Spokeswoman Jacqui O’Sullivan says that 4,400 staff are expected to leave through voluntary severance and early retirement packages. If this number is not achieved it may move to potential retrenchments.
A further 3,400 staff are expected to be ‘exited’ through an ‘enterprise development’ program. This will see Telkom assisting existing employees to develop their own new businesses. These businesses would then be able to contract their services back into Telkom and other service providers. This allows Telkom to retain their skills while still reducing staff numbers.
Telkom currently has over 18,000 employees. The planned reductions are in addition to the 1,170 employees transferred in April when Telkom outsourced three divisions.
Telkom CEO, Sipho Maseko, said recently that the group must accelerate its efforts to achieve the targeted ratio of staff costs to revenue. “Much like most telecoms operators globally, Telkom must move towards a leaner and more productive workforce,”
This forms part of Telkom’s ongoing strategy to revamp operations and ensure better long-term stability in a market that is moving away from landline based communication.
Trade Union Solidarity however is not happy with the drastic cuts. Marius Croucamp, Head of Solidarity’s Communications Industry, said “We have been pressuring Telkom since the beginning of this year to come clean regarding the number of people that will be affected and we are still questioning whether this drastic action will put the company on a sustainable path.”