BBC to cut jobs with enforced cutbacks

After years of sending their staff on jollies at the expense of the British tax payer through the stealth tax that is the BBC TV Licence, finally the technological age has caught up with Auntie.

After showing complete left wing bias during the 2015 General Election the BBC is facing the fact that there is a £150m shortfall in funding and the gravy train is going to be soon hitting the buffers.

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Various BBC stories from around the web.


The BBC will cut over 1,000 jobs due to a £150m shortfall in its licence fee income, director Lord Tony Hall has confirmed.

With the number of households owning television sets falling as audience’s consumption practices change, the broadcaster’s income from license fee subscriptions has diminished.

The BBC said the financial challenges “means additional savings must now be found” and that it aims to save £50m from the slim down.

Hall said creating a “simpler, leaner, BBC is the right thing to do and it can also help us meet the financial challenges we face.

“We’ve already significantly cut the costs of running the BBC,” he explained, “but in times of very tough choices we need to focus on what really matters – delivering outstanding programmes and content for all our audiences.”

Professional and support areas will be most affected by the cuts, management layers will be removed and the number of its overall divisions reduced as part of Hall’s wide-ranging attempts to improve efficiency and make savings at the broadcaster.

Wage restraints, pay-off caps and a reduction in senior managers have already been implemented as part of his remodelling plan. Properties have also been vacated and sold off in order to cut costs – last month its Media Village site in White City was sold and sublet for £87m.

The £145.5 annual licence fee has been an issue of much contention in recent weeks, after culture secretary John Whittingdale called it “regressive” and argued it hit the poor the hardest.

However, Hall has said the licence hee has got “10 years life in it”.

From the Press Gazette

he BBC is to cut more than 1,000 jobs, including many managerial roles, the corporation has announced.

The cuts come as the corporation seeks to become “simpler, leaner and more effective for the future”.

They were announced by director general Tony Hall in a speech to staff this morning from the BBC’s Media Cafe. It was streamed on the corporation’s intranet.

The cuts announcement comes after reports the BBC discovered a £150m shortfall in funding from licence fee in 2016/17.

The cuts would amount to around one in 20 BBC staff going.

The BBC said it could deliver £50m in savings from “merging divisions, cutting down management layers, reducing managers and improving processes”. It said that more than 1,000 jobs would be lost as a result.

Asked where the other £100m – making up the rest of the shortfall – would come from, a BBC spokesperson said this would be announced “in due course”.

The BBC said it would reduce the number of divisions by “joining up technology teams across Digital, Engineering and Worldwide”, and said: “Further changes are also possible.”

It has also pledged to “reduce the number of layers from the top to the bottom of the organisation. In some places there are currently ten layers of people and management and this will be cut to a maximum of seven in the future.”

The statement also said that the BBC will “reduce management roles in all areas of the BBC. A simpler organisation will inevitably require fewer managers, especially at senior levels.”

And it will also bid to “simplify and standardise procedures across the BBC particularly looking at how professional and support areas such as marketing and communication, finance, HR, IT support and legal are structured and can be simplified.”

In a statement this morning, the corporation said: “Over recent years the BBC has built an impressive savings record that will deliver over £1.5bn of savings a year by 2017. Much of this has been done through cutting administration and property costs, pay and headcount restraint, plus tough decisions like more daytime repeats and shared sports rights.

“A new independent study by PwC being published today ranks the BBC amongst the most efficient organisations in the public and regulated private sectors. Overhead costs are approximately 8 per cent of total costs and will fall to 7 per cent – well below both the public sector average of 11.2 per cent and the regulated industry average of 8.8 per cent.

“Despite the progress already made, and the realities of the licence fee being frozen for seven years, a new financial challenge means additional savings must now be found.

“The licence fee income in 2016/17 is now forecast to be £150m less than it was expected to be in 2011. This is because as more people use iPlayer, mobiles and online catch-up, the number of households owning televisions is falling. It also provides further evidence of the need for the licence fee to be modernised to cover digital services.”

Director General Tony Hall said: “A simpler, leaner, BBC is the right thing to do and it can also help us meet the financial challenges we face.

“We’ve already significantly cut the costs of running the BBC, but in times of very tough choices we need to focus on what really matters – delivering outstanding programmes and content for all our audiences.”

US and Russia agree nuclear arms cuts in Moscow

warheadUS President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev have come to an initial agreement on nuclear power – an issue which has divided the nations since the Cold War.

The agreement sees a reduction in the number of nuclear warheads in Russian and US strategic arsenals to between 1,500 and 1,675 in a period of seven years and the number of ballistic missile carriers to between 500-1,100.

The new treaty is to replace the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START 1) treaty, which was due to expire in December, and sets levels lower than those proposed in the 2002 Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty (SORT).

Whilst they remained divided over the issue of Georgia, along with US plans to install a missile defence shield in eastern Europe, Obama said the two countries were both “committed to leaving behind the suspicion and the rivalry of the past”.

The White House has said that the treaty, “commits both parties to a legally binding treaty that will reduce nuclear weapons,” and while this still leaves both countries with sufficient nuclear power able to destroy each other several times over, the opening up of a dialogue represents a huge step forward in international relations.