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Rescue bid to save 800 Sheffield Telewest jobs

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From the Sheffield Star...

 

Rescue plan to save 800 call centre jobs

 

A DRAMATIC rescue package to save 800 Sheffield jobs is being put together by a leading city firm.

 

Ant Marketing, the largest privately-owned telemarketing company in the UK, is bidding to take over cable communication firm Telewest's national customer care centre in Chippingham Street, Atter-cliffe.

 

Telewest merged with rivals NTL earlier this year and last week the group announced plans to axe 6,000 jobs.

 

NTL says it has yet to make a decision about what will happen to the 800 people working in Attercliffe who won a top award in the Call Centre Association Excellence Awards last year.

 

But, it added that it wants to avoid compulsory redundancies and is considering outsourcing some operations – as it is doing with its national faults management operations, which are being taken over by IBM. Ant Marketing, which emp-loys 250 full-time and 550 part-time staff at call centres in Sheffield, Rotherham and Chesterfield, says it is making urgent efforts to contact NTL and start negotiations.

 

Managing director Anthony Hinchliffe, who founded Ant in 1989, said the firm had tried to speak to NTL before the weekend without success about its proposals, which would involve taking over the lease of the Chippingham Street building, retaining all 800 staff and respecting their terms of employment. "We want to re-assure the workforce there that their jobs will be safe under the plans we have in mind.

"We know many of the personnel there and there is no doubt that it is a first-class team," said Mr Hinchliffe.

 

Ant Marketing has expanded rapidly since its formation and lists the London Stock Exch-ange, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, the BBC, First National Bank and The Economist among its customers.

 

One of Ant's reasons for wanting to acquire the Attercliffe centre is the need to handle increasing volumes of work, including a substantial contract it recently secured with a major insurance company.

 

Mr Hinchliffe added: "The skill and expertise of the Telewest staff would help augment our own highly-skilled and committed workforce, equipping us with the strength and vitality to meet all the exciting challenges that lie ahead."

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I hope they can do something to save the jobs at Telewest, my mate works there, though I doubt she would be very happy about working for Ant.

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To be honest, i'd rather take a redundancy package than work for Ant..

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I don't think many would choose Ant to be honest. I know I wouldn't!!

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I worked at Ant Marketing for about 11 mins once when I was so desperate for Xmas cash and it was the last resort - thats after trying to getting people to sponsor me to hack my head off with a rusty spoon and selling sexual favours to psychotic criminals (no takers)

It was far more depressing and humiliating than either of those two alternatives. Needless to say, they messed up my wages and I didnt end up getting the 58p they owed me til after xmas anyway....useless t**ts

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ant did exactly the same when dsg lost the freeserve contract, in respect of poaching staff - but it failed as dsg didnt get rid of anyone via redundancy afaik.

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I know someone extremely close *ahem ahem* so close, its like my shadow...and he would rather take redundancy then work for them!

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ant did exactly the same when dsg lost the freeserve contract, in respect of poaching staff - but it failed as dsg didnt get rid of anyone via redundancy afaik.

 

 

Thats not actually true, lots left on payoffs from Capita as they weren't actually made redundant however. Ant would be an awful place to end up in my opinion.

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I applied for a Job at Telewest a few months ago soooooooo glad I didnt get it if this gets the go ahead, Ive heard Ant is a total nightmare to work for...

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Oh that's not good, be a shame for that many people to lose jobs.. I worked in the canteen at that telewest last summer, had quite a good time there!

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