Radical reform to deliver a more focused BBC
Journalism is undergoing a revolution. There is a transformation in the way people get their news and information – driven by digital technology and the growth of on-demand platforms such as the web. The weekly reach of television news is declining. Audiences for current affairs television are falling, while new media consumption is increasing.
- bbc.co.uk/news is reaching a weekly unique average of 14.5 million users.
- BBC mobile has reached an all-time high for News, Sport and Weather users – 2 million monthly users.
- Seventy five per cent of news consumers on mobiles are under 44 – compared to 25% of the same group for the flagship TV news bulletins.
- BBC News podcasts are reaching just under 3 million users per week – an increase of nearly 50% in six months.
BBC News has to ensure that it offers all its audiences something they value. It also has to offer them the journalistic quality people expect of the BBC in ways they find accessible and convenient and on platforms they increasingly take for granted – from mobile phones to vodcasts.
BBC News will deliver £155million pounds savings over five years, and will be able to invest a further £75million between now and 2012/13.
To meet these challenges BBC News will create a multi-media newsroom; a multi-media programmes department and a multi-media newsgathering operation.
- Bringing together key elements of News to produce a department where journalistic excellence can flourish.
- A system that is simplified and improved to speed up decision making; focusing on quality and distinctiveness against the competition on all platforms.
- To be ready to meet the audience challenges of an on-demand world.
- Helping staff members develop a broader skills base over time.
- A department that best addresses the problems of duplication and inefficiency.
- An approach that maintains the quality people expect of the BBC on the platforms they expect to get it.
- A new department that brings together all the major daily and weekly current affairs brands, investigative journalism and major interview programmes including Panorama, Today and Newsnight.
- A journalistic powerhouse for the kind of original journalism which distinguishes the BBC from all its competitors.
- Key programmes brands that will be supported by the best and most sophisticated websites.
- A department that will share its interviews and richness of original journalism across BBC News.
- Adding real value for audiences by bringing exceptional expertise together to find and break more new stories.
- BBC News fully recognises the need to protect the 'story getting' aspect of the process.
It is vital that Newsgathering remains equipped to serve both the new Newsroom and the new programmes department.
Newsgathering will continue to maintain its current bureaux presence.
- Maximising impact for audiences by fully integrating specialist reporters with their News Interactive colleagues.
- The strategy for Current Affairs will see BBC News strengthening those totemic brands that represent the best of the genre, including Panorama, This World and The One Show. The Creative Future plan confirms Panorama at the heart of the BBC One schedule, at 8.30pm, 48 weeks of the year, plus one-off specials.
- The department will continue to champion definitive, landmark series in the heart of the schedule, including Dimbleby's Russia and Iran And The West.
- There will be continued investment in the creative health of the wider UK, with increased business in Northern Ireland and Manchester's ongoing contribution to The One Show.
- Current Affairs will sit in the newly created Multi-media News Programmes department.
- The Political Unit in Millbank remains extremely important to the BBC, and will be restructured in line with the multi-media newsroom. Network television, radio news and online will be pulled together to create a fully integrated, multi-platform newsgathering operation.
BBC News & Current Affairs (a current department of 3,000) will make approximately 355 to 370 net redundancies by the end of the period across all departments, including Political Programmes, Current Affairs, Television News, Newsgathering, Radio News and News Interactive.
Before the effect of natural turnover and redeployment, BBC News & Current Affairs will be closing in the range of 475 to 490 gross posts over five years.