AT&T is closing a call center in Goldsboro that was flooded during hurricane Matthew but the affected employees are being offered a chance to transfer to other locations. The communications giant is offering them a $10,000 relocation allowance.
For those who chose not to relocate, AT&T is offering a variety of other compensation, including a “transition relief” payment of $7,500 and severance pay.
AT&T spokesperson Mart Richter noted that the call center had been closed since Oct. 10 after it was “severely damaged.” He also said employees had continued to be paid following the closure.
The company also said that call center volume “had been declining significantly for some time and was expected to continue.”
AT&T had filed a layoff notice with the state of North Carolina in which the closing was disclosed and 95 workers would be affected.
“This was a difficult decision, and we’re completely focused on providing several good options for our employees,” Richter explained..
“While we’re adding people in many parts of our business where we’re seeing increased customer demand for products and services, in other areas demand for our legacy services continues to decline. That’s the case at this call center. Call volume had been declining significantly for some time and was expected to continue. So we have decided to consolidate work that was done in the center into other company locations with unused capacity.”
The affected workers can chose to relocate to other AT&T offices, including locations in Fayetteville, Greensboro and Charlotte.
“We have talented employees, and we sincerely hope they’ll seriously consider their options to stay with us,” Richter said.
“For those who decide not to work at another company location, we’ll provide outplacement services and continue to provide pay and benefits through Jan. 3, after which we’ll be providing a transition relief payment of $7,500, plus up to 10 weeks of severance pay.”
Richter said AT&T continues to hire in the state with some 100 jobs open. So far this year he says the company has hired “nearly 900” people in the state.