Optus call centre cuts 200 jobs
After reporting last week about ISP Internode’s plan to start using offshore call centres, today the ABC has reported that now Optus is cutting close to 200 call centre roles.
In a further blow to Adelaide’s local call centre community, the Australian Communications Workers Alliance’s national assistant secretary (ACWA), Steven Butterworth, has suggested that all the full-time roles that are being cut are being replaced by offshore call centre workers.
OPTUS is owned by Singtel and use call centres located in India, Philippines and Australia with the apparent strategy of using the cheapest labour possible to handle their customer enquiries.
Optus call centre cuts 200 jobs from Mawson Lakes
The Communication Workers Union believes up to 187 workers could be cut from Optus’ call centre at Mawson Lakes.
The telecommunications provider confirmed last week 480 jobs would be cut across its workforce as part of a restructure of a number of its business divisions.
The call centre currently employs 440 workers.
The union said it was working to reduce that number and hopes some of the workers can be redeployed into 30 new positions in South Australia that will be created as a result of Optus securing the English Premier League football rights.
The ACWA’s national assistant secretary, Steven Butterworth, said workers were first told of a restructure early last week, but affected workers were only informed of the cuts on Monday.
“[Workers] are quite depressed,” Mr Butterworth said.
“I was talking to a gentleman yesterday who has been working for Optus for the last eight years as a technical support person and has a young family, and he’s devastated. That’s the only way I can describe it.”
Mr Butterworth said most of the positions were full time and that the jobs were being sent overseas.
Some workers could be finishing up at the call centre as early as four weeks’ time, Mr Butterworth added.
“There will be a small group kept on for several months during the transition period,” Mr Butterworth said.
Not happy? Contact: OPTUS customer service
Recommended further reading: Why Australian call centre jobs are going offshore (but are starting to come back)