Publishing & design services to amalgamate

AMS’s agenda, yearbook and P&CC design portfolio will merge in May

Three AMS services will be amalgamated into the Tricolour Publication Services in May, AMS Media Services Director P.J. Lee said.

The Guide to Queen’s Agenda (GQA), Yearbook and Convocation Services (YCS) and the Publishing and Copy Centre (P&CC) Designs will combine to become the Tricolour Publication Services.

Lee said he proposed the amalgamation because Convocation Services is outsourced, he thinks GQA needs year-round staff and the P&CC design portfolio doesn’t fit with the P&CC’s other services.

Students bring design requests to the P&CC and employees complete the projects.

Lee said the amalgamation will also benefit the volunteer designers at the Yearbook.

“The P&CC hires designers and the Yearbook recruits volunteers, so the role of the designer will be moved over and a volunteer would be able to be paid as casual staff,” he said.

The projected net surplus for the first year of the amalgamated services in 2010-11 is $12,000, he said. The estimated surplus for the three services by the end of this year will be $14,715, he said.

The amalgamation means the $36,583 profit from Convocation Services for 2009-10 would be put into a separate budget. This means the estimated deficit for the three services for 2009-10, not including Convocation Services, will be $21,868, he said.

Lee said this means the amalgamation will benefit the services financially.

The proposal will be implemented over the next few months, he said.

“My proposal including positions to be hired as well as management structure and policy is all already finished,” he said, adding that hiring for management positions will take place during the normal timeline, after March 2 when applications are due.

Nick Chesterley, AMS Board of Directors chair, said he thinks combining the services will improve their efficiency.

“The goal was to streamline and centralize a bunch of our services,” he said. “All three of them do similar things so combining the operations will help them out.”

Management structures within the amalgamation will also be different, he said.

“The new service will have a Head Manager and a Chief Editor position,” adding that both positions will work on the design portion and the Head Manager position will be more financially oriented.

“Rather than having three sets of designers we can have a larger set of designers who can work on two to three projects,” he said.

Chesterley said both the Yearbook and the GQA Editors will be able to share the load of work.

“The yearbook editor tends to be very busy,” he said, adding that allowing the two editors to share services will increase efficiency.

Chesterley said he doesn’t think the services will change locations.

“We’re thinking for the moment to leave them in the yearbook office in the JDUC,” he said.

Yearbook and Convocation Services Editor in Chief Jeff Fraser said he thinks the amalgamation is a good idea.

“It saves the AMS a lot of money and it combines a lot of skills and resources into one place,” he said, adding that the main saving will come from the reduced costs of running P&CC Designs.

Fraser said the only aspect of the services which won’t be part of the amalgamation will be the gown and hood rental component of convocation services. It will be taken over by media services and the vice-president (operations).

Fraser said the amalgamation will make it a lot easier to find advertisements for the GQA.

“We will be able to solicit advertisement early on in the year so we can make sure the GQA has full advertising potential … one of the problems this year was that when we were looking for advertisers in May and June people had already planned their entire budget,” he said, adding that GQA staff positions were only four months long so work couldn’t start until the summer months. With the amalgamation the GQA manager will also be the Yearbook Editor in Chief, he said.

Fraser said the amalgamation would combine the applicant pool and increase the skill level for all services.

“We really don’t have a lot of resources in the way of skilled applicants for graphic design or photography because Queen’s doesn’t have the programs,” he said. “Just making sure that pool comes to one service is a way to make sure we’re getting the most talented people.” —With files from Rachel Kuper

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