The ACT Brumbies will put the majority of their staff on reduced hours to ease coronavirus pressure as they begin the fight to save the club's long-term future.
A handful of senior staff, believed to include chief executive Phil Thomson and coach Dan McKellar will remain in full-time roles but will take significant pay cuts to keep the Brumbies afloat.
News of the Brumbies cutbacks followed Rugby Australia's decision to stand down 75 per cent of its workforce until June 30 as the sporting world comes to grips with a new reality.
The Brumbies board will meet on Wednesday to discuss more plans to safeguard the organisation against financial disaster after the Super Rugby season was shutdown.
Rugby Australia will give Australian franchises the next installment of their quarterly grant to help them "survive" the next three months, but money is already tight and causing major headaches.
The Brumbies have been walking a financial tightrope for several years and there are serious concerns about the ongoing viability of all Australian teams and Super Rugby as a competition.
But the federal government's "JobKeeper" package has helped the Brumbies give their staff some comfort in uncertain times.
The majority of staff will continue on reduced hours and receive government payments to help them stay at the Brumbies.
For some that equates to one or two days per week, but it has emerged as a better option than being forced to stand down staff without pay.
Players, meanwhile, are also nervously awaiting details of their immediate payments after the Rugby Union Players Association met with Rugby Australia on Tuesday.
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Worst-case projections for Australian rugby forecast a $120 million loss in revenue if the entire Super Rugby season is cancelled and the Wallabies are unable to play a game in Australia this year.
Brumbies chief executive Phil Thomson said: "This is the hardest decision ever made by the Brumbies as an organisation and also for myself personally.
"The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is being felt right across society and what we have had to implement today is the first step in trying to ensure the Brumbies remain viable into the future.
"Our staff and players are the fabric of the Brumbies family and an essential part of our future and will be an extremely important part of our recovery from this unprecedented situation.
"I cannot thank them all enough for their incredible work and for what everyone has been able to achieve so far this year both on and off the field and I'm sorry we are in this situation.
"We are an organisation with a long and proud history, with our foundations built on overcoming adversity and displaying resilience. I am confident that the Brumbies family will bounce back."
Three quarters of Rugby Australia's staff will be stood down for the next three months and the remainder retained on drastically reduced salaries as the code braces for a $120 million hit from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chief executive Raelene Castle, who will take a 50 per cent pay cut, said she'll ensure staff stood down would have access to "whatever government support is available" and that they were working closely with the RUPA to reach an "appropriate" agreement on player salary reductions.
She said additional help from World Rugby and individual state governments would also ensure grassroots rugby could continue once it is safe to return to the field.
"Today we have had to deliver the hardest news imaginable to our incredible, hard-working and passionate staff, that many of them will be stood down for a three-month period so that the game can survive this unprecedented crisis," she said.
"We could lose up to $120 million in revenue should it not be possible for any Rugby to be played in 2020. Of course, that is the worst case scenario, and we are very hopeful that we can recommence the Super Rugby season and domestic Wallabies Test matches at some point this year.
"The measures we will implement from April 1, although extremely painful, are necessary to ensure the sport remains financially viable and to ensure that we are able to come out the other side of this global crisis, fully-operational and ready to throw everything into the rebuild."
The announcement comes a day after RA reported a provisional loss of $9.4 million in 2019 and hours after USA Rugby were forced to file for bankruptcy when their financial woes were exacerbated by the coronavirus shutdown.
RA had last week announced a makeshift five-team domestic competition featuring a Western Australian team when international travel restricted normal Super Rugby fixtures.
That was swiftly postponed until at least May 1, with a think tank now set to be formed to assess what professional rugby may look like in Australia in the short and long-term future.