AFTRS to examine screen industry’s future needs

22 November, 2015 by Don Groves

AFTRS is calling on guilds, agencies, associations, employers and individuals to take part in an industry survey designed to identify the training and talent development needs of the screen and broadcast sectors.

Launched today, the AFTRS Skills Survey 2016 will build on the comprehensive research commissioned by Metro Screen into the professional development needs of emerging practitioners.


AFTRS has set up an online survey which will go live on Wednesday and will be followed by focus groups and interviews.

The survey’s online address is

The Metro Screen report, Emerging Visions: Career Pathways in the Australian Screen Production Industry, warned that the closure of state-based screen resource centres after Screen Australia cut off their funding will deprive many emerging filmmakers of a vital bridge between tertiary education and entering the workforce.

It concluded, "An industry-wide strategy encompassing the education sector, production sector and funding bodies is required, including a focus on the interface between formal study and professional practice."

AFTRS CEO Neil Peplow said, "As the screen and broadcast industries continue to be disrupted by new technologies and distribution platforms, it is essential that the skills and talent needed to adapt are identified and addressed. AFTRS is well placed to conduct this research on behalf of the Australian industry. It is our intention to undertake this research every three years as the impact of new technologies continues to transform our industries.

“AFTRS is asking the industry to tell us what skills and talent are needed both today, and in the future. This could range from a particular skills gap that needs addressing immediately, to a demand for talented creatives who understand emerging formats and platforms."

Screen Australia CEO Graeme Mason said, “This research comes at a pertinent time for the screen industry. It's an important and positive step in ensuring that we all best understand the skills that the new generation of content makers need to be equipped with for the sector they come in to."

ABC TV Director Richard Finlayson said, “Developing the craft skills of our people is the number one challenge for the ABC in meeting the demands of digital transformation. ABC TV  is delighted to be supporting this initiative and will eagerly anticipate the outcomes as we shape our business for the future.”

ASTRA CEO Andrew Maiden said,  “Many students begin their screen careers working in subscription television, so we are especially keen to help AFTRS design a curriculum that equips students for their future careers. Subscription television is transforming rapidly, so we’ll have much to contribute to this survey.”

The findings of the survey will be published as early as possible in 2016.