Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Unknown knowns

We glide through the dog days of 2015 into 2016 without key pieces of information about the BBC.

Unanswered Freedom of Information requests include exactly how many staff are graded at Band 11, the new not-quite-senior-management level that might (or might not) give the lie to how many managers the BBC really has, or needs. It's hard to know why this question can't be answered.

Another in the pending tray - how many compromise deals the BBC has struck in reducing staff numbers, and has anyone had a deal above £150k ?

The BBC Trust agreed a target with the Executive, back in May 2011, that senior management should be reduced to 1% of the workforce by December 2015. In March 2015, there were 407 staff in the SM grades, and a total headcount of 18,974. I make that 2.1%. Unless those revolving doors have been turning faster than we thought in recent months, that's quite a miss, after four years. One presumes Rona Fairhead and the BBC's ultra-tough non-executives will be reflecting on this failure in meetings of the appropriate remuneration committees.

Of course, we leave the year once again without release of the Dame Janet Smith Review. Will it come before Charter renewal ?

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