More jobs at risk as Fairfax continues to restructure

The media company is preparing to cut costs – and staff – again as it makes a wide-ranging changes across several departments. 

Fairfax Media is preparing to cut costs – and staff – again as it undergoes a wide-ranging restructure across several departments. 

A review has begun of editorial, sales, operational, pre-press departments and the contact centre. Fairfax NZ has around 1800 employees, including about 800 editorial staff.

Fairfax NZ acting general manager Andrew Boyle says cost cutting began last year by implementing a no-replacements policy after staff departed, but now a further review is necessary.

He could not comment on how many jobs will be lost, but says the review will be undertaken on a site-by-site basis. Changes are expected by the end of September this year.

The company is in a planning phase, Mr Boyle says, but in some departments staff had already been told. 

“We haven’t consulted all the impacted areas with staff at this point.”

While Dunedin community title D-Scene is on the block – putting eight jobs are risk – Mr Boyle says this is only proposed site closure at this stage.

“We still intend to be the largest newsroom in the country. We know competing with quality local content is vital to our future.

He says part of the reorganisation may include considering centralised hubs for categories such as travel to reduce duplication.

“We have already reorganised content around single verticals such as NZ Farmer, which is an online vertical. We do business through Business Day but others will be looked at. But there are no definitive plans on what they will be.”

Mr Boyle says the Fairfax editorial services team will continue its model of sub-editing as one group irrespective of the geography. Some Australian regional titles and the Australian Financial Review are already sub-edited in New Zealand. 

The Sunday Star Times, which was restructured last year to take more content from the Dominion Post and the Press news rooms, would be further reviewed.

“Like all of our business, there will be some more thinking into how we structure it. Sunday titles aren’t immune.”

Fairfax’s contact centre will be partnered with external provider TeleTech as part of a trans-Tasman Fairfax initiative.

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