Become a Radio Producer: Step-by-Step Career Guide

Learn how to become a radio producer. Research the education requirements, training information and experience required for starting a career in the field of mass communication.

Do I Want to Be a Radio Producer?

Radio producers select and prepare audio content for broadcast on radio shows. Some of their job duties include operating the broadcast soundboard, editing taped interviews and managing corporate videos. The job includes a good deal of tight deadlines, time constraints and stress. Irregular work hours are common. However, there can be strong competition for these producing jobs as they offer close proximity to the entertainment industry and have creative components.

Job Requirements

Although experience in this field is very important, a bachelor's degree in mass communications, broadcast journalism or radio production may be necessary to obtain an entry-level position. The following table contains the essential requirements needed to become a radio producer:

Common Requirements
Degree Level Employers generally prefer candidates with a bachelor's degree*
Degree Field Mass communication or media arts**
Experience None required, but employers may prefer candidates with some field experience*
Key Skills Detail-oriented and multi-tasking ability;* creativity***; research and interviewing skills***
Computer Skills Video, audio and radio software editing programs****
Technical Skills Ability to operate various pieces of equipment, such as soundboards, needed for media production****

Sources: * (Job postings found in October, 2012), **Southern Illinois University Carbondale, ***Columbia College Chicago, ****New England Institute of Technology.

Step 1: Earn a Bachelor's Degree

Bachelor's degree programs in the audio arts may be offered through a school's college of communication arts and mass communication. These 4-year programs teach about media law, electronic media performance, radio and audio production, audio engineering and writing for the media arts.

Success Tips:

  • Complete an internship. Some programs strongly encourage radio production internships and have relationships with local media companies. Interns may learn skills such as researching, voicing, interviewing and audio editing.
  • Create a portfolio of work. Some programs may allow students to create projects using state-of-the-art computer programs. These portfolios can later be shown to potential employers.

Step 2: Work as a Producer

Different types of radio producers work under the supervision of executive and senior producers. Some employers prefer candidates to have experience as production assistants before assuming producer roles. The size of the station and market may affect an individual's career-entry job opportunities.

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