Channel 5 has announced that it is to reevaluate tariffs to tailor them to specific shows and is to invest in a dedicated training programme for its indie suppliers.

The reevaluation of its hourly programme tariffs for peak-time commission will “release individual productions from the constraints of a per-hour budget model.” From now, Channel 5 will agree the genre for each programme, then negotiate and agree indicative pricing that addresses specific production requirements rather than applying a fixed, per-hour pricing tariff model.

The broadcaster is also committing an annual seven-figure sum towards a dedicated training fund in order to boost industry learning and development. Production companies can submit applications to the fund for their employees and freelancers working on Channel 5 programming, at any stage during a contracted production.

Production companies can choose the course topics and which training providers they wish to use, giving rationale in their application as to how it will benefit an individual or a crew. There is an annual training allowance cap of £15k per any one indie.

Channel 5 has also signed up to ScreenSkills’ ‘Unscripted TV Skills Fund’ which means 0.25% of the budget of factual and entertainment programmes will go towards training. In addition, Channel 5 is requiring all cast and crew on its productions to complete ScreenSkills’ free anti-bullying and harassment training prior to production commencing. 

Ben Frow, Chief Content Officer, ViacomCBS Networks UK said: “The clamours for change in our industry are loud and it’s important that we do our best to respond to them. We are a sector which is wholly dependent on talent and through this training fund we are helping to invest in people’s future careers. 

“It is no secret that Channel 5 has always operated on lower tariffs and we want to ensure that fixed hourly budgets don’t put undue pressure on the production process. By reevaluating the constraints of per-hour tariffs, we can look at commissioning deliverables more holistically going forward.”

Production companies wishing to submit an application to Channel 5’s training fund should contact Nan Whittingham, Vice President, Productions.

Jon Creamer

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