British Airways launches monthly magazine for its 37,000 employees

Beleaguered airline British Airways is launching a new monthly magazine for its 37,000 employees.

Staff magazine launch: British Airways
Staff magazine launch: British Airways

The firm, which is currently involved in an ongoing dispute with its cabin crew staff, is to launch Up To Speed, which will concentrate on in-depth analysis, profiles, travel and opinion.

The new magazine replaces BA's long-running employee newspaper publication BA News, which was launched in the 1930s. Instead, news about the company will now be posted in a weekly e-newsletter, Up To Date, produced by BA's in-house team.

Up To Speed will be edited by Charlotte Swift, who joins from Food and Travel magazine where she was also editor. Deputy Phil Heard joins from Haymarket Publishing.

Fresh content

The first issue will feature exclusive columns from BA CEO Willie Walsh and an in-depth profile of finance director Keith Williams. But the majority of the content is about, and generated by, BA's staff and customers.

The new magazine will be produced by Cedar, the consumer publishers responsible for BA's inflight titles, shareholder magazine and advertising generation.

BA head of internal comms Penny Lawson said: ‘British Airways aims to be the leading global premium airline and we want an internal publication that reflects that ambition. Our much-loved newspaper has served us well, but many of our staff now expect to read about breaking news as it happens, online, at the same time as wanting the connectedness that a print publication can bring. That's what this change is all about.'

Addressing the issues

Cedar editorial director Mark Jones added: ‘We're not going to shy away from the huge issues facing the airline and the industry, however. The magazine will inform, debate and analyse - what it emphatically won't be is a propaganda sheet.'

The airline is still negotiating with cabin crew and the Unite union over changes to staffing levels, pay and working conditions.

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