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Telstra axes 1,425 jobs in fresh round of cuts

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People walk past a sign of telecommunications company Telstra in Melbourne on August 16, 2018. - Australia's dominant telecommunications company Telstra on August 16 warned of "enormous challenges" ahead as it posted an 8.9 percent slump in annual profit. (Photo by William WEST / AFP)        (Photo credit should read WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo credit: WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)

More than 1,400 Telstra jobs are on the line as Telstra lifts its temporary freeze on planned redundancies amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The telecommunications giant said it would hold off on scheduled job cuts in March last year as the pandemic hit Australia, having already completed 6,900 of the planned 8,000 job cuts under its T22 strategy.

But staff were informed in a company-wide email on Wednesday about a fresh round of “proposed job cuts”.

“As you all know, last year we put our T22 job reductions on hold when COVID hit. We did this to give you as much certainty as we could during a very challenging time,” Telstra CEO Andy Penn said in an email seen by Yahoo Finance.

“We also said we would have to move ahead on these early this year as we continue to transform the company and complete our T22 journey. Today we are proposing up to 1,425 net role reductions.”

The additional 1,425 job cuts would mean Telstra would be more than 90 per cent of the way to its target of 8,000 job cuts by 30 June 2021.

“Decisions like today’s proposed reductions are never easy, particularly given we are still dealing with the impacts of COVID,” Penn told staff.

According to a Telstra spokesperson, axed staff and their families will have free around-the-clock access to the company’s employee assistance program.

Telstra will also aim to help staff secure another position at the company, and where it’s not possible, they will be offered its career transition program and redundancy benefits.

Further cuts expected

We can expect to hear about at least another 8,000 cuts, as part of Telstra’s T22 strategy, later this year.

However, Penn flagged that the company may have to make further cuts outside the strategy.

“We will need to continue making organisational changes, which will likely include role reductions beyond T22 as our business changes – just as we did before T22,” Penn said in the email.

“This is because the makeup of our workforce will continue to change as customer needs change, more go online and nbn volumes reduce further, and as we realise the benefits of our significant investments to digitise and simplify our business and how we work.”

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