Gillard government invests $4m in Vodafone

Funding will help create 750 new customer service jobs in Tassie

The Gillard government is providing $4 million to [xref:http://www.arnnet.com.au/tag/vodafone|Vodafone|All on Vodafone]] Hutchison Australia to facilitate the creation of 750 new customer service jobs in Hobart.

The funding will be used for recruitment, training and the accommodation of new staff, as well as access to existing government programs for training and support.

In addition, the Tasmanian government will provide $850,000 for infrastructure costs and waiving payroll tax for Vodafone’s new employees.

Vodafone plans to create up to 70 extra jobs each month over the next year – 750 jobs in total – by expanding its call centre headquarters at Kingston. The new jobs would include positions in highly skilled and technical roles.

This move will double the size of Vodafone’s Tasmanian operations.

Vodafone CEO, Bill Morrow, said the expansion is in line with a renewed focus on customer service announced in October last year.

“Our customers' needs and expectations are constantly changing, and we need to do the same to ensure we continue to deliver the service expect and deserve. Our Tasmanian call centre investment plays a vital role in delivering the services Australians have asked for,” he said.

Morrow claimed the investment was an example of how both government and private industry can work together to create jobs, respond to consumer preferences about service delivery and support local communities.

In a statement, the Gillard government said its commitment to work together Vodafone will increase the skills of the Tasmanian workforce and enable it to harness the benefits of the NBN.

It stated the NBN is at an advanced stage at Kingston and will feature in Vodafone’s longer-term planning of the services delivered out of the expanded centre. “This is an exciting opportunity for Tasmanians and a welcome development. It will provide training, employment and business opportunities for the region,” Australian prime minister, Julia Gillard, said.

She added that other significant benefits include the building and operation of new infrastructure and the flow on effects to the local economy.

When the new employment initiative is fully operational, it is expected to deliver the Tasmanian economy more than $45 million per year in direct payroll contributions. Through the staff growth, Vodafone also aims to expand its customer care facilities within the Tassie region.

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