Telstra slammed over plans to shift jobs to India

By SiliconIndia   |   Monday, 16 February 2004, 08:00 Hrs
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SYDNEY: Telstra, the communication service provider, has been criticised by the communications union over its plans to send hundreds of jobs to India, the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Monday.

It follows the recent criticism of Telstra by Federal Treasurer Peter Costello over a plan to outsource 450 technology jobs to India.

Though unspecified in the report, it is believed that the top-end IT positions would be moved to India.

According to the paper, the report in The Australian Financial Review cites an internal Telstra memo suggesting the telco plans to increase offshore outsourcing of back-office operations.

While calling on the federal government to intervene, the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union Victorian secretary Len Cooper said that the telco was putting profits ahead of its workers. "The issue here is that Telstra is totally focused on the needs of the big institutional shareholders, which also includes the federal government of course ... that's really their motivation here, to drive up the bottom line as quickly as possible to prepare the ground for privatisation," he said.

The Union secretary added: "We think it is quite immoral that they are doing this and the federal government could easily, if their priority was keeping high-skilled jobs in Australia, direct Telstra to make that their priority."

Cooper said it was unclear which jobs would be moved offshore but they were likely be top-end IT positions.

Telstra was not immediately available for comments, the report added.

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