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18 Dec 2015

Vodafone may lose around 100 permanent customer service staff, with intends to almost halve the length of its consumer mobile service team, extend the graveyard shift to 7.30am and increase outsourcing with a call centre inside Philippines.

The proposal, outlined in the internal document obtained through the Herald, is an element of a restructuring required to bring 200 to 250 job cuts.

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The consultation document, offered to vodafone customer care number support staff the other day, said average revenue per customer was falling plus the firm was forecasting a 2 percent year-on-year revenue decline.

"As this pressure continues, we should accelerate our offers to transform our costs and lower our costs to offer, sell and deliver our products to customers," it said.

"Therefore we're going to be reducing our employment costs overall."

Vodafone head of external communications Craig Jones said 50 to 100 contract customer satisfaction roles may also be affected. The contractors were helpful to support the integration of TelstraClear, acquired in 2012, he stated.

In consumer mobile, the quantity of prepay and on-account support roles could be cut from 100 to 55, with 29 related contract roles also set for being terminated from the end of the month, in accordance with the document.

Ninety percent of prepay and 50 % of on-account calls will probably be handled inside the Philippines by call centre operator Teleperformance, while using balance handled by Vodafone, the document says.

"We are going to be extending our existing capability at our Philippines service centre for straightforward transactional and administrative tasks," said Mr Jones. "However, complex customer services will continue to get managed by our New Zealand-based team."

He said customers could expect faster call answering times and quicker resolutions.

The document said the number of customer support team leaders would drop from 34 to 19, while six customer fault escalation roles and 15 fixed technology positions would also go.

The company's "resolve team" can be reduced from 24 to eight agents by February 28 and Vodafone is proposing to boost the end of that graveyard shift from 6am to 7.30am.

Craig Young, leader of the Telecommunications Users Association of New Zealand, said he was always concerned when providers downsized in customer care. For more details visit:

"That's the main one area that directly concerns users," he was quoted saying. "But ... consumers can certainly make a choice if they end up receiving bad service from supplier then they have got plenty of other suppliers to attend."

Vodafone New Zealand reported a full-year loss in $27.9 million not too long ago.


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