Today we learned of some structural changes at BBDO’s Atlanta office: an unspecified number of individuals have been laid off as part of an attempt to more effectively address clients’ changing needs.
The official word from the agency is that some staffers will be replaced with new hires “better suited to the agency’s new focus” and that the number of positions created will ultimately be as large, if not larger, than the number eliminated.
This change began almost exactly one year ago when former Best Buy SVP of marketing Drew Panayiotou took over for departing President/CEO Gill Duff (who has yet to list a new position on his LinkedIn page). As expected, Panayiotou’s arrival coincided with an effort to push the Atlanta office in a more content-focused, digital/analytical direction.
That meant some positions would be eliminated and new ones created to fill their place; the first round of such changes occurred in June 2014, and the second round hit this morning.
A source claims that the total number of staffers dismissed today barely broaches the two-digit mark, but we don’t currently have specifics on departments or names. We do, however, have reason to believe that at least some of those affected were creatives specializing in traditional TV work and that the departing employees will be replaced by (presumably) younger candidates with more experience in the digital realm.
Clients appear to be responding positively to the newer, sleeker BBDO Atlanta. According to an agency spokesperson, the office has won the Carnival Super Bowl work in addition to several other undisclosed pieces of business since Panayiotou took over twelve months ago.
The spokesperson also notes that the total number of employees at BBDO Atlanta will, eventually, increase as a result of this office-wide strategic shift.
Expect hiring news to come.