Barclaycard is weighing up plans to hand over operations at its Teesside call centre, which houses around 700 staff, to Indian BPO outfit Firstsource.
The firm says it has entered into negotiations and intends for Firstsource to take over the majority of the customer services for the credit card and payments business currently provided by the Teesside centre and a related payment servicing team located in Wavertree, Merseyside. A final decision will be made later this year.
Barclaycard says "plans for the existing Teesside employees and building will form part of the discussions and Firstsource has given a commitment to establish a long term presence in Teesside".
However, this has not calmed fears over potential job losses. Rob MacGregor, Unite national officer, says: "Unite has major concerns that this move is a first step on the way to the offshoring of these roles which would have a devastating effect on the job market in the North East. It appears that the long term plan is to transfer the work done by Barclaycard staff in Teesside abroad. It is vital that these 700 jobs remain in the region."