What happens at a JobHack?


By 2025, we've pledged to make our new hires reflect UK society. In 2016, our Careers team welcomed 150 young people to 5 #PRHJobHack events across the UK, from Glasgow to Taunton to Birmingham, targeting young people who may not otherwise have considered a career in publishing.

In July, we hosted our first JobHacks of 2017 in Derby and Norwich. Talent Advisor Alex Watson was on hand to let us know what happened.

JobHack 2017

“JobHack was a really personal workshop run by a huge publishing house - it made the publishing world feel a lot more accessible.”

- a JobHack attendee

What does it mean when you walk into a room containing a flurry of flipchart paper, a host of enthusiastic publishers, and tables filled with Penguin merchandise?

Nine times out of ten, a JobHack is about to begin.

JobHack is a day of creative, free, publishing-oriented workshops aimed at reaching 18-24 year olds who would not necessarily have considered publishing as a career choice before or had easy access to opportunities or information about our industry.

JobHack travels the UK giving attendees the chance to test out what it’s like being an editor, publicist, recruiter (and more), as well as win some very exciting prizes, get to grips with how a book is made and quiz our colleagues on the ins and outs of publishing and their careers.

This summer, we’ve already visited Derby and Norwich and debuted two brand new workshops. 


In a new workshop in Derby, JobHackers got to hear all about the exciting world of Audio and record their own audiobooks (if you’re curious about audio, head here to go behind the scenes), reading their own versions of Into the Water by Paula Hawkins, The Heart's Invisible Furies by John Boyne and You Don't Know Me by Imran Mahmood.

Whilst in Norwich, our Children's design team revealed the journey for Tom Fletcher’s There’s a Monster in Your Book along with Tom’s own initial sketches. Attendees then had the chance to respond to design brief for The BFG, putting a together collage of different jacket elements to appeal to their target audience. 

On top of that, JobHackers got to take part in the following workshops, back for 2017:

Rewriting book blurbs

Ever wondered how the blurb on the back of a book gets created? Our copywriters took attendees through the whole process.

Pitching book ideas

Our editors-in-residence were all ears to hear some fantastic book pitches, providing feedback on how the idea could work and the steps we'd have to carry out to make it happen.

Creating a publicity and marketing campaign

Our experts discussed their approach to campaigns such as The Power by Naomi Alderman and Believe Me by Eddie Izzard.

Stepping into the shoes of a recruiter

We all know about what interviews feel like - but what about the other side? Who would you put forward to an interview? Attendees found out what our resourcing team are looking for and what can help their applications to stand out.       

JobHack 2017
JobHack 2017

Describing the Norwich event, Senior Marketing Executive Stephanie Naulls said: “At JobHack, I met a really great group of people who we’d be lucky to have joining the industry. My favourite bit was hearing the participants come back with their campaign ideas - it made me think about new audiences for books I work on."

Over 60 people attended both events, and approached the day with curiosity, interest and a lot of enthusiasm. Thanks to all who attended. Next up for JobHack is a trip to Newcastle on the 22 September. We hope to see you there.

Want to find out more? Applications for JobHack Newcastle are now open. Head to the JobHack website to apply before applications close on the 29 August.

JobHack 2017

"I left the event feeling reassured that the industry is accessible and that aiming to work in publishing is a realistic goal, even if you're not currently based in London. I loved learning about all the different roles available - I didn't realise how varied the industry was! Thank you."

- a JobHack attendee

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