Air NZ plans to contract out IBM

Air New Zealand is proposing to contract out call centre work and staff to IBM in a move their union says could spell pay cuts and changes to employment conditions.

The Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union (EPMU) is planning to challenge the proposal, which would transfer the employment of about 80 temporary staff to IBM.

The EPMU says the move would affect the airline's bookings, sales and general customer inquiry lines.

EPMU assistant director of organising Strachan Crang says the proposal appears to be a cost-cutting measure, and the union is concerned those cost savings will be paid for from its members' salaries.

"We're also concerned that the company hasn't come to us previously to look at cost savings and has instead looked to contracting out as the first solution."

Mr Crang says Air New Zealand is not giving any guarantees about the safety of the remaining 351 permanent positions not currently affected by the proposal.

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