O2 is cutting 400 jobs at its call centres as part of an outsourcing plan, the Communication Workers Union has claimed, bringing its total redundancies following the deal with Capita to 1,000.
The union is currently balloting members for strike action over the decision to outsource 3,700 jobs. The affected roles will be in the Bury, Glasgow, Leeds and Preston Brook call centres. The CWU said that O2 confirmed today (12 June) that there will be 600 voluntary redundancies, with those taking a package to leave on 6 July. A further 400 will leave by 1 December.
According to leaked documents from earlier this month, Capita could retain as few as 1,370 staff by the end of 2015. O2 described this as one scenario under consideration.
Andy Kerr, CWU, deputy general secretary, said: 'We’re dismayed and disappointed at this latest announcement of job cuts from O2 at such short notice. The outsourcing transfer date is less than three weeks away and the goalposts appear to be moving daily. This is not how a decent, responsible employer should behave.
'Our members in O2 have been brutally destabilised by the actions of O2. They’ve been given a very short period to consider serious decisions about their future. Many don’t know whether to stay or go; whether to take some money and leave now or take a chance on Capita.
'These job cuts will mean the permanent loss of decent jobs in these towns and cities. We remain gravely concerned for the future job and site security of people affected by outsourcing to Capita and we have further talks aimed at securing the best assurances we can for people’s jobs, terms and conditions. We’re urging all members to vote yes in the current ballot.'
An O2 spokesman said: 'These are not compulsory redundancies. This relates to our well-publicised discretionary voluntary redundancy programme where the terms have proved attractive for people who are looking to leave the business.'
The result of the strike ballot will be revealed on 18 June.
Author: Graeme Neill