ABC plans further redundancies to fund content and digital platform investment

An ABC proposal to double its investment in its digital platforms may cost up to 37 positions within the broadcaster.

The proposal to create a Product and Content Technology team drawn from other ABC resources will see the broadcaster prioritising digital products, content management and core technology capabilities, in line with its Investing in Audiences strategy announced in February.

The latest ABC proposals are part of chairman Justin Milne’s pivot to an ‘ABC 2.0’

Under the proposal, the ABC claims it would have a flatter management structure speeding up decision making and improving accountability with the new operating model anticipated to go live at the beginning of August.

An ABC spokesperson told Mumbrella: “The ABC has announced a new operating model with teams formed from existing employees. Any new roles would be advertised internally or externally if we need a capability that cannot be filled internally. There are about 600 existing technology employees.

“The proposed changes that impact on the 37 (FTE) employees is subject to a period of consultation before any implementation can be decided on. This number is made up entirely of Technology employees – Broadcast Operations, Content Services, Digital Network and Technology infrastructure and support.”

At the time of unveiling ‘ABC 2.0’ in February, ABC chairman Justin Milne said the organisation would focus on evolving into being “fit for the digital challenges of the next 20 years”.

Milne said the “new digital platforms” would be created to understand audiences better and serve content anywhere, anytime. He pointed to modernisation of production processes for ABC News and content partnerships with Australian production companies.

As part of the shift to digital platforms, the ABC axed 20 jobs in its city newsrooms in April in moving to a structure which the broadcaster claimed would better cope with the ‘modern media environment’.

In today’s announcement, the ABC also said it has identified efficiency cuts that would affect 37 staff but allow the organisation to invest the saved funds into content creation.

“These are hard decisions, but the right ones to guarantee the ABC remains properly equipped, now and into the future, with so many rapid changes in technology,” said ABC chief digital and information officer Helen Clifton.

“This proposal will ensure we are a future-focused media organisation able to meet changing audience expectations and will strengthen our commitment to delivering outstanding content and media experiences to Australian audiences.”


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