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B2B Job Focus: Sub-Editors

In a previous post, we described different career paths available to B2B reporters. In this article, we explore the significant part played by sub-editors/copy-editors in the editing process!

Sub-editors / Copy-editors

Sub-editors who work for newspapers and magazines are often called copy-editors (or subs). Their role is to process the copy that will appear in their publication. They must ensure that it is accurate, free of mistakes, makes sense and reads well.

Sub-editors often sit in/next to the production team. They do not write articles, but they edit the work of others to “house-style” and adhere to word counts. They also write headlines, standfirsts, captions and summaries. Their duties may include laying out pages too.

Typical tasks

  • correcting spelling or grammar/typographical errors
  • writing headlines, abstracts and captions
  • checking the article’s accuracy and spotting potential legal problems
  • cutting or editing copy to fit on the page
  • liaising with reporters and editors
  • laying out pages

Sub-editors need to be meticulous and ready to edit heavily if necessary. They are more often than not the crafty hands turning articles into compelling stories. They need to be very organised and able to work to tight deadlines.

Many sub-editors trained as journalists before moving on to this position. Unfortunately a lot of publishers outsourced their sub-editing/production function in the last decade and journalists and editors often have to fill in for sub-editors as they don’t have the in-house staff required. And the line is sometimes very thin between these positions.

Career Path

The National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ), the National Union of Journalists (NUJ), the Society of Editors and the Publishing Training Centre offer preliminary accredited qualifications or copy-editing courses by distance learning. Graduates with relevant qualifications, such as a degree in English, media or publishing are also considered. The career path for a sub-editor includes being promoted to senior and potentially chief sub-editor or production editor. Their main role is to supervise a team of sub-editors and oversee the whole production process, making sure the magazine is delivered on time and to schedule.

Next week, we will be entering the fascinating world of Market Reporters!

Is our career advice helping you in your job search? Do let us know via our social media channels!

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Administrator in the Hot Seat: Cheryl O’garro

  • Who would you invite (and why) to your fantasy literary dinner party?

Meg Cabot has been one of my favourite authors since my teens, so she is non-negotiable. Richard Brinsley Sheridan and Jane Austen because their ear for wit, satire and the human condition is just fantastic. I think if the three of them got together, the resulting literary effort would  be a masterpiece. I’m just there for the great company!

  • If you could have written any book that exists now, which would it be?

How long do you have?! Off the top of my head, I would have to say either Harry Potter (for obvious reasons) or Northern Lights (the first of the His Dark Materials trilogy.) Both of those for me really draw you into their world and allow your imagination to really flow in a way that isn’t often possible outside of fantasy novels. I first read them when I was 7 and 10 respectively, and I would count both among my favourite books.

  • What has been the highlight/s of the past year?

The examiner telling me that my Masters’ thesis on the psycho-social benefits of hyper-engagement (a term I coined describing the adoption of arts consumption as a personality trait) had a strong and original voice and warranted elaboration. Who am I to decline that kind of professional and academic validation?! That is closely followed by my graduation ceremony in January.

  • If you were given the chance to have one superpower from any book/comic character, what would you have?

Right now it would have to be Quicksilver- the ability to move at great speed would be so useful for travelling and completing tasks. I’d still have my 24 hours in the day, but could fit in so much more! 

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B2B Job Focus: Deputy Editors/Editors

Are you a section editor who wants to climb up the career ladder? Today we’ll introduce you to Deputy Editors & Editors!

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

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!

Is our career advice helping you in your job search? Do let us know via our social media channels!

 

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Atwood Tate Book Club: Back to School

 

Have you ever wondered what a team of publishing recruitment specialists like to read in their down time? Curious about our favourite books growing up? Welcome to the Atwood Tate Book Club, where we reveal what books have a special place on our shelves! For this entry, we go back to school with our favourite reads from our educational careers.

Julie Irigaray, Trainee Recruitment Consultant

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

The first book I read after having passed the French equivalent of the GCSE (around the age of 15). I was moving to another school and to a higher level, so I suppose I needed to read a book about the changes taking place when one becomes a teenager. This novel deals with dark themes like suicide, sex and obsessional love in such a delicate way and with such a rich language that I couldn’t resist. The mystery surrounding both the main characters and the narrator makes it even more mesmerising.

 

Anna Slevin, Temps & Freelancers Administrator

Arcadia by Tom Stoppard.

