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Published on Sep 16, 2007
MANILA, Philippines, September 17, 2007 – Telecom provider PLDT has had to let go of 575 employees due to redundancy effective 15 September 2007, because of changes in technology and consumer demand.
The affected employees are from the Company’s traffic operations, network, and fleet services.
The affected employees will receive a generous compensation package plus a 2-year medical program. The package is the normal retirement benefit plus 100% premium. Those with less than 15 years of service will receive 200% times the number of years. Based on these averages, the average compensation is P1.1 million.
The impact of technological change is most evident in the case of telephone traffic operators, whose positions comprise the bulk of the redundancy. Manpower reduction becomes unavoidable in their case due to the continuous, significant downtrend in operator-assisted national and international long distance telephone calls.
“From 216 million calls in 2000, the number of operator-assisted international and domestic long distance calls fell to 153.8 million in 2001 and has continued to slide until it was down to 36.5 million in 2006. Customers have shifted massively to direct distance dialing and mobile phones because of convenience and lower cost,” PLDT spokesperson Ramon R. Isberto said.
The 79 personnel from network services are mostly assigned to relay stations which, due to advances in technology, are now fully automatic. Affected positions in the Company’s fleet services division are not part of PLDT’s core business.
The Company has taken all possible measures to cushion the impact of these redundancies.
Since 2003, PLDT has been offering training courses for telephone operators and Corenet employees to prepare them for redeployment. Some 3,700 graduates of various technical and administrative courses came from the telephone operators’ ranks while around 1,500 from the Visayas and 1,300 from Mindanao took these training courses.
With these new skills, PLDT was able to redeploy around 180 employees – who otherwise would have been affected by the MRP – to various business units, since 2002.
In line with this, employees affected by the recent redundancies were advised to look and apply for other positions within PLDT which would match their competencies. They were also afforded with various services/seminars and workshops to assist them to move on after PLDT (e.g. Contracting Business, Personal Financial Arrangement, Livelihood and other Investment Opportunities, etc.).