Trade union Prospect has reacted angrily to Vodafone's sudden announcement that it will cut 375 jobs before the end of March.
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Prospect national officer Steve Thomas branded Vodafone's actions as a "disgraceful way to treat employees," accusing the firm of failing to consult with staff or offer to let them work their notice.
"We are also extremely disappointed to have learnt about these cuts from the media and not from the company," he added.
The mobility giant sought to mitigate the impact of the cuts by pointing out that the 375 positions at risk were mostly in back office functions, and pledged to hire for 170 customer-facing roles in the near future.
The job losses, which will mostly be from Vodafone's Newbury base, form part of an ongoing cost-cutting drive at the world's largest mobility vendor. CEO Vittorio Colao has made it a priority to take an additional £1bn of costs out of the business by 2012, on top of at least a billion already cut during the recession.