An Auckland call centre doing work for Air New Zealand faces a shift to the Philippines as part of a cost-saving drive.

The airline says it is working with Concentrix "to assess the future location of the contact centre work they conduct on its behalf".

No Air NZ staff are affected and no final decision has been made. If it is on, it will take place over the next year to 18 months.

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"Regardless of the final decision, Air NZ will retain its New Zealand-based contact centre function."

Global call centre company Concentrix employs about 80,000 staff throughout the Philippines.

Those doing work for Air New Zealand in Auckland met airline representatives yesterday and were told contact centre roles would move to the Philippines, a tipster said.

"This would lead to the loss of many jobs in New Zealand."

When Air NZ outsourced part of its call centre work to Concentrix in 2014 about 70 roles were created for what was promoted as on the job training for students and part-timers.

Concentrix has centres in 40 countries and its NZ country leader Tim Roberts is sayng little.

''Concentrix values the confidential relationships we have with our clients and does not comment on individual client programs.''

He said the firm was committed to New Zealand.


''We support a number of clients in New Zealand and do not see significant impact to our people in the foreseeable future.''

Concentrix in Auckland. It moved some Apple helpdesk jobs away from the city in 2018. Photo / Jed Bradley
Concentrix in Auckland. It moved some Apple helpdesk jobs away from the city in 2018. Photo / Jed Bradley

The airline spokesman was not certain of how many roles could be affected.

It is understood the Philippines staff would handle inquiries such as Airpoints balances while those at the airline's call centre would deal with more complex questions.

Air New Zealand has had a number of cost-saving projects under way for almost a year with the aim of cutting head office expenses by at least 5 per cent.

While the call centre proposal has been part of work likely to have been under way for some time, new chief executive Greg Foran is also looking for other cost savings.

He has written to 1200 senior Air New Zealand managers and asked for feedback on several aspects of the airline, including views on where the company wastes money that could be better spent serving customers.

He also wants to know what opportunities there were to grow revenue and profitability.

In 2013 the airline faced criticism from workers when it announced it would outsource jobs in its own operation to the contract service, which is based at Unitec.

The airline said then it would save about $3 million a year.

Air New Zealand said then the partnership would boost its contact centre capability and enhance customers' experience.

"This would offer the benefit of a part-time workforce which can be called upon at short notice to ensure extra support is provided to customers and staff at times of high demand," it said at the time, when it had 431 contact centre staff.

Air NZ chief executive Greg Foran has asked senior staff for cost cutting ideas. Photo / Supplied
Air NZ chief executive Greg Foran has asked senior staff for cost cutting ideas. Photo / Supplied

Last August, Foran, while still president and CEO of Walmart US, opened a new call centre for the retail giant in its Arkansas home state.

That building includes a number of amenities for employees including a 24-hour fitness centre, full-service café, outdoor patios and dedicated spaces for training and employee development for the 950 staff, a number that could expand to 1200.

Last year Air New Zealand topped recruitment firm Randstad's latest brand research as the most attractive employer in the country for the third year in a row.