The Derek Holder Legacy Fund

The Derek Holder Legacy Fund

Professor Derek Holder left a considerable legacy to the IDM Trust that he wished to be devoted to education and the continued development of the profession. Now the IDM Trust has merged with the DM Foundation to form the DM Trust, this work will continue through the Derek Holder Legacy Fund (DHLF) over a period of 5 years.

The DHLF has a total value of more than £700K. The aim of the DM Trust will be to maximise the Fund’s impact over a five year period and act as a memorial to Derek by funding initiatives that encourage and equip the most talented young people in each generation to enter the data driven marketing profession, as well as raising standards of professional practice throughout.

The DHLF Committee will meet quarterly to review applications and make decisions.


Objectives of the Fund

A: Creating opportunities in the data driven marketing industry for those who might otherwise face barriers to entry.

We favour applications that support young marketers entering the profession. The increasing cost of tertiary education and increasing challenges faced by young people in finding worthwhile employment in a highly competitive marketplace means this remains vitally important.

In addition, the cost of exams, courses and internships may mean it is difficult for some talented and ambitious people to enter and succeed in the industry. This is a disadvantage to both those individuals and to the industry, which would otherwise gain from participants with diverse experiences and backgrounds.

We plan to fund institutions and programmes that will help:

•  Give individuals access to training/qualifications that they could not otherwise afford

•  Individuals to take on activities that will help them enter the profession



B: Improving standards in the data driven marketing industry

As the industry is relatively young, it sometimes comes under scrutiny, particularly concerning issues of selling, sharing and using data.

New entrants may not have a sophisticated understanding of the economics or methodologies of modern one-to-one marketing, while senior leaders and managers may not have had formal grounding in digital marketing techniques. We are looking to support activities that:

•  Create bridges between academic institutions and professional bodies

•  Allow individuals to benefit from studying or obtaining qualifications from recognised lead bodies and using this skill/knowledge in their future work

•  Encourage individuals who demonstrate excellent knowledge and skills into the profession



DHLF Programme Activities

The committee has identified four initial programmes for 2016 and beyond. However, from the outset we have been open to receiving other innovative and interesting suggestions for future programmes and activities that meet our objectives.

Three year programme: The IDM Summer School

As part of the merger of the IDM and DMA, it was agreed that the Derek Holder Legacy Fund would provide a minimum of three year’s sponsorship for the IDM Summer School, starting in 2015.

The sum of £50,000 was paid annually to the Employability (now DMA Talent) initiative that operated as a separate unit from the IDM and DMA. This funding ensured that the highly successful and popular summer school founded by Professor Holder continued to thrive.


Bursaries for Undergraduates, via a partnership with academics

In order to kickstart the programme, we have decided to proactively fund the cost of the IDM Certificate exam fee for up to five students in each of the 20 academic institutions which deliver IDM accredited courses to undergraduates and postgraduates.

In addition, the same institutions have the opportunity to award a Professor Derek Holder Prize for the best Dissertation related to direct, digital or data written by students on their courses.

During 2016 the DHLF looked at developing other specific programmes to support the entry of undergraduates into the data driven marketing profession and considered ways to target hard-to-reach groups that would not otherwise discover this particular career path.


To find high quality training for non-graduates

This scheme was open for those involved in Employability (now DMA Talent) or existing apprenticeship schemes aimed at the marketing sector.

In recent years there has been growing interest in developing and supporting vocationally-led routes to the workplace, and some early initiatives are underway in the marketing sector.

We have little direct experience in this area but are keen to find ways to support talented young people who do not have the benefit of a University-level education to gain qualifications and enter the data driven marketing profession.

In 2016, the DHLF Committee focussed on supporting existing apprenticeship schemes or Employability development programmes. This was through funding additional high quality training in direct and digital marketing to supplement the experience gained on the apprenticeship schemes. Funding could then be administered and applied to a group identified by specialists operating in this area, rather than providing individual grants.

We would expect the following criteria to be achieved:

•  Clear additional career and skills benefits to apprentices participating in the scheme

•  Ideally, any training will provide a statement or an award that will help apprentices build on in the future to achieve a relevant qualification

•  Compiling compelling case studies based on individual and group outcomes

•  Evidence of how such programmes will contribute to greater diversity in the marketing workforce

Schemes or organisations will have to apply directly to the fund to demonstrate their commitment to the activity. Please email for further details.


For individuals working in the voluntary or not for profit sector 

This will support enterprises to take IDM Professional or Postgraduate Diplomas or other relevant professional courses to help those working in the third sector.

Participants in IDM Diplomas are professionals pursuing their own CPD by paying for the course themselves or, in many cases, with assistance from their employer. The costs are understood to be beyond the budget of voluntary sector or other not for profit organisations.

We have decided to offer a number of Derek Holder Bursaries to individuals that have already applied and been accepted on an IDM Qualification programme, who have therefore proved their suitability for the course.

The bursary will fully fund the cost of the course of study to either Certificate or Diploma level providing the student attends and completes the programme. The criteria for suitability for a Bursary of this kind will be as follows:

•  Employed by a small charity, social enterprise or equivalent certified not-for-profit organisation that would benefit from more professional direct, digital or data marketing

•  The organisation must have a turnover of less than £1 million a year and have a minimum of one year’s audited accounts

•  Students are not expected to previously have been marketing specialists

•  Students must be committed to attending, and having first gained a place on a recognised IDM qualification