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Coronavirus impact sees job losses at NSW Rugby

Coronavirus impact sees job losses at NSW Rugby
July 1, 2020

A restructuring of operations at NSW Rugby in the wake of COVID-19 challenges will see more than a quarter of the organisation’s made redundant.

On Tuesday, NSW Rugby announced it would make 15 roles (27% of its workforce) redundant, while the remainder of the business remains on significant pay cuts for the time being.

Of that 15, 12 are community rugby development officers and three are general managers in the commercial side of the business.

Other parts of the community arm have been retained including competition managers, coach education staff and referee-related roles in what Doorn described as a centralisation of the community area.

NSW Rugby Chief Executive, Paul Doorn (pictured), who recently increased his own pay cut from 30 to 40% said the decision was one about the organisation's immediate survival, advising “in this particular period, in this COVID time, it would have been crazy to plough on and continue spending on the same things we were spending on, it would have been irresponsible.

"We looked at the way in which we could save money, everything from redundancies and keeping people on stand down to reduced hours.

"Super Rugby AU kicks off this Friday. and we're limited to how much further we could scale down our coaches and support staff, who have already taken 60% cuts.

"We have to make decisions on the opportunities available to use and in the community part of the business, this is what we need to do to continue to support the game this year.

"From our perspective, we had to decide what were nice to haves and the role of the development officer we'd love to keep and we'll hopefully be able to bring back in the future when we have the resources to support it but we can't afford to do that at the moment."

Adamant the news did not reflect a lack of value being placed on community rugby, Doorn added “what we’ve done here, the rationale has been to say we’ve had to make decision to let people go to continue to support the game.

"It we didn’t do this, our survival as a entity significantly compromised. We’re not Robinson Crusoe in this space - other sports and other businesses are having to do the same thing.

"The pain is being felt across all parts of the business, it's not just the guys at the coal face, people in head office taking cuts to salaries and we're also having to let go three of our general managers.

"There's pain across all parts of the business."

No jobs were cut from the Waratahs program but all high-performance staff are on at least 40% salary cuts in the wake of cost cutting across the whole business.

With Rugby Australia last month announcing plans to cut 47 of its 142 full-time staff, NSW Rugby is the first of the Super Rugby organisations to confirm its restructure plan.

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16th May 2020 - Rugby Australia announces new Chair-elect

11th May 2020 - Coronavirus and financial losses push New Zealand Rugby to lay off half its staff

20th May 2020 - Global sports sponsorship market predicted to fall by 37% this year

1st May 2020 - Coronavirus has multi-billion dollar negative impact on global sport

8th May 2020 - World Rugby releases guidelines for top level matches to be held in closed stadiums

6th May 2020 - Rugby Australia appoints interim Chief Executive after director resigns

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21st April 2020 - Rugby Australia and players agree wage cuts

17th April 2020 - World Rugby announces US$100 million global relief package

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31st January 2020 - Paul Doorn leaves Venues NSW for Chief Executive role NSW Rugby Union


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