Telecom suffers and shrinks

| Print |  Email
Archives - December 2008
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

Kill the Meeting

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY AMY MILSHTEIN

Meetings get a bad rap. A few local companies make them count.


Read more...

Streetfight

News
Sunday, December 07, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER

On Friday, Uber switched on an app — and with one push of the button torpedoed Portland’s famed public process.


Read more...

Water World

November/December 2014
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE

Fred Ziari aims to feed the global population.


Read more...

Free Falling

Contributed Blogs
Thursday, December 18, 2014
121714-oilprice-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

The implosion of the energy complex: The best thing for low oil prices is low oil prices.


Read more...

Growing a mobility cluster

News
Friday, October 31, 2014
0414 bikes bd2f6052BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Why are there so few transportation startups in Portland?  The city’s leadership in bike, transit and pedestrian transportation has been well-documented.  But that was then — when government and nonprofits paved the way for a new, less auto centric way of life.


Read more...

The short list: 4 companies engaged in a battle of the paddles

The Latest
Thursday, December 04, 2014
pingpongthumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Nothing says startup culture like a ping pong table in the office, lounge or lobby.


Read more...

The short list: 5 companies making a mint off kale

The Latest
Thursday, November 20, 2014
kale-thumbnailBY OB STAFF

Farmers, grocery stores and food processors cash in on kale.


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