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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

HR for Creatives

Accessible HR support

Supported by

SCVO is excited to be providing free HR support and development to 20 arts, screen and creative industries employers for the next 12 months supported by Creative Scotland. We know that organisations want to create working environments where people can thrive in the creative industries. But budgets are tight, people are busy, and specialist HR services won’t always be a focus. We’re here to help.

We’ll provide:

  • detailed audits of policies and procedures
  • one-to-one expert HR and people management advice from SCVO’s HR team
  • access to webinars, peer-to-peer learning and networking.

We’ll be gathering information about the needs of creative organisations, as part of a wider research project to identify what the sector needs longer-term. So your participation will also help us reach more people and offer you better support in the future.

Eligibility and application process

Who can apply?

Here’s everything you need to know about applying. The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Friday 7th July 2023.

To apply you must be a:

Micro to small sized arts, screen, and creative industries organisation

with no in-house HR, or specialist HR support

based in Scotland

Eligible applicants include, but are not limited to:

  • Arts, screen and creative industries organisations based in Scotland
  • Artists' spaces, hubs, studios, incubators, workshops
  • Community arts organisations
  • Creative collectives and networks
  • Festivals
  • Residency providers

We encourge organisations that fit one of the above criteria and who work with volunteers or vulnerable groups to apply.

You don’t have to be a charity, CIC or social enterprise to take part, but your organisation does need to deliver work which has a wider public value.

If you're unsure if you're eligible, please email

Who cannot apply?

  • Organisations based outside of Scotland
  • Organisations that already have access to dedicated in-house and/or specialist HR and people management support
  • Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) set up around screen productions
  • Heritage organisations
  • National collections and national performing companies (see full list on the Scottish Government website)

If you're unsure if you're eligible, please email

  • Educational institutions, including higher and further education providers
  • Organisations with core activities that are not part of the arts, screen or creative industries
  • Profit-distributing companies, such as companies limited by shares or companies without a clear asset lock
  • Individuals seeking HR support eg people who are in dispute with their employer

What areas can SCVO's HR Service help with?

We can help with a broad range of topics, including one-to-one advice, guidance and templates. These include:

  • Disciplinary and grievance
  • Employment contracts
  • Dismissals
  • Fixed-term / permanent employment / freelance work
  • Flexible working
  • Pay and terms and conditions
  • Redundancies
  • Safeguarding
  • Working with volunteers

We will make sure that our support:

  • Is flexible and responsive to your organisations’ needs and time constraints
  • Is thoughtful, expert and trustworthy, and understands the arts, screen and creative industries organisations' operating contexts
  • Is available regularly and repeatedly within the project timeframe
  • Is sensitive to your starting point and will inform, advise and coach without judgement

What's needed for the reseach element of the project?

Participating organisations will share their HR learning journeys with a dedicated researcher. The research findings will be shared so that other organisations across the arts, screen and creative industries can learn from participants’ experience.

How to apply

The closing date for applications is 12 noon on Friday 7th July 2023. Please read the guidance fully before applying and once you're ready, please complete the application form below and submit before the deadline.

Your submitted application will be sent to SCVO’s HR team and you will receive and email confirming receipt of your application. If you'd like to request a copy of your completed application, please get in touch with us at

Background of the project 

Creative Scotland’s recent Review of Fair Work shows that specialist HR expertise is often beyond the budgets of employers in the arts, screen and creative industries, which could put them at a disadvantage in the implementation of the Scottish Government’s Fair Work First agenda.  

In response, Creative Scotland has partnered with SCVO and Project Manager Kathryn Willens on an action research project to explore the support needed for micro and small creative organisations. The HR for Creatives project will support 20 arts, screen and creative industries employers over the next 12 months with skills development, one to one advice and peer support.  

About SCVO 

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is the national membership organisation for the voluntary sector. SCVO is passionate about the voluntary sector and believes that charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups make Scotland a better place. Our vision is a thriving voluntary sector at the heart of a successful, fair and inclusive Scotland.  

Our team of experienced and qualified HR professionals provide HR advice and resources to voluntary sector organisations. SCVO is committed to offering Fair Work and to supporting other organisations to offer Fair Work. 

About Creative Scotland  

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding from the Scottish Government and The National Lottery.  

Screen Scotland sits within Creative Scotland and is the dedicated partnership for screen in Scotland, delivering enhanced support for all aspects of Scotland's screen sector.  

As a non-regulatory, non-advisory (on HR matters) organisation, Creative Scotland is partnering on the delivery of this project with SCVO, who can supply direct HR support, and Project Manager, Kathryn Willens, to curate a bank of relevant resources and offer one-to-one support.  

About Kathryn Willens 

Kathryn Willens has participated in project co-creation and is leading on developing a resource base in response to the needs identified over the course of the project. 

Kathryn has 20+ years of cumulative experience in the strategic development, planning, managing and evaluating of complex, multimillion-pound projects in Scotland, the UK and internationally.