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Author Topic:  BBC do it Myers way as 200 jobs go in BBC Radio  (Read 1797 times)

darcysarto

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BBC do it Myers way as 200 jobs go in BBC Radio
« on: June 10, 2014, 09:19:43 PM »
In 2010 Tim Davie asked John Myers to review the way the BBC's popular music stations were run.

In 2011 his report was published and the findings were fed into the Delivering Quality First initiative.

Now in 2014 it was announced today that 200 jobs, around 15-17% of the total, are to disappear from Radio by 2017, reaping a saving of 38m; or to put it another way, 38 Mark Byfords, 12-and-a-half Pollards or around 40% of a DMI.

Here is what John has had to say about it on his blog today.

Quote
Interesting times within BBC Radio. Job cuts, back office mergers and more streamlining is on the way and while some will always find fault with that, the truth is, you can do just as well with fewer people if they are all going in the same direction. Many of the things they are doing now come from the recommendations I made within my own report into the networks way back in 2011, the most controversial point being the discovery of some 52 people to run Newsbeat. Even now, I get criticised for having raised it despite the fact that having 52 in one area was just absurd. People creep has been a popular sport within the corporation for years. When you don't have to balance income from advertising, you can always convince yourself that more people are required. Overall, while some people will lose out, and that is always sad, it is the right decision. Merging, protecting what is good and streamlining things is just good business. However, there is more to do.

Interestingly, the reorganisation at BBC Radio will only affect staffing and structures across Radios 1, 2, 3, 4, 1Xtra, 6 Music, 4 Extra and the Asian Network in a division which contained around 1,300 people in 2012 and, under the new plans, will employ approximately 1,100 in 2017. Nothing is said about 5Live though which of course comes under a different BBC division and is therefore excluded. I have said this before, what is the point of splitting radio up like a cherished apple pie between different bosses? They all love radio, they all want a slice and thats a big part of the issue right there. Lord Hall needs to bang heads together and put all radio, national and local under one roof. It wouldn't happen anywhere else. Only then will you be able to get the most savings from one technology, one ethos, one decision process and best of all, a strategy that protects each network. It will also protect jobs and keep people focused. Why can we all see that and Lord Hall can't?

For a case in point lets just review my later report into BBC Local Radio. In that, I urged a more cost efficient management structure and proposed that Managing Editors should look after more than just one station. It was an unnecessary high cost if you ask me and it would mean that 50% of them would have to go. They listened, nodded, laughed and promptly ignored me. It was asking turkeys to vote for Christmas after all. They proposed a different idea. They preferred to cut the Deputy Editor roles. OK, I get that and it was a good alternative with some merit I thought.

How many of those roles have disappeared then? Dont count on your fingers as you might be in danger of giving a V salute when you work it out. There is no point in announcing cuts if they are never carried out.

I congratulate BBC Radio. They are protecting the output while managing change. However, even Helen cant control the vast central charges to UK radio from the internal BBC robots. The numbers are huge and account for something like 60-70% of the total cost of each network. Someone might have a look at this but there is a better chance of England winning the world cup than any success here!

darcysarto

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Re: BBC do it Myers way as 200 jobs go in BBC Radio
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2014, 08:17:48 PM »
Gillian Reynolds among others appeared on the Media Show today to discuss the cuts.  When I say among others, that did not actually include anyone from the BBC as they declined.

Gillian voiced concerns that Radio was being disproportionately targeted for cutting, given it's reach within the population compared to TV, with more networks. more creativity and more programme ideas.  She also aired concerns that they would mean doing fewer and yet bigger 'impact' pieces across the BBC.  Steve Hewlett counters that bigger impact pieces may be better than yet another documentary on Radio 4.  Gillian's response was that it depends on whether you love and nurture your audience and whether you are in the business of public service.  Touche!  She also cautioned against the push towards 'online' as it opens up the can of worms marked 'subscription'.



Oddly, it's been announced that Radio 2's Live from the central reservation of the M25 in Hyde Park will continue this year, with Blondie and Billy Ocean already confirmed.

Tiger

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Re: BBC do it Myers way as 200 jobs go in BBC Radio
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2014, 10:03:48 PM »
Ha! Brilliant post Darcy.

Seriously, however, if anyone reading this cares about BBC radio they need to listen to this.

There is no doubt that this latest cut will go to the very bone of some services.

And as Gillian said imagine a cake. The cake that is BBCTV is pretty huge, despite Yentob gobblings and can take a bit of slicing, considering that it does not have the huge audience that BBC Radio has.So why is Helen Boaden not fighting for a service that she is supposed to love and defend? Perhaps she is more concerned about the fact that she partly authorised the dumping of the Savile Newsnight program and she is not going to rock any boats. Cowardice is not a good quality for those in public service.



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