Telecom suffers and shrinks

| Print |  Email
Monday, December 01, 2008

PORTLAND The loss of 100 Oregon jobs from Denver-based Qwest, part of 1,200 jobs the telecom company said it would cut nationwide by year’s end, is another blow to an already shrinking job sector in Oregon.

The state reports that 300 telecom jobs have been lost this year, or 3.4% of that sector’s workforce. That figure includes 10 jobs cut by Metro One Telecommunications earlier this year.

The loss of telecom jobs doesn’t surprise Oregon state employment economist Art Ayre. In 2001 telecom jobs in the state peaked at 11,000, but since then have steadily declined to 8,500 in September of this year as new technologies enter the industry and providers become more labor efficient.

Ayre projects telecom jobs will grow at one-third the pace of overall job growth in the state through 2016 in part because wireless technology is less labor intensive than  maintaining landlines. Telecom employment nationwide is expected to grow at half the pace of all other industries. “When we look at the trends, we are expecting it to be a very weak sector in the state,” Ayre says.

Conventional land-line accounts are a significant part of Qwest’s revenue, but the number of those phone lines the company manages has dropped by almost 10% since this time last year as customers increasingly prefer wireless technology, says company spokeswoman Diane Reberger.

Qwest reported $3.4 billion in third-quarter revenue, a 1.6% decline from the same period last year. Profits nose-dived from the same period last year from $2.1 billion to $151 million, according to the company’s most recent Securities and Exchange Commission filing. Revenue from voice services, the business segment landlines fall under, is down nearly 9%.

In response to changing customer demand, the company is ramping up its high-speed Internet services to compete with cable providers, says Reberger. She declined to say how and when the lost jobs might return to the state.

The Oregon job cuts will be spread throughout all operations of the business and be completed by the end of the year, with about 50 coming from Portland.                 

JASON SHUFFLER


Have an opinion? E-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 

 

More Articles

Raising the Stakes

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

The 2014 Bend Venture Conference set a record for the most cash, investments and prizes awarded at an angel conference in the Pacific Northwest. Investments in the six winning companies exceeded $1 million. The 11th annual conference was hosted by Economic Development of Central Oregon.


Read more...

Ski traffic

Linda Baker
Tuesday, January 20, 2015
0121-skiway-thumbBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

A place-based multimodal transportation plan for Mt. Hood is long overdue.


Read more...

Uncertainty about convention center hotel could cost Portland an NBA All-Star Game

The Latest
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
463545460BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

NBA commissioner: "I would love to end up having an All-Star Game in Portland. It's really just a function of ensuring that we can fit in town."


Read more...

5 companies react to lower fuel prices

The Latest
Thursday, January 15, 2015
thumb-shutterstock 233787049BY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Consumers love the savings they get from low oil prices, but how has business been affected?


Read more...

Tweeting Portland's State of the City address

News
Friday, January 30, 2015
Screen Shot 2015-01-30 at 3.08.19 PMBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

For those who were working, here are a few highlights of Charlie Hales' State of the City address.


Read more...

Nuclear fingerprints

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

At Oregon State University, a 21st century version of the bad dream — nuclear terrorism — is alive and well. This winter, the Department of Nuclear Physics and Radiation Health Physics created a new interdisciplinary graduate emphasis in nuclear forensics, a Sherlock Holmes-sounding program that aims to identify how and where confiscated nuclear and radiological materials were created.


Read more...

Which Way to Chinatown?

February 2015
Monday, January 26, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN | PHOTOS BY JASON E. KAPLAN

The Jade International District, already Portland's center of Asian life, is poised for rejuvenation. Where does that leave the westside's historic Chinatown?


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS