JPIMedia to create new digital content team and shrink some print teams

JPIMedia is to create a new digital content team which will serve all of the companies websites, the firm announced this morning.

The new team, which will be made up of 24 internal transfers and 9 new roles, will include a digital graphics and video production team, and new digital content subject areas, such as lifestyle, for our major websites. The data and investigations team will also now report into the central digital team.

The company also plans to hire a team of subscription specialists to make the most of the paywalls it has introduced across much of the business.

At the same time, the company announced it would be reducing the number of people employed in some print-focused teams as the company now doesn’t expect to reinstate much of the pagination lost during the pandemic.

Around 20 to 30 roles will be lost from these teams, although the company said some design work in print which was suspended during the pandemic will begin again.

In a memo sent to staff this morning, JPIMedia editor-in-chief Jeremy Clifford said: “Over the past few months we have learned much about the types of content that engage our readers and we intend to continue to shift our focus to producing more content that appeals to our digital readership — particularly for our biggest brands.

“What we have learned about the value of our digital content has reinforced our belief in our digital strategy and transformation.

“It is therefore our intention to focus on new content areas by transferring 24 job opportunities into a newly-formed central digital content team.

“This will include creating a digital graphics and video production team, and new digital content subject areas, such as lifestyle, for our major websites. The data and investigations team will also now report into the central digital team.

“During this time we have also changed the type and range of content produced by our advanced community news and sports teams. We have significantly reduced the number of pages produced by the central design team during the lockdown.

“While we believe there has been minimal impact on the quality of our titles as a result, we do intend to reintroduce some elements of design that were previously provided. We also want to provide more digital and commercial services by transferring a small number of design roles into this team.

“It is unlikely we will see any reinstatement of pages that were removed from our products because of reduced activity levels in the community and advertising volumes. This gives us the opportunity to reassess the content we produce for all our titles.

“Unfortunately, this means we will need fewer people to work on them and we therefore intend to reduce the number of roles in the community and design teams — specifically in the Scottish Small Brands, the Advanced Content Hubs, Community Sport and the Design Hub.

“Whilst it is our intention to redeploy as many people as possible into the central unit, regrettably we anticipate an overall reduction of between 20 and 30 roles from these teams.

“We are also investing in nine new roles based on our learnings about engagement, subscriptions, and search-driven content. These roles will be open to anyone to apply for, however, due to the specific expertise required, we will also be advertising these externally.

“We are commencing a Voluntary Redundancy process today for those people potentially impacted by these changes. We will also consider requests for reductions in hours.

“I am sorry this is difficult news for people who have worked so hard for our company during what has already been a very challenging year. The economic circumstances and changes to the ways in which our readers access content mean we need to respond to those challenges to ensure the continuing viability of our business.”

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