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190 Sheffield Call Centre Workers Thrown a Christmas Lifeline

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Sheffield, England, Dec 21, 2020 -- Workers at Webhelp in Attercliffe face redeployment or redundancy in the shakeup announced just before Christmas.

The French-owned firm said they hoped to move ‘all or most’ impacted employees into other roles and the process was due to complete in spring.

The announcement prompted Anthony Hinchliffe, boss of rival company Ant Marketing, to reassure worried workers with the offer of a potential job.

He said: "We can offer the 190 people customer service roles, with retail clients - so they don’t need to worry over Christmas."

The Star was alerted to the consultation in a letter allegedly from a relative of a Webhelp employee claiming they had been told customer service jobs for online retailer Freemans would be transferred to South Africa in spring. And all people on the contract in Attercliffe would be made redundant.

It added: "Staff have been told not to make public this news. They have worked very hard throughout the pandemic, many from home, and this is how they are treated. I think this is disgusting."

Webhelp employs 2,500 in the South Yorkshire region and operates from three sites, Amberley Street in Attercliffe, Nunnery Square in the city centre and in the Dearne Valley.

The consultation process affects staff at Amberley Street.

Polly Ashdown, Webhelp marketing and communications director said it was launched after a business review earlier in the year.

She added: "This review includes a proposal to move a number of customer service activities from our Sheffield site to our South Africa site.

"As a result, we are consulting with 190 colleagues based at Amberley Street and hope to re-deploy all or most impacted employees into other Webhelp roles.

"Our focus now is on the consultation process and having meaningful conversations with our people and their representatives."

The company was committed to its offices in Sheffield and had no plans to close them, she added.

Ant Marketing is a call centre and social media monitoring company in Sheffield - although most staff have worked from home this year.

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Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
Source: https://www.thestar.co.uk

Date Posted: Tuesday, December 22, 2020



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