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MTS trims staff

The Reminder is making its archives back to 2003 available on our website. Please note that, due to technical limitations, archive articles are presented without the usual formatting.

The Reminder is making its archives back to 2003 available on our website. Please note that, due to technical limitations, archive articles are presented without the usual formatting.

The telecommunications industry continues to face challenges in certain areas and Manitoba Telecom Services ("MTS") is no exception. The company is faced with lower growth and must adjust its operations in order to remain a leader in the marketplace and provide customers with the best possible rates and service. As a result, MTS is looking to obtain approximately 85 reductions this year and will do so using voluntary measures wherever possible. The reductions will come from MTS Communications Inc. and Qunara Inc., located in Manitoba as well as in Ottawa. Since 1991, over 90% of reductions at MTS have been achieved through voluntary measures. "While no one likes the prospect of having to reduce their workforce, we need to take the proper action now so we can continue to offer our customers high quality service at competitive prices," says MTS President and CEO Bill Fraser. "Fortunately, MTS has been able to minimize the amount of reductions required, and as a result the Company does not expect these changes to affect the high level of service our customers are used to receiving." Fraser went on to say that MTS contributes more than $1 billion to the Manitoba economy every year, through salaries, capital spending, income taxes and purchasing goods and services. "By taking these steps now," said Fraser, "MTS will remain a major contributor to the successful economic future of Manitoba." In addition to these reductions, MTS will also be amalgamating its contact centre operations from Thompson and Dauphin with operations in Brandon and Winnipeg, effective early January. Employees affected by this amalgamation will be given the opportunity to relocate to Brandon or Winnipeg, and those who decide not to move will be given a severance package. Although MTS has maintained its solid market performance over the past year, growth in the telecom industry as a whole is still not matching levels seen in prior years. In addition, regulatory decisions which continue to limit MTS's ability to adjust prices while mandating greater discounts to competitors and imposing productivity gains have made these reductions a necessary step in order to preserve MTS's competitive position in the market. The company estimates that these staffing reductions will result in annual operating savings of $5 to $7 million.