Skills and Training

Supporting skills development is very important to us. UK Screen works closely with members and with Creative Skillset, in order to identify skills gaps and priorities and to develop industry-led solutions. UK Screen represents it's members on the Film, High End Television and Animation Skills Councils.

The Apprenticeship Levy

UK Screen has been lobbying and responding to government consultations about the introduction of the Apprenticeship Levy in April 2017.

Whilst we are in favour of the concept of apprenticeships, this particular government policy has a number of challenges for our sector. We are lobbying for funds to enable standards creation by employers; currently employers will not be able to use their apprenticeship levy accounts to fund standards creation. We would like the range of training on which apprenticeship levy funds can be spent, to be widened to avoid diverting training budgets away from short courses and CPD. 

Members can view our consultation responses in the members area of our website.

Here's our initial reaction to the government announcement made in August 2016.


Skills Investment Funding (SIF)

These funds have largely run out now and will finish completely by 2017 when the main focus for funded training will be the Apprenticeship Levy.

In 2013 the Treasury increased the amount of money available to employers in Film, TV, Animation, VFX and Games to boost skills and develop talent in those sectors. This decision was made in the context of an expected increase in work in the UK as a result of the new creative industries tax credits and a potential shortage of some skills.

A total of £16m pounds was available over a two year period and the distribution of this money is being managed by Creative Skillset, working with industry to understand how and where this should best be spent to promote growth and job creation. All funding must be matched pound for pound by industry. Creative Skillset have set up five industry-led skills councils - one for each of the government's five target areas. Industry match funding is collected either in the form of production levies or directly from beneficiary companies.

The three key ways in which funding is being spent is as follows:

Trainee Finder - enables eligible employers to access new talent from a database of individuals. Trainees receive a training allowance from their host company, 50% of which is paid for by the Skills Investment Fund.

Click here for information on VFX Trainee Finder.


Commissioned or Funded Training - Where there are gaps in training available in the industry Creative Skillset will commission third parties to provide tailored training, developed in consultation with industry and 50% match funded. In some, but not all, sectors there will also be lists of approved 'Funded Training' courses. Eligible companies will be able to claim back 50% of delegate fees.

Post production and media management Funded Training - click here

VFX Funded Training-  click here


The Challenge Fund – Grants of £10k to £1m per year for companies or consortia wanting to develop training programmes, internships, apprenticeships etc that develop talent in their own companies while addressing the skills gaps and shortages of the wider industry.

Challenge Fund information - click here

We are working with Creative Skillset to understand how facilities and production services companies can access more of this funding in order to develop skills across the wider industry. General information can be found at on the Creative Skillset website  and we will post updates in our member communications and in the Members' Area.


Onion Sessions

The Onion sessions are our own UK Screen inititaive and are available to members only. It is a series of experiiential and inspirational masterclasses aimed junior staff within our membership, giving those just starting out in their career useful insight in to the industry and helping them develop their career. The sessions take the form of panel discussions, workshops and skills based events which are held at the end of the working day.

Experts from within our membership present topics such as 'Grading', 'ADR & Foley' 'QC & Delivery' and many more.

The sessions are free to junior employees of UK Screen members and will be advertised in member communications and on our Events pages. Contact us for further information.


VFX Skills Working Group

Our VFX Skills working group meets each month. It is the forum where we coordinate members views and action about training, recruitment and the skills pipeline. It has been actively involved in delivering the recommendations of the Livingstone-Hope report on the need to embed the appropriate skills at all levels of education in order to deliver the digital creative talent of the future. Work to date has included lobbying for and helping to develop a computing qualification on the schools curriculum, creating media assets for teachers and careers advisors, and engaging with Further and Higher Education institutions on course development and accreditation. It is currently deeply involved in consultations about the Apprenticeship Levy.

Members can view meeting notes in the Members' Area.


Technology Events

Our regular technology events are free to members and cover hot industry topics such as 4k and HDR, QC and Automated Workflow and R128 Loudness Standards. Industry experts lead presentations, panels and case studies and our manufacturer sponsors demonstrate the latest equipment.

A limited number of tickets are made available to non-members. Check out our Events listings for further information.


Other skills and training information is included in our regular member communications.