Wednesday 06 July 2022

Booking.com cuts thousands more jobs, outsources customer service

Photo: DutchNews.nl

Hotel and holiday house booking service Booking.com is cutting thousands of jobs in its customer service departments and transferring the work to another company, but its offices in Amsterdam and Manchester will not be affected.

Chief executive Glenn Fogel told staff in an email that the contracts of thousands of customer service staff will be shifted to outsourcing giant Majorel in the second quarter of the year. Majorel, which is based in Luxembourg, offers customer services to a variety of different companies world wide.

The news affects 12 of the 14 Booking customer service departments in Europe, Asia Pacific, and the Americas and the reorganization is needed to ensure the company remains ‘sufficiently flexible’, Fogel said, so that fewer staff need to be employed during quieter periods.

The news has caused a major upheaval among staff, who are worried that their working conditions will change when they are transferred to Majorel. Booking.com said that workers were guaranteed job security for the next six months.

‘This is sad news given today with no pre-warning, no packages offered, no redundancy,’ one worker told DutchNews.nl.

More job losses

Booking was founded in the Netherlands in 1996 and its headquarters, with a workforce of some 5,000, are in Amsterdam. The company has been listed on the New York stock exchange since 2005, when it was taken over by US travel company Priceline.

In summer 2020, the company announced it was cutting its workforce by around 25% because of the coronavirus crisis and around 1,000 programmers and managers in Amsterdam lost their jobs.

The Amsterdam and Manchester call centres will remain in operation as ‘centers of excellence’, dealing with more complex cases involving insurance and payments, the company said.

A Booking spokesman told DutchNews.nl that 2,700 people work at the centres affected by the transfer and the company currently has a workforce of 13,000 worldwide.

‘We are fully supporting all employees impacted by these intended changes, including specific details on what employees in each location can expect, while ensuring continuity of service for all of our customers and partners,’ the spokesman said.

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