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BT Recruits Another 250 Engineers to Help UK Superfast Broadband Rollout

Monday, October 22nd, 2012 (9:37 am) - Score 1,318

BTOpenreach has announced yet another plan to recruit up to 250 new telecoms engineers from “Armed Forces leavers” (i.e. those due to leave within the next year). The ex-Military personnel will be used to help support the UK operators £2.5bn national roll out of superfast broadband (FTTC etc.) services.

The development means that BT will have added around 1,900 new engineers since March 2011 and should soon be home to a total of close to 4,000. BT has previously recruited more than 800 engineers from ex-Forces personnel and the current campaign will push that total to more than 1,000.

Apparently each of the 250 or so personnel will be expected to spend three months with Openreach on a civilian attachment. At the end of that period, assuming all criteria are met, they will be given the option of continuing a new career with Openreach.

Liv Garfield, CEO of Openreach, said:

We have had great success in recruiting talented people with Armed Forces experience in the past so we are delighted to be able to offer these roles to people who are set to leave the Forces. Past recruits have brought great enthusiasm and professionalism with them and I have no doubt the new recruits will as well.

Fibre will help to spur economic growth and these recruits will be helping to power and drive that recovery.”

Culture Secretary, Maria Miller, added:

The rollout of superfast broadband across the UK is a key factor in generating sustainable economic growth. Today’s announcement is win-win. BT will benefit greatly from the vast amount of experience, knowledge and skills that these ex-service personnel will bring to the job and the recruits will leave the Armed Forces with a secure future career in the private sector.”

The new personnel are highly likely to become part of BT’s Mobile Engineering Workforce that “can be deployed anywhere in the UK” to fight terrorists install new superfast FTTC cabinets or perform related work. BT aims to expand its superfast broadband coverage to reach 66% of UK homes and businesses by the end of 2014, which could rise to 90% by 2016/17 if it wins the lion’s share of the governments £680m Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) fund.

Meanwhile new service installations are still suffering from long delays, which is largely as a result of recent weather conditions (floods etc.) and the disruption that results when existing engineers switch priority to repairs. The new ex-Military engineers should help to ensure that BT’s “Fibre Broadband” roll out doesn’t suffer due to the current stretch on existing resources.

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
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