The transition begins
From: XXX On Behalf of Buchanan, MargaretThe Business Courier, which has been asleep at the wheel on the troubles at the Enquirer, puts the number of employees at about 30, based on total employment of 1,140.
Sent: Tuesday, October 23, 2007 4:11 PM
Subject: Staff reductions related to the end of the JOA
To: Non-Represented Employees
From: Margaret Buchanan
Many of you, especially those of you whose work involves Post responsibilities, are probably wondering what will happen to staffing levels when the Joint Operating Agreement between Gannett and Scripps comes to an end on December 31. With this communication, I hope to give you some idea of what's coming in the weeks ahead. But please understand that a lot of the communication will need to be done at the manager/supervisor employee level because the situation is unique from department to department, and because we want employees to hear about these changes directly from their managers.
I will first say that, yes, there will be a reduction in force effective December 31, 2007. Most of you will not find that surprising. The jobs we're looking at are mainly tied to Post work.
Second, we will make every effort to retain these affected employees in other jobs -- where an employee is a) interested in a particular open job, and b) has the qualification for that job.
Third, for employees who we are unable to place elsewhere, we will offer severance pay in accordance with our policy.
Just today, managers have begun to discuss staff reductions with employees in the Production, Advertising Operations and Circulation (departments). About 3% of The Enquirer's total workforce will be affected by these reductions.
We regret having to reduce staff. But we all realize that the termination of the Post, and business necessity, give us no choice. Give the current competitive business climate, we need to make the most of our resources and restructure our organization to be in the best position to compete.
You will be hearing more about this from me and your division heads in the coming weeks.
I appreciate your hard work and dedication.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask.
My favorite sentence in the letter is: "But we all realize that the termination of the Post, and business necessity, give us no choice." In the past, the surviving newspaper would have been strengthened by the death of its rival, but times have changed. The Post has been weak for years. The instances where the Post has been able to reach up and slap the Enquirer with a good scoop have grown few in number. Now, the age of Cincinnati as a one-newspaper town is greeted with layoffs. The mood inside the Enquirer is quite gloomy these days, with the veterans hoping they can hold on till they decide to retire, not an earlier date chosen by Gannett.