Apply for Operational Posts at YA Shot

Applicants must be over 18. Please send a short cover letter (2 pages max.) and current CV to ya @ yashot.co.uk. The CV is primarily so we know what skills and experience you have: we aren’t looking for particular qualifications. We’re hoping to start choosing successful applicants over the holidays, so it would be helpful to have your letter and CV by December 24th. 

Remember that we’re looking for commitment and passion above all else: we need people who will reliably get the work done and who really care about what we’re doing. If that’s you, then we want to hear from you.

 

General requirements and information for all posts

There are two key things we need in members of the YA Shot operational team: true commitment and a passion for what we’re trying to achieve for libraries and young people.

Until we get sufficient sponsorship or other income, all operational posts at YA Shot will be unpaid, but we are asking not just for generosity in volunteering your time but a true commitment to follow through. Our experienced team knows that good intentions end up being very damaging to a charity when they are divorced from realistic decisions about whether you can and will do the work, even if you get busier or life gets in the way. We need help – but we need people we can rely on above all. A lot of our work is flexible – but it’s only flexible up to a point.

We’re a passionate group of people working to support young people and libraries, with an ethos centred on equality, fairness and inclusivity. YA Shot is all about creating a space in the world that holds to our highest ideals – but does so in an atmosphere infused with our love of stories. You must be prepared to be responsive, transparent, reliable, honest and attentive to every detail. We expect everyone to give and take both positive feedback and constructive criticism – and we expect everyone to reflect on their own work and report both successes and failures.

Almost all of the work is conducted by email. By its nature, the work often comes in waves: there are times when there’s quite a lot of urgent work, but also patches where things are quiet and the work is non-urgent. The key thing is to be responsive to emails and timelines where your input is needed before other people can move on with their own work. In general, emails should be answered within 3 working days (and ideally 2 working days) – unless you have an out-of-office message up, but it must accurately specify when you will return to work. If you’re away during a busy period or for more than 10 consecutive days, you’ll need to delegate to another team member and arrange a proper handover of files and information to facilitate this. Similarly, if you leave your post, you must hand over effectively to the person who takes over.

In the operational-post descriptions below we’ve identified skills/qualities you must have to apply and ‘helpful’ things that would be a nice bonus but are not required as other members of the team may be able to provide.

 

Deputy Director

This role is prestigious and exciting, but relatively time-consuming compared with the other operational posts. You should assume you will need to commit an average of 3-4 hours per week: there’s always more that can be done, but that’s a good ballpark figure for deciding if you’ve got the time and energy.

Next to the Director, this is the most wide-ranging post, giving you a hand in all areas of YA Shot’s work. You will work in partnership with the Director, dividing up work, agreeing how work can be delegated to the rest of the team and who will oversee delegated work, agreeing mutual timelines, reporting back to each other, and generally supporting each other to get the work done and make sure there are no gaps or errors. You will need to be responsive to messages from the rest of the team to keep projects ticking over and working to time; there will be regular busy periods where your input will be needed to drive everything forwards.

You must have good written communication skills; it would be helpful if you also had excellent grammar and punctuation, and strong editing and proof-reading skills. You must be highly organised and detail-oriented. You will need to keep scrupulous files and records and share these regularly with the Director. You must be physically able to take an active role in, as well as overseeing, the physical aspects of load-in (i.e. set up on the day before the Festival) and the Festival itself: in other words, you must be able to carry out some minor lifting and carrying, hanging posters, walking between venues and so forth. It would be helpful if you were willing and able to attend a few planning meetings with partners and/or with potential sponsors if any wish to discuss YA Shot in person.

Working in partnership with the Director, you will

  • Research and develop the programme, liaise with authors and publishers, compile information from author forms, update ‘databases’ of information, prepare individual briefings and other programme documents, develop and update the website, develop the Festival schedule and check for conflicts and errors
  • Manage all aspects of the Box Office, including compiling budgets, dealing with queries, compiling ticket-sales information, ‘pulling’ tickets, preparing security and other passes
  • Manage all aspects of the Libraries Schools Programme, including encouraging applications, liaising with library-system partners, connecting authors with host libraries, sourcing books, developing materials, gathering feedback and collating and compiling it into reports
  • Manage all aspects of the Festival logistics, including sourcing good-value supplies, ensuring the event is effectively catered, checking to do lists and documentation, liaising regularly with partners, developing team rotas, preparing and printing documents and signage, managing load-in (day before the Festival), and managing the team at the Festival
  • Manage and oversee recruitment and training of ‘Heads of Department’
  • Complete charity and other required paperwork, including writing and checking reports, researching reporting requirements, researching other documentation responsibilities and preparing the relevant paperwork
  • Work as a team with the Director and all the individual ‘Heads of Department’ to ensure their activities (below) are carried effectively, efficiently and on-time

