Feeds

TELEPOCALYPSE as Australian carriers shed jobs with horrible speed

Blame the re-invention of the NBN for giving telco-land pause in the worst possible way

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

While Australia's telco industry has become accustomed to the constant slim-down drive at incumbent Telstra and number-two Optus, an accumulation of bad news further down the food chain will narrow the options for the country's telco professionals.

Optus' latest job cuts announcement, that rather than the 200 originally mooted in Australia's mainstream press, it would be cutting 350 staff, predominantly in back-end corporate functions, added to what looks like a broader industry employment downturn.

M2 Communications, which rose to prominence on the back of an aggressive acquisition strategy that put it in control of Dodo, iPrimus, Commander Communications and VoIP business Engin, announced on Monday that it is to shed as many as 150 jobs.

Its acquisition strategy, the company said, has resulted in duplication, leading M2 to begin a consultation process to identify the roles that will get made redundant.

Meanwhile, iiNet has begun talking of job cuts again. The company had previously slimmed its executive ranks after acquiring Adelaide-based Internode, and in 2012 it had a round of cuts after acquiring Canberra-based TransACT. TPG recently hosed out a lot of former AAPT staff.

There are several dynamics at work driving carriers and ISPs to slim down, but National Broadband Network policy is casting a shadow over the industry, and has done for years.

The original NBN fibre-to-the-premises plan put a freeze on much of the once-aggressive infrastructure rollouts of the ISP sector: new ADSL deployments became reactive rather than speculative, since nobody wanted to deploy an asset that would be stranded when fibre arrived.

The industry stasis has become more acute since the change of government, with the NBN under review: the rate of fibre deployment has slowed (Tasmania's peak body, TasICT, has called the rollout in that state a shambles), and the proposed FTTN rollout has yet to get beyond trial stage.

The telco industry's doldrums are reflected in national productivity data: the sector is attributed with a 7.2 per cent decline in productivity (chiefly driven by an NBN-dominated capital spike of 6.3 per cent).

With all of this and a long-term future in which everyone outside of the mobile business will become an NBN reseller, it's hard to see an employment turnaround, and that's its own problem. At some point, telco is going to have to try to attract new, young blood.

Who would be foolish enough to try and enter an industry in which a career looks so uncertain? ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Want to break Netflix? It'll pay you to do the job
'Senior Chaos Engineer' sought to inflict all sorts of nasty, nasty, pain
HOT BABES! Worried you won't get that JOB in IT? MENTION how hot you are
'Don't hate me 'cos I'm beautiful' ploy for sad honeys
Oracle to DBAs: your certification is about to become worthless paper
So hurry up and get a new one, will all of you who took exams for 10g and lower?
HP's axe swings AGAIN: 5,000 more staffers for the chop
Extra job cuts not linked to PC and printer biz split
Phones 4u demise: 1,700 employees laid off with redundo package
'Limited interest in remaining 362 stores', says administrator PwC
Germany strikes again over Amazon warehouse pay
Employees to walk out in long-running wage dispute
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.