Fairfax Media announces proposed metro media newsroom structure

17 FEBRUARY 2016: 

Fairfax Media today started consultation on the introduction of a new metro editorial structure, for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, that allows it to better deliver its 24/7 digital news and newspapers.

Sean Aylmer, Fairfax Media Editorial Director, said: “We will be consulting across the newsroom extensively over the next 10 days and looking for feedback before finalising the model.

“The proposed structure enhances the delivery of our quality journalism across the country with depth in our key news topics, including federal politics, state politics and policy, sport, entertainment, investigations and justice.

“It will simplify newsroom workflows, and allows reporters and editors more autonomy to better manage their workloads and create content that meet the 24/7 demands of our audiences.

“Our new structure is similar to the recently announced newsroom structures of the Wall Street Journal and Daily Telegraph of London and other newsrooms around the world.

“The new structure will deliver greater focus on content creation and distribution roles – with our editorial people focused on the creation of content and our distribution people focused on the dissemination of our content. We believe this will strengthen our audience- first approach.

“The reporters and editors in the newsrooms will remain focused on great stories, videos, graphics, photos and multimedia. The distribution arm of the newsroom will get that content to the biggest and best possible audience via all channels available, digitally and in print.

“To support the new structure, a number of new roles will be created and some roles altered.”

Editor in Chief, The Age
“After discussions with Andrew Holden, he has decided to leave the company after 13 years, the last eight as a daily editor, with three and a half years as Editor in Chief of The Age.  Andrew has successfully led The Age through a period of great transition and we thank him for the contribution he has made and wish him well for the future. Mark Forbes will be Acting Editor in Chief of The Age,” Mr Aylmer said.

Andrew Holden said: “It's an enormous privilege to be Editor in Chief of The Age and I have thoroughly enjoyed that experience. It is an outstanding newsroom and perfectly placed to thrive in the new media environment. After eight years of leading newsrooms through many challenges, I'm looking forward to new opportunities.”