Telstra says it will cut 2600 jobs over the next two years – a somewhat slimmer figure than the 6000 to 8000 posts due to go by November 2008.
The move is part of Sol Trujillo’s plan to slash the telco’s workforce by 12,000 by 2010 but hundreds of jobs have been cut every month since November last year.
Telstra chief financial officer John Stanhope told Telstra staff of the coming cutbacks on Tuesday. He said 1120 full-time equivalent jobs would be lost in the services area in the next financial year and that over two years 35 product management and 100 IT jobs would also go, according to AAP.
A further 1220 jobs will be lost in consumer sales and service and about 115 positions would be cut in a restructure of transaction processing and business support, core finance and decision support and other specialist areas. Already 58 Telstra CountryWide jobs have been lost in Bendigo, Victoria, where a local work management centre has been closed this week. The centre dispatched work to field technicians.
Geoff Wall, CountryWide general manager for central Victoria, said the move was part of the “streamlining” of Telstra processes. He said the dispatching work was now highly automated and the Bendigo centre would be just one of several around the country to be rationalised.
Telecoms analyst Paul Budde told AAP it was interesting to see that the cuts announced yesterday were largely to staff on the services side rather than those involved in operating the network.
“In my opinion it is critical that Telstra really starts to understand that its core business is running the network and not being a sales organisation,” he said. Telstra spokesman Warwick Ponder said the cutbacks are “tough decisions Telstra must make now to remain competitive in the future and deliver benefits for our shareholders. Changing the way we do business will deliver better service to customers, but will not require the same number of employees.”
Telstra claims the cuts will reduce duplication, simplify systems and allow it to better serve its customers. When Truijillo announced the 12,000 jobs cut figure in November, Telstra emphasised that similar or much larger cuts were planned or already made by other large telcos round the globe.Journalists were given a graph showing more than 30,000 cuts planned at Deutsche Telekom, 22,000 at France Telecom, 10,000 at SBC Communications and about 9000 at Verizon of the US.