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Verizon Looks to Cut Workforce with Retirement Offers

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Verizon is making early retirement offers to workers nationally because, as one analyst puts it, most telcos must get by with fewer people.

Early retirement packages have been offered to “thousands of staffers, including all of its management employees as part of a broader cost-cutting effort,” according to a Wall Street Journal report. The voluntary severance packages include three weeks’ pay for each year of service, the first such offer in at least 13 years, it said.

Rich Young, Verizon spokesman, confirmed the telco is offering a voluntary separation package to eligible management employees based in the United States. This voluntary offer includes a “generous separation agreement and allows our eligible employees to decide what’s best for them,” he said.

“As our industry and our company rapidly evolve, we find ourselves with a unique opportunity to re-imagine our business and to better position ourselves for future growth,” he said. “In this highly competitive environment, operating with agility, speed and flexibility is more important than ever before.”

451 Research's Rich Karpinski

451 Research’s Rich Karpinski

Rich Karpinski, 451 Research’s principal analyst of mobile-operator strategies, said this “certainly isn’t anything new in the telecom industry — from competitive shifts to technology automation, most telcos can and must get by with fewer people.”

“Verizon is also going through a massive re-imagining of exactly what business it is in,” he said. “Running its mature wireless business – which still generates the bulk of its revenue – with fewer people and at lower costs while staffing up with the right people to incubate and grow new businesses – from Oath-driven digital businesses to next-generation 5G-enabled services to shifting enterprise opportunities – is one of the most significant challenges facing Verizon today.”

Channel Partners contributor Michael Finneran, of dBrn Associates, said wireline telephony “is dying, and I don’t think they’ve made up the loss with FiOS sales.”

“Cellular is a mature business, and enterprise wireline (internet, MPLS, LD, toll-free, and so on) is a commodity,” he said.


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