Around 20 jobs, including that of a regional daily editor, could be lost as Trinity Mirror’s latest restructure is rolled out to its Scottish division.
As reported on HTFP yesterday, the company announced a newsroom reorganisation in the West Midlands – with 19 jobs at risk at the Birmingham Mail’s office and six under threat at the Coventry Telegraph’s office.
Now the company has unveiled proposals to cut around 20 of 311 staff currently employed by its Media Scotland arm, with titles affected including the Daily Record, Sunday Mail and Paisley Daily Express.
Express editor John Hutcheson, pictured above left, is among those whose jobs are at risk, as Trinity Mirror plans to combine his role with that of the news editor to create a new executive editor position.
A memo sent to staff by Media Scotland managing director Allan Rennie, which has been seen by HTFP, also outlines plans to reduce production roles on the Daily Record and admits there will be “fewer checks” on copy in future.
The cutbacks include reduction of the Daily Record’s editorial production management team from three to two.One sport and two news multimedia journalists are set to be cut from the Daily Record and Sunday Mail’s staff, with one sports writer also facing redundancy.
In addition three roles are at risk of redundancy at its regional production hub, with a new position of head of production (Media Scotland regionals), which combines their duties, being created to replace them.
The company is seekinng up to eight voluntary redundancies as part of the changes.
In the memo, Allan wrote: “We understand that it is a challenge to produce award-winning newspapers papers with fewer staff. So it is important we all do what we can to streamline workloads.
“With fewer people, there will be fewer checks. Reporters and writers need to produce copy fit for online in the first instance and which requires the absolute minimum intervention from production for print and digital.
“The main focus of MMJs (multimedia journalists) should be headline and caption writing, copy fitting and pulling together complex multi-sourced stories.
“We need to target our art power on the showpiece pages and simplify design. As a consequence, we will template up to 70pc of all Daily Record and Sunday Mail pages – this includes magazines and sport.”
Allan added that the company would aim to achieve savings through voluntary means and would consult with the NUJ to try to find alternative employment for staff potentially at risk.
The voluntary redundancy package is open to all editorial staff working for Media Scotland and will be on the enhanced Daily Record and Sunday Mail rate.
As a result of the move, the Record and Mail will now move to a single Scottish edition structure with the exception of regional adverts.
Both titles will retain the capacity for slips up until 12.30am, for instance in the event of a major news story, while up to 70 pc of pages will be templated from now on.