Telstra is proposing to outsource more highly skilled work – this time to IBM.
On 8 November, Telstra notified the CWU and other Telstra unions that it intended to outsource work performed in Telstra Service Operations (TSO) and Information Technology Services (ITS) at the cost of 46 jobs. The particular areas affected are the Infrastructure Deployment and Core Engineering Teams within ITS and End User Services (ESU) within TSO.
At a meeting held on 14 November to consult on this decision, Telstra told the unions that it had been based on a “in depth analysis” of the needs of its business in these areas.
It says it needs to outsource the ITS functions to IBM to strengthen its cloud and data analytics business. In the case of ESU it says that new ways of working are needed that can’t be delivered by current systems and current staff.
Union officials and members at the meeting asked why systems and skills upgrades, if that was what was needed, couldn’t be made within Telstra and with existing staff. Affected staff also asked to be given access to the “in depth” analysis on which the outsourcing decision was supposedly based.
Unions also expressed the view that if part of the problem was a lack of “innovation” within the company, as Telstra appeared to suggest, then the problem might lie more with management than employees.
Employees in these areas have for some time been making suggestions about how things could be improved, but these have fallen on deaf ears.
We are now waiting to see what further information about the rationale for their decision Telstra is willing to provide. Any CWU members affected by the process should contact their state branch.