German software developer SAP has decided to relocate 42 call centre jobs to its Irish operations as part of its plans to restructure its salesforce.
The jobs will be located at Citywest Business Park where the company already employs 280 people, offering multilingual support services to the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region.
The restructuring, which is being carried out at the firm’s US operations, is resulting in the loss of 88 jobs – although this figure is considered relatively small in comparison to the massive hits being taken by the company’s competitors in recent times.
The news comes as a lucky break for the company’s Irish operations as SAP has said it would be freezing all hiring and adjusting staff in some areas to deal with slower demand.
A spokesman for the company told siliconrepublic.com that SAP expected the new jobs – the nature of which are as yet unclear – will be here before the end of the year.
“The announcement is a testament to what Irish politics is doing in encouraging investments in people and training. SAP has a policy of following the sun,” he says.
Last week, the IDA announced that overall employment in the tech sector here had fallen by 5pc last year. However, in its end of year report it also found that 4,000 new jobs were created in the sector in 2002.
The jobs boost came ahead of surprisingly optimistic predictions from the company that their fourth quarter software licences revenues, due at the end of the month, will be €950m, considerably more than the €817m expected.
Based on that figure, SAP anticipates its 2002 full-year revenues to increase slightly, compared to 2001 full-year revenues, with operating margin, excluding stock-based compensation and acquisition related charges increasing by at least 1pc over the 20pc achieved in 2001.
Last year SAP cut 150 jobs at its American operations, which employs 3,400, and sent 1,000 workers on unpaid leave.
At present it’s understood there are no plans to cut jobs at its sales or administration operations in Germany.
By Suzanne Byrne
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