News editor jobs can differ depending upon several factors: whether the publication is a magazine or newspaper; the size of the publication; and the scope of information covered by the publication. For example, a major print news magazine will have numerous editors, most of whom will be news editors. A community newspaper, on the other hand, may have one or a few news editors, and also have editors covering other topics such as arts and entertainment, sports and schools.
Both newspapers and magazines typically have a top editor with the title of Editor-in-Chief or Executive Editor. This person has the job of overseeing the editorial content, the layout and budgets, but not normally the day-to-day operation of the publication. Daily operation is often handled by the Managing Editor, who determines what news to cover, which editor or writer should write an article, and placement of the article based on its importance. The Managing Editor may handle budgets as well.
Most publications — whether large or small — commonly have several news editor jobs. One may have the actual title of News Editor, with the responsibility of deciding on news articles, assigning them, and determining their placement in the publication. Another may be called the Business Editor, in charge of business news. A larger publication may also have both a National Editor, who handles reporters writing on news throughout a country, and an International or Global Editor who oversees writers reporting on news that is worldwide in scope. Larger magazines and newspapers may also have assistant or deputy news editors who assist or fill in for any of their news editors.
Most of these news editor jobs are filled by people who have worked their way up in the newspaper or magazine business. Generally, a potential candidate has started his career as a writer or copy editor, worked for several years as an assistant editor, and continued to move up to higher news editing jobs throughout his career. He may move up within the same publication, but very often editing professionals in the industry move to other publications in order to receive one of the news editor jobs with greater responsibility and a higher salary.
Most news editor jobs require the editor to have a college degree when starting his career. Although it is possible for a candidate lacking a college degree to prove his ability with exemplary writing samples, the reality is that news editor jobs are highly competitive. Therefore, most news editors have college degrees and years of solid experience in writing and editing.