Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Call for Phil and Kirstie

I can find little "new" news in the review of BBC talent pay, conducted for the BBC Trust by their favoured boutique media consultancy, Oliver & Ohlbaum. It may be in the full report - there are 14 occurrences of a scissors symbol, which I take to mean information redacted.

The figures on current deals are from the 2013/14 Annual Report. O&O say some of the reduction in direct talent pay is because the BBC is making fewer programmes for itself; and some is due to churn and driving harder bargains. It was allowed to track the process of 15 deals made, and found that only two were settled for less than the BBC negotiator had in his/her suitcase.  In terms of very top talent, it said some of the "business cases" behind the contract were lacking in detail. The harder deals are being made with people on less than £100k - the sadly-named "Non-top talent".

There's brief mention of deals in news and radio, where some competitors cried foul - News said it used Towers-Watson benchmarking (so that's all good then ?) ands radio said its DJs were more knowledgeable and had to use more words than their commercial competitors (they'll like that). Fans of simpler management structures will be delighted to know that the Pan-BBC Talent Steering Group has had its remit refreshed.

O&O say Auntie doesn't always assess all the benefits of a BBC contract to talent. Perhaps this is a reference to the amount of lager that Danny Dyer consumes on the EastEnders set.

  • Will there be sufficient nuggets in the report to maintain the interest of delegates to the Oxford Media Convention this afternoon, for Rona Fairhead's session ?  Or will the real sparks come when Rona faces Ol Ma Hodge at the Public Accounts Committee next Monday, in her role as a non-executive director of HSBC ?

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