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Debenhams places 230 staff into consultation 4 April 2012

Debenhams has confirmed it has put around 230 staff into consultation as it executes plans to outsource its customer contact centre to Capita Group.

The company said its contact centre in Taunton could not longer meet the enquiry volumes and so the decision had been taken to transfer the job roles across to Capita’s offices in Leeds.

In its announcement, the group said it already outsources 50% of its calls, so the move was ‘not something new’.

The statement continued: “This hasn’t been an easy decision and we will be doing everything we can to support affected staff. The face of modern retail is changing. Customers increasingly expect retailers like Debenhams to provide a full multi-channel offer, allowing them to shop using a number of options.

“As a result, we have experienced an increase in customer enquiries and volumes are expected to rapidly grow in the next three years. We already outsource nearly 50% of our calls to a third party and with demand continuing to grow we decided to undertake a strategic review to understand how best to meet the needs of our customers in the future.

“We have reached the conclusion that a specialist external provider is the optimal solution to support Debenhams continued growth.”

The transfer of job roles is to take place in mid to late summer of this year while the Debenhams head office switchboard will stay where it is currently.

According to data from analysts at statistics provider company watch, Debenhams currently has a financial health score of 11 out of 100.

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