Radio 1 ‘enhances’ programme teams after end to hiring freeze
‘Tweaking’ to station includes new summer weekend shows from independent sector
Tom McGuire: “We’re enhancing our programme teams now, and training 12 producers at the moment.”
After a post-Kenny wobble, Radio 1 has been performing well in the ratings of late, and the head of the station Tom McGuire attributes this in part to the lifting of a hiring freeze in RTÉ radio.
“We’ve come out the other side of a time when we had a recruitment embargo. We’re enhancing our programme teams now, and training 12 producers at the moment, and they’ll be coming through” he says.
The announcement last October of a public competition for entry onto the RTÉ radio producer training course and panel was the first such competition for about seven years and was highly subscribed.
According to McGuire, the station now “needs to consolidate” the gains it made in the recent Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) survey, which showed that it reaches 891,000 listeners on an average day – a rise of 6 per cent over the past year. It now has a 23.5 per cent market share.
McGuire says there will be “only tweaking” to the Radio 1 schedule in the immediate future. It is spending €500,000 on new commissions, however, and has been assessing the pitches received from independent production companies to fill the 10am-11am slots on Saturday and Sunday for a six-week summer period in which Saturday’s The Business and Sunday’s Miriam Meets come off air.