National Portrait Gallery staff nearly halved last year

The National Portrait Gallery’s workforce has been reduced by 122 people in 2020-21, according to its most recently filed annual accounts.

This is a drop of 46%. Some 109 employees were made redundant at the end of June 2020, and seven others were made redundant at the end of March 2021. Six left the organization and were not replaced.

The National Portrait Gallery was closed to the public in 2020 and is not expected to reopen until spring 2023 due to its Inspiring People project, which requires a major transformation of the building.

A spokesperson for the exempt charity said the gallery had always planned to ‘reduce its workforce’ because of it, but ‘expect to return to its pre-closure workforce’ as it has need this number of employees in place to operationally manage the operation of the gallery.

Staff diversity is decreasing

Decreasing staff has affected the diversity of the National Portrait Gallery’s workforce. In 2020-21, the majority of its workforce was white (83%), with nearly 12% “non-white” and 4.9% unwilling to declare their ethnicity.

The gallery had a predominantly female workforce, consisting of 73.4% women and 26.6% men in 2020-21. Currently, there is no category for non-binary people.

Asked about this, a spokesperson for the gallery told Civil Society News: “This is something the gallery is currently considering. We will be implementing a new HR system in December 2022, which may bring changes to the how we store the personal data of our staff.”

The average average of the male-female distribution over the last three financial years is 28% of men in the workforce compared to 71.8% of women.

In 2020-21, 2.03% of the workforce had a disability, which is a slight increase from 2019-20 at 1.9%.

The report states: “The National Portrait Gallery is committed to becoming a truly inclusive organization with a workforce and audience that represents the communities it serves. The gallery operates a blind recruitment process, ensuring that those involved in the recruitment decision-making processes do not have access to applicants’ personal data. »

The gallery is also part of the Disability Confident Scheme.

In 2020, some 13 employees were paid more than £60,000 a year, up from 12 in 2021. The highest paid employee earned between £110-119,000 in 2020-21.

Memberships blocked despite the closure of the gallery

Despite the gallery’s long-term closure, its member retention rate was 75%. However, new member acquisition rates have been “dramatically impacted” by the pandemic, the report said.

The charity’s total income fell by £3m to just over £20m in this financial year and total expenditure of £16,643m, from £6m sterling compared to the previous year.

Fundraising revenue for the last financial year fell only slightly from £6,454m in 2019-20 to £6,008m in the previous financial year.

The major decline in income for the exempt charity can be attributed to two areas. First, revenue from charitable activities fell by 62% from 2019-20 to 2020-21. This is a drop of over £2million.

While donations and legacies, mainly through government-funded grants, have increased by £1 million this financial year, other donations and legacies have fallen by more than half, from £1,844 million pounds sterling in 2019-20 to 723,000 pounds sterling last year.

Julia P. Cluff