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AT&T Layoffs: Carrier Confirms Cuts Affecting Global Workforce

AT&T has begun cutting some jobs in legacy areas of its business this week, the carrier confirmed to CRN.

AT&T confirmed Monday that it’s in the midst of a round of layoffs this week that sources said affect “a very small portion” of its global workforce in the legacy services part of its business.

The latest round of layoffs, which began on Monday, comes one year after the carrier giant pledged that the benefits it received from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act would lead to $1 billion in company investment and 7,000 new jobs.

[Related: AT&T Layoffs On The Horizon As Carrier Reduces Headcount One Year After Tax Reform Windfall]

Earlier this month, reports surfaced that the Dallas-based carrier was readying itself for a round of staff reductions after an internal memo from AT&T's Vice President of Technology and Operations Jeff McElfresh was published that described the impending staff changes. The cuts, according to McElresh's memo, would begin later this month and take place over the next several months.

In his memo, McElfresh said that the company had to continue to lower costs and stay agile, noting that staff reductions would be necessary as a result.

Just as it did earlier this month, AT&T on Monday once again confirmed the staff reductions, which sources said are affecting a very small portion of the firm’s overall global workforce. The carrier would not confirm specifically which business units are being affected or how many employees were affected, however.

"We are hiring to meet the needs of the growth areas of our business. In fact, we hired more than 20,000 new employees last year and more than 17,000 the year before. In cases where we do have to adjust our workforce, we take steps to lessen the effect on employees," a spokesperson for the carrier told CRN. The carrier didn't specify whether the new hires were for jobs located outside of the U.S. 

According to contributors on TheLayoff.com, a site where current and former employees can post information on staff reductions or layoffs, the job cuts are impacting teams across several departments, including AT&T Technology and Operations, the business unit responsible for networking, wireless, security; and AT&T Foundry innovation centers.

AT&T, according to the Communication Workers of America union, eliminated 10,700 union jobs across the business in 2018. The company had 273,210 employees as of August 2018.

AT&T is expected to report Q4 2018 earnings on Wednesday morning.

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