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The odds are good that unless you live on the island of Australia you do not know what the company Optus does. So for those of us who are not Aussies here is a look at how the company describes itself, “Optus is an Australian leader in integrated telecommunications, delivering cutting-edge communications, information technology and entertainment services. In 2001 SingTel became the parent company of Optus, paving the way to become a strong and strategic telecommunications player within the Asia-Pacific region.”
Apparently the company has decided that it is not cutting edge to have a lot of people on the payroll. The company has decided to get rid of about 750 workers in order to make a serious dent in its payroll expenses. The company has not released a list of specific positions that are going to be cut, but we do know that the jobs are going to come from support positions, clerical workers and management positions. That last one is fairly rare in terms of job cuts, which usually impact the lowest paid workers most heavily, and spare many managers.
This round of cuts will actually impact a fair number of members of the middle and senior management staff. In the official release put out by the company the chose to describe the job cuts as part of their larger effort to restructure, “By moving to a more streamlined and centralized structure, Optus will remove a number of areas of duplication. As a result, Optus is proposing to make approximately 750 roles redundant over the coming months with an associated one off charge of approximately $37 million. The majority of these roles will come from senior and middle management as well as operations, back office and support functions. To maintain its customer focus, minimal customer facing staff will be directly affected by today’s announcement.”
The company’s cuts will no doubt have a serious impact on the workers, but the overall reduction in force is less than 10 percent of the company’s current workforce. The company employed about 9726 workers before the cut, so all in all a little more than seven percent of the workers will be put out of a job in the current round of layoffs.
These layoffs are going to cost the company a significant amount of money. They are expecting a one-time charge of about $37 million to be associated with the layoffs. This number does not include any payments for unemployment benefits, severance or any other benefits that the company may choose to extend to the soon to be displaced workers. For the time being the company has not put out any information about what benefits, if any, they are currently planning to extend to the workers who they are going to be laying off. There is also no information being given about when the layoffs are going to be put into action. The workers are being given notification already, but when restructures occur that does not always mean they will be out of a job right away.
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