I read the play for fun around the time I was sixteen and bored at school. The way time merges together and the interplay of language between characters really captures the imagination. I’m still wondering if it would be anywhere near as good on stage!

 

Claire Law, Managing Director

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood 

 

I did a course at Uni on Canadian Women’s literature and this and her other books had a great impact on my reading both for study and pleasure purposes from that point. I also decided to make a literary nod to her name when I set up Atwood Tate!

 

Helen Speedy, Associate Director

Der Kaukasische Kreidekreis (The Caucasian Chalk Circle) by Bertolt Brecht

I can’t remember whether Bertolt Brecht’s Der Kaukasische Kreidekreis (The Caucasion Chalk Circle) was one of my A-level set texts or an add on, but it remains one of the most influential plays that I have read. Our literature focus for German was Die Gerechtigkeit und das Gesetz, which translates as Justice and the Law.  When I got into trouble at school it was usually a rebellion in the face of injustice, so Brecht, who explores the concept of justice and the tendency for corruption to manipulate the law and even favour the criminal over the innocent, was appealing to me.  I recently re-read my other set text by Duerrenmatt, Der Richter und sein Henker (The Judge and his Hangman), and would recommend this as a quick and accessible read.  It’s a thriller (verging on noir) which delves into this issue of justice and (or versus) the law and I hope you can find it in translation somewhere if you don’t read German.

 

Charlotte Tope, Trainee Recruitment Consultant

Noughts and Crosses series by Malorie Blackman

I couldn’t put these books down – they delivered a great message, in a thoughtful way, to a young audience. Such an effortless read!

 

Faye Jones, Trainee Recruitment Consultant

The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald 

I studied The Great Gatsby for A Level English and become completely immersed in the characters and history behind 1920’s America. Even though the first chapter of the book is difficult to get through, I always recommend The Great Gatsby to anyone who’s looking for a short read and the film is great as well!

 

Cheryl O’garro, Administrator and Social Media Coordinator 

The School for Scandal by Richard Brinsley Sheridan 

This 18th century satire from Irish playwright Brinsley Sheridan was one of my AS level set texts and I have been in love with it ever since.  The play follows Lady Sneerwell and her band of gossips and the hypocrisy of their behaviour. The two plots are amazing: Sir Peter Teazle and his new, much younger wife and their marital troubles (half of which stems from society rumours)  and Sir Oliver Surface who, wanting to write his will, sets out in various character disguises to test if brothers Peter and Charles Surface are as respectively good and bad as society claims. I picked up a leather bound 1903 third edition copy from an antique book shop in Dublin (where he was born) and I was so happy I nearly hyperventilated!

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Industry Spotlight: Production and Operations

Welcome to Atwood Tate’s industry spotlight series, where we go behind the scenes of each of our recruitment desks to give you the scoop on working with Atwood Tate. This week’s entry is with Clare Chan, who works on Science, Technical, Medical, Distribution, Operations and Production roles across London, the Home Counties and East Anglia. In this entry, Clare will be breaking down how to get into Production, Distribution and Operations in the publishing sector.

Production

production

What does ‘production’ mean in publishing?

There is a wide range of production roles in publishing, most commonly Production Assistant, Production Controller, Production Editor and Production Manager. Production itself can be varied– covering printed and digital books, printed and digital journals and more. The skill set of a Production Manager in trade books versus a professional publisher can be very different, so it is all down to the content of what is being published to determine what kind of production knowledge you should have or what duties you will be doing in the role. So a role in children’s books will probably be highly illustrated and need someone with a good eye for detail and 4 colour experience.

What will be the academic requirement?

There isn’t a specific requirement to get into production roles.  You will need to demonstrate substantial project and supplier management as well as excellent communication skills because the majority of the suppliers will be offshore.  You will also need to have good software skills, i.e. Excel spreadsheets, InDesign and Adobe CS, Biblio3 (especially for trade book publishers) or XML publishing (for digital publishing).

What background will the clients be looking for?

Your previous experience plays a significant role when it comes to applying for production jobs.  Production roles are not as fluid as one would think when it comes to switching roles.  For instance, if you wanted to become a Production Controller in a children’s book publisher, you should have novelty book production experience and also knowledge of European toy safety legislation.  And if you are to work for a journals publisher, you will be working as a Production Editor and dealing with external typesetters to get the journals published which often also requires copy-editing skills.  More details about Production Editor will be discussed in my next blog when I explore STM editorial roles – keep your eyes open for that!

