BT reveals 13000 job cuts across UK

Illustration Retrenched employees

Commenting on the business plan, chief executive Gavin Patterson said BT was in a position to be a "leader in converged connectivity and services".

These job cuts and other measures are aimed at helping the telecom reduce its costs by £1.5bn though it does plan to hire an additional 6,000 employees to improve its customer service and network deployment.

The firm, which announced 4,000 job cuts nearly a year ago to the day, said on Wednesday that a further 13,000 staff - or around 13 per cent of its global workforce - will be culled over the next three years.

The roles, the company revealed, would be chiefly in middle management and back-office roles, with a third coming from outside the United Kingdom in the Global Services division.

It explained on Thursday that it was making moves to simplify its operating model by "de-layering" its management structure and ensuring there are "fewer, bigger, more accountable leadership roles".

It was also trying to improve productivity across its core United Kingdom operations, including "process simplification and automation to reduce costs".

"While I recognise the pain, ultimately it is the right thing to do for the business".

"We are also concerned that cutting such a large number of roles will inevitably impact those who remain in BT and could lead to work being pushed down to employees in lower grades".

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Its headquarters near the London Stock Exchange will be closed, although it will still maintain a smaller presence in London at a yet to be decided location.

In response to the cull, Philippa Childs, the general secretary of the Prospect union, said: "The scale of these jobs cuts is higher than had been previously speculated on and come as a devastating blow to managers and professionals represented by Prospect".

Around 80 per cent of its staff are now based in around 50 locations, with some cities hosting multiple offices.

Moving forward, it said it planned to concentrate its operations on "around 30 modern strategic sites".

It booked a £241 million restructuring charge over the period, when it cut more than 2,800 roles mainly across managerial and back office staff. For the 10 years from April 1, 2020, to March 31, 2030, BT will make annual payments of around GBP900 million towards its pension scheme.

The latest round of job cuts and restructuring was announced as BT delivered a three per cent drop in fourth-quarter revenue to £5.96bn.

The shares, down 22 percent this year, are trading at levels last seen in 2012.

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