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Deutsche Telekom welcomes acceptance of the collective agreement on T-Service


René Obermann: “A good solution for our customers, for the workforce and for the company”

In a recent ballot, members of the services trade union Verdi employed by Deutsche Telekom who are switching to T-Service have decided with a 72,6 percent majority in favor of the collective settlement that had been hammered out between the two parties. “The results of the ballot reflect how hard we have worked in recent weeks to arrive at a workable compromise. After careful consideration, many employees have now voted in favor of the agreement, even if they are still dissatisfied with some of the points, while others voted against it. I respect both decisions”, says René Obermann, CEO of Deutsche Telekom. “This outcome obligates us, as the Board of Management, to do everything in our power to ensure an exemplary and enduring quality of service. We have always been convinced that the path we have chosen offers a good and viable solution for the future – for our customers, for the workforce and for the company. The challenge now is to put it to the test and convince all employees that this is the correct approach. The fact that we attach a high level of importance and value to customer service will help to smooth the path ahead“.

The compromise negotiated with Verdi represents a good and sound basis from which to build a future-viable Deutsche Telekom, explains Obermann. Of course, it cannot exist in isolation. The complete raft of measures also includes a successful product policy, an improved IT infrastructure, and a new workforce culture. “Service employees are the calling card of Deutsche Telekom. Our three powerful teams of experienced, quality-focused employees will help to make Deutsche Telekom one of the best service companies in the country. As a service-oriented management board, we will support them in this to the best of our ability”.

The three service companies are the key to moving closer to what customers really want, stresses Obermann. In the future, Deutsche Telekom will process orders more quickly, be more readily accessible, and improve its punctuality record; and Saturdays will become a customer service day.

The key points of the agreement are the extension of weekly working hours from 34 to 38 hours without a salary increase and the socially conscious adjustment of salaries (gradual reduction of 6.5 percent over a period of 42 months), including a greater emphasis on performance-related elements (variabilization). At the same time, it was agreed that there would be no compulsory redundancies up until the end of 2012. The key aspects of service training and the promotion of service careers were likewise anchored in the collective agreement.

The outcome of the collective negotiations puts Deutsche Telekom well within its target range for planned savings of EUR 0.5 billion to EUR 0.9 billion in 2010, and means it can safeguard around 50,000 jobs within the Group.


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