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Become A Technical Director

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Working As A Technical Director

  • Interacting With Computers
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • $127,293

    Average Salary

What Does A Technical Director Do

Producers and directors create motion pictures, television shows, live theater, commercials, and other performing arts productions. They interpret a writer’s script to entertain or inform an audience.

Duties

Producers and directors typically do the following:

  • Select scripts or topics for a film, show, commercial, or play
  • Audition and select cast members and the film or stage crew
  • Approve the design and financial aspects of a production
  • Oversee the production process, including performances, lighting, and choreography
  • Oversee the postproduction process, including editing, special effects, music selection, and a performance’s overall tone
  • Ensure that a project stays on schedule and within budget
  • Promote finished works or productions through interviews, advertisements, and film festivals

Large productions often have associate, assistant, and line producers who share responsibilities. For example, on a large movie set an executive producer is in charge of the entire production, and a line producer runs the day-to-day operations. A TV show may employ several assistant producers to whom the head or executive producer gives certain duties, such as supervising the costume and makeup team.

Similarly, large productions usually employ several assistant directors, who help the director with tasks such as making set changes or notifying the performers when it is their time to go onstage. The specific responsibilities of assistant producers or directors vary with the size and type of production they work on.

Producers make the business and financial decisions for a motion picture, TV show, commercial, or stage production. They raise money for the project and hire the director and crew. The crew may include set and costume designers, film and video editors, a musical director, a choreographer, and other workers. Some producers may assist in the selection of cast members. Producers set the budget and approve any major changes to the project. They make sure that the production is completed on time, and they are ultimately responsible for the final product.

Directors are responsible for the creative decisions of a production. They select cast members, conduct rehearsals, and direct the work of the cast and crew. During rehearsals, they work with the actors to help them more accurately portray their characters. For nonfiction video, such as documentaries or live broadcasts, directors choose topics or subjects to film. They investigate the topic and may interview relevant participants or experts on camera. Directors also work with cinematographers and other crew members to ensure the final product matches the overall vision.

Directors work with set designers, costume designers, location scouts, and art directors to build a project’s set. During a film’s postproduction phase, they work closely with film editors and music supervisors to make sure that the final product comes out the way the producer and director envisioned. Stage directors, unlike television or film directors who document their product with cameras, make sure the cast and crew give a consistently strong live performance. For more information, see the profiles on actors, writers and authors, film and video editors and camera operators, dancers and choreographers, and multimedia artists and animators.

Although directors are in charge of the creative aspects of a show, they ultimately answer to producers. Some directors also share producing duties for their own films.

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How To Become A Technical Director

Most producers and directors have a bachelor’s degree and several years of work experience in an occupation related to motion picture, TV, or theater production, such as an actor, film and video editor, or cinematographer.

Education

Producers and directors usually have a bachelor’s degree. Many students study film or cinema at colleges and universities. In these programs, students learn about film history, editing, screenwriting, cinematography, and the filmmaking process. Others major in writing, acting, journalism, or communication. Some producers earn a degree in business, arts management, or nonprofit management.

Many stage directors complete a degree in theater and some go on to receive a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree. Classes may include directing, playwriting, set design, and acting. As of May 2015, the National Association of Schools of Theatre accredited more than 180 programs in theater arts.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Producers and directors might start out working in a theatrical management office as a business or company manager. In television or film, they might start out as an assistant or another low-profile studio job.

Advancement

As a producer’s or director’s reputation grows, he or she may work on larger projects that attract more attention or publicity.

Important Qualities

Communication skills. Producers and directors must coordinate the work of many different people to finish a production on time and within budget.

Creativity. Because a script can be interpreted in different ways, directors must decide how they want to interpret it and then how to represent the script’s ideas on the screen or stage.

Leadership skills. A director instructs actors and helps them portray their characters in a believable manner. They also supervise the crew, who are responsible for the behind the scenes work.

Time-management skills. Producers must find and hire the best director and crew for the production. They make sure that all involved do their jobs effectively, keeping within a production schedule and a budget.

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Technical Director Jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Technical Director 4.0 years
Technical Manager 3.9 years
Top Employers Before
Director 7.3%
Internship 7.3%
Consultant 6.5%
Manager 6.5%
Technician 3.7%
Top Employers After
Director 10.9%
Consultant 10.0%
Owner 5.6%
President 4.4%
Manager 4.0%
Internship 3.9%
Principal 3.4%

Do you work as a Technical Director?

