Channel 4 is launching 4Skills, its new training and development initiative aimed at seeking out and developing talent in the Nations and Regions.

The on-going programme is focused on finding and nurturing talent from the Nations and Regions with the aim of attracting people into broadcasting and production from diverse backgrounds4Skills will address skills gaps and also “play a key role in progressing the careers of those already in the industry.”

4Skills will reach out to people of all ages and from all sorts of backgrounds including school children; young people wanting to break into broadcasting; those seeking to take their careers in the industry to the next level; and people who might never have even thought about working in broadcasting.

SineaRocksChannel 4’s Managing Director, Nations and Regions, said: 4Skills will transform how Channel 4 delivers its training and development and the type of people who come into the broadcast industry.

We have a greater presence in the Nations and Regionsthan ever before which enables us to reach out to the communities where we live and work

4Skills will enable us to explore previously untappedtalent pools and attract people from diverse backgrounds, people who might never have considered a career in broadcasting.

4Skills will include

– Apprenticeships across Channel 4 with the first cohorts starting in the Leeds and Manchester bases in early 2021
– new initiative focused on digital creativity and production that will provide open days, workshops and paid placements in partnership with 4Studio
– A schools and college aged engagement and outreach programme introducing children to careers in the broadcast industry
– The relaunch of C4’s Production Training Scheme with a 100 per cent focus on the nations and regions
– Virtual industry events from Bristol, Glasgow and Leeds for independent productions companies providing a mix of commissioner sessions and workshops
– Bespoke training to address skills gaps in the nationand regions, working with key partners such as the NFTS, ScreenSkills, TRC and PACT
– Providing specific schemes focused on talent development such as the Factual Fast Track scheme in Wales, or C4’s De Montfort University investigative journalism MA.

Jon Wardle, NFTS Director commented: “We welcome 4Skills with open arms – it is absolutely vital that we continue to seek out and nurture the next generation of talent in the Nations and Regions. 

At the NFTS we are working harder than ever to identify skills gaps and provide world class training to match demand. It’s key to the future success of the creative sector that it’s regarded as an industry that offers a career path open to everyone, regardless of background or circumstance.” 

Applications are now open for 12 places on 4Skills apprenticeship schemes based in Leeds and Manchester. Thapprenticeships will cover a wide range of skills such as content production, finance, agency sales, social media, programme management, IT support and cyber security.

Aimed at people in the Nations and Regions and/or from a diverse background, the schemes are set to start in early 2021subject to Covid-related restrictions

In addition to 4SkillsChannel 4 has today launched the Emerging Indie Fund, specifically designed to help indies outside of London break through key stages of growth.

Run annually, the fund will involve commissioners identifying small N&R indies to work with more closely. Indies accepted into the fund will receive funding and get mentoring sessions plus expert advice from Channel 4s commercial affairs, ad funded programming and legal teams.

Jon Creamer