Sponsored by Oregon Business

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

Beam Me Up

April 2015
Thursday, March 19, 2015
BY DAN COOK | Photos by Jason E. Kaplan

An alliance of developers, academics and timber industry executives wants to position Oregon as a front runner in the glamorous new world of wooden skyscrapers.


Read more...

The 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon

March 2015
Thursday, February 26, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

Employment in Oregon is almost back up to prerecession levels — and employers are having to work harder to entice talented staff to join their ranks. This year’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon project showcases the kind of quality workplaces that foster happy employees. 


Read more...

Downtime with the executive director of Greater Portland Inc.

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015

Janet LaBar, Executive director, Greater Portland Inc.


Read more...

Downtime with the president of NAI Norris, Beggs & Simpson

March 2015
Monday, February 23, 2015
BY JESSICA RIDGWAY | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Live, Work, Play: Catching up with Chris Johnson.


Read more...

Get on the bus!

April 2015
Thursday, March 19, 2015
BY APRIL STREETER

How the private sector can ride the next transit revolution.


Read more...

Meeting Facilities Perspective

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

A conversation with Donna Earley, director of sales and marketing for the Salem Convention Center.


Read more...

Opening soon: 3 of the coolest new breweries in Oregon

The Latest
Thursday, March 19, 2015
brewthumbBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

There are 278 companies licensed to operate as brewery, according to the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. Here are three new beer-making hubs slated to open soon.


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