Skills in publishing

Jobs in Publishing

There are a huge amount of job roles within publishing, and those employed or hired on a freelance basis may be hired for a specific specialisation. In a smaller company, it’s common for people to take on more aspects of a publication’s creation – for example, a writer may also source the photographs for an article. Larger companies will look for specialists in all areas.

Publishing is a big industry, and there are job roles beyond the traditional Editors and Contributors. Graphic Designers are a key commodity in Publishing, creating magazine spreads or book covers on demand.

Data analysts are also vital to monitoring online trends to help shape the direction of the publisher. Publishers also tend to operate large marketing departments, as well as be in need for a lot of administrative assistants.

Getting Into Publishing

The Publishing industry is in the midst of a revolution, with traditional publications moving to digital in order to remain relevant to their audience. There’s a lot of new job opportunities because of this, and having experience in digital publishing also allows you to be on the cutting edge of this new era. For example, roles in SEO are becoming increasingly important to help a publication's search engine rankings, and data analysts are becoming more and more in demand.

Most entry level positions in publishing require an undergraduate degree. There are courses available in Publishing, though qualifications in English or Modern Languages are also seen as valuable. When looking at where to study, it’s worth considering where the major publication hubs are in Britain.

While the majority of jobs in Publishing are in-house, there are a few freelancing opportunities such as proofreading, if that style of works suits you more.

If you’re interested in reading more about going freelance, consult our Freelance Toolkit.

A recruiter might read hundreds of applications, so when applying you’ll need to make sure your CV is as close to perfect as possible. We have a great guide for writing a CV, but for publishing specifically your CV needs to be of a very high standard. Due to the nature of the industry you’re applying for, you need to showcase excellent English language throughout, ensuring there are no spelling or grammar mistakes.

There will also need to be a considerable amount of effort put into the formatting of your CV, showing that you know how to utilise space on a page.

When making an application, it’s often recommended that you “show passion”. But how does that translate into a job application? Quite simply, it’s anything that can prove how much you love VFX. If you’ve spent three years studying it at University level, that shows you have passion. Or if you’ve created a portfolio of personal projects you’ve done to practice your craft, it shows you have passion.

When a studio hires you, they’re trusting that you carry a love for the craft that will show up positively in your work. Sometimes, the best way is simply to show them via a trainee or internship scheme.

Working in Publishing

When working at a weekly or monthly magazine, there is a constant stress as deadlines loom. There may be a lot of overtime, often in strict environment, to finish a magazine on time. Being able to handle the pressure of the situation requires a lot of mental fortitude, and the ability to still work to a professional level while under pressure.

Due to the growing digital market in publishing, it’s definitely vital to know about the emerging trends in digital publishing. With a lot of the content that would typically only be inside magazines now available freely online, publishers are using various different methods to maintain their revenue streams.

When looking at companies to work for, it’ll be a good practice to start investigating how they’re monetising their online content to gain a better idea of how their company is running.

No matter what industry you’re working in, it’s always wise to know where to seek legal counsel and aid if required. The International Publishers Association represents most parts of the publishing industry, but there’s also the Publishers Association which focuses solely on the UK.


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