What does a production assistant do?
Production assistants are responsible for the smooth administration and running of the production office.
Production assistants work in the production management department and, depending on the type of programme being made, could be office-based, out on location or the person at the director’s right hand. On large projects, production assistants support production coordinators, but on others may support production managers, producers or whole teams.
Their role is varied and can include organising the production contacts list, making and taking calls, monitoring stock, ordering stationery and processing paperwork such as contracts, release forms and invoices. They manage timesheets, research and book travel, transport and accommodation, book meeting rooms, take minutes and arrange couriers, shipments and storage.
Production assistants can work full-time for broadcasters or for TV production companies but are often on a fixed-term contract.
What's a production assistant good at?
- Learning quickly: observe what’s happening, listen, use own initiative and ask questions at the appropriate time
- Organisation: be able to plan, multi-task and prioritise to meet deadlines; work calmly under pressure.
- Communication: maintain effective relationships both internally and externally, have a professional, approachable manner
- Knowledge of TV production: learn and understand different production processes, particularly financial
- IT: be able to create spreadsheets for data entry to include budget and monitor spend; be able to quickly adapt to new systems and software