TV or film production runner

Film and TV runners work behind the scenes, doing small jobs and basic tasks to help the production run smoothly.

Average salary (a year)

Variable

Typical hours (a week)

39 to 41 variable

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays away from home

How to become a TV or film production runner

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
  • working towards this role
  • applying directly

University

It's not essential to have qualifications, but you might find it helpful to take a course that includes practical skills, work placements and the chance to make contacts in the industry. Relevant courses could include degree or postgraduate courses in subjects like media production or film and TV studies.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree

More information

College

It's not essential to have studied film, video or media production, but you might find it helpful to take a course that includes practical skills, work placements and the chance to make contacts in the industry. Relevant courses include:

  • Level 3 Certificate/Diploma in Media Techniques
  • Level 3 Certificate/Diploma in Creative Media Production

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a level 3 course

More information

Apprenticeship

You may be able to start in this job through a creative and digital media higher apprenticeship.

The BBC, ITV and Channel 4 also offer apprenticeship opportunities. Get more information from:

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and college qualifications like A levels for a higher or a degree apprenticeship

More information

Work

You could also work for sound or camera equipment hire companies to get experience. 

Volunteering and experience

Getting experience is a great way to get a taste of working in the industry, meeting new people and developing a network of contacts. Your industry contacts can be a way of finding longer-term paid work later on. You could get experience through being involved in activities like:

  • student film or TV productions
  • community or student radio
  • work experience placements

Large broadcasters like the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 offer work experience placements, graduate schemes, and ‘insight' and ‘talent days'. These are designed to help you get a better understanding of the industry. Schemes are very competitive and have eligibility and application criteria.

Direct application

You can apply directly to become a runner. This job is often seen as a media entry-level job and employers could be more interested in your enthusiasm, common sense and initiative than your formal qualifications.

More information

Career tips

You should show that you have administrative and organisational skills, so any previous experience in areas like office work, customer service or hospitality would be useful.

Professional and industry bodies

The Production Guild is a membership organisation for professionals working across production in the UK film and television industry. It offers a range of training and workshops including a Runner's Basic Training workshop for people who want to get into the industry. 

Further information

Take a look at ScreenSkills for more advice and information on careers in the creative industries.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • the ability to work well with others
  • active listening skills
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • knowledge of media production and communication
  • to be flexible and open to change
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • the ability to come up with new ways of doing things
  • Being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • collecting and delivering equipment and scripts
  • distributing messages and post, and running errands
  • filing and photocopying
  • answering the phone and greeting visitors
  • driving vehicles around sets or between locations
  • finding props
  • keeping sets clean and tidy
  • looking after studio guests, getting lunches and making tea and coffee

Working environment

You could work at a tv studio or at a film studio.

Career path and progression

If you already have some industry experience or have completed training, then you may be able to apply for a Creative Skillset Trainee placement.

With experience, you could move into a production assistant, assistant producer (AP) or producer role.

Training opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

Photoshop/Graphic Designer Apprentice

  • Wage : £120.25 Weekly
  • Location: Colchester CO7 6BL

Production Apprentice

  • Wage : £18,500.00 Weekly
  • Location: Uxbridge UB11 1FE

Courses In England

Certificate in Creative Media Production (QCF)

  • Provider: HALESOWEN COLLEGE
  • Start date: 10 September 2019
  • Location: Halesowen

Certificate in Creative media Production (QCF)

  • Provider: Samuel Ryder Academy
  • Start date: 04 September 2019
  • Location:

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