Graduates are key to UK's film and television industry

12 May 2020 3 min. read
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The film and television sector is an extremely important source of GVA growth for the UK, expanding at more than three times the rate of the wider economy. According to a new report, UK graduate workers are a key part of the industry’s financial contribution.

A recent research piece commissioned by the National Film and Television School (NFTS) found that the gross added value (GVA) of film in the UK is exploding when compared to other sectors of the national economy. The UK’s wider GVA growth currently sits at a relatively sluggish 4% – something narrowly surpassed by the creative industries collectively – film and high-end television (HETV), which has a somewhat similar production cycle to film, far surpass that at 16% and 15% respectively.

Following this, the NFTS commissioned OC&C Strategy Consultants to prepare a report giving insight on the impact graduate work has on this fast-growing industry. According to the resulting Graduate Impact Report,  97% of the biggest budget ‘inward investment’ films have NFTS graduate involvement – while 62% of productions have graduate involvement in a key role.

Percentage of Films with NFTS Graduates in Keu Roles by Budget, 2015-2019

An ageing population has seen the number of skilled professionals reaching retirement age balloon in recent years, while most industries have seen spikes in start-up competition, meaning the process to snap up valuable graduate labour has been fierce. This trend seems to be especially potent in the film industry, as illustrated by the fact that 35% of largest film productions have two or more NFTS graduates in key roles. At the same time, over 50% of the biggest box office successes since 2015 have had at least one NFTS graduate in a key role.

Mostyn Goodwin of OC&C Strategy Consultants said, “Our work with the NFTS clearly illustrates what a vitally important role they play in the development of the UK Film and Television industry. Their impact and influence on the industry has only been increasing since we first worked together back in 2012, a direct result of the hard work of the NFTS team.”

Percentage of HETV Projects with NFTS Grads in Key Roles by Budget, 2015-2019NFTS graduates have also played a central role in the UK’s thriving high budget television scene. The industry relies on highly-skilled creative professionals, and as NFTS graduates are taught intensively by industry professionals in small groups, and have access to a range of state-of-the-art facilities, they have been heavily involved in high budget TV production projects with a combined budget of c.£7 billion since 2015.

Further, two-thirds of all production spend on HETV in Britain goes to a project with at least one NFTS graduate in a key role. Emphasising this demand for graduates in top HETV work that 15% of projects worth over £50 million had three or more in key roles.