Fujitsu is stepping up its efforts to do more work using workers in cheaper locations around the world. This is often referred to as “offshoring” (or “nearshoring” where the location is closer, usually within the EU).
Key locations for Fujitsu Services include India, South Africa, Portugal, Northern Ireland and Russia.
You can read some general UNITE/Amicus information on offshoring on the union’s national web site.
People in other countries want decent jobs just as much as we do, but this shouldn’t make us shy away from protecting our own futures. Most people would reasonably object if their job was taken from them and given to someone on half the pay, whether it was on the next desk or half a world away.
As well as the relatively well established areas of software development and some call centres, Fujitsu’s push offshore/nearshore is now affecting jobs in second-line support and even design (CSAs).
With Fujitsu Services expanding rapidly, the company hopes to increase the workforce offshore without a significant negative impact on GB employees. Concerns raised include:
- Will good jobs be available for everyone displaced?
- Will adequate training be provided to support people through the change?
- What jobs will be left? Will career paths disappear if certain roles tend to move overseas?
- Will Data Protection and privacy concerns be adequately addressed?
- Will employees in the offshore locations be treated properly?
- If jobs do disappear in GB, what redundancy payments will be made? Will volunteers be sought rather than compulsory redundancies?
These are concerns that can’t be tackled on an individual basis. We need effective union organisation in every location to protect our jobs and careers.
As well as campaigning within Fujitsu to protect our jobs and careers, we need to campaign to improve the legal, economic and political framework Fujitsu (and we) operate in.
UNITE has called a major national demonstration for Sunday 23rd September at the Labour Party conference. The key theme of the march for IT and Finance workers is for Employment rights to protect jobs from offshoring. Demands include:
- That UK companies inform their customers that their details may be accessed abroad
- That companies inform customers of the measures they have implemented to ensure their personal data is protected
- Job protection equal to those enjoyed by workers in Europe
- Improved information and consultation in restructuring
- Improved redundancy pay
- Obligations on employers to provide a social plan as part of major redundancy proposals
UNITE is laying on free transport to the demonstration for members, friends and families. Please book your place and ensure UNITE’s message is heard loud and clear.
For more information, see www.amicustheunion.org/marchwithamessage/.