Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Pay freeze at Guardian Media Group
GUARDIAN Media Group today announced a pay freeze for the 2009-2010 financial year, affecting employees across its businesses including the Guardian and Observer newspapers.
The freeze affects the company's wholly owned businesses, including Guardian News & Media, publisher of the Guardian, the Observer, guardian.co.uk and MediaGuardian.co.uk; the Manchester Evening News local newspapers and GMG Radio, operator of the Smooth Radio and Real Radio networks.
GMG blamed "the impact on revenues of the economic downturn", in "anticipation of worsening conditions" in the coming year.
The freeze will hit all staff and management within GNM, GMG Regional Media, GMG Radio and GMG Property Services, which operates software businesses for estate agents and those working directly for GMG plc.
Bonus payments to commercial staff based on financial performance – up to 70% of individuals' total bonus packages – for the current financial year, up to 31 March, will be scrapped but bonuses based on "achievement of personal objectives" will be paid.
In the 2007-2008 financial year all commercial staff received a bonus based on the company's performance. Commission received by sales staff is not affected by the changes announced today.
The GMG remuneration committee has also suspended both financial performance and personal objective bonuses for the 2009-10 financial year, starting on 1 April, unless specially approved.
Management at the company's various divisions met union officials to inform them of the pay freeze today.
Today's announcement does not affect Trader Media Group or Emap, which are part owned by GMG.
In 2007, GNM staff voted for a two-year, 4.8% pay rise, with an additional inflation-linked boost from April 2008. This arrangement ends on 31 March this year.
GMG is owned by the Scott Trust