The ABC will make 35 television editorial staff redundant this week without slowing content production, following a review by Boston Consulting.
ABC director of television Kim Dalton yesterday announced the cuts via email:
The Production Review was established to deliver the most efficient and effective approach to the production of television content. Today, we are announcing the proposed TV Production Pool Efficiencies initiative, which is part of the Production Review announced by the Managing Director on 27 March.
The majority of programs have been commissioned or committed for the 2009 calendar year and after discussions with Executive Producers, TV Managers and ABC Resources; programs have been commissioned adopting a more efficient and effective production methodology.
ABC Television will maintain a mixed production model of both internal and external production with levels of internal production commissioned by the ABC remaining the same in 2009 as in 2008. ABC TV will also continue to commission programs from across the States.
This initiative will ensure we can maintain the current levels of content production but work in a more efficient way in how we produce content. These savings can then be used to fund further content production.
There will be a number of potential redundancies within the TV Division. This number is not expected to exceed 35 Television staff nationally.
Over the last few months Television has methodically assessed the way that we approach the planning of the Production Slate. As a result we will be:
- Amalgamating production units within the same genre eliminating duplication of work and increasing utilisation of staff skill-sets
- Adopting greater discipline in field production
- Reducing post production demand through adoption of best practise preparation prior to edit
- Clear and detailed production planning at program level
Internally produced programs such as Catalyst, Compass, Sunday Arts, First Tuesday Book Club, Media Watch and Collectors will be affected, with staff expected to continue to generate sustained hours of programming.
“There will just be 35 less people to work on them,” an ABC staff member told Crikey.
“This part of the ABC is not over-staffed and from my experience, the people working on these programs work extremely hard and are often under lots of stress due to the work load.”