UK-based communications giant Vodafone has pledged to invest over £2bn in its customer service over the next two years, starting with the announcement of over 2,100 new UK call-centre jobs.
The new roles will be on shored from South Africa, where the company currently uses an agency, and spread across existing Vodafone call centres in Scotland, Wales, Manchester and the Midlands.
The company will continue to use some of its customer service operations overseas, including technical staff in Egypt.
Locations include Stoke-on-Trent, Newark and Cardiff, with nearly half of the new roles sent to the company’s Manchester call centre.
A fine of £4.6m was imposed by Ofcom in October 2016 due to issues with Vodafone’s billing systems in 2015, with Ofcom accusing Vodafone of ‘mis-selling, inaccurate billing and poor complaints handling procedures.”
Cheaper overseas customer service roles have been used traditionally by telecommunications and technology industries, with countries such as India and South Africa benefiting from the work. However, recent wage inflations and the continued frustrations by customers at being routed overseas to discuss issues has motivated more and more companies to on shore customer service departments.
EE claimed to be the first operator to in-source all call centre rolls back in 2014, bringing over 1,000 customer service operator jobs to sites including North Tyneside, Darlington, Plymouth and Merthyr Tydfil.
Parent company, BT, which bought EE for £12.5bn, has also started the process of bringing back jobs from India, with 1,500 call-centre staff being hired across the UK and Ireland.