Is there good progression in production?

There is a good progression and a clear career strucutre and you will also become a production specialist as you build up solid knowledge from previous experience. One thing to bear in mind is that production technology is ever changing so keeping up with new software and technology is essential.  The book industry is a great example: decades ago, it was all about off-set printing, but now we have digital printing as well as e-book and audiobook production.

What key skills do you need?

A good learning attitude is a must.  Good communication skills, project management, time management, account management as you will manage different suppliers (most often overseas) and there could be pressing deadlines from time to time so being organised is important too. Numerical skills are also important as you’ll could be working with Excel, calculating and negotiating costs for reprints and shipping etc.

Distribution and Operations

operations

What roles are there in the Distribution and Operations in publishing?

We deal with a range of distribution and operations roles. Examples of roles we recruit for include Inventory Assistant, Inventory Coordinator, Stock Controller, Supply Chain Manager, and Head of Operations. Distribution and Operations plays an essential part in a publishing house, monitoring the inventory and arrange reprint or stock movement when needed.

What skills or knowledge will the clients be looking for?

Analytical skills and excellent software knowledge. You will be using Excel spreadsheets a lot, including Excel formulas. Depending on the publishers, you might also need to have certain software knowledge.  Communication and organisation skills are also essential as you will be coordinating with in-house colleagues from Design, Editorial, Rights, Sales & Marketing as well as external suppliers.

Is there good progression?

Similar to Production roles, Distribution and Operations are also a specialist roles with good progression.  You may eventually lead the team and be promoted to Inventory Manager and Head of Operations.  Keeping up with the latest data management technology will also lead you a long way in the field.  Candidates with Production experience may move laterally into Distribution and Operations for a change in their career path. There are always new opportunities!

If you have any questions about Production, Distribution or Operations roles, feel free to get in touch with Clare at clarechan@atwoodtate.co.uk!

 

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B2B Job Focus: Digital / Online / Web Editor

Are you a journalist or a section editor who wants to climb up the career ladder? In a previous post, Atwood Tate introduced you to the world of Section Editors. Today we’ll focus on Digital/Online/Web Editors!

Digital / Online / Web Editor

Web editor positions (also known as Digital or Online editors) developed as online publishing was spreading across publishing. It is now a rare thing for a publication to have a print version only but not so peculiar to have digital only titles! Web editors are responsible for creating content tailored for online publication. This includes a wide range of material from text to videos and podcasts. Web editors create and develop editorial guidelines to attract and increase online audience.

Web editors’ responsibilities include:

  • producing appealing content for the publication’s website, app, etc.
  • liaising with in-house team members and clients to adapt digital content
  • ensuring that search engine optimisation (SEO) is effective
  • overseeing the online publication’s layout (text, images, videos…)
  • developing and monitoring online communities
  • monitoring online messages boards and social media

 

Web editors act as the main point of contact with technical staff. They need to collaborate with several professionals (web developers, writers, photographers, web designers, the marketing team…) to enhance the website’s visibility. They also monitor online traffic to measure popularity and find new ways to make content attractive.

Required Skills

Not surprisingly, web editors should have strong IT skills. An excellent knowledge of desktop publishing and photo imaging packages like Photoshop and InDesign is necessary to work as a web editor. They must also be familiar with SEO and content management systems. They still need to have strong editorial skills though as this is ultimately an editorial position! And employers value creative candidates who can anticipate the next trade or burning topic within their industry.

Career Background

There is no particular route to become a web editor although a strong body of experience is often required. Many web editors have worked as journalists, and have solid knowledge of online publishing. Some digital editors move into editorial team management, but once again the career paths for this role are pretty flexible. With the boom of online publishing, many companies hired web editors and new graduates are all expected to be familiar with online publishing. It seems that this function is nowadays more and more engrained in Editor roles as onlube publishing has become inevitable and it is probable that this specific function will merge totally in an Editor role.

You can find relevant Digital/Online/Web Editor jobs here: www.atwoodtate.co.uk

Inspired by the different careers in B2B publishing and thinking about new opportunities? We are running a contest to receive a personalised CV surgery session with Karine, our Lead B2B Consultant, to make sure you are the best applicant you can be! Apply here between midnight 20th August and 11.59pm 2nd September to secure your chance!

