BBC Studioworks wants to combat what it describes as “the acute skills shortage in the UK TV studios market” with a new three-year plan.
The plan will aim to increase diversity at BBC Studioworks by engaging directly with school leavers and providing opportunities for employment in the Elstree and White City areas.
It is made up of four elements:
- Broadening the volume and range of trainees – BBC Studioworks is increasing the number of trainee roles; with the aim they’ll account for 10 per cent of its workforce by 2021. New trainee positions are planned across vision, sound, lighting and engineering. It also plans to introduce post-school entry level positions for a number of roles including camera and lighting assistants.
- Increasing early years advocacy at school level – BBC Studioworks has partnered with Rise on its ‘Rise Up’ programme to inspire and educate primary school children to consider a career in broadcasting, tech and engineering roles. Starting from January 2021, BBC Studioworks will sponsor and run ten training workshops (likely to be delivered virtually) for year six children in Elstree and White City.
- Mentoring – As part of its commitment to increasing its engagement with the local community, BBC Studioworks is launching a mentoring scheme in partnership with ScreenSkills using National Lottery funds awarded by the BFI as part of the Future Film Skills programme, and Elstree Screen Arts Academy (formerly Elstree University Technical College). The initiative is designed to provide support for school leavers as they make the transition to employment within the creative industries. The pilot mentoring programme, which runs from October-February 2021, will see 15 BBC Studioworks staff mentoring 15 Elstree Screen Arts students.
- Work experience – BBC Studioworks plans to enhance its work experience offering and expand it to new areas such as design and carpentry, but also to non-craft areas such as facilities management.
“To create a healthy, dynamic and thriving business for the future, access to opportunities in our industry need to change,” said Andrew Moultrie, CEO, BBC Studioworks. “By rethinking our approach to our future talent pipeline, and making active interventions to remove barriers to entry, we’re positively committing to action.”