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    Default 2G scam: Telecom sector losing charm for employees after the cancellation of 123 licences

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    The telecom sector seems to be losing its charm for employees after the cancellation of 123 licences . There is an exodus of staff from the affected companies as some employees are being assigned for multirole tasks while others are being forced to change their work profile.

    Many mid-level and even senior employees have become restless as those involved in technical work are being asked to start networking and create revenues for the organisation.

    "All these years, I have been developing networks for different telecom companies I have worked with. Now, the management wants me, as well as some other members of my technical team, to switch to marketing. This has annoyed me and my colleagues. We are all looking for jobs," a senior telecom engineer working for a leading telecom company at Chandigarh said.

    Many other leading telcos are executing day-to-day work by involving more and more people in revenue generation instead of giving preference to other work which also involves quality of services. A senior official confided that the staff was evolving a new work strategy to boost revenue.

    "We have to think unconventionally now. We already have a strong network and it is not always that we require so many technical people. We recruited them when we were developing our network but now we don't need so many of them. Either we ask them to leave or give them a different job," the official said.

    Many leading telcos have even laid-off employees and do not plan to hire people, at least for now, in the new financial year. Matters are worse at those companies who lost licences following the Supreme Court's cancellation of 123 licences.

    While telcos like Etilsalat, STel and Loop have closed their Indian operations, leaving thousands jobless, the staff at other affected companies - planning to continue in the business and take part in the upcoming auction of cancelled licences - are on tenterhooks.

    Employees at these organisations are the biggest sufferers as they face uncertainty. They are also finding it difficult to get good jobs as headhunters are flooded with the CVs of a large number of employees looking to quit the telecom industry.

    At Etisalat DB Telecom, around 2,000 people are expected to lose their jobs. Even with a skeleton staff and operations in only six circles, S Tel has over 1,000 employees set to lose their jobs. Over 17,000 employees in Uninor are facing an uncertain future.

    According to telecom industry officials, executives with a technical background are heading to the IT and ITeS sectors, while those from sales and marketing are heading towards FMCG and retail.

    Also, those working in sales and marketing are going into product sales companies.



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