Only one in eight BBC staff think that senior management listens to employees, according to the corporation’s latest annual workforce survey.
After a year in which the BBC has introduced cost cuts that will lead to around 4,000 job losses and the outsourcing of a further 2,000 roles, only 13% of staff said they thought that management listened to staff, down from nearly 25% last year.
And only 20% of BBC employees believed that management achieves the best performance from its staff, down from 33%.
However, there was better news elsewhere, with improved ratings from employees for the BBC’s “clear vision for the future”, for “open and honest” communications and for its ability to respond to criticism.
“I hear you loud and clear,” said BBC director-general Mark Thompson in an e-mail to staff today, reported in the Guardian.
“Managing redundancies, outsourcing, Acas agreements and charter renewal have taken up a lot of management time and slowed the pace of change, creating uncertainty and frustration for everyone.
“It’s disappointing, but not surprising, that senior management may appear to be out of touch with people at the front line.
“I agree that the challenges of the past few years have made us focus inward and particularly on redundancies. It’s time for us to look to the future in a positive way, recognising that change will continue and become part of everyday life at the BBC.
“Our aim must be to create a BBC which can lead change rather than be a victim of it.”
About 44% of BBC employees took part in the survey, down only marginally from 45% last year.
For an interview with BBC People director Stephen Dando, who leaves the corporation in April, see tomorrow’s Personnel Today.