What a WHSV news director does:
1) Communicate with news staff
2) Hire new employees, including posting job descriptions, interview candidates, and write contracts
3) Prepare and control news budget for operating and capital expenditures
4) Payroll, including managing overtime
5) Benchmark newscasts
6) Review ratings
7) Help, coach, train reporters, provide feedback
8) Attend department head, WebQC, special project meetings
9) Copyright Clearance Supervisor
10) Oversee planning of news coverage and promotional efforts
The news director’s job is to supervise the news staff and programming, as well as create standards for the department. They also provide long-term strategic vision for the news department and protect the journalistic integrity of the station. The role of the news director can best be summarized as “non-stop”. They manage about half of the employees in the building. Some of the big tasks include recruiting, preparing the department’s budget, payroll, and overseeing the quality of the department’s operations.
One of the main jobs is to attract, hire, coach and provide feedback to employees. Part of that includes knowing who is on the news team, who may leave, and what talent is looking for a job. Another part of the job is collaborating on daily newscasts and special projects. The news director will review each of the station’s newscasts at least once a month with producers and review ratings when they come out. They will also meet with staff on big station projects, such as TSRs.
In addition to the hours spent at the station, a news director is constantly on-call for staff in cases of breaking news, equipment failure or staff scheduling emergencies. News directing is a high-pressure job as ultimately they need to answer for the actions of the entire department. The role of the news director is manageable or not manageable based on the people in the newsroom.
Why be a WHSV news director?
A WHSV news director has the opportunity to be involved in a variety of projects and tasks, while still having a personal relationship with their employees. They also have the chance to cultivate young talent and help coach reporters and producers who are recent college graduates.