Mobile phone network provider EE has announced it will be creating 1000 UK jobs by nearshoring some call centre jobs and tripling the size of its apprenticeship scheme.
In the spring, the company will be bringing 1000 customer service call centre jobs back to the UK, beginning with the creation of 250 roles in Northern Ireland.
It is hoped that the re-introduction of call centres on British shores will allow the company to increase customer loyalty, plus introduce subscription plans with tiered levels of service.
“Within 18 months, I want to be able to say that EE has done for customer service in the UK what it has done for networks,” said EE’s chief executive Olaf Swantee.
The provider also intends to increase the number of apprentices it hires to 1,300 by the end of 2015, triple the number it has hired to date.
“Our plans to triple our apprenticeship programme will play a significant role in tackling youth unemployment in many areas, and bring a large number of digitally skilled employees into the business,” Swantee claimed.
The EE apprenticeship programme was launched in 2013 and of the 460 apprentices who have completed the scheme since then, 80% have been hired into full time, permanent positions.
However, the network supplier will not bring all of its call centres ashore.
Simple transactions will still be handled by the cheaper overseas customer service staff, while more complicated smartphone and tablet queries will be handled onshore.
EE also plans to increase its retail footprint by 50 stores to grow the number of people buying from it direct, despite the closure of nearly 80 stores last year where Orange and T-Mobile stores were apparently too close together.