120 new members of the 2012 BBC Academy Production Talent Pool

Thursday 26 July 2012, 18:13

Jon Jacob Jon Jacob Editor, About the BBC Blog

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BBC Production Talent Pool 2012

Members of the Production Talent Pool for 2012 at a networking event in the BBC Media Village.

Editor's Note - Simon Smith is the Manager of Creativity and Special Projects in the BBC Academy. In this post, he writes about the new intake of young creative talent who have won places in the BBC's prestigious Production Talent Pool.

Today is a big day. I am really proud to say the first members of the BBC Academy's Production Talent Pool are now recruited, trained and ready for work in the BBC. Last night I met for the first time many of these 120 bright, talented and committed recruits who are now available for junior production management and running roles across BBC TV and radio.

The BBC Academy, which delivers training, has always helped the BBC discover, recruit and train new talent to work on its radio and TV shows. It's a big day because this year we have changed the way we do this; combining three previous recruitment schemes into one. Until 2011 the Production Trainee Scheme, the Audio and Music Talent Pool and the Vision Intake Pool worked independently of one another. It was confusing for delegates applying for places and it was costly for the business as each scheme required lots of BBC staff time helping with the interviewing and selection process.

The Production Talent Pool brings these three schemes together for the first time, it was a risk but, meeting the new members of the Pool last night, it looks like it's paid off. Recruitment for the PTP started in February. There were just under 3000 applicants and my team have done a terrific job of managing a rigorous selection process that started with online tests and ended with observed assessment of creative and group work skills. We have ended up with 120 who have been given basic training by the BBC Academy, and who are now ready to be deployed across the BBC by its network of production and talent managers. The successful 120 will be in the PTP for 1 year and for that time will be 'first on the list' for shows needing to recruit production management assistants and runners.

Winning a place in the Pool is also the first step to gaining the most cherished of the BBC's training schemes. After a final selection process 1 in 10 of those in the Pool will be selected for a place on the prestigious Production Trainee Scheme. The PTS has been the launch pad for many illustrious careers and the successful 11 will start their training in October. You can follow their progress and discover more about BBC Academy training by following @bbctrainees on Twitter.

Simon Smith is Manager, Creativity and Special Projects, BBC Academy. Follow him on Twitter @simonsmithster.

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    I am disappointed with the decline in standard of English particularly amongst presenters and news readers - perhaps all new staff should attend a course to ensure a good standard. The word sitting has almost disappeared and adverbs are frequently not used. The recognition of regional usage in drama is understood but surely not in national news.


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