and The Talent Manager have launched a new initiative to make it easier for people to job share in the TV industry.

The two organisations have teamed up to launch technology that allows TV freelancers to apply for a role together as a job share, and for production companies and broadcasters to advertise positions which they are open to being a job share.

It will also identify both experienced job sharers and companies with a proven track- record for providing job-sharing opportunities. It is the latest in a suite of tools developed by The Talent Manager to improve diversity in the industry, including search functionality to help companies identify the best production talent from BAME backgrounds or with disabilities, and to address Unconscious Bias in the recruitment process.

The new job-share initiative comes amid ongoing concern at the number of established professionals – especially women – leaving the industry. Just 14% of women working in the UK film and TV industry are parents, compared to 75% across UK industry as a whole. Many cite excessive hours, long working weeks and the struggles of achieving a work-life balance as reasons that make sustaining a career in TV difficult. A recent survey of screen professionals found that 82% said their careers had been negatively impacted by their responsibilities as parents and carers.

Although attitudes in the TV industry still lag behind many other sectors, there is a growing recognition among recruiters and key decision-makers that allowing flexible working has substantial creative and commercial advantages. SMTJ has worked with over 35 production companies that are actively supporting job-sharing including Crackit, RDF, Hungry Bear, Endemol, Studio Lambert, Optomen, ITV Studios and WalltoWall.

To help this, freelancer platform has teamed with SMTJ on new functionality that enables two freelancers to send a joint application for a job where the employer has ear-marked it as being ‘job-share friendly.’
Similarly, employers can now show they are open to prospective job-sharers applying for a role by displaying the ‘Job Sharers Accepted’ button on the listing.

Louise Patel of Share My Telly Job, said: “Job sharing in television is a proven concept and there are more and more enlightened employers who are now seeing the benefits. It enables the industry to retain talent, encourage diversity and address the issues of gender pay disparity and equality.

“Over the past four years Share My Telly Job has campaigned to encourage the conversation about flexibility for freelancers. Now, more than ever, it is clear that in an industry with almost no part-time jobs the only way for many people to continue in their career is to create part- time hours through sharing contracts.”

“We want the industry to get behind our flexible working campaign, to list as many jobs as possible that are job share friendly and to encourage applications that always attract a diverse a pool of applicants. Working with has allowed us to make employing job sharers easy and familiar for production companies.”

Sarah Lee, of The Talent Manager, said: ‘’For all its creativity, the TV industry has often not been very creative when it comes to thinking about recruitment. Successful job sharing has been shown to benefit the productions, and the bottom line.
‘’With more and more production companies out there, the best freelancers increasingly have a choice as to who they work for. Those employers who embrace flexible working and create a supportive and nurturing work environment tend also to be the ones picking up the gongs come awards’ season.’’

Staff Reporter

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