The latest in the ongoing series of cutbacks at the BBC will see up to 100 of BBC Vision's 250 multiplatform jobs to go in a restructuring that will see an end to separate multiplatform commissioning.
The corporation had been criticised for duplication in roles especially when it came to different platforms and it has been expected that teams producing online, interactive and Red Button content for drama, comedy, entertainment, factual, knowledge and learning would be prime candidates for a scaling back of ambition.
The new modus operandi is a clear shift away from each BBC division has a website budget to support its own editorial output. There will no longer be an overall divisional budget to spend on individual TV websites, thus fewer commissions will be made and they will be part of a broader creative process which more closely aligns online and linear TV commissioning.
The BBC says that its aims will be to bring technically skilled staff in BBC Future Media together with editorially skilled people in other divisions and ask them to create products which have a single set of objectives.
As a result, some categories of posts will close with others mapping directly onto new roles and some being pooled. All 250 Vision staff across production centres in London, Salford, Bristol and Birmingham will be affected, revealed Victoria Jaye, the BBC’s new head of IPTV and TV Online Content which also includes the key TV & iPlayer division.
TV & iPlayer will retain a total of 21 editorial roles and 24 production roles yet despite the general cutbacks, the corporation has appointed a new executive editor and will appoint other new senior roles such as a development editor for IPTV and Red Button, overseeing content like play-along and multi-screen services for the Lottery shows, Eurovision and Glastonbury.
Speaking about the cutbacks and their effect in the round, Andy Conroy, General Manager, BBC Online added that the BBC expected the new streamlined approach to deliver operational efficiencies. He said: “As a consequence, we hope, it will be far easier for third parties to work with us…we expect to be able to reduce investment in competing and non-interoperable technologies. And this will mean that editorial teams are free to focus their resources on providing higher-quality output which will appeal to both regular and new users of BBC Online.