Wales to escape major job losses.Byline: DAVID JONES David Jones is a common name, particularly in Wales, and there have been several well-known individuals with this name. Variations include Dave Jones and Davy Jones.
MOVES to cut 850 British Gas jobs will have minimal impact in Wales said the business's owner Centric a last night.
The job losses, which will hit mainly managerial and back room staff,are part of a drive to achieve savings worth pounds 90m next year.
The company said 1,450 positions would be lost in total,but that redeployment re·de·ploy
tr.v. re·de·ployed, re·de·ploy·ing, re·de·ploys
1. To move (military forces) from one combat zone to another.
2. and the removal of vacant positions would reduce the figure to around 850.
Centrica said North Wales will not be affected by the jobs cutback cut·back
1. A decrease; a curtailment: "The political effects of food cutbacks could be devastating" New York Times.
2. and there was likely to be only ``minimal impact'' on staff levels at its major UK customer contact centre in Cardiff, where 2,500 people are employed.
A spokeswoman said: ``Customer-facing staff in Wales will not be affected by the reduction so that means that engineers and people who sell for us are not affected.
``North Wales will see a number of new engineering recruits taken on as part of a UK-wide drive to recruit more than 1,000 extra engineers to shortfall. ``And we have today announced that we are recruiting 300 additional staff to our customer contact centre at Old Trafford, Manchester.''
The jobs axe is to fall on some staff employed at British Gas headquarters at Stockley Park,near Heathrow,and on an office at Mitcham, south London, will close in the middle of next year.
The GMB GMB (in Britain) General, Municipal and Boilermakers (Trade Union) said it was dismayed at the cuts to jobs and vowed to do all it could to prevent redundancies.
National officer Brian Strutton said: ``It is clear to us that the company is totally bereft of any strategy or ideas for the business.''
He said that if the company wanted to save costs, they would be better shutting one of their huge corporate head offices rather than taking away operational staff who look after the paying customers. The moves are part of a major transformation programme that has seen investment in new systems and other process improvements.
The company, which also owns the AA and One.Telbrands, said: ``This will create a more customer-focused organisational structure,enabling a reduction in managerial positions and support functions.''
Centrica chief executive Sir Roy Gardner described yesterday's announcement as an ``important step'' and said it would contribute to British Gas achieving its 8% operating margin Operating Margin
A ratio used to measure a company's pricing strategy and operating efficiency.
Calculated by: target for 2005. He added: ``It will also enable us to invest more time and resources in the delivery of enhanced services to our customers.''
In February, Centric a said British Gas increased 2003 turnover by 2.4% to pounds 6.2bn but operating profits were down 16% at pounds 206m.