American Airlines is laying off hundreds of US-based contact center employees, in a move that the carrier claims will allow it to “provide an even higher level of support in the future.” But of course!
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American cutting nearly 700 US-based contact center jobs
American Airlines is reorganizing its customer service team, which will see the airline laying off at least 335 contact center employees in Phoenix, and at least 320 contact center employees in Dallas.
These non-union employees will maintain their jobs through March 30, 2024. They’ll have the chance to apply for more than 800 current job openings with the company, or otherwise American will help place them elsewhere. If employees are not able to find employment elsewhere in the company or are eligible to retire, they’ll be offered a severance payment.
If you are in touch with an American contact center employee in the coming weeks, be extra nice, because they could soon be out of a job.
How American is reorganizing its contact center
Here’s how American describes the reorganization of its contact center team in a statement:
“Today, we announced updates to our contact center organization that will help us better serve our customers. As part of these updates, we are creating a new Customer Success team that will be dedicated to providing more convenient, elevated support to American Airlines customers with some of their most complex travel needs.”
So American is creating a new “Customer Success team” that will be made up of 135 “upskilled team members,” who will handle more complex travel issues. Then American will be expanding its outsourced teams offering 24/7 support for less complex customer questions.
Presumably none of these employees will be as efficient as Gemma Flint, er, Cathy Garcia, er, whatever name American is now using for its automated customer relations.
American claims that setting up a smaller dedicated team of US agents and then outsourcing the rest of the jobs will somehow provide travelers with “an even higher level of support in the future.” American has been using its outsourced customer service teams since 2021, and claims that the airline has “seen improved customer satisfaction” with these employees.
American Airlines is cutting hundreds of US-based contact center positions. Instead, the airline will set up a smaller team of “upskilled” US-based customer service employees, and will outsource the rest of these positions. The airline claims that this reorganization will allow the airline to provide “an even higher level of support.” As the old Fox News slogan used to go, “we report, you decide.”
What do you make of American’s contact center reorganization?