News : QVC Closing Port St. Lucie Contact Center
Port St. Lucie, FL, USA, June 3, 2015 -- QVC has confirmed it is closing its Port St. Lucie call center.
Treasure Coast Newspapers , which first reported the news, says many of QVC's 800 employees will lose their jobs.
The call center will close in March of next year.
Port St. Lucie Mayor Gregory Oravec called it "bad news."
Councilwoman Michelle Lee Berger said the news is shocking.
"At one point in time I was able to work there when my children were very young as well, it’s been good to our community," said Councilwoman Berger.
For 16 years, the call center has provided hundreds of jobs to locals.
"I’m very upset, it’s hard to know that a job that’s so good is closing," said employee Yakira Williams.
Williams just got back from maternity leave a week ago. Now she's finding out she's losing her order entry position next year.
"I’ve always thought that I would have my job for like 20 years like most of these people have been working here for 20 years and then just to know that they’re going to be closing and this is your whole life, it’s hard," added Williams.
The mayor said the employees will receive some sort of severance package.
"Since it will happen in 2016 we have more time to deal with it and help with the people who are being displaced," Mayor Oravec said.
QVC's call centers in Texas and West Virginia will remain open.
The company released this statement late Wednesday afternoon.
"After careful consideration, QVC has made the decision to close the Port St. Lucie contact center effective March 1, 2016. As the world’s leading video and ecommerce retailer, QVC is increasingly seeing that our customers interact and purchase with us using our ecommerce and mobile platforms. This shift in customer behavior has necessitated an evolution of our customer experience model to ensure we continue to provide the best possible service across all platforms.
This was a very difficult decision, but we are confident it will allow us to implement the strategies needed to best serve our customers. We are grateful to the entire Port St. Lucie team for their hard work and unwavering commitment to providing excellent customer service. We also thank the St. Lucie community for their support and collaboration over the past 16 years."
Michelle Glass with Career Source says it's been a rough couple of years for Port St. Lucie, with layoffs at Liberty Medical Supplies, Digital Domain's collapse and trouble at VGTI. The agency is doing what it can to help these employees.
"We have had some bad luck, but we’ve been able to bring in some good companies as well. We’ve got a couple of grants that we’re working with right now that are bringing in some manufacturers and some good things that are coming, so hopefully we’ll be able to recover from it quickly," said Glass.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Monday, June 8, 2015