Technical Services Director


Department/Team: Technical Contract: Permanent Location: The Old Vic, 103 The Cut, London, SE1 8NB (there may be occasions where home working may be appropriate depending on the production schedule) Hours: Full-Time (40 hours per week, Monday-Friday; evening and weekend working may be required) Additional hours may be necessary in order to fulfil the requirements of the post Direct reports: Head of Lighting, Head of Stage, Head of Wardrobe, Deputy Head of Sound and dotted line to Assistant Production Manager Salary: In the region of £65,000 per annum

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Role Summary

The purpose of the Technical Services Director is to oversee The Old Vic (theatre, building and the new Old Vic Backstage Studio and building) technical, stage and event infrastructure, including line management of the core and casual technical teams (excluding those engaged specifically for productions). They will work closely with the Production Director who will oversee the schedule for those teams for production periods. The Technical Services Director will work with the Production Director and Technical Heads of Department (HoDs) to identify and propose maintenance and improvements required for the technical delivery of Old Vic activity. In addition to underpinning excellence in technical work, the role will work to improve sustainability, environmental impact and H&S compliance. The Technical Services Director will sit on The Old Vic’s Senior Management Group (SMG).

The Technical Services Director will work closely with the Producer, Production team, Technical team and Production Director, in addition to collaborative working with the Head of Building Operations and Facilities team.

Areas of responsibility

Technical Services

  • Managing the HODs to support the delivery of Old Vic productions
  • Overall responsibility for the management of stage and technical facilities and for technical equipment maintenance, upgrades and improvements, doing so with regard to safety, environmental, financial and insurance requirements
  • Working closely with the HODs to support the Production Director throughout the production process to ensure ambitions are realised within The Old Vic’s financial, logistical, sustainability and safety framework
  • Supporting the Production Director to ensure there is sufficient resource to plan and manage fit ups, change overs and get outs, ensuring smooth communication and coordination in preparation and planning for technical team and any casual staff working under the HODs

Health & Safety

  • To promote a positive approach to Health and Safety, leading a technical health and safety culture designed to ensure compliance with safety standards and supporting the same theatre wide. Ensure the technical team and casuals are sufficiently trained and equipped to work safely
  • Overall responsibility for the provision of specialist health and safety and fire advice for all technical related activities (the Production Director will have overall responsibility for Production related activities)
  • Working within The Old Vic’s H&S management framework, where the Board delegates authority through the Operations Director and Head of Building Operations.
  • Ensuring internal collaboration and with external advisors or auditors where necessary and appropriate
  • Conducting, reviewing and finalising technical risk assessments for equipment and the building (not including Production Risk Assessments, which are the responsibility of the Production Director), in conjunction with the HODs
  • Developing, reviewing and maintaining safe systems of work arising from risk assessments
  • Ensuring a robust inspection and monitoring process for the management of third party contractors working from time to time in technical areas, where required
  • Being a member of the Health and Safety Steering Group and the Health & Safety Committee
  • Working with the technical HODs to identify training needs and conduct training where appropriate and select, brief and liaise with training providers where necessary.
  • Advising all members of the technical team of the legal requirements affecting health and safety as they relate to The Old Vic and advise on any changes to such requirements and their implications
  • Advising the Production Director and HODs on health and safety and regulatory requirements for the operational running of storage facilities used on a temporary or long-term basis
  • Carrying out safety audits and periodic inspections and any follow-up investigations as required
  • Responsible for all Technical and Health and Safety Technical equipment and immediate infrastructure and certification, liaising as required, for example with the Head of Building Operations and Facilities Manager in regard to auditorium related matters and upgrades
  • Ensuring that all Technical Department H&S documentation is up to date on the central H&S system, Blue Lemon

Environmental Sustainability

  • Playing an active role in developing The Old Vic’s sustainability strategy, with specific responsibility for the reduction in the carbon footprint of the OV technical infrastructure, equipment and ways of working
  • Ensuring The Old Vic utilises the Theatre Green Book to the highest possible level
  • Being aware of and responding to other theatre industry standards as they emerge
  • To engage in and promote environmentally sustainable working practices


  • Providing leadership, coaching and development of direct reports to ensure effective performance, management, skill development and teamwork
  • Maintain high morale across Technical teams
  • Fostering a culture of continuous improvement across all Technical departments, services and activities
  • Leading Career Development Discussions for direct reports, to identify development needs and opportunities and ensure that these are carried out throughout the team
  • Ensuring technical casual show crew are recruited and inducted in line with The Old Vic standards and procedures
  • Overseeing the contracting and onboarding of all casual stage, lighting and wardrobe show crew including H&S inductions, welcome and IR35 considerations for freelancers
  • Overseeing rotas, TOIL and annual leave of core technical team, authorising leave and TOIL where required to meet production requirements, (guided by the Production Director during production periods)
  • Overseeing the processing of the weekly payroll for technical weekly paid staff and overseeing the approval of timesheets
  • Ensuring equality and inclusion within the Technical team, in accordance with the targets and priorities set out in the Belonging and Inclusion Strategic Plan
  • Supporting the HODs rostering of casual and freelance technical staff to meet staffing needs, whilst ensuring appropriate rest periods and that the wellbeing of staff is maintained
  • Providing effective channel/s of communication, liaison and decision-making between technical departments and with the wider theatre
  • Leading regular technical team meetings and 121s with HODs, and organising and participating where required in planning and scheduling meetings and thereafter ensuring that information is collated and distributed efficiently
  • Attending production, and other meetings as necessary
  • Ensuring departmental compliance as required

