A production coordinator, or a production office coordinator (POC), is the person keeping a project organized and assisting the project manager in any way possible. The production coordinator essentially gets all the cast and crew what they need in order to do their jobs, and the role usually requires someone to take on many different roles depending on the demands of the project and the project manager. Hiring a freelance production coordinator can be a great way alleviate the stress of a production while making the whole process more efficient.
What to look for
When hiring a freelance production coordinator, there are a few key qualities you should look for:
Above all, production coordinators needs to have an overall proficiency in many areas. They need to have effective communication skills, problem-solving skills, basic accounting skills, and a good amount of computer skills. They need to be able to understand and coordinate all areas of a production.
Look for evidence that your potential hire can multitask. Juggling several assignments at once is basically the underlying skillset every production coordinator needs, and you should be able to tell after looking at your potential hire’s resume if they can be in charge of a group or not.
Know what you need
Be sure to ask and understand what your potential hire might need to do his or her job effectively. Freelance production coordinators typically need to have free reign to make many of the day-to-day decisions they will be faced with—this is why you hired them! Ask them what kinds of issues they prefer to resolve themselves and which ones they would rather pass up to the production manager.
In addition, find out how much they charge for their services. The going rate for production coordinators is not regulated by any government body and therefore can be drastically diverse. You want a coordinator who will put in the hours necessary. Determine how valuable that is to you before accepting or rejecting a service.
Finally, your production coordinator needs to have space to work and the tools to carry out the project’s demands. Hiring a freelance production coordinator and expecting him or her to work without an office space is not the wisest move. You need to give them what they need to manage effectively.
Questions to ask a potential candidate
“What type of management style do you typically employ?”
Production coordinators pull together your entire team. Knowing their leadership style can give you an indication as to how they will coordinate your production.
“What is your previous work experience?”
Production coordinators have to get experience from somewhere, but hopefully your potential hire has had success at their job previously.
“How do you handle conflict?”
Balancing the needs of many different people can be tricky. Ask this question to get an insight in their problem-solving strategies.
“Have you ever had a problem with your superiors?”
Production coordinators still report to the production manager. Make sure your potential hire is a team player.
“Are you a details person or a big picture person?”
You should hear an answer that reflects a little of both. Production coordinators have to master both ends of the spectrum to be successful.