 

Head of Funding & Sponsorship

You must have good written communication skills. You must be good at managing deadlines, including getting work to colleagues in a timely manner for discussion, feedback and polishing. You must be highly organised and detail-oriented. You will need to keep scrupulous files and records and share these regularly with the Director and Deputy Director. You must have good basic ‘financial’ maths skills and understanding (e.g. know how to add and subtract VAT, balance simple budgets). It would be helpful if you were out-going with strong phone, face-to-face and presentation skills; it would be helpful if you were willing and able to attend meetings with potential sponsors if any wish to discuss YA Shot in person.

You should assume you will need to commit an average of 1.5-2 hours per week: there’s always more that can be done, but that’s a good ballpark basic figure for deciding if you’ve got the time and energy. Relatively little of the work for this post will be time-sensitive so, although responsiveness will be important for effective team-work, for the most part the only urgent work will be to respond to any contact from potential sponsors and meet external deadlines for funding applications. You will be able to request intern input, particularly as regards research, though you may need to oversee this work in a mentoring capacity.

You will work as a team with the Director and Deputy-Director to accomplish the following:

  • Complete financial paperwork, write reports and budgets, including researching other financial documentation responsibilities and preparing the relevant paperwork
  • Research and set up any insurance the charity needs, research related issues then set up procedures and complete relevant paperwork as needed
  • Research, set up and manage the charity’s bank account – depending on legal issues, you may also help to collect and compile receipts and/or help organise and settle invoices
  • Research sponsorship and funding opportunities (with assistance from the interns), develop pitches for sponsorship, complete funding application forms and supporting documentation, talk with potential sponsors/funders by phone and/or arrange in-person meetings to explore promising opportunities
  • Research and develop other potential sources of income, including researching and developing opportunities regarding financial exploitation of filming and podcasting (this will be with assistance from the interns)

Some of your work will overlap with the Head of Marketing & Promotions and the Head of Press & Publicity, so effective collaboration and cooperation will provide support, reduce duplication of efforts and help with the potential workload, as well as ensuring that YA Shot is as attractive as possible to potential sponsors

 

Head of Internship & Mentoring Programme

You must have good written communication skills; it would be helpful if you also had excellent grammar and punctuation, and strong editing and proof-reading skills. You must be highly organised and detail-oriented. You will need to keep scrupulous files and records and share these regularly with the Director and Deputy Director. It would be helpful if you were willing and able to attend the training day, which is usually about 6 weeks prior to the YA Shot Festival and held in Uxbridge.

You should assume you will need to commit an average of 2 hours per week: there’s always more that can be done, but that’s a good ballpark basic figure for deciding if you’ve got the time and energy. Responsiveness will be key to this role to ensure that you are driving forwards the activities of the interns and the mentors. There will be regular busy periods, particularly during recruitment and around task deadlines.

You will work as a team with the Director and Deputy-Director to accomplish the following:

  • Recruit interns and mentors, including compiling information from application forms, liaising with university career and volunteer officers, completing paperwork associated with recruiting from different universities, writing references and reports (including signing off on hours and timesheets)
  • Train mentors and oversee their work, including writing references if needed
  • Oversee and develop the internship programme, including setting tasks, pairing interns and mentors for tasks, answering queries, ensuring interns and mentors meet deadlines, checking interns’ work and mentoring them further if need be, ensuring interns are CCing appropriately, ensuring interns are submitting regular timesheets, planning the training day
  • Ensure interns and mentors understand relevant safeguarding and DPA responsibilities
  • Recruit work experience students (age 16-18) and stewards, manage and oversee their work, and prepare the rota for their work at the Festival

Some of your work will overlap with the Head of Press & Publicity, so effective collaboration and cooperation will provide support, reduce duplication of efforts and help with the potential workload. If you can delegate work effectively to the interns, with an eye to safeguarding and DPA issues, that will be an added bonus for the Programme and will help with the workload: possibilities should be discussed with the Director and Deputy Director.

