Matt Hancock, the government minister responsible for the creative industries, spoke recently (read his full speech here) about how important the sector is to Britain’s future. He promised ongoing commitment to the industry and this is good news, of course.
But his speech comes at a time when skills are diminishing and good people are harder to find than ever – there is already a noticeable creative skills gap. And it will only get worse: recent GCSE results show nearly a 10% drop in the number of Design and Technology students and those continuing on to further studies has fallen by more than a quarter.
We all know the difficulties that these skills shortages bring. I’m always having conversations with leaders about the lack of real talent – whether creatives and designers, account managers and directors, or project managers.
What we are doing
At bfpeople, we’re currently involved in several initiatives to plug these future gaps: we’re working with schools and colleges, visiting classrooms, advising students and raising awareness of careers in the industry, speaking at careers events and, of course, at industry conferences.
We’ve been working with apprenticeship scheme managers to make sure that design oriented programmes are relevant; we’re currently doing research into careers paths and prospects in retail design and Visual Merchandising and we’re partnering with some of the best trainers in the business to provide great training in account management and other key areas for the sector.
We have plenty of other ideas and we’ll share these in due course. But if you have your own ideas, want to get involved or are happy to share what you are doing to build the future pipeline of talent in the industry, then we’d love to have a conversation with you.
How you can help – the creative skills gap survey
We have a very short survey for employers here (link is no longer valid): If you hire or manage creative staff in UK, please take 2 mins to offer your views and experience – there’s no need to identify yourself or your company. We’ll publish the findings in due course.
As a search firm, we’re not involved in the recruitment of entry or junior staff but we all need a strong pipeline of talented creative people and we are determined to do our bit.