Trinity Mirror is set to make 40 jobs redundant as part of a restructure that will see greater content-sharing across its regional titles and more emphasis on local digital output.
The newspaper publisher is cutting 92 posts from 800 editorial staff across its regional papers, excluding Scotland, but will be hiring for 52 new roles – although only 21 of those will be created in regional news.
Announcing a new publishing model “devised by a team of Trinity Mirror’s senior editors”, the company said the changes were necessary “as it moves towards an integrated approach to creating and sharing first-class content across the group”.
A new shared content unit will be established in Liverpool, producing non-local material for all of Trinity Mirror’s regional newspapers and digital channels to include health, travel, fashion, food, entertainment and reviews.
And in what can be said to be the first significant move towards a digital-first strategy, there will also be a “greater emphasis” on the production of digital content, including breaking news, pictures and video, and there will be a “much enhanced focus” on the curation of community content.
The company said it hopes to achieve any redundancies by voluntary means as well as redeploying staff, where possible, to newly-created roles under the new publishing operation.
The new editorial positions will include digital roles in some regional newsrooms to support what it called “the rapid expansion of Trinity Mirror’s digital ambitions”, which will include tablet editions for the Liverpool Echo and Manchester Evening News later this year.
New regional roles
The positions will include 12 community content curators, eight regional digital roles and three or four new journalist roles.
Neil Benson, Trinity’s editorial director, said: “Our newsrooms have made great progress in embracing the digital world in recent years but, essentially, our processes have remained print-led.
“This new approach is a bold, imaginative step that will enable us to become a fully-fledged, digitally-focused news operation, and brings together for the first time the best of our regional and national journalism.
“It is never easy to make these decisions when it affects our colleagues in this way but we must re-engineer the way we work if our journalism is to thrive in the future.”
Consultation will affected staff had already begun, Trinity said.
Lloyd Embley, editor-in-chief of the Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror and the People, added: “The new roles will significantly enhance our output while creating a closer working relationship with our regional colleagues.
“This is a huge step forward for the Mirror and the One Trinity Mirror initiative as we take a more unified approach in creating and sharing first-class content across the group.”
Trinity added that the new approach will be underpinned by investment in technology, including the ContentWatch editorial system and the Escenic web publishing CMS, which are being rolled out across Trinity Mirror’s newsrooms.
As well as the Echo and Evening News, Trinity’s portfolio of regional newspapers in the North includes the Liverpool Post, Daily Post Wales, Huddersfield Daily Examiner and many weekly titles.