The business side of CQ Roll Call continues shedding itself of baggage deemed unnecessary to their mission. This week alone, they’ve laid off five people, four of whom were on the marketing team. The two remaining on staff have been sent over to advertising. More change is on the way. Internal sources tell us the editorial department is not expected to be affected outside of a few people shifting positions. However, no one wants to make hard and fast promises on that front.
“Guess they learned their lesson from 2009 when they decided to bring everyone into a room and announce that a shitstorm of layoffs were coming,” a source highly familiar with internal happenings told us. “They’re just going to let this drip down like a leaky toilet.”
This afternoon Executive VP Keith White released a memo to staff explaining in generalized terms the intricacies of what is happening. The gist of the extremely wonkalicious memo that could send you into a coma: They’re eliminating certain business positions to free up financing for other priorities.
See the memo…We’ve highlighted lines that you need to read in between. In the next two weeks, says White, there will be “additional change” (i.e. layoffs).
In response to a number of questions I have received from employees in the past few days, I wanted to update the company on some of the changes we are making with our business.
In advertising, we are addressing changes in consumption primarily through the investment in our revised, consolidated daily product, a redesigned website and investments in marketing services. In A & E, we are launching an entirely new platform, Phoenix, that promotes engagement in a way that far transcends anything available in the market. In Legislative Services, we are responding to the shifting needs of information intermediaries and end users with a new platform that builds on the success of the Executive Briefs in our core products. We’ve done a lot of insightful research on these initiatives, and while some are more ripe than others, we are very excited and optimistic about our prospects and our position in the market.
In order to better position ourselves against these initiatives, we are making significant changes in how we are organized to build, research and sell our products. As we do this, we have and will continue to eliminate certain positions in order to move more quickly and gain greater focus. We have already unified our marketing and moved certain functions into finance. In advertising, we brought in new expertise in online and marketing services, and we are on pace to exceed our goals for revenue coming from non-print sources. In circulation sales, we have reorganized to better serve the needs of new and existing customers, and we will make additional changes to leverage our individual expertise in each area. We have halted extraneous projects to focus on strategic initiatives. We have invested heavily in business systems, making it easier to understand customer needs and usage patterns. We have formed shared services with the Economist in HR and Finance, leveraging the global company while providing support to other divisions. In editorial, we have shifted resources and made investments in our new product line.
As we respond to the tremendous changes affecting all media companies, particularly in the migration of advertising from print to online, we have worked carefully to be opportunistic and shift people to our new areas of focus where possible. But we will not be able to do that in all cases and there will be additional change during the next couple of weeks. What will not change is our commitment to remain the market leader in serving professionals who need to understand and affect policy by leveraging our world class journalism, product innovation and support.
I will continue to keep you updated as changes are made, and you should also feel free to stop by or email me if you have questions,