‘There’s nothing to hide’: Implications of Seven shake-up and redundancies

Having announced a major shuffle to its leadership team and big-name redundancies, the question for Seven now is where to from here?

On Wednesday, as well as confirming the departures of chief marketing officer Melissa Hopkins, chief revenue officer Kurt Burnette and Seven Melbourne’s head of sport and managing director Lewis Martin, the media giant announced a new operating model “designed to deliver on the strategy that includes optimising its television business and delivering on the digital future”.

The senior executives are just three from what is believed to be up to 150 redundancies coming out of Seven West Media, however the group did not confirm that number, only saying in a statement this week: “A number of redundancies and other cost actions are being taken.”

It’s since been reported that Seven is looking to axe $100 million in costs on the back of a tough advertising landscape and the end of its multi-million dollar news media deal with Meta.

On a new episode of the Mumbrellacast, editor Neil Griffiths and publisher Adam Lang discussed the major announcement just hours after it was made, noting the string of controversies that has plagued the network lately, including the sacking of crime reporter and occasional newsreader, Robert Ovadia, just last week.

“Think about the scandals that have happened in the last couple of weeks and months,” Griffiths said. “You’ve got all these changes and these redundancies. Would you encourage the leadership team to be proactive as far as external comms? Do they just need to be worried about what’s happening in house?”

Lang replied: “It’s important for the people that even watch Channel 7 or read the West Australian that they’re able to understand what’s going on at the company, should they be interested.

“It’s really important for trade partners, media buyers, creatives, comms and PR people to understand what’s going on. Let’s face it, many of us deal with people at Seven in a variety of professional capacities, so to understand, are they there? Are they okay? What’s going on?

“First internally, particularly to those people whose jobs are affected, and then secondly, is to all of their trading partners and people who might be interested. There’s nothing to hide.

“You’ve got also your advertisers, your trading partners that need to be brought in. If there’s campaigns underway with one member of staff that is no longer there, who do I talk to? Who is taking over this responsibility? So, I think communications are even more vital at times of dramatic change.”

Listen to the full episode here.


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