There are stories I hate writing and there are stories I REALLY hate writing, this goes beyond either of those as T-Mobile (internally I might add, though it’s bound to become public anyway as employees find out) announces they are closing down 7 of their 24 call centers. In a move that is likely to shore up finances the company will need to boost operations, close to 3300 employees will be out of work. However, T-Mobile is offering relocation help as the 17 remaining call centers will attempt to fill close to 1400 positions, leaving 1900 net employees out of work.
On a personal note I’m terribly sorry to hear this news and it’s heartbreaking to know that so many good people are now looking at an uncertain future. Our heart goes out to them.
I have difficult news to share today: we are consolidating our call center operations and closing seven of our 24 facilities. This decision was not easily reached, but it is a necessary measure. The reality is our cost structure must be better optimized to match our customer base and call volumes.
The affected Customer Service facilities are Allentown, Pennsylvania; Fort Lauderdale, Florida; Frisco, Texas; Brownsville, Texas; Lenexa, Kansas; Thornton, Colorado; and Redmond, Oregon. The consolidations will result in 1,900 net job reductions. Approximately 3,300 employees at the seven impacted facilities will be affected, and we will begin hiring immediately at the remaining 17 call centers to fill as many as 1,400 positions.
Impacted call centers will remain open for three months following this announcement. Affected customer service representatives will have the option to transfer to any of the remaining 17 call centers. Employees who choose not to transfer and are employed on the date the center closes, will be offered transition packages with severance pay and outplacement support. T-Mobile is partnering with an outplacement firm to provide on-site career centers at all seven facilities. Every employee will have access to a personal career coach and be offered job search training and tools. In addition, T-Mobile will pay for two months of continued health care coverage under COBRA (which is available for up to 18 months for eligible employees who elect this option).
Looking ahead, we will also be restructuring other parts of the company. It is important to note this will not include our customer service representatives in the remaining 17 call centers, technicians in engineering or front line employees in our T-Mobile corporate-owned stores. In other parts of the organization, the majority of changes will be announced by the end of May 2012. Senior leaders are intently focused on making the best possible choices standing on the foundation of our shared T-Mobile Values. The outcome will be an organization that is structured efficiently and closer to the customer. Leaders will share more information as plans evolve.
These are not easy steps to take – or, I know, to read. We must address our business realities so we can focus on getting T-Mobile back to growth.
Our commitment, as we go through this process, is to provide clear perspective and understandable rationale, be forthright in our communications regarding our decisions, and be respectful and compassionate in our treatment of affected individuals.
Thank you for your ongoing commitment and support.
With sincere appreciation,
CEO & President