 

Head of Press & Publicity

You must have excellent written communication skills, including a track-record of effective pitching. You must have excellent copy-writing, proof-reading and general editing skills, including top-notch grammar and punctuation. Responsiveness to other team-members in relation to polishing and editing key emails and documents will be an important part of the role. You must be highly organised and detail-oriented. You will need to keep scrupulous files and records and share these regularly with the Director and Deputy Director. You must have strong social media game, including experience using a range of platforms and apps effectively. It would be helpful if you had an engaging phone manner.

You should assume you will need to commit an average of 1.5-2 hours per week: there’s always more that can be done, but that’s a good ballpark basic figure for deciding if you’ve got the time and energy. There will be a number of busy periods, particularly around interns’ publicity-task deadlines.

You will work as a team with the Director and Deputy-Director to accomplish the following:

  • Develop standard emails and other key ‘communication’ documents so that they are short, clear and effective, as well as helping to copy-edit YA Shot’s documentation and materials
  • Provide oversight of all ‘final’ publicity pitches and similar by interns before they are sent out to external organisations, including some direct mentoring regarding final touches
  • Manage all aspects of YA Shot’s publicity, including researching and developing new publicity opportunities, developing existing media partnerships, writing and updating press releases and other publicity documents, setting up and maintaining online event listings for the Festival, arranging free listings in relevant community publications (print and online)
  • Arrange local press coverage of YA Shot (particularly newspaper coverage), arrange national press coverage of YA Shot (working closely with existing media partners)
  • Recruit and train new member of the Social Media Team, including ensuring they understand relevant safeguarding and DPA responsibilities
  • Oversee the work of the Social Media Team, including develop new guidelines and procedures, research and develop new social media opportunities

Some of your work will overlap with the Heads of the Internship & Mentoring Programme and Funding & Sponsorship, so effective collaboration and cooperation will provide support, reduce duplication of efforts and help with the potential workload. The interns will help research and pitch for publicity and press coverage. You will also be able to request extra intern input, particularly as regards research, though you may need to oversee this work in a mentoring capacity.

 

Head of Marketing & Promotions

You must have excellent written communication skills, including a track-record of effective pitching. It would be helpful if you had strong copy-writing, proof-reading and general editing skills, including good grammar and punctuation. You must be highly organised and detail-oriented. You will need to keep scrupulous files and records and share these regularly with the Director and Deputy Director. It would be helpful if you had strong social media game, including experience using a range of platforms and apps effectively. It would be helpful if you had an engaging phone manner.

You should assume you will need to commit an average of 1.5-2 hours per week: there’s always more that can be done, but that’s a good ballpark basic figure for deciding if you’ve got the time and energy. Relatively little of the work for this post will be time-sensitive so, although responsiveness will be important for effective team-work, for the most part the only urgent work will be to respond, as and when, to any contact from potential industry partners/sponsors/advertisers and around the time of the Festival with regard to gift tickets. You will work as a team with the Director and Deputy-Director to accomplish the following:

  • Research and develop new ways to market and promote YA Shot, including to potential industry partners and relevant professional bodies
  • Promote and publicise YA Shot locally to schools, social groups and other organisations
  • Research, develop, help design, source and order promotional items (Tshirts, tote-bags, posters, flyers, branded stationary, etc.)
  • Research and develop ways to offset the cost of promotional items, including sponsored advertising (in programme and tote-bags) and sponsorship-in-kind
  • Explore opportunities for sponsorship-in-kind, especially with local businesses, to offset other costs
  • Develop our audience to increase ticket-sales, including increasing the sale of gift tickets, research and develop relationships to ensure gift tickets are used effectively, answer queries about gift tickets, ‘distribute’ gift tickets and compile information on gift ticket recipients for the Box Office

Some of your work will overlap with the Head of Funding & Sponsorship, so effective collaboration and cooperation will provide support, reduce duplication of efforts and help with the potential workload, as well as ensuring that YA Shot is as attractive as possible to potential sponsors. You will be able to request help from the interns, particularly as regards research, though you may need to oversee this work in a mentoring capacity.

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