Cost-cutting purge, or ‘workplace improvement programme’ as BT calls it, sees huge culling of offices
BT is carrying out a massive consolidation of its office space in the UK, which is it billing as a ‘workplace improvement programme’.
This will see BT consolidation more than 300 office locations in the UK to just 30 locations, in places such as Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Ipswich (Adastral Park), London and Manchester earmarked to be key locations for the carrier.
BT is also exiting its famous St Paul’s headquarters in central London, where BT (and prior to that the General Post Office) has been based since 1874. BT is currently looking for a new location in London.
BT announced the first eight of the locations as part of its three-to-five-year programme “to improve and consolidate its workplaces across the UK.”
BT said the reduction of more than 300 locations to just 30 will allow it to offer “modern, future-fit buildings, including corporate offices, contact centres and specialist sites.”
The carrier said it is the largest programme of its type in the UK, and that BT’s telephone exchanges will be retained by the Group.
BT said it is still finalising its plans, but that some existing BT buildings will be refurbished while others will see BT move into new offices altogether.
“The Better Workplace Programme is about bringing our people together in brilliant spaces, and transforming the way we work,” BT Group chief executive Philip Jansen said.
“Revealing these eight locations is just the first step; we have dedicated teams working on identifying the best buildings to move into and which ones to redesign for the future,” Jansen added. “As a result of this programme, BT people will be housed in inspiring offices that are better for our business and better for our customers.”
The move comes after Ofcom last month announced new rules to provide greater access to the telegraph poles and underground pipes (ducts) belonging to Openreach.
That will be another cost pressure on the firm, which is also looking to cut 13,000 jobs over the next three years.
The carrier said the job losses would come mainly from back office and middle-management roles, the Guardian newspaper reported last month.
About two-thirds of the job cuts will impact its UK workforce of about 83,000, with the remainder coming from the 23,000 staff it employs internationally.
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