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Telstra rejects claim of technician system ‘meltdown’

Telstra rejects claim of technician system ‘meltdown’

Telco acknowledges it experienced a problem with its internal job allocation system but says customers were not affected

Telstra has accused a union representing communications workers of exaggerating the impact of a fault with the job allocation system for the telco’s field staff.

The Communications Workers Union described the Telstra system as being in “meltdown”

“Homes and businesses across the country are being left without service because of Telstra’s inability to manage its systems properly,” Shane Murphy, national president of the CEPU Communications Union, said in a statement.

“This system has been plagued with problems since it was introduced. Today is a major meltdown that is leaving customers right across the country high and dry.”

“The meltdown in the internal job allocation system means that Telstra can’t dispatch any jobs to technicians and installations and fault repairs all over the country aren’t being completed,” Murphy said.

A Telstra spokesperson said the union’s statement was “grossly misleading.”

The spokesperson said that at around 8pm yesterday the telco “identified a small issue with our field service job allocation system which was fixed at 9.40am this morning”.

“Telstra is scrambling to try and find ways to dispatch work to its field workers,” Murphy said.

“There has been no impact to our customers as we switched to a manual process,” the Telstra spokesperson said.

The union has criticised Telstra over its T22 restructuring program. As part of T22, Telstra is slashing 8000 positions.

Last month Telstra CEO Andy Penn revealed the telco would launch an Innovation and Capability Centre in Bangalore, which Penn described as India’s ‘Silicon Valley’.

The chief executive said the centre would help Telstra combat a skills shortage in Australia, with the company initially planning to recruit some 300 network and software engineers through the new centre.

Murphy blasted Penn in the wake of the announcement.

“Within the ranks of the 8000 jobs he's cutting, there would be plenty of candidates that could be re-trained or up-skilled to fill the so-called ‘skills gaps’ that Andy Penn is claiming Australians have,” Murphy said.

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