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Staff Size

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by TarHeelMan, Sep 29, 2014.

  1. TarHeelMan

    TarHeelMan Member

    Curious about this with so many places downsizing ...For papers 25,000 and under, how big is your staff now?
  2. I'm the SE at a 20,000 daily in the Midwest. We have myself and three full-time writers all essentially covering 31 high schools since there are no pro teams or Big State U within 100 miles. We also have a part timer covering our D2 university and two other part timers on staff. We are the exception to the rule. We're family owned and edit our own copy and design our own pages. It's nice not having to bow down to the corporate overlords that have gutted other newspapers in our region.
    I do believe the slogan of some dailies in our part of the state should be "We'll give you yesterday's news tomorrow." It's getting that bad out there.
  3. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member


    Oh, wait ...
  4. Doc Holliday

    Doc Holliday Well-Known Member

    We're a 25,000 circ. paper. One editor and three writers. We use five or six stringers on a regular basis. Section is almost completely local most days.
  5. Matt Stephens

    Matt Stephens Well-Known Member

    We're at 25K and have 5 1/2. Used to be six (part time position used to be full). We have an editor, a full-time columnist/digital manager (me), CSU major sports reporter, CSU minor sports reporter/preps, an outdoors reporter and a part time preps person who covers the smaller schools and handles items for our twice-a-week publication in a neighboring town.
  6. JordanA

    JordanA Member

    We're a 12-15,000 circ (depending on who you ask), and it's the sports editor and me covering 14 high schools and one DII university.

    Line for high-fives starts at the door.
  7. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    As a teen I worked on a 17K daily, 24K Sunday that had three full-timers and 16 -- sixteen -- part-timers, including another hungry kid and I who basically worked 50 hours and got paid for 25. We covered 17 high schools (huge news hole and staffed a lot of games in all sports, but staffed every FB game) and staffed as many home games as we could for two MLB teams (plus sometimes a third in a city a bit farther away), two NFL teams, an NBA team, a pro soccer team, a women's pro basketball team, a little small college stuff. I was the lead writer on girls sports, covered my share of HS FB and wrestling and baseball, covered all but one home game on women's pro hoops, did backup on the NBA and MLB. Learned a shitload.

    In 1980 we got sold. Sports editor took me aside, said new publisher was gonna add one FT spot, cut 12 PT spots. I could go FT, I could stay PT or I could leave, but if I intended to leave, I had to tell him so he didn't whack someone else. I said I'd leave, then sweated it out for a month or so until a 110K hired me to cover preps and do some backup on MLB. A year later, I had an MLB beat, which actually I hated and moved to the desk and quickly became copy desk chief.

    The little paper was the most fun I've had in the biz, maybe because I knew so little and got to do so much. I don't know if I'd enjoy it that much now. The biggest newsroom I've worked in had 500 people in the good old days, and another had a Sunday circ of 1 million when I was there. Now the other young dude who worked insane hours as a part-timer when we were teens. He made it to a 75K/95K for a little while, but did not like the bigness of it. He's an ASE at a 25K close to two big cities and seems happy. I think I learned a lot from working for bigger papers, but I don't think my old pal has appreciably less natural ability than I do or less work ethic. He has his comfort zone and I have mine. He probably would have stayed at the little paper we worked on as a kids, except not even small papers are immune from putting complete morons in charge and one of the douchebags fired him from really the only job he ever wanted.
  8. Ryan Holmgren

    Ryan Holmgren Member

    We advertise that we're a 19,000 daily, but I think we're actually closer to 15,000 now. It's myself and two full-time writers covering a Division II university and around 40 high schools, though we put a big emphasis on the three high schools in town. We had a four-man staff until last October, when a writer left and our publisher eliminated that position. We shoot our own photos, but don't touch much layout aside from scoreboard. We're in the process of filling a page designer position, though, so I'm stuck laying out once or twice a week until they get the new hire trained in. Could be better, but could be worse.
  9. Beef03

    Beef03 Active Member

    We advertise we're a 16,000, I wouldn't hold my breath on the validity of that. In sports we have myself, a sports editor and a desker. We cover a major junior hockey team, a junior A hockey team, a junior B hockey team, a college, three high schools in the city and about a half dozen or so in the surrounding area. Plus all the minor sports that goes with it.
    Keeps us plenty busy.
    The rest of the staff includes the managing editor, two deskers, a city editor, a business editor, an entertainment reporter, five news reporters, a full-time photog and a part time/weekend photog. But we also just cut three positions -- an assistant city editor, a reporter and a desker -- about a month and a half ago. I barely survived the axe then.
  10. TarHeelMan

    TarHeelMan Member

    Thanks folks....Some have plenty of help from full-timers and stringers and some are pretty lean. We have 4 fulltimers and only cover high schools. SO we seem to be a little more than most for a 15,000 gig. Only 9 high schools too...
  11. RecoveringJournalist

    RecoveringJournalist Well-Known Member

    I remember, back in the late 1990s, there were papers this size in college towns that had staffs of 8-10. Today, the Tennessean doesn't have a staff that large and Indianapolis might not be far behind.
  12. 4 copy desk paginators (for 'A' section and special sections)
    3 news reporters
    2 photographers
    2 features reporters
    2 sports writers
    2 community news (obits, schools, clubs, weddings, births)
    1 Newsroom editor
    1 city editor ('A' section leader)
    1 sports editor
    0.5 sports clerk/assistant

    Have 4 empty desks that won't be filled (2 news reporters, copy desk leader, features leader)

    Sports also does all of its design.

    In the 14 years I've been here (turned 33 in June), I think the biggest/largest our newsroom staff was 24.5.
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