KTN Journalists to Lose Jobs in Mass Firing

  • The Standard Media Group Mombasa Road Offices . Thursday, October 14, 2019.
    The Standard Media Group Mombasa Road Offices . Thursday, October 14, 2019
    Simon Kiragu
  • Standard Group Plc on Wednesday, March 18, sent out an internal memo notifying employees of a decision to declare 170 positions redundant.

    According to the memo seen by Kenyans.co.ke, the decision will affect employees in multiple departments. Affected employees were to be given a one-month notice, with plans afoot to undertake the redundancy in phases.

    The media group cited shifting media consumption trends as one of four reasons that necessitated the move to downsize the workforce.

    "I wish to notify you of the company's intention to declare redundant about 170 positions across various departments. This had been necessitated by the reasons stated below:

    Standard Group headquarters along Mombasa Road, Nairobi
    Standard Group headquarters along Mombasa Road, Nairobi
    Simon Kiragu

    "The need to realign the organisation structure to be better equipped to deal with the emerging business challenges brought about by regulatory changes and a difficult business environment.

    "Shifting trends in media consumption occasioned by technological changes in the digital environment.

    "Efficiencies arising from automation of key internal processes.

    "Outsourcing of non-core services," the memo read in part.

    At least five different sources at the company contacted by Kenyans.co.ke on Thursday, March 19 confirmed receipt of the memo.

    The company noted that the process would be done in compliance with relevant labour laws including the Employment Act 2007 and Labour Relations Act.

    "The affected employees will be duly notified in writing," the organisation noted.

    Standard Group additionally offered the affected employees counselling sessions and financial training in the month preceding their exit.

    "Private counselling sessions will be available for the affected employees in addition to free financial management training within the month," the memo read in part.

    The changes at Standard Group represent the latest in a trend of media houses laying off employees due to the harsh economic environment and evolution of media consumption.

    In January, for example, Nation Media Group (NMG) announced plans to lay off a section of their staff as part of the plan to transition to a digital-first media company.

    "Over the recent past, we embarked on a strategic journey of transforming the group into a modern Twenty-First Century digital content company. We have made critical strides such as converging our newsroom, launching innovative products, developed new revenue streams while we ensure our current print and broadcast business.

    "In this regard, the implementation of the strategy will continue to involve the reorganisation of our operations across the group. Regrettably, this will result in the reduction of our workforce. The exercise will be carried out with due respect to our employers and within the Kenyan laws," a statement from the media group read in part.

    File image of Standard Group Plc's Mombasa Road Headquarters in Nairobi
    File image of Standard Group Plc's Mombasa Road Headquarters in Nairobi
    The Standard