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Pro audio “has to start to seeing training as an investment”

Jon Chapple 17 September 2014
Pro audio

Like Elliott Whyte, Christian Huant emphasises the value of ‘going above and beyond’ in an industry he says is “at its most competitive now”. Pointing to the ever-changing nature of technology in the studio and broadcast environments, Huant (pictured) states that employers no longer have the time to teach employees “everything they need from the ground up” and that “a certain amount of basic knowledge is now expected”. (Continued from part one.)

“That basic knowledge is actually not [that] basic,” he explains. “It is not simply about knowing what button to press on the software in order to record or rename something. An applicant [for a studio/broadcast role] would be expected to have an understanding of not just how things are done, but why.

“Good workflows, avoiding basic errors, a good work ethic, making regular backups and, above all, proficiency that leads to speed are the skills that are really required – and these can’t necessarily be picked up in a book, but [have to be learned] through training with professionals who know the bigger picture and can teach techniques by putting them in context.”

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A recent Prism Sound ‘Mic to Monitor’ training event in Orlando, Florida, US

Huant believes ‘upskilling’ – that is, an established professional learning new skills – is also essential: “Professionals who understand their tools fully can also adapt when the inevitable changes come. Some changes are profound, but, usually, it’s just a different skin with an improved algorithm… The tasks remain fundamentally the same.”

Obviously, there’s no such thing as a free lunch, but in the opinion of David Ward of JAMES, both individuals and organisations “have to start to see training as an investment and not a cost”. “Many of our trade organisations have made a brave effort to structure continuing professional development (CPD),” he comments, “but the time has now come when all [these] organisations have to come together, put aside their political differences and work towards creating cohesive industry-wide training.”

“Our industry has to do this for itself, but relying on government funding and the various bodies is too convoluted to meet urgent needs,” he concludes. “This is why our trade organisations have to come together and pool resources for the common good.”

Concluded tomorrow with a look at the cream of European audio training courses!

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