Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/04/08/ntl_jobs_union/

Union blasts NTL job cuts

'Unsettling' for loyal workers

By Tim Richardson

Posted in Broadband, 8th April 2004 11:34 GMT

Broadcast union BECTU has slammed plans by NTL to axe 1,500 call centre jobs, claiming that it is unsettling for workers who have stood by the cableco through thick and thin.

BECTU is not recognised by NTL for call-centre staff (it does represent NTL's field engineering staff), but it represents many on an individual basis.

Said Sharon Elliott, supervisory official at BECTU: "[This] announcement is hugely unsettling for the staff affected who have continued to support the company through the many troubles of recent years and had hoped for better treatment. BECTU will do what it can to support its members to ensure that the reorganisation is conducted fairly and with compassion."

Many NTL punters have greeted the news of cuts in staff handling customer calls with bemusement. Their beef is that NTL struggles to handle customer enquiries as it is, and they're at a loss to see how cutting jobs will help.

One reader told us: "It's a complete nightmare getting through to NTL. If you have any kind of problem, you can be on hold for 20 minutes at the moment. It's almost unbelievable that they can fix this bad service record by getting rid of people."

While another said: "NTL to axe 1,500 jobs? In the call centre of all places? If you are an NTL customer, the call centre is the one area that NTL needs 1,500 extra workers. How will cutting jobs help hem deliver better service to customers? My record time waiting for an NTL representative is 49 minutes and that doesn't include the numerous transfers you endure once the person who answers realises they can't help you." ®

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