With a career in the media and publishing sector, you’ll soon be making the headlines. Unleash your creative, technical or even your administrative talents in this far-reaching industry that recognises hard work. In this digital age, traditional media is rapidly changing to meet new demands, and a whole scope of new roles have been created to meet major technological advancements.
This is a fast-paced and competitive industry, with roles in larger and more prestigious companies being hard to come by. It is an industry with a lot of thriving small organisations. However, out of the roughly 8,000 publishing companies in the UK, most have fewer than 25 employees and freelancers make up about 15% of the workforce – there are options for whatever kind of workplace you desire.
The media and publishing industries encompass all sorts of roles, not just the traditional editors and printers. For instance, graphic designers, photographers, sound engineers, camera technicians and marketing specialists all have a massive involvement in the production of the media that you see every day. In this sector, there is something for everyone.
In the media and publishing industry, work experience is crucial. Your work will be in the public-eye from day one and so employers want to know that you have the skills necessary to represent their brand. The best place to find experience is close to home, either in your school, college or university’s newspaper or radio station, or even your local small media and publishing companies; work experience at larger companies may be more difficult to come by do take the initiative and approach companies that interest you.
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Apprenticeships are widely available in the media and publishing industry. These are highly useful as they give you the practical experience that employers are looking for. Not only will you get to work hands-on from day one, but you’ll also be paid a salary while you study towards your qualification at the same time, really setting you up for an amazing career. Here are some possible apprenticeships that you can consider.
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Degree apprenticeships are also available in the media and publishing industry. This is an option that combines the best aspects of an apprenticeship and university. Not only will you earn a degree, but your employer will pay for your university fees and your salary as you gain practical experience in the workplace. You’ll be working alongside experienced professionals and gaining a lot of responsibility, especially as you advance in the company.
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To pursue a career in media and publishing consider going to university. Your course will give you all the up-to-date theoretical knowledge and skills in the industry, which you’ll then be able to apply to your job after graduating. You’ll also have the option to choose modules in which you can specialise – these skills may help you down the career you wish to pursue once you leave university. We’d recommend that you look for degrees that have placement years as this will give you the necessary work experience needed to succeed in the media and publishing industry.
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Unlike other sectors, only a small percentage of companies in media and publishing run an annual recruitment drive for graduates or interns, and the few employers that do have a very limited intake. Some businesses offer graduate schemes which deliver structured training to candidates in order to give them a greater understanding of the scope of the business. To take advantage of the elusive opportunities offered by smaller firms, it may be a good idea to speculatively apply to those that take your interest – even if there are no roles available at that time, your motivation may encourage an employer to contact you later down the line.
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The content creators involved in this sector tend to be successful for their personal qualities rather than their professional accreditation. The media and publishing industries have many roles taken up by talented apprentices, but there are a few areas in the industry that you can enter either without the relevant qualifications, or very few qualifications at all. If you have evidence that you could potentially go far in media and publishing, this may satisfy employers and see you succeed in your dream career.
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