Siemens confirms it is in negotiations with SIS workers

20 Apr 2011

Engineering giant Siemens said this morning that contrary to claims by the Communications Workers Union it is in discussions with the 24 workers who will be affected by Yell’s business moving from Siemens IT Solutions in Cork to Yell’s Reading operations in the UK.

It emerged this morning that the Communications Workers Union has called for Enterprise Minister Richard Bruton TD to intervene in a dispute over the transfer of workers at Siemens IT Solutions in Cork to the UK.

Siemens IT Solutions had informed workers at its Blackrock call centre in Cork that it will no longer provide customer support services under its Yell contract and that these services will be provided by Yell in the UK.

However, the CWU inferred that proper consultation with workers in line with Irish employment law governing collective redundancies had not been adhered to.

A spokesperson for Siemens in Ireland told that this is not the case and that discussions are being facilitated.

Siemens statement

A statement from Siemens IT Solutions and Services this morning read: “As a long established employer in Ireland, SIS acts responsibly in dealing with employees. SIS provides multilingual support to international customers from its premises in Cork.

“One UK-based SIS customer advised that it would be terminating a long-standing contract to provide IT support from our service centre in Cork.

“As a result, SIS engaged with the customer concerning the potential application of the European Communities (Protection of Employees on Transfer of Undertakings Regulations, 2003 (TUPE) and we entered into consultation with the 24 impacted staff.

“SIS is currently in consultation with impacted staff and working to achieve a satisfactory outcome for all parties. As a responsible company, SIS will honour all our contractual obligations to our employees,” Siemens stated.

Siemens has been active in Ireland since the early 20th century, helping engineer the construction of the Ardnacrusha Dam in 1928 and today employs 1,000 people in the country.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years