Are you a section editor who wants to climb up the career ladder? Today we’ll introduce you to Deputy Editors & Editors!
Deputy Editors are second-in-command within the publication. When the Editor is away, the deputy Editor deputises for them.
Depending on the publication’s size and structure, the role of the Deputy Editor may vary: you can have the same duties as a section Editor’s or assist Editors with their workload. Deputy Editors are usually less involved in hands-on writing and focus more on editing the work of other journalists, assisting the Editor with workflow management and mentoring/managing more junior members of staff. On top of solid writing skills, you will need excellent communication and organisation skills.
Here is a summary of what the role typically involves:
- Edit and proofread the work of writers
- Manage and assign articles (and sometimes write them)
- Oversee the publication’s content to maintain quality and accuracy
- Organise copy editing and production processes
- Mentor or manage junior members of the team
Some publications may use the job title Assistant Editor instead, while other companies both have a deputy Editor and an assistant Editor. Assistant Editors’ main duty is to support the Editor, sometimes by performing a similar role as a section Editor. It’s confusing, we know!
Most deputy Editors have a solid background as a Reporter/Senior Reporter with a keen interest in the editing process. A degree in journalism or in a subject related to the publication (for example, a law degree to work for a law publication) can also be an asset. The next step for a deputy Editor is to become Editor!
Editors are responsible for the publication’s smooth delivery and more importantly for its Editorial strategy and commercial success. They need to ensure that the content published is accurate and compelling as well as meeting the audience’s needs. Editors act as the face of the publication, and as a result they may be required to attend events and conferences related to their industry. They need to be commercially aware and keeping up-to-date with market trends. They might also be involved in the launch or development of events associated to their publication as events now represent a large part of some publishers’ revenues.
Editors are expected to:
- Plan, coordinate and revise content for publication
- Manage Editorial workflow and monitor the printing process to ensure deadlines are met
- Establish and monitor budgets
- Be aware of market trends and identify new opportunities for new products
- Review story ideas and suggest new ones
- Act as the main point of contact between Editorial team and other departments
- Work with sales and marketing teams to raise brand awareness
- Work with events team to develop/launch new events or provide events content
- Attend industry events and chair panels
- Manage and develop Editorial team, recruiting staff and conducting appraisals
Editors’ responsibilities can be very broad especially if you are working on a small publication. Editors work closely with the sales, marketing and production teams as well as writers to produce a quality publication.
As we mentioned before, job titles vary enormously from a company to another. A step up from Editor would be Managing Editor and/or Editor-in-Chief.
Extensive experience is usually necessary to become an Editor, as we explained in our previous articles on B2B journalism and Section Editors. So if you are an ambitious graduate, you’ll have to get some relevant experience before applying for such a position!
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