Technical Director Demographics

Gender

Male

79.8%

Female

17.4%

Unknown

2.8%
Ethnicity

White

61.1%

Hispanic or Latino

14.0%

Black or African American

10.9%

Asian

9.7%

Unknown

4.3%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.3%

French

14.5%

Chinese

6.2%

German

5.9%

Italian

5.1%

Portuguese

4.8%

Mandarin

4.3%

Russian

3.0%

Japanese

3.0%

Korean

2.4%

Carrier

2.2%

Arabic

1.9%

Cantonese

1.3%

Greek

1.3%

Hebrew

0.8%

Thai

0.8%

Swedish

0.5%

Hindi

0.5%

Hungarian

0.5%

Croatian

0.5%
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Technical Director Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

14.3%

Pennsylvania State University

7.8%

New York University

5.7%

Full Sail University

5.3%

University of Florida

5.1%

Texas A&M University

5.1%

University of Southern California

5.0%

Purdue University

4.7%

University of Texas at Austin

4.2%

Ohio State University

4.2%

Temple University

4.1%

Harvard University

4.1%

George Washington University

4.1%

Rochester Institute of Technology

3.9%

University of Pennsylvania

3.9%

Michigan State University

3.8%

Arizona State University

3.8%

University of Colorado at Boulder

3.6%

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

3.6%

Northeastern University

3.6%
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Majors

Business

18.3%

Computer Science

13.5%

Communication

8.7%

Electrical Engineering

7.2%

Photography

5.8%

Theatre

4.4%

Computer Information Systems

4.2%

Chemistry

4.1%

Information Technology

4.0%

Management

3.9%

Mechanical Engineering

3.4%

Education

3.0%

Journalism

3.0%

Fine Arts

2.6%

Finance

2.4%

Medical Technician

2.4%

Computer Engineering

2.3%

Digital Media

2.3%

Project Management

2.2%

Music

2.2%
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Degrees

Bachelors

41.5%

Masters

25.2%

Other

17.4%

Associate

6.3%

Doctorate

5.2%

Certificate

3.5%

Diploma

0.8%

License

0.1%
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Real Technical Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Mechanical & Electrical Technical Excellence Director Parsons Brinckerhoff, Inc. New York, NY Jun 17, 2015 $310,000
Technical Director CPT Global Inc. New York, NY Jan 01, 2015 $300,000
Technical Director-Software Architect Continuum Analytics New York, NY Aug 21, 2015 $300,000
Technical Director CPT Global Inc. New York, NY Jul 20, 2015 $300,000
Technical Director CPT Global Inc. New York, NY Mar 30, 2015 $300,000
Technical Director/Chief Engineer RCR Race Operations, LLC Welcome, NC Oct 22, 2016 $300,000
Technical Director CPT Global Inc. New York, NY Apr 01, 2016 $300,000
Technical Director, Dolphin Program Georgia Aquarium, Inc. Atlanta, GA Jan 01, 2015 $250,000
Director-Technology Verizon Corporate Resources Group San Jose, CA Sep 11, 2016 $230,625
Director-Technology Verizon Corporate Resources Group San Jose, CA Nov 09, 2016 $230,625
Technical Director DAL-Tile Corporation Dickson, TN Sep 18, 2015 $229,400
Director Technology at&T Services, Inc. Middletown, NJ Dec 23, 2016 $159,737
Director Cementing Technology Baker Hughes Incorporated Tomball, TX Nov 15, 2016 $156,750
Director of Technology Photon Infotech, Inc. Plano, TX Feb 06, 2016 $155,000
Director of Technology Photon Infotech, Inc. Irving, TX Jun 22, 2015 $155,000
Technical Director Mobilityware, Inc. Irvine, CA Jul 18, 2016 $155,000
Technical Director Mindtree Limited San Jose, CA Feb 17, 2016 $154,287
Director of Technology Corra Technology, Inc. Montclair, NJ Jan 07, 2016 $153,670
Director Technology Sensitive National Government Services, Inc. Baltimore, MD Jan 21, 2015 $153,296 -
$170,000
Director-Technology Synechron, Inc. Charlotte, NC Jan 10, 2016 $121,200
Director I Technology Anthem, Inc. Norfolk, VA May 13, 2015 $120,600 -
$134,927
Technical Director Charles Schwab and Company, Inc. Lone Tree, CO Jun 12, 2016 $120,058 -
$135,000
Technical Director Oligo Basics USA LLC Cary, NC Aug 01, 2015 $120,000
Technical Director K.G. International, Inc. Doral, FL Sep 07, 2015 $120,000
Director of Foundry Technology Hua Hong International (Americas), Inc. Fremont, CA Feb 01, 2015 $120,000
Technical Director Ultraclean Fuel LLC NM Sep 20, 2015 $120,000
Tech Director Globant, LLC San Francisco, CA Sep 09, 2016 $118,500

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Top Skills for A Technical Director

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  1. Web
  2. Video
  3. Infrastructure
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Developed and maintained corporate website, marketing materials and promotions.
  • Spearheaded development of innovative video production and delivery methods while managing day-to-day actions of technical department.
  • Applied advanced Telecommunications capabilities into the situation as an added infrastructure, changing the equation underlying economic development in the town.
  • Developed and implemented policies and procedures to improve the predictability of the organization's customer service process.
  • Served as video projectionist and Audio/Visual technician during festival.

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