BT to axe 13,000 jobs

The company operates in 180 countries and is the largest provider of fixed-line, mobile and broadband services in the UK.

UK telecommunications company BT will be cutting 13,000 jobs over the next three years.

The company, formerly known as British Telecom, also plans to vacate its central London headquarters, which it has occupied since 1874 – back when the group was part of the UK's General Post Office group.

It is expected that two-thirds of the job cuts will affect the 83,000-strong UK workforce. The remaining third of layoffs will disrupt the company’s international labour pool, which numbers 23,000. Most of the positions being cut are back office and middle-management roles.

The layoffs follow only a year after a previous round of restructuring which saw the company slash 4,000 jobs; half of which were in the UK.

In total, the cuts comprise more than a tenth of BT’s total global workforce of 98,000.

However, the company has also said that it will also be hiring 6,000 new staff – mostly engineers and customer service officers. More than half (3,500) of these roles are being created by Openreach, which is a separate, standalone company owned by the BT Group.

It is unclear if BTI will seek to channel retrenched staff into any of the new roles.

“We need to do this to be competitive in the future. If we are compared with our peers we are frankly too complex and overweight. While I recognise the pain, ultimately it is the right thing to do for the business,” said Gavin Patterson, the chief executive of BT.

 

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