O2 is cutting 160 roles from its 5,600 strong customer service teams in Leeds, Glasgow, Preston Brook and Bury as it restructures to cope with a wider range of products and services. The consultation is due for completion in June.
The operator stressed that the cuts, which will mainly be in the customer support function and in ‘some of the management teams’, were not recession-driven and that it would redeploy ‘as many of the people affected’ as possible.
A spokesman said the changes were a result of a ‘transformation in customer service’, as consumers’ requirements change in the face of specialised products such as the iPhone and the ‘Joggler’ notebook device.
Last month, O2 chief executive Ronan Dunne told Mobile that the way the operator serves customers is changing, as the company makes changes amid the volatile market. He also revealed he has not ruled out job cuts in 2009.
He said that the operator’s focus will change this year, as less calls go into call centres and retail becomes a priority.
He said: ‘The focus will be on making sure our cost base is competitive, to give value to customers. I’m not saying we are cutting back, but the mix is changing on how we serve them. If the number of calls is falling, we can have our call centres talking about broader customer services.’