Contact centre workers employed by Virgin Media in Swansea have woken up to some bad news – the company is cutting back and closing a contact centre, says the BBC and other sources. The process will be completed during 2019.
The move will hit over 700 jobs, quite a chunk for a smallish town in Wales (although not quite the 800 the BBC puts in its first paragraph, being rather generous with the rounding-up).
The Welsh government has expressed its disappointment and the local council is talking to other employers nearby such as Tui to see whether they can help. Finding out about job availability may not be an obvious part of the council’s function but given the breadth of the job losses perhaps any help is good news.
At least a part of the issue has to be that call centres (and we use the term advisedly) are becoming dated in an environment in which they are surrounded by often-excellent automated solutions. Self-service on websites is rife and chatbots are not always obvious (only last week your editor asked a text-based chatbot whether it was human…she was quite offended actually…) so the role of the agent has to evolve.
Also, sometimes the need just changes. We have no inside information on the Virgin situation but we wish the employees well in finding new work, and draw the attention of anyone recruiting call centre staff to Swansea.