Mobilink Lays Off Over 100 Employees

Mobilink_logoMobilink is freeing up its resources – mainly from technical department – by laying off over 100 employees in a single go, we have confirmed with sources.

This extreme action was taken when employees were served with sudden, without any notice, the termination letters today Morning.

What’s surprising here is that employees were not notified beforehand, thus giving this step a rather undignified notion on part of an organization as huge as Mobilink.

More staff is to see the doors in coming days.

This was first round of eliminating resources from the company since Vimpelcom took over the parent group company “Orascom Telecom”.

It maybe recalled that Mobