Now Ogilvy UK offers all staff voluntary redundancy

More downsizing is afoot at Ogilvy UK with all staff being offered voluntary redundancy.

The agency says this is because it wants to be “transparent” about the changes being made under new group CEO Michael Frohlich which have already seen the departures of most of the previous top management headed by Ogilvy & Mather CEO Charlie Rudd, CCOs Mick Mahoney and Emma de la Fosse and CSO Kevin Chesters. The likes of O&M and OgilvyOne no longer exist in the UK as Ogilvy pursues a more “integrated” offer.

Newly appointed Ogilvy COO John Cornwell says: “This offer of voluntary redundancy is the final stage in Ogilvy UK’s transformation journey. Our intent is to be as transparent as possible and provide our people with choices as we continue to reshape our business for the future. The intent of these actions is to enable us to reinvest for the future.”

Voluntary redundancy for everyone is a somewhat blunt instrument and suggests, among other things, that Ogilvy UK needs to reduce costs and fast. It remains to be seen how clients react to these far-reaching changes, especially relatively newbies British Airways, Boots and Vodafone. So far there hasn’t been a big client fall-out from the Frohlich revolution.

Owner WPP has made clear there are problems in its creative operations, especially in the US where a parallel Ogilvy restructuring is taking place. New WPP CEO Mark Read recently merged Y&R globally into digital network VML to create VMLY&R and other far-reaching changes are expected to follow.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.

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