INM is to introduce reduced hours and temporary lay-offs for some of its commercial staff and will cut pay for senior management amid the hit to advertising from the Covid-19 outbreak.
Around 90 staff working in INM’s commercial teams will be directly affected by the decision. The company employs around 800 staff across the island of Ireland.
Most of those affected by the cost cutting plan will continue to be paid 90% of their monthly salary, with lower paid workers kept on full pay for the period, which is expected to last 10 weeks.
Senior managers across the company have also accepted a temporary 10% pay cut.
The editorial, print and distribution parts of the business are not directly affected by the cost saving plan.
INM is Ireland’s biggest private sector media business and publishes titles including the Irish Independent, Sunday Independent, Sunday World, Belfast Telegraph and Kerryman. The company has been owned by Belgium headquartered Mediahuis since the middle of last year.
In an internal message to staff, management said INM, which publishes on both sides of the Irish border, intends to avail of Irish and UK government wage supports.
Payments available under those schemes will be topped up by the company to ensure affected employees continue to receive 90% of their normal average gross monthly pay.
Lower paid staff earning below €30,000 or £27,500 a year will receive 100% of their normal monthly pay.
“We are conscious that the significant, negative disruption being experienced by the business has resulted in certain colleagues being unable to carry out their roles. This loss of activity has had a consequential adverse financial impact on the business,” the internal message said.
The measures will take effect from April 14th and are set to run until June 30, subject to constant review.
“We have thought long and hard about these decisions and have not made them lightly. We understand this is a very difficult time for all our stakeholders but we believe these decisions are prudent and right in response to the challenges we are facing,” the internal communication said.