With National Apprenticeship Week upon us, we wanted to shed some light on what it’s like to be a CityFibre apprentice....
- Help make sure that live and recorded radio programmes run smoothly
- You'll need excellent administrative and organisational skills
- You could become a radio producer or music programmer
- Researching programmes
- Booking guests
- Preparing contracts and arranging payment
- Booking studio time and equipment
- Typing scripts
- Producing programme logs and running orders
- Keeping track of costs
- Updating the programme or station's website, blog or social media
- Archiving programme material
- Arranging and sending out competition prizes
If you work in production your day-to-day duties may also include:
- Managing phone lines for phone-ins and competitions
- Timing shows
- Operating recording
- Editing and mixing equipment on pre-recorded or live programmes ('driving the desk')
- Recording and editing programme trailers
- Writing things like links or quiz questions
Your hours may be irregular and include evenings, late nights and weekends, depending on the programme. You may often need to work overtime to meet deadlines. You would work in offices and recording studios. You may also have to travel locally or nationally for outside broadcasts (OBs). These could be in city centres or at events like concerts or festivals.
This role requires someone with excellent administrative and organisational skills, excellent communication skills, teamworking skills, research skills, and technical and IT skills.
You could do a higher national diploma or degree in radio or media production. This will help you to learn about the broadcasting industry and develop the skills you'll need for this job. Other courses like science or politics would be useful if you want to work on specialist radio productions.
You can also do a college course, for example a Level 2 Certificate in Radio or Level 3 Diploma in Creative Media Production.
Alternatively, you can get into this career through a broadcast production assistant advanced apprenticeship. Employers will set their own entry requirements.
Competition for jobs is strong. Employers will expect you to have practical experience and able to show you have a real enthusiasm for radio broadcasting. You could get useful experience through community, hospital or student radio, and work placements. You can get a list of radio stations from Community Media Association, RadioCentre or Hospital Broadcasting Association. You can also apply for a BBC work experience placement.
It's a good idea to develop a portfolio of your work on CD, MP3 or social media, so you can showcase your skills to potential employers. For news-based and factual radio, you may have an advantage with a background in journalism or media research.
With experience, you could become a radio producer, music programmer or a technical studio manager. You could also move into television research or production.