News Corp Australia portfolio transfer

”The steps involved in producing a news story … reduced from around 70 to less than 20.”

Background 

News Corp Australia (NCA) managed a portfolio of over 160 titles, ranging from national and regional metro dailies to local newspapers and magazines, together with their associated digital editions.

Challenge

Having originated through multiple acquisitions, the NCA portfolio used a total of 19 different editorial systems to produce its titles. This resulted in considerable duplication and redundancy, as well as representing a barrier to sharing of content between different properties in the portfolio.

NCA management wished to undertake a major streamlining of its editorial operations aimed at increasing productivity and creating synergies between different editorial centers.

The move to a common Méthode platform was a key element in the organization’s strategy.

Solution

A single Méthode platform was created in Sydney to host three intercommunicating editorial hubs. In a carefully phased operation, sections of the group’s portfolio were transfered to the new platform, starting with the most local titles and finishing with the group’s national daily, The Australian.

The transfer of large numbers of print and digital editorial operations to the new platform was achieved in a short timeframe through the use of standardized formats and data structures which could be applied across different titles. This ensured that, once created, an editorial environment could quickly be duplicated and adapted for another title.

The same standardized approach to content templates ensured that common news items could be easily shared between different publications.

Outcomes

At the end of the deployment, all of NCA’s 160 print and digital titles were in production on a common Méthode platform, accessed by each newsroom and local office. The steps involved in producing a news story from initial planning to final publication had been reduced from around 70 to less than 20.

Extensive content-sharing between titles allows the group’s publications to expand the selection of news items offered to its readers, without increasing its resource base.