Vodafone: So many branches will be closed

Vodafone is closing branches. This is the bad news. But there is at least some good news for Vodafone employees. Update: Vodafone reveals the approximate number of branches affected.

Update 1.6.:

When asked by PC-WELT, Vodafone gave an approximate indication of the number of branches affected: “All in all, Vodafone operates more than 1,000 stores. The 7 percent correspond to a number in the double-digit range.”

update end

Vodafone is closing stores. Under the harmless-sounding headline “Vodafone optimizes its stationary sales structure”, the Düsseldorf mobile phone company announces the closure of branches. Expressed in hard numbers and without marketing gibberish, this means: “In total, the total number of Vodafone stores will be reduced by seven percent by 2024.” In its announcement, however, Vodafone does not name the specific number of shops to be closed; employees are said to be talking about 40 branches that have to close. This reports Caschy’s blog.

Update 1.6.:

So this number does not apply.

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The reason for the branch closures

Vodafone is reacting to changing customer behavior. Because the online boom and the corona pandemic have influenced customer behavior in retail across all sectors, as Vodafone explains. In other words: “Customers are shopping more online. In this context, Vodafone refers to a study by the EHI Retail Institute GmbH, according to which “particularly in the busy inner cities, the cities and communities surveyed were recording store closures”. And further: “almost 70 percent of the municipalities would notice a decline in shops in the city centers due to the pandemic”.

However, those customers who continue to prefer to shop in brick-and-mortar stores would expect “high-quality service and advice” there.

There are also new branches

Vodafone is reacting to this change in customer behavior by closing shops in uneconomical locations on the one hand and strengthening branches in better frequented locations on the other. In some cases, Vodafone even wants to open new shops – the company cites Hamburg and Berlin as examples. There, “Vodafone wants to further improve service, advice and the shopping experience in order to react to customer requests and changing shopping behavior.” with the help of digital and interactive tools, we can provide even more transparent and better advice.”

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This happens with the affected employees

Employees affected by branch closures “Vodafone wants to make the best possible alternative job offers in the company, such as employment in nearby branches. Further training opportunities and professional development in other areas of the company are also offered. In cases where this alternative is not an option, Vodafone is striving to get closer Socially acceptable solutions in consultation with the employee representatives. The concrete steps will be worked out in a timely manner”.

This example shows very nicely how important a works council is. At Klarna, which is laying off ten percent of its employees, there is no works council to support the dismissed “Klarnauts”. You can read more about the mass redundancies at Klarna here:

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Klarna is laying off 10 percent of its employees – via video message

Online business is growing steadily

The number of online bookings at Vodafone has increased by more than 40 percent in the past three years. With a strong upward trend

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