The number of people needed to produce a newspaper varies widely. The smallest weekly papers have only 1 to 3 workers, who do everything from writing the news, to selling ads, to running the press. Some larger weeklies employ 10 to 30 people. The largest metropolitan dailies have 2,000 or more employees.
The staff of most dailies is headed by the publisher, who directs all the departments. The staff of such a paper is divided into three main departments: (1) editorial, (2) business, and (3) mechanical.
The editorial department is responsible for the news and features that the paper prints. The head of the department is called the editor in chief, executive editor, or simply editor. This individual must have a thorough knowledge of all phases of newspaper work and know how to deal well with people.
A managing editor helps the editor in chief direct the members of the editorial staff. Under the managing editor are assistant managing editors and news editors. Other editors have charge of news in certain areas. For example, most large dailies have a city editor, a suburban editor, a national editor, a feature editor, and a foreign editor. Each of the various sections and departments of the paper, such as the sports, arts, and financial sections, also has its own editor. Each editor supervises a staff of reporters, writers, and other workers. Some editors, such as the sports and financial editors, may write a daily column in addition to their supervisory duties. An art director works with the editors in planning the illustrations and photographs to accompany stories. The art director oversees a staff of artists and photographers.
The editor in chief directs the news staff and editorial writers. In many cases, the publisher helps guide these writers. For that reason, a newspaper's editorials often express the views of the publisher. Metropolitan dailies also employ special columnists to write columns of humor, advice, or general information.
Many newspapers provide special facilities to assist I he editorial staff. For example, a library keeps copies of past stories and pictures plus such resources as almanacs and encyclopedias. The library also uses computers to .search national and international databases. In addition, artists and photographers need special facilities to do l their work. For example, a newspaper must have a photo lab where pictures can be processed speedily.
The business department tries to ensure that the paper makes a profit. A business manager heads the department with the help of an advertising manager, a circulation manager, and a promotion manager. The advertising manager directs a staff that sells advertising space to .stores, manufacturers, and other businesses as well as classified ads to individuals and firms. The circulation manager supervises the distribution of the newspaper. The promotion managers develops ways of drawing attention to the paper too attract new readers and new advertisers. The business «department also has accountants and bookkeepers to hand le the financial records.
The mechanical department prints the newspaper. A production manager directs the department's operations. Some workers create layouts of pages, and others set the type. Still other workers produce the printing plates from which the newspaper is printed.