Irish Water has appointed Abtran Ltd, Cork, to operate its customer contact call centre. This decision will create 400 jobs at the Abtran facility at Bishopstown, Cork from July of this year. The contract is for a five year period and was awarded following a competitive tender process.
The call centre will commence operations in July 2013 with up to 100 people to support Irish Water’s metering programme. By mid 2014, the call centre will employ 400 people and provide customer care to approximately 1.6 million domestic and commercial public water users.
Phil Hogan T.D. Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, said: “I welcome the announcement of these 400 jobs. This is good news for Cork. These jobs are greatly needed and together with the 1,600 jobs to be created through the national metering programme, are examples of the economic benefits from a reformed water services sector. Increased infrastructural investment, greater foreign direct investment from water-intensive industries and innovation in water technologies will create further jobs as reform of the water sector is implemented. Irish Water will work closely with local authorities to deliver the water services of the future.
“I am confident that Irish Water, in collaboration with Abtran Ltd, will ensure that customer care is a priority for all who avail of public water and waste water services.”
Dr John Tierney, Managing Director, Irish Water, said: “The creation of 400 jobs to provide customer care is a milestone announcement for Irish Water. Over the last 12 months, considerable preparatory work has been undertaken to set up Irish Water and we are now moving into a more public and operational phase. The setting up of the call centre will support the start of the national metering programme this summer, as well as the development of an Irish Water customer database in advance of the start of domestic billing. Ensuring that we have adequate resources to provide help and support to customers is a priority, and today’s announcement is one of the first major steps in transforming the way public water services are provided.”
Michael Fitzgerald, CEO Abtran, said: “Abtran’s focus will be on providing excellent service to Irish Water’s customers. Winning this prestigious public contract is a major endorsement of our proven capacity and competitiveness in delivering long term customer service solutions, on behalf of our clients. It follows significant investments by Abtran in recent years in our overall operations where we currently employ over 1,100 people. We look forward to working with Irish Water and to meeting the needs of Irish Water’s customers.”