Returning to Work: Practical Planning for Publishing Businesses

12-1pm | May 21, 2020

PPA Webinar with Bauer Media, Hearst UK and Immediate Media

With a roadmap published by the government this week, setting out how the economy could begin to reopen, sector specific solutions are top of the agenda. But what could a ‘new normal’ look like for publishers, are businesses planning to reopen the office doors and how are we managing our most creative assets, our people?

In the latest PPA Live! session we will hear from three leading publishers about their response to COVID-19, adapting to remote working and plans for recovery. As the UK looks ahead to months of movement restrictions and prolonged social distancing, how will publishers be adapting their plans and supporting people to work in new and innovative ways?

We hear from three publishing businesses, their thoughts and strategies for all this and more.


Sarah Barnes, Bauer Media
Sarah Barnes
People & Culture Director
Bauer Media

With over 20 years’ experience in the field of HR and Learning and Development gained mainly but not exclusively in the media sector. Sarah strongly believes that people development is key to organisational, team and personal success.

With a career grounded from an operational environment, she has a down to earth, pragmatic and results focussed approach to the development of individuals and teams that really make a difference both personally and professionally for long lasting behavioural change.

A qualified and highly experienced Leader, Facilitator and Executive Coach with specialisms in Leadership Development, Talent Management, Personal & Team Effectiveness, Diversity and Inclusion and Transformational change.

Owen Meredith, PPA
Owen Meredith
Managing Director

Owen was appointed Managing Director at PPA in 2018, with operational responsibility for the association, in addition to leading on external affairs and cross industry engagement. He joined the PPA in 2014 as Director of External Affairs, having previously worked in Parliament, with objective to bolster the industry's external affairs agenda and build the PPA's reputation with stakeholders, including in parliament and government. He has led on a number of cross-industry projects, including the post-Leveson regulatory environment and more recently the #AxeTheReadingTax campaign to end the VAT penalty on digital publications.

Jo Brandl, Immediate Media
Jo Brandl
HR Director
Immediate Media
Surinder Simmons, Hearst Europe
Surinder Simmons
Chief People Officer
Hearst Europe

Surinder was appointed Chief People Officer, Hearst UK in 2015 and became Chief People Officer, Hearst Europe in 2020.

Surinder and her team have been instrumental in transforming the culture of the business, creating an environment where people can get more out of life. Having adopted the mantra of Learn Well, Work Well, Live Well she has championed employee engagement at every level. From launching learning academies, introducing a new approach to reward and wellbeing and driving the diversity and inclusion agenda.

Surinder has spent more than two decades in Human Resources, with a focus on media and telecommunications. She has held senior HR roles at Sony Ericsson, Virgin Media and Telewest/ntl.