Chinwag Live: Skills Emergency

Event Info

Tue 29 Jan, 2008 at 6:00pm
The Slug & Lettuce (Downstairs)
80-82 Wardour Street
London, W1F 0TG, UK (Map)
Cost: £25+VAT until 23rd Jan, £40+VAT thereafter


supported by:
CNet Networks

The skills shortage in digital media is worsening. 2008 promises to be a crunch year for some and the pain is widely distributed. So what are we going to do about it?

People are moving around and big brands are offering glitzy packages. But this is just the industry cannibalising itself, not growing the digital gene pool...

As demand for digital media and services increases, companies are feeling the squeeze as talent is not coming into the industry in sufficient numbers. Many businesses struggle to train staff and augment their abilities.

The UK is a hub for creative and technical talent, so smart solutions must be possible. Training, mediated internships, bringing people over from print, radio and TV... what else can we do? Join us to discuss the options..

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More on Skills Emergency

Unless these issues are addressed, the knock-on effect for the digital and related industries will be severe. Innovation and competitiveness will be diminished.

What is the role of government agencies like Skillset, NESTA, and the Regional Development Agencies? How are the many roles in new media repesented as careers in schools?

Join us on 29th January as Chinwag brings together experts from across the spectrum of recruitment, HR, creative agencies and business support bodies to assess initiatives that are up and running, discuss new plans in the works, and debate other potential solutions.


Matt Alder - Head of Digital, Barkers
After initially working as Online Marketing Manager for an internet content company, Matt became involved in online recruitment nine years ago, spending seven years as Head of Interactive Media with TMP Worldwide before joining Barkers as Head of Digital early in 2006. Matt has played a key role in developing innovative online recruitment methodologies over the last few years and has set up teams that have devised some of the Europe’s biggest and most complex online recruitment campaigns. He helped pioneer the use of tracking tools in this space in the UK and has spoken at numerous conferences on various aspects of global online recruitment. Matt is co-founder of one of the industry’s leading blogs, Digital Recruiting Blog.

Tim Elkington - MD, Enhance Media
Tim is the MD of Enhance Media - the specialist online recruitment communications agency. Enhance Media helps employers recruit effectively using the internet and works with employers such as AXA, Dell and T-Mobile. Before launching Enhance Media in 2001, Tim was the Head of Research at and was part of the core team that launched the brand from the Guardian Media Group. Prior to Workthing, Tim worked in the planning department of the Guardian where he was responsible for research and sales support material across the Guardian network of sites, including Guardian Jobs. At Enhance Media Tim has also initiated NORAS - the UK's largest online recruitment research project. Tim blogs at 'Online Recruitment - the bigger picture'

Harry Fowler - Group Digital Recruiter, AMV Group
Harry Fowler moved into the web world in 1996 helping to shape the digital community in Edinburgh before leaving for London to work with a commercial property portal in 1998. Moving into recruitment Harry was snapped up by Major Players Ltd in 1999 and has recruited through the boom and bust of the digital era. Harry focuses his time on client services (suits to you) whilst keeping an eye on emerging markets and sectors. Working with some of the biggest and best, agencies and brands alike, Harry continues to help develop the digital marketplace as it moves from strength to strength.

Laura Jordan Bambach - Head of Art, Glue & Co-founder, She Says
Laura cut her teeth as a key figure in the infamous Geek Girl hyperzine in the early nineties, and has been involved in the design and implementation of many of the world's most cutting edge digital projects for international brands as diverse as Levi's, Mini, We Are What We Do and Coke. She has consistently won awards for her commercial work. Laura teaches dynamic lab-based and technical digital media classes at major universities. Together with Alessandra Lariu she founded SheSays in 2006 and it currently has 500 members. SheSays is an initiative to help more women to start or develop a creative digital career, focusing on monthly free events, and a mentorship programme.

Fiona Kilkelly - Interactive Manager, Skillset
As Interactive Media Manager at Skillset, the Sector Skills Council for the audio visual industry, Fiona works with industry, training providers and government to address the interactive sector's skills and business support issues across the UK. She is also a senior consultant with Digital Public designing and launching online services for a number of public sector clients. Fiona had directed a number of important arts and media festivals, including the Galway International Film Fleadh; the Irish International Children's Arts Festival; devised and delivered nationwide training programmes for the Irish film and television industry; produced websites for a variety of organisations including Chase Manhattan Bank and Granada Media; and served as the Director of the UK's Digital Content Forum, working closely with key government departments to broker new relationships with industry and stimulate new thinking on digital media.

CHAIR: Sam Michel - CEO, Chinwag
Sam founded Chinwag in 1996, as a place to discuss the emergence of the digital marketing industry. From the initial email discussion list, uk-netmarketing, Chinwag has become the UK's leading community for new media and digital marketing professionals. The site has grown to include lists covering design, usability, wireless marketing and viral marketing, leading recruitment website, Chinwag Jobs and networking events. Sam was one of the UK's first full-time webmasters for Time Out magazine, executive producer of the award-nominated movie website,, for Carlton plc and consults on email marketing projects for clients including MSN.

Guest Contributors:



We do our best to put microphones under the noses of our panelists, for your aural pleasure. The podcasts are available in iTunes flavour, old school RSS listen using the player below or download.

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