Telstra has made an internal announcement that 170 full-time positions and the jobs of up to 90 contractors will be outsourced to Indian company Infosys, and most of them moved to Infosys’s sprawling campus outside the southern Indian city of Bangalore.
The announcement comes on top of Telstra’s announcement earlier this year that its Sensis division was outsourcing hundreds of call centre jobs to the Philippines. The changes were announced by the Managing Director of Telstra’s Network Applications and Services (NAS) division, David Burns. NAS is Telstra’s professional services and enterprise outsourcing business. It currently employees 2400 people, and its revenues of $636 million constitute around 5% of Telstra’s revenue.
"We need to be able to support our customers as they move into the Asian region, and we need to be competitive as we do that,” he said. “Access to deep pools of talent and the ability to respond to our customer requirements is a fundamentally important component of this services business."
NAS has become one of Telstra’s big growth areas in recent years, It received a big boost earlier this year with a $1.1 billion five year deal with the Department of Defence. Burns said this contract will be staffed entirely from within Australia, and made the point that NAS has already employed 150 extra staff in Australia in the last 13 months, with 350 more to come as part of the Defence deal.
The moves have led to the usual calls from unions and newspaper editorialists that the jobs be retained in Australia. "This is another slap in the face for hard-working Telstra staff and their customers," Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union spokeswoman Teresa Davison said. "Staff are struggling to understand the business reasons behind offshoring such a profitable and growing part of the company.”