How To: Get A Job In The Music Industry

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Very few industries are more exciting to work in than the music industry.  We’re not saying that it is all glitz and glamour – it’s hard work, more so now than ever!  We know that it isn’t always easy to get your foot in the door of the industry – but it is possible.

First and foremost, it is important to be clear about the role you want within the industry and work towards the skills required to fulfil it.  Proving that you have the enthusiasm to learn more and adapt in an industry which is constantly changing and innovating will also help.

Like any other industry, the record industry wants to recruit and retain the very best talent from within the worlds of digital, marketing, A&R, communications, sales, and much more.  But talent, alone, will not suffice.  Labels are looking for people who are passionate about music and genuinely want to work in a fast-paced, ever-changing sector.

There is no magic formula for getting that dream job, but you can help yourself along the way.

1. Be Specific

Don’t just say that you want to work in the music industry – identify the skills you have and the way in which you could apply those to a job in the business.  The earlier you decide what role you specifically want to do, the more time you have to build up a portfolio of experience.

2. Undertake an Internship

The industry offers a number of internships – paid and unpaid – each year to those who demonstrate passion and enthusiasm for music.  Details of the internships offered by the UK’s major record companies are available on their websites.  And once you’re there, make yourself indispensable.

3. Join a Recruitment Agency

If you have already gained experience in your chosen field, make sure you sign up to a recruitment agency which specialises in the creative industries.  The most popular sites for music industry jobs are Handle Recruitment, Career Moves, and Arts & Media.

4. Keep An Eye on the Company’s Website and Social Media

If you have a desire to work for a specific company, keep an eye on their website for new opportunities arising.  Sign up to any newsletters they publish and make sure you follow them on Twitter or Join their Facebook page.

5. Attend Networking Events

The music industry is renowned for networking – you can never know too many people!  AIM (The Association for Independent Music) has a networking calendar open to non-members.  Check out other music industry trade bodies for similar events programmes.

6. Look at the wider creative industries

Music works closely with its colleagues in the film, TV, publishing, sporting and other creative sectors.  Do not limit yourself to working only in music. Experience gained from working with other content creators will be invaluable in the music business.

7. Break Your Dream Down into Achievable Steps

Don’t expect all your dreams to come true at once.  Be patient.  Break your ultimate goal down into realistic and achievable steps.  And enjoy the journey!

8. Keep up-to-date with changes in the music business

The nature of the record business has changed greatly over the last decade or so – and this evolution has by no means come to an end.  Keep up-to-date with industry news and views by subscribing to music trade magazines and by setting up news alerts for the subjects that interest most to you.

One final word….

Once you get that elusive industry job, don’t become complacent.  Work hard and go that extra mile to prove to the company that they were right to hire you.

For more information on developing your career in the creative industries, check out Creative Choices.  Creative Choices provides expert knowledge, tools and support for those looking for a career in music, film, TV, theatre, design, the performing arts and much more.