 

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B2B Job Focus: Section Editors

Thinking of a career in B2B journalism? Atwood Tate is here to help! In a previous post we introduced you to the wonderful world of B2B publishing. Let’s continue our closer look at the different editorial career paths of B2B publishing with Section Editors!

Section Editors

 

Becoming a section editor is one of the career paths available to reporters/senior reporters interested in editing or getting some managerial experience. Section Editors can focus on a particular type of content like news or features. They could also specialise in a particular topic such as fashion, games or technology.

Section editors are responsible for overseeing the content of their part of the publication. They commission articles for their sections and work independently with their team of journalists (if the publication is big enough for them to have a team). They ensure that their section is of quality, up-to-date with the industry’s latest developments, and informative.

The duties associated with this role include:

  • scheduling content for their section of the magazine/website commissioning/writing articles
  • supervising freelance writers to ensure they hit deadlines and potentially managing in-house reporters.
  • editing, proofreading and subbing copy

Section editors may write some content for the publication but their main duty is to supervise writers and guarantee that deadlines and quality standards are met.

Our clients expect candidates to have solid experience as senior reporters to apply for a section editor position. They are looking for reporters with good proofreading and subbing skills as well as the ability to manage a team and to plan content for the section of the magazine.

The natural progression for section editors is to move on to a deputy editor position and then an editor role. No specific qualification is required to become a section editor but a journalism degree can be a bonus as previously stated in our Reporter focus.

Next week, we will be looking at the typical job description and career path for a Digital/Online/Web Editor position!

Is our career advice helping you in your job search? Do let us know via our social media channels!

Inspired by the different careers in B2B publishing and thinking about new opportunities? We are running a contest to receive a personalised CV surgery session with Karine, our Lead B2B Consultant, to make sure you are the best applicant you can be! Apply here between midnight 20th August and 11.59pm 2nd September to secure your chance!

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What happens to my CV?

Introduction

If you’ve never worked with a recruitment agency, it might be difficult to know what the different stages actually mean. Does registering with us automatically mean you’ve applied for a job? How will I know what the details are? Lead Recruitment Consultant Karine Nicpon explains.

Applying for role via a job board (Guardian/Gorkana/Bookseller) or via our website

Applying through a job board or through our website doesn’t send your application directly to the client. Instead, it is reviewed for suitability by the consultant, based on a full client brief (required skills, experience and salary expectations.)

If we think you are suitable, we send full details: name and website of the client, job description, salary, and any other relevant information. This is when you can decide how interested you are.

If everything still looks rosy, great! It’s time to send us a tailored CV and cover letter for us to send to the client. The process to your shiny new job begins!

Unfortunately, if we don’t think your skills and experience match what the client is expecting, we won’t proceed with your application. The client hasn’t seen your CV, as we only send over a personalised application with your permission. If you haven’t heard from us, you are welcome to apply for other jobs that we may have available or request to be added to our database for future opportunities.

Registering with us via our website/E-mailing us your CV

When you send us your CV by e-mail, one of our administrators reviews it for relevant experience. If we can help, we invite you in for a registration meeting. If there isn’t enough relevant experience, we have a range of temp and freelance roles to build up your experience. Many temps move into permanent roles, so don’t be disheartened! If your CV is strong but not publishing focused, we send you a reply acknowledging your experience.

Registering your CV via our website is similar: fill in a form with your preferences, which is reviewed against current vacancies to see if we can help. If we can, we invite you in for a registration meeting to discuss your needs and start the job search process!

If we can’t help you, we will let you know so you aren’t left hanging.

Automatic job alerts

Once we have added you to our database, we activate your job alerts (unless you tell us not to!). These are instant alerts to our new vacancies so that you are always aware of the jobs we have. While these come up with a consultant’s email address, they are sent by our IT system based on your preferences, not by the consultants themselves. Receiving a job alert is not a guarantee that your application will be progressed!

If you don’t like the sound of a job you can delete it but, if you do, you can apply via our website for your CV to be reviewed by our consultants. One thing to remember: our alerts are not matched by salary, so please don’t be alarmed or offended if you receive something that seems too high or low for your experience! If you feel you are receiving too many alerts, you can ask to switch them off or edit your preferences directly by logging into your profile.

