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Telstra ramps up for HFC contract

Telstra is turning its attention to resourcing the contract it won last year to design and project manage the upgrade of its former HFC network as part of the NBN roll-out. 

In preparation for this work, it has initiated an internal recruitment programme aimed at meeting workforce needs from among current Telstra staff. 

Under the Coalition’s NBN policy, Telstra’s HFC assets will become the property of the Commonwealth and, along with Optus’ HFC network, will provide a fast broadband platform for some 4 million of the 11.9 million premises that will be served by the NBN. 

Telstra knows its own network so it obviously makes sense for it to drive and oversight the upgrade necessary to deliver the speeds of 50Mbps (and beyond) that current policy requires. 

But resourcing the contract will involve rebuilding its pool of HFC skills which the CWU believes has shrunk significantly in recent years. 

The programme is at this stage aimed at Network Delivery staff and is seeking expressions of interest from employees with skill sets relevant to the HFC contract e.g.  design and/or field experience in the CAN or HFC network; project management; reporting and analytical skills; contract negotiation and/or management; construction project management and implementation skills. 

The CWU welcomes the fact that Telstra is seeking to utilise its own staff on this project and the union encourages our members to apply for the future roles. 

We also note that in addition to those who may already have relevant skills there are others who will be eligible for relevant retraining under the $100 million NBN training deed between Telstra and the Commonwealth. The CWU would expect these funds to be utilised to maximise those opportunities for ongoing employment for our members which the HFC and other NBN-related contracts provide. 

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