Employee/Industrial relations

  • To model a culture of respect, fairness and openness aligned to The Old Vic’s culture and values
  • To ensure that all HoDs and Managers know, understand and operate within the terms of house and collective agreements
  • To participate as required in the preparation for, and process of, formal consultation and negotiation with recognised technical Trade Union bodies, currently BECTU


  • Oversee the Technical department budget (department running budget and capital expenditure), giving updates and forecasts as necessary, ensuring that budgets are on target and that any potential deviation is promptly notified
  • Obtain quotations for financial approval
  • Be responsible for raising and approving purchase orders as necessary in Business Central
  • Be responsible for production related petty cash, completing returns to finance as required
  • Ensure relevant documentation and contracts for suppliers is recorded and held in an organised system
  • Working with relevant members of the Senior Management Group to assess the Company’s future plans in regard to people and resources, including infrastructure, setting realistic and achievable budgets, providing costs and recommendations as necessary
  • Ensuring best practice in value for money and quality procurement
  • Complying with all insurance requirements, highlighting any insurance related issues, and responding to any enquiries


  • Adhere to The Old Vic’s policies including confidentiality, sustainability and all other policies included in the staff handbook

This is not an exhaustive list of duties and the Theatre’s management may, at any time, allocate other tasks which are of a similar nature or level or required in an emergency situation.

Person specification

  • Demonstrable experience operating at a senior level within a theatre overseeing an in house technical team and managing a technical infrastructure
  • Proven commitment to working in a collaborative working environment, driving change
  • Proven record of strong financial management
  • Experience of applying the principles of equity and inclusion within a theatre setting
  • Excellent technical skills with a thorough understanding of current equipment and systems across all the main areas of technical theatre (stage, lighting, flys, sound, engineering, automation, stage technologies and construction/access areas)
  • Excellent leadership and communication skills, with the ability to manage, motivate and develop the senior managers in the technical teams
  • Experience of managing trade union relations and negotiations
  • Extensive experience in health, safety and fire advice within the creative industries
  • Recognised Health and Safety qualification i.e IOSH Certificate
  • Strong time management skills with a strong focus on delivery
  • The ability to communicate positively, both verbally and in writing with all levels of staff

How to Apply

We understand that everyone is different and we want you to apply in whichever way you feel best shows your skills and experience. There are a range of ways that you can apply with us:

1. Sending a short video file of yourself (no longer than two minutes in length), detailing your experience, why you are applying for the role and what about working at The Old Vic interests you (have a look at the person specification in the job description).

2. Sending a short audio file of yourself (no longer than two minutes in length), detailing your experience, why you are applying for the role and what about working at The Old Vic interests you.

3. Completing our application form.

4. Uploading your CV and covering letter, explaining why you are interested in the role and working at the Old Vic.

As a Disability Confident employer, The Old Vic has made a commitment that all applicants with disabilities who meet the essential criteria for this job will be invited to interview. However in the event that we have a high volume of applications all of whom meet the criteria and identify as disabled, meaning it is not practicable to interview everyone, we may apply a weighting to the shortlisting criteria, or add an additional shortlisting stage before any interviews take place. In all cases we will take care to ensure that any criteria or weightings do not disadvantage disabled applicants.

All appointments are made subject to satisfactory references and proof of eligibility to work in the UK.

The Process

The recruitment process for this role will be two stages:

  • 1st stage in person conversation
  • 2nd stage in person conversation

The closing date for this role is 11.59pm on 5 August 2024. First stage conversations are likely to take place w/c 19 August 2024.

Equal Opportunities

We actively support and encourage people from a variety of backgrounds, experiences and skill sets to join us and help shape what we do. We are particularly keen to receive applications from people of the global majority, LGBTQ+, neurodiverse and disabled candidates.

We may take positive action, in cases where candidates are equally qualified, to increase the employment of under-represented groups at The Old Vic.

In the event that we ask you to attend the theatre for a conversation and you are struggling financially, we may be able to reimburse you for any reasonable travel costs.

We partner with a range of inclusive organisations, to find out more please read our FAQs.


Read our recruitment and selection and equal opportunities FAQs here


The Old Vic

Location Type

Specific location

Salary Type


Salary (Exact)


Closing Date


Contract Type

Permanent, Full Time

Job Type

Backstage & Technical, Production

Link to application details