As Live-Sports-Production Industry Faces Crewing Crisis, Program Productions Snaps Into Action

PPI is taking a three-stage approach to confronting the issue: recruitment, training, and placement

The live-sports-production industry is facing an existential crises in terms of its workforce. Since the pandemic began, more than one third of the freelancer community has retired or departed the industry for alternative career paths. As a result, both regional and national broadcasters often finding themselves scrambling to crew integral engineering and production positions in the truck on an almost daily basis. With that in mind, Program Productions Inc. (PPI) is taking action with a new initiative to recruit the next-generation of live-sports technicians.

While many members of the live-sports-production community have chosen new career paths during pandemic, young engineering professionals have also been less inclined to enter the business than their predecessors with the advantages offered by big-tech companies.

As Program Productions’ EVP, Strategy & Development and Chief Sales & Marketing Officer Amy Scheller, put it, “we’ve stopped just talking about it and we have actually committed resources to it.”

Over the last three years, PPI has developed a dedicated recruiting and training department and has invested over a million dollars in these efforts. The company continues to grow the department and is laying out a comprehensive plan to get the training done on both a national and regional level using a three-stage approach: recruitment, training, and placement. However, PPI can’t fund this effort alone, so it is now asking its broadcast partners for support in continuing to grow the initiative.

At SVG’s RSN Summit in Chicago last month, PPI Chairman and ProCrewz CEO Bob Carzoli provided an overview of this new recruitment and training program, how he sees the industry evolving in the coming years to confront this crewing crisis, and how broadcasters can get involved to build a path to their future.

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