Contacting the team

Our team are always happy to hear from new and existing candidates. If you would like to get in touch, there are a few options:

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B2B Job Focus: Reporters

Thinking of a career in B2B journalism? Atwood Tate is here to help! In a previous post we introduced you to the wonderful world of B2B publishing. Let’s now take a closer look at the different editorial career paths of B2B publishing, starting with Reporters!

Reporter/Journalists 

B2B Reporters/Journalists source and write news and features articles for a variety of formats, from print and online magazines to newspapers and broadcast (TV and radio).

B2B journalists investigate and report the latest news within a specific market. In this capacity, reporters may be required to travel nationally and/or internationally to cover industry events. Typical duties include:

  • Sourcing and writing news stories/features/opinion pieces about a specific market
  • Researching and interviewing key industry contacts to deliver accurate content
  • covering conferences and reporting on industry events
  • building strong contacts within the industry and developing an expertise of the market covered

B2B publications cover a wide range of subjects: from mechanical engineering to cabinet-making, energy to nursing, there is a publication for every trade!

Our clients are open to journalists without prior B2B experience for entry level positions. For roles requiring previous experience, a B2B background is desirable as writing for business audiences requires a different approach to consumer journalism. Some of our clients also value experience working for a local newspaper as local reporters often have strong investigation skills. Employers are looking for journalists with good research skills and the ability to pick up a subject quickly. You don’t have to know all about civil engineering to work for a civil engineering magazine, but you do need to be able to get to grips with the subject quite quickly. For more senior positions, our clients might ask for previous experience in a specific sector. This is particularly true with complex sectors such as finance or law.

Career paths vary according to what reporters are interested in. The natural progression for news-driven journalists would be from reporter to senior reporter and possibly section editor (news editor or features editor) positions if editing is something of interest. They can also choose to become assistant editors before moving on to a deputy editor and later editor positions, while those who prefer focusing on editing and copy-editing can become sub-editors. There is a thin line between all of these roles and your choice to follow one path or another will depend on your skills and preferences. Job titles can also mean different things in different companies (It’s confusing, we know!) Always read job adverts and job descriptions carefully before applying to try and understand what the role really entails. Or speak to your recruiter!

Is a formal qualification really necessary to become a journalist, I hear you ask? It isn’t an absolute requirement and some of our clients are quite happy with equivalent experience. A course might help craft your skills and teach you the basics of what makes a good reporter. If you can, we would recommend doing a course/training or gaining some relevant experience like internships before applying for a first job. The National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ) offers accredited courses and many universities have journalism degrees.

We hope this helps! Watch this space as we will continue the series next week, where our next post will be on section editors!

Inspired by the different careers in B2B publishing and thinking about new opportunities? We are running a contest to receive a personalised CV surgery session with Karine, our Lead B2B Consultant, to make sure you are the best applicant you can be! Apply here between midnight 20th August and 11.59pm 2nd September to secure your chance!

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Consultant in the Hot Seat: Charlotte Tope

What three books changed your life?

The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
This is a good starting point for anyone who wants to explore the idea of higher consciousness without heavy, hard thinking text. I think you’ll either love it or hate it, but it was definitely a significant book for me.

02. The Secret by Rhonda Byrne
Granted, you have to take this book with a pinch of salt – don’t expect to show a little gratitude and ‘will’ all your hopes and aspirations into fruition by next month. For me, this book was a powerful read in terms of showing how our mental attitude and belief can really effect the direction your life will take. The law of attraction is a powerful thing!

03. The Working Woman’s Handbook by Phoebe Lovatt
I just love everything about this book, from its design to the typography and most importantly it’s content. If you need a push, or a little advice on your creative projects – this is the one.

If you could have written any book that exists now, which would it be?

The Little Book of Hygge by Meik Wiking. In fact if I were a book, this is what I would be.

If you were given the chance to have one superpower from any book/comic character, what would you have?

I would want to have Avatar Aang’s powers, from The Last Airbender. Putting it really simply, depending on what nation you are from, (based on the 4 elements of earth, air, fire and water) some individuals have the power to control and manipulate their nations element i.e people from the fire nation could control fire. Avatar Aang however, was able to control all 4 – would have worked a treat in this recent heatwave!

If you could write ‘THE book’ on something, the definitive how-to guide on any subject, which topic would you choose?

Christmas (in London), of course! What to read, where to go, the best window displays! Am I the only one ready for Christmas?

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