Vodafone confirms large job cuts due to Covid-19

Author
Melissa Nightingale, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 11 Jun 2020, 3:44PM

Vodafone confirms large job cuts due to Covid-19

Author
Melissa Nightingale, NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 11 Jun 2020, 3:44PM

Vodafone New Zealand is estimating more than 100 jobs could be cut as the company addresses the impact of Covid-19.

A spokeswoman said 5-7 per cent of its roughly 2000-strong workforce could be cut thank to "significant financial impact" caused by the pandemic.

This translates to 100-140 possible job losses, not including contractors.

"In mid-April this year, Vodafone NZ started reviewing all its costs to address the impacts of Covid-19 and to ensure long-term business sustainability," the spokeswoman said.

"Covid-19 has had a significant financial impact on our business, including reduced roaming and retail revenues, the providing of additional data to customers on unlimited plans for no extra revenue, and the increased risk of bad debt."

This, along with changing customer habits such as higher phone and data use and a greater need for online customer support, meant Vodafone had to significantly reduce its costs and "adapt to the acceleration of digital adoption", she said.

"We have been doing everything we can to minimise the impact on our people, however unfortunately it is inevitable there will be some job losses to help offset the financial impacts of Covid-19 and accelerate our digital strategies to meet the new needs of our customers."

Over the next few months, they estimate the 5-7 per cent loss of staff, depending on how many can be redeployed.

"Wherever possible, we are looking to redeploy or reskill people. For example most of our retail team were redeployed in customer roles during alert levels 3 and 4."

The industry was "incredibly dynamic" and Vodafone was continually looking at priorities and skills to provide services most valued by the customers.

"In coming years, as we continue to adapt to the new digital future, our business will keep changing as we reprioritise to grow in new areas and stop investing in others."

Vodafone chief executive Jason Paris earlier told staff he and senior managers were taking a 20 per cent pay cut, and confirmed a salary and hiring freeze.

It follows a move by rival 2degrees, which in April said it was laying off 120, or 10 per cent of its 1200 staff.