Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Call centre hangs up on Winnipeg

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HGS Canada says it didn't get the numbers its was hoping for to locate a new call centre in Winnipeg.

P.E.I.-based Hinduja Global Solutions Canada Inc. held a job fair in the city last month to see whether the local labour market could fill 500-plus positions, including front-line customer-service, support and management jobs.

HGS wanted 2,000 candidates, but only about 500 submitted applications.

An official says HGS Canada may try again in the new year.

The company had gone through the same process in Ontario in Guelph, Kingston and Windsor.

HGS has 11 customer-contact centres in Canada -- five in the Maritimes and six in Ontario, half of which are in northern Ontario.

The Canadian operations of what used to be called On-Line Support, were acquired by HGS, a Bangalore, India, firm in 2011.

HGS has 24,000 employees and operates 56 outsourcing centres in India, Canada, the U.S., the U.K., Mauritius, France, Germany, Italy, Jamaica, the Netherlands and the Philippines.

Cheryl Barsalou, CEO of the Manitoba Customer Contact Association, said a recent industry survey found 9,500 people working in the call-centre sector in Winnipeg this year, down from 12,000 in 2009.

In November, HGS Canada president and CEO Ross Beattie stated: "We recently expanded our research into Manitoba and our analysis of Winnipeg is very promising."

-- The Canadian Press, with files from the Free Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 14, 2013 A3

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