back to article Capita: Listen up redundo staff, we know you're leaving but...

The management team at Capita are all heart – they have asked staff being made redundant at a Glasgow call centre running O2’s phone support desk to prep newbies coming to the team. Some 700 workers – split evenly across centres in Bury and Glasgow – last week opted for voluntary redundancy, though according to the …

  1. hplasm Silver badge
    WTF?

    Surely-

    If there are 'replacements' then the roles are not redundant?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Surely-

      If you have the right sort of education and trainnig then there is a difference. IANAL so how would I know but having been in this situation myself there is some wierd legal description that makes it all right.(Not)

      still I was gonna leave anyway so the £5k+ I got out of the men extra redundancy pay more than made up for it. any more and I would have had to pay tax on the redundancy.

    2. casaloco

      Re: Surely-

      Doesn't apply if it's voluntary... you're effectively being paid to quit.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "the roles are not redundant?"

      "If there are 'replacements' then the roles are not redundant?"

      Correct. But the work is being offshored [1], therefore the jobs of the people currently doing the work must go. There's a lot of it about, and there has been for a very long time (in IT terms). The Urban Dictionary's original reference to jobs being Bangalored dates back to 2003, and the process, and the term describing it, had already been around for a while. El Reg had a "My job went to India and all I got was this lousy T-shirt" item in 2004:

      http://www.theregister.co.uk/2004/03/09/ny_times_in_my_job/

      Not sure what's new in this article, except more of the same.

      What's perhaps new is companies like alleged leading hi-tech employer Rolls Royce (the jet engine one) offshoring important work to India and simultaneously seeking 2600 redundancies among hi-tech employees (designers, testers, etc) in the UK [2], which apparently rather upset the workforce although it's not been widely reported:

      http://www.unitetheunion.org/news/rolls-royce-workers-give-backing-to-industrial-action-war-chest/

      [1] From the article: "Top brass at Capita want to ensure as smooth a handover as possible as staff leave and newbies pick up the slack in the UK and on the South Africa service desk." which I read (in the context of call centre history) as meaning yet more UK jobs are being offshored to South Africa, for the usual reasons.

      [2] http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/11/04/uk-rollsroyce-restructuring-idUKKBN0IO1CB20141104

      "Without giving any explanation, Rolls also said Finance Director Mark Morris had left after 27 year with the company and would be replaced by David Smith, who is promoted from finance director of the Aerospace division."

      David Smith was formerly CEO at Jaguar LandRover (owned by Indian company Tata). I wonder which company will be getting the outsourced work. Small world, eh.

  2. Tony S

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Upset staff, with nothing to lose, talking to incoming staff about the management team and their abilities or lack thereof.

    I'm sure that the new staff will be thoroughly motivated by this (to look for another place as soon as possible)

    1. TitterYeNot

      Re: What could possibly go wrong?

      But think of the revenge fun you could have with this on your way out...

      Now listen carefully newbie, it's vitally important that you start the call correctly. You must always, without fail, begin with "Hoo's it gaun, ye wee feck?"

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Crapita contract will likely be void once the deal with Three goes through. A material change in ownership clause is usually included in most outsourcing contracts.

    All the roles will then transfer to Three's Indian call centres.

  4. This post has been deleted by its author

  5. Chris Miller

    The main thing that has kept me with O2 is that their UK call centres are really rather good. Start transferring me to Bangalore and watch my business disappear (although I doubt the other providers are much better).

  6. nematoad Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Ah yes.

    Been there, done that.

    When the outsourcing company I worked for lost the contract to manage the IT at a call centre run by a large financial company we were asked by the clients to do the same.

    When we queried this with our managers we were told. "Show them where the loos are and leave it at that." So we did.

    Result: I heard that the place was in uproar, our replacements had a very shaky grasp of the English language (they were shipped in from India) had little or no idea where anything was or what it did, thanks to our instructions on minimal help on the handover and generally were struggling to understand a system that we had developed over five years and that we had polished to a fine art. We did leave documentation on everything and a disaster recovery plan etc. but as I said they had trouble speaking English fluently so how they got on with the sometimes cryptic documentation, which was in places more of an aide-memoir than full specs, I don't know.

