- Local radio news operations remain small, and highly centralized when there are groups. While the average staffing for radio newsrooms is 2-3 full-time and 2 part-timers, the median radio news staff size is 1 full-time and 1 part-time. That means that more than half of all radio have only a single full time news person, aided by a single part-timer. Furthermore, about 78% of all multi-station operations have a centralized newsroom providing news for multiple stations.
- Employment levels and budgets in radio news are fairly static - three-quarters of local radio newsrooms had no change in staffing levels in the last year, and 62.9% reported that there was no change in the news budget. Only 16% reported and increase in staffing levels, and only 15.7% saw and increase in newsroom budget.
- Only have the sample responded to a direct question about how many hires they had made in the last year - and of those, more than half indicated they made none.
- Interestingly, more than half the local radio news directors did not know whether their news operations were profitable or not. About 20% felt their newsrooms broke even, 14.5% felt they turned a profit, and 10.4% felt they ran a loss. Those numbers are more or less in line with survey numbers going back to 2000.
- There was and interesting relationship between market size and profitability - stations in the largest markets were the most likely to report profits, and the most likely to report losses
Source - Full study report - 2012 TV and Radio News Staffing and Profitability Survey, Part 1