Drew Rowlands, director of development at creative agency IVE, tells us how his organisation is looking to improve the creative talent pool, with an employment programme designed to nurture potential.
It’s no secret that the skills pipeline into the creative industries has started to suffer over the past few years. The focus on an ‘academic core’ within the curriculum has seen creative subjects all-but pushed out; to the extent that they are receiving less teaching time, fewer specialist teachers and significantly less take up at GCSE and A level.
This is going to increasingly leave holes in the competencies needed in the creative industries. In addition, careers advice for students looking to move into this field is, at best, poorly delivered and, at worst, non-existent. This in turn is leading to fewer professionals entering the sector; leaving existing staff overworked and replacements for those leaving the industry few and far between.
We at IVE are looking to provide a solution to this widening skills gap by developing and nurturing a pool of talent for the creative economy.
In order to achieve this, we first of all need to inspire young people, especially those from disadvantaged backgrounds, and dispel the myth that opportunities for them to gain meaningful employment in creative sectors don’t exist.
In order to achieve this, we have created a multitude of development programmes which address the key issues facing the sector, whilst at the same time providing young people with opportunities to pursue different routes into creative roles.
Our flagship programme ‘Shaping Creative Futures’ draws upon our 20 years’ experience in creative research and development, and provides a supportive platform which encourages participants to explore their potential through wide-ranging opportunities with professional practitioners and organisations.
Taking part in work placements, work shadowing and a summer residential, each young person taking part in the programme will have access to a multitude of leading industry professionals, and will build up a body of work which will allow them to demonstrate the skills they have gained and hopefully go towards helping them achieve meaningful employment.
On top of this, each participant will also be assigned a dedicated professional mentor who will offer guidance in relation to the possibilities available and point them in the direction of suitable, sector-related employment, training or higher education following completion of the programme.
In addition to providing an excellent avenue for young people, the development programmes are also of great benefit to the business community. Not only will the organisations involved be introduced to a constant stream of potential employable talent, they will also be encouraged to think about their organisations in a new way in order to best promote their offering to a new demographic.
So, if you’re a business looking to help shape the future of the creative industry, contact us today. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call us on 0113 322 3050.