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‘Remodelled’ Dimension Data to retrench 480 employees

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Grant Bodley, CEO of Dimension Data MEA.
Grant Bodley, CEO of Dimension Data MEA.

Systems integrator Dimension Data has become the latest South African tech company set to retrench employees.

The company confirmed to ITWeb that through a Section 189 process, Dimension Data anticipates that approximately 480 employees may leave the business.

“Dimension Data can confirm that it has started the process of consulting with stakeholders and employees, with a view to implementing a new operating model aligned with announcements in March this year,” says the systems integrator.

“The four brands of Dimension Data, Internet Solutions, Britehouse and ContinuitySA brands will be brought together into a single operating entity, trading under the Dimension Data name.”

The retrenchments come following an announcement in March that the company was remodelling its business, which saw four of its companies come back in the fold to operate under one name – Dimension Data.

At the time, Grant Bodley, chief executive officer of Dimension Data MEA, said: “As the market around us continues to evolve, we are conscious of the need to remain relevant by delivering products and services that enable our clients to meet the increasing demand for personalisation and customisation.

“Leveraging technology is critical for businesses, and our products and services play a vital role in empowering them to build their future.”

Now the company says the main reason for this change is to provide a single portfolio of services to clients and improve the client experience, as well as to streamline operations and future-fit the Dimension Data business.

“As a result, our workforce requirements have changed. We intend to remove role duplication and consolidate platforms, tools and processes into single instances, and flatten our structure. While reducing costs is not the primary objective of the One Dimension Data model, the effects of COVID-19 on the business has made further workforce changes necessary.”

According to the company, impacted staff have already been informed, and through ongoing consultations, where necessary, every effort will be made to either redeploy or support them with onward career placement wherever possible.

“We are committed to an open and transparent process and employees will be provided the necessary support,” says Dimension Data.

This is not the first time the systems integrator has announced job cuts.

In May last year, Dimension Data’s Merchants subsidiary announced it was letting go of an undisclosed number of staff.

This came one year after Merchants acquired Toronto-based Millennium 1 Solutions, which specialises in contact centres and credit card support services.

Another bout of retrenchments was also reported in 2016.

In October 2010, Japan-based Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT), one of the largest global telecommunications service providers, acquired 100% of Dimension Data for £2.1 billion, or R24 billion, making Dimension Data a wholly-owned subsidiary of the NTT Group.

Following the acquisition, Dimension Data delisted from the London and Johannesburg stock exchanges.

In 2019, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation unveiled NTT, a global technology services provider that unites the capabilities of 28 companies, including NTT Communications, Dimension Data and NTT Security, into one $11 billion company.

As the South African economy continues to shrink, Dimension Data joins the likes of Telkom, Ellis and Massmart in reducing head count.

According to a recent survey by Stats SA, just over one-third (36%) of firms indicated they were laying off staff in the short-term as a measure to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

It says this is higher than the 20% reported in the first survey. One in four firms (25%) indicated they were decreasing working hours, down from 28% in the first survey.

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