By Howard Rauch
How to deal more effectively with mounting print/digital workloads will be my focus during an ASBPE June 17 webinar.
In advance, I invited all concerned editors to complete a questionnaire outlining their current responsibilities. Respondents were asked to focus primarily on their online workloads. They were challenged to identify their most time-consuming tasks.
During follow-up phone calls starting May 15, I’ll consult with each participant about possible ways to simplify workloads. An extra benefit: all respondents receive an analysis of e-newsletter content based on the eight-factor scoring system I outlined in a recent Editor’s Notes article (556K PDF; available to ASBPE members only).
Early returns reflect some significant patterns. Here are a few:
1. Production responsibilities are major time consumers. In several past editorial performance projects focusing on print, I often found production processes were hampered by burdensome practices. There is every indication that the same holds true for online. Of course, that depends on how you define “production.” I include assorted posting functions — coding, sizing photos, proofreading — anything else that’s distinct from original writing/editing tasks.
2. There is agreement that job overload has impaired editing quality. This is especially true in those cases where e-newsletter workload has doubled or tripled in the past three years.
3. Publishers not yet committed to dedicated digital staffs will never exploit online marketing potential to the fullest. Descriptions of current workloads make that clear. For instance, developing a strong package of high-value webinars and white papers requires several days a month of focus. Furthermore, it seems farfetched to expect besieged staffs can deliver a continuous flow of exclusive, high-enterprise content.
We’ll discuss all of the above and much more on June 17. Meanwhile, there’s still time for you to benefit from advance participation. Just complete a performance questionnaire and return it to me before May 15. For more information or to obtain a copy of the questionnaire, contact us.