    Last I heard they were out and a new lot of perms had been installed. I would have felt sorry for them but as I lost my job over it I could not quite bring myself to do so. Though the £16000 I got as a payoff did help a little.

    1. Yugguy

      Re: Ah yes.

      Been somewhere similar, and yes, the redundancy cash is sweet.

      But who ultimately suffers? Not the bastard teflon managers, oh no. It's the users, the poor sods just trying to do their jobs with shit IT.

    2. Vic

      Re: Ah yes.

      had little or no idea where anything was or what it did

      That's outrageous. You should be ashamed.

      You were supposed to show them where the loos were...

      Vic.

      1. nematoad Silver badge
        Happy

        Re: Ah yes.

        "You were supposed to show them where the loos were..."

        Well they did find themselves in the shit so I suppose they did listen to that part of our "handover".

  7. Yugguy

    We're on a journey together

    Little tip. If your manager ever says anything like to you, run like buggery.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Crapita

    I thought everyone knew it's "Crapita" not "Capita" ?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Deja vu

    At my last job we were all made redundant after refusing the "opportunity" to relocate hundreds of miles with no no relocation package and no guarantee of a long term job (we'd been recruiting locally 3 months earlier and new recruits were told by the suits they had no plans of moving - so we didn't trust them).

    We were then asked to _recruit_ _and_ train our replacements. We also caned them for PAYE after they tried to make the redundancy performance-related (which is taxable) - gross pay was scaled up so that net pay was as promised, but taxcodes being what they are we all got huge tax repayments at the end of the year. Bitter sweet - it was the most interesting job I've had.

    As I understand it, 80% of the people we recruited had left within a year.

  10. kmac499

    World Leading Consultancy Management

    Futher proof as we all know that Crapita et al are contract management not service companies.

    Tha 'A' Team turn up for the presentation, and promises prices so low they are effectively underbidding the actual costs, so the project is in deficit from Day 0.

    The 'B' and 'C' teams and contractors arrive to do the actual job. They are driven into the ground and demoralised to meet the ridiculous targets. The quality drops, and as soon as the client starts to look elsewhere, form a queue for the Exit here.

    Here's a thought if outsourcing is such a great solution, why doesn't Crapita et al outsource their legal, finance and HR depts and let the service guys run the company.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Heh :)

    Well I remember a few days before SWAN, when Capita's media department got the Scottish media to print stories lauding the jobs they'd create if they won it! Which definitely swayed the bid, no doubt about it.

    Not much commitment to Scotland or Northern England now, eh?

  12. Dan 55 Silver badge

    Variation order

    Those are expensive aren't they? Or doesn't it work like that if you're an underling...

  13. PeterM42
    Go

    Some simple math

    Crapita + O2 = DOUBLE disaster.

    Go GiffGaff (best of contract AND PAYG)!

  14. Securitymoose

    They never learn do they?

    Remember the same thing happening at RBS. "Oh yes," said the luminaries, "let's sack all the experienced staff and get them to train a load of eager rookies in India,"

    Then followed the longest and most disastrous outage in banking history. Connected?

    Look forward to seeing Capita avoiding that oncoming juggernaut.

  15. Matthew 3

    Brings back memories

    My former employer sent our jobs to India and also expected us to train our replacements. We also exhibited a staggering lack of commitment to that task, not least because our redundancies were involuntary.

    There was lots of schadenfreude when the newbies were asked to shut down one data centre for maintenance and instead accidentally shut down every single datacentre, globally.

    The estimated losses were far greater than the gain from losing all those years of experience and goodwill but, hey, they were cheaper...

  16. Dr Patrick J R Harkin
    Pirate

    Invited to write the SOPs for training my replacement?

    Dear gods, that's an opportunity I couldn't resist.

    "But, boss, it says in the SOP we encrypt all invoice numbers and amounts with this one-time pad before entering them into the accounts software for security..."

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