Is enough being done to attract young people into print?

I read an interesting article in Print Week recently: Is enough being done to attract young people into print? Firstly, I will say we can always do more. But that’s not to say we’re all sitting on our laurels, hoping the average age in our industry is magically going to drop below 48.

At last year’s Dscoop conference in Dublin, myself and Jon Tolley, the managing director at Prime Group, launched the Dscoop Young Entrepreneurs. The group aims to provide a thinking ground for likeminded individuals under the age of 35, all connected through the Dscoop community. It’s an industry first and we hope it will go on to inspire a new generation to launch careers in print.

“Involving younger industry members in Dscoop is an excellent way for them to hear global industry leaders, meet with them informally and build relationships that can last through their careers. The future depends on having enthusiastic and knowledgeable young people to drive new ideas and approaches to business.”

Alon Bar-Shany. Vice President and General Manager of the Indigo Division

At ProCo, we’re always on the look out for new, up-and-coming print industry superstars. We take an innovative approach to everything we do and young professionals bring a new perspective into the business. They are vital to our future and the future of the industry as a whole.

“The more you can do to encourage young people to become skilled, particularly in your sector, which covers a wide range of skills, the better.”

HRH The Duke of York at The Printing Charity’s 188th Annual Luncheon

There are a number of other initiatives across the industry that aim to encourage young people to consider print as a career choice:

  • Stationers’ Crown Wood Academy in Greenwich, the first academy in the UK to specialise in digital media
  • Charity Proskills’ PrintIT! Initiative, which aims to inspire the next generation into the print, paper and packaging industries
  • Cash grants from the Print Future Awards to cover the cost of training in printing, publishing or graphic arts for UK residents aged 16 to 30
  • British Printing Industries Federation (BPIF) working with the industry to design and deliver printing apprenticeships.

The next meeting of the Dscoop Young Entrepreneurs will be in Tel Aviv, Israel, between 5 and8 April 2016 at the Dscoop Conference and I can’t wait to see what they have all been up to since our last meeting. If you are a Dscoop member and would like to join, please give me a shout.


Jon Bailey, MD at ProCo – 15th January 2016