Fujitsu is to cut 1,800 UK jobs early next year as it looks to remain competitive with foreign rivals that can offer services more cheaply.
The company was adamant that the decision was not linked to the EU referendum and Britain’s vote to leave the UK, despite the fact that being outside the EU could result in the freedom of movement that is enjoyed by EU citizens, make it harder for companies like Fujitsu to access skilled workers.
“The company today advised its employee representative forum of plans to restructure the organisation in order to provide better service and respond more quickly to customer needs.
“As part of the programme, Fujitsu plans to streamline operations in order to remain competitive in the market. Proposed measures include changes which would result in a reduction of up to 1,800 jobs in the UK. All affected employees will be offered guidance and support and Fujitsu is establishing a consultation process with elected employee representatives.”
There is little information on where Fujitsu will cut the jobs, but it does have offices in Belfast, Bracknell, Manchester, Solihull, Wakefield and Warrington.
The cuts come at a time when skilled technology workers are in high demand, so those with coding, electronics or digital skills would likely find other jobs fairly quickly. However, it is likely Fujitsu is cutting jobs that require less advanced IT skills and can be had at a cheaper rate if shifted to another nation were labour costs are lower.
As one of the largest Japanese companies in the UK, the move is quite a blow for the viability of the UK as a true base for large tech corporations to expand into Europe.
The past two months has seen retailer M&S cut chunks out of its IT work force, and Cisco have a major cull of workers despite its profits in its recent financial results.
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