Thousands of jobs at risk under BBC savings plan

Hundreds of HR jobs at the BBC are to be cut as part of the corporation’s plans to save £320m a year, director general Mark Thompson announced today.

An initial 2,900 jobs could go, Thompson said, with HR – which employs 1,000 people – training, finances and legal services hit the hardest. Another 400 jobs are set to be cut at the corporation’s factual and learning departments.

With a target of savings of £57m, the adminstration departments are expected to lose just under half of the 6,500-strong workforce over the next three years.

Thompson said that the job losses would be made through redundancies and outsourcing posts.

In addition, almost 2,000 workers are going to be moved from London to Manchester by 2008, to make the corporation more reflective of UK audiences.

Broadcast union Bectu said the announcements meant it was “not a very happy Christmas” for staff who were facing redundancies or having their jobs relocated or outsourced.

The announcements come as the BBC seeks to renew its Royal Charter in 2007. The Charter sets out the BBC’s role, structure and funding.

Thompson has said the licence fee will only survive as the main method of BBC funding if the public is convinced that the corporation is spending money wisely.


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