How creative and digital industries are in better position to cope with disruption

The creative and digital industry is optimistic about the future and is in a much better position to cope with another potential lockdown having learnt lessons from the first, according to the boss of a regional sector organisation.

“The industry as a whole has prepared and learnt the lessons from the first lockdown and is in a much better position to be able to cope with it,” Robert McClements.

Robert McClements, president of Creative Digital Industries (CDI), told The Yorkshire Post that he was “surprised by the level of optimism” in the sector at this year’s Visual Media Conference hosted by the CDI.

He added that businesses within the sector had organised themselves taking advantage of Government support to weather the Covid-19 crisis.

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The industry would be “disappointed” by another lockdown but it would be “accepted”, Mr McClements says.

"We’ve been pleased to support and encourage Visual Media Conference", Roger Marsh OBE.

“The industry as a whole has prepared and learnt the lessons from the first lockdown and is in a much better position to be able to cope with it,” he added.

Mr McClements said: “It made people look at their businesses strategically. It was a short, sharp shock that made them step back and question what they were doing, why they were doing it, the resources that they needed to be successful.

“People have been able to see through and they’ve been forced to focus on the businesses and look at them objectively and in some cases it’s made them realise that they needed to change direction.”

CDI hosted its annual Visual Media Conference online earlier this month with over 550 people registering for it. The conference attracted delegates from across the world.

Speakers included Jonathan Geldart, director general of the Institute of Directors (IoD), Felicity Burch, director of innovation and digital at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and James Sommerville, former vice president of global design at The Coca-Cola Company.

Roger Marsh OBE, chairman on the Leeds City Region Enterprise Partnership (LEP), said: “We’ve been pleased to support and encourage Visual Media Conference since the beginning seven years ago as it has grown from 40 people having a coffee in Leeds to a global online event with over 550 registrations and speakers and attendees from Australia to California.

“Recognising the importance of the burgeoning creative digital sector across our region, networks like Creative Digital Industries help provide the vital link between government funding and strategy with the people and businesses that convert that into GDP.”

The event also provided a networking platform through Hopin.