Pittsburgh Symphony lays off 17 staff members to help close deficit

Posted on: March 5, 2014

In Wednesday’s (3/5) Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Elizabeth Bloom reports, “The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra has laid off almost 10 percent of its administrative staff in ongoing efforts to balance its budget and make operations more efficient. The 17 employees laid off last month include all telephone sales representatives—12 part-time and two full-time employees—and three full-time patron services representatives. The PSO employs 79 full-time and 80 part-time workers, not including musicians, said Louise Sciannameo, vice president of public affairs. The telephone sales representatives were furloughed on Thursday. The telemarketing duties will be outsourced.… PSO officials hope the vendor will make the operation more efficient through improved technology and training, she said. ‘We believe we will see a sustained increase in revenue and match that with lower overhead expenses.’ … The three patron services representatives were let go on Feb. 7 and will not be replaced. Those employees work out of Heinz Hall and assist ticket-holders, particularly subscribers.… Last year, the PSO reported a $1.475 million deficit, down from $2.9 million in 2012.… ‘We already know that we’ll achieve [the balanced budget] through a combination of revenue growth and expense reduction,’ Ms. Sciannameo said.”

Posted March 5, 2014