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Broadcast engineer

Set up and operate the equipment to get TV and radio programmes out at the right time and without interruptions.

About skillsGetting in

About the job


Source: National Careers Service



Entry level





Entry level





Entry level




people are currently employed

High growth

200 more jobs in 5 years

These figures refer to this job and similar ones with comparable skills and qualifications. They only apply to Scotland. Source: Oxford Economics

What it's like

You would set up and operate the equipment to make sure TV and radio broadcasts go out to viewers and listeners at the right time.

You’d make sure that they can enjoy the programmes without any technical faults or interruptions and fix problems quickly if something goes wrong.

You might work on studio and outside broadcasts (OBs), post-production operations, and new media such as interactive TV and webcasts.

You might be directly involved in broadcasting programmes or you might focus on servicing the equipment.

You would:

  • Set up studio equipment for transmission and editing

  • Design and set up audio and video circuits

  • Install multimedia hardware, software and other digital broadcast technology systems

  • Set up and operate links between studios and OB units

  • Do vision mixing, which means editing programmes live as they are being transmitted or recorded

  • Test and service equipment

  • Find and repair technical faults as quickly as possible, with minimum loss of service

You would work as part of a team that can also include producers, studio managers and presenters.

Working with electrical equipment, you’d need to have a good awareness of health and safety in the workplace.


You would normally work around 40 hours a week. Shift work is common, including weekends and nights. You may need to work extra hours at short notice, particularly for news programmes.


You could work in recording studios, studio galleries, control rooms and maintenance workshops, and on outside broadcasts (OBs) in all weather conditions and locations.


Location work and outside broadcasts (OBs) could involve working away from home around the UK and possibly abroad.

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Related industries

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  • Engineering and manufacturing
  • Digital technologies
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Top skills

Skills are things you're good at. Whether you know what yours are or not, everyone has them!

It's useful to learn which ones are important in a job so you know the areas you need to brush up on. It can also help you work out if you're suited to a career.

Here are some of the skills you'll need to do this job:

  • taking responsibility
  • developing a plan
  • attention to detail
  • problem solving
  • resourceful
  • working with technology
  • verbal communication
  • cooperating

Your skills are important

Our unique skillsets are what make us stand out from the crowd. Learn about each skill in depth and discover what employers look for in your applications and interviews.

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Getting in

Explore the sections shown for more information about getting into this career.

You might have qualifications which are not shown here but will allow you access to a course. You can compare your qualifications by looking at their SCQF Level. For more information about this, check out the SCQF website.

Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.

Colleges and universities will list subjects you'll need for entry to a course. Some useful subjects include:

  • Foundation Apprenticeship: Automotive

  • Design and Manufacture

  • Engineering Science

  • Music Technology

  • Practical Electronics

  • Skills for Work: Creative Digital Media

  • Skills for Work: Engineering Skills

You can get a head start in this career by doing a Foundation Apprenticeship in S5 and S6.

You'll get an SCQF level 6 qualification which is the same level as a Higher. You'll also learn new skills and gain valuable experience in a work environment.

Discover what's on offer at your school on  Apprenticeships.scot.

Most entrants normally start as a trainee broadcast engineer and for this you usually need a Higher National Certificate (SCQF level 7), Higher National Diploma (SCQF level 8) or degree (SCQF level 9/10) in electrical, electronic or broadcast engineering though other science, design technologies and ICT subjects may be considered.

You might also apply to an in-house engineering training scheme from other roles within a broadcasting company; you might start work as a runner for a broadcasting company and then apply for in-house engineering training.

Entry to this career is highly competitive so you will need experience in working with electronic equipment and using broadcast technologies.

You will need to register with the Engineering Council as a professional engineer once you have relevant qualifications and experience.

You should have normal hearing and colour vision. 

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