Briscoe restructures amid staff disquiet

Edward Briscoe Design is to appoint a new client services director and a non-executive director tomorrow, amid rumours that concerned staff are seeking to leave the group due to a decreased workload over the summer.

Edward Briscoe was one of the first consultancies to throw its hat into the interactive ring with any conviction.

Consultancy chairman Ted Briscoe says the pace of development in interactive media is now such that it is outpacing client demands. Keeping up with technology has been “pushing us away from our core creativity”, he says.

Briscoe says the group is restructuring its interactive design offer to make it more relevant to clients, but denies trading problems. Interactive designers John Rafferty and Craig Peel have left the consultancy, but continue to work for it on an account specific consultancy basis, he says.

Account handler Jenny Gerry, who was responsible for the group’s key Rover account, has also left. Briscoe describes her departure as amicable.

He counters industry sources who suggest staff at the 34-strong group are preparing to leave due to their concerns over its performance. A significant number are understood to have contacted recruitment agencies.

Edward Briscoe staff became aware of alleged problems “three or four months ago”, according to one recruitment agent. The agent adds, “This has been on the cards for a while.”

And one ex-staff member says a number of staff are planning to leave because: “They [Edward Briscoe Design] are fairly quiet.”

“Things were slack in August, but the order books are now full,” Briscoe says. Changes implemented to the interactive offer have “caused a bit of panic unnecessarily”, says a spokeswoman for the consultancy. Briscoe says the group is currently seeking to recruit freelance staff.

The group, described by one industry source as an “old school, do-everything design consultancy”, is due to file accounts for the year to 31 December 1996 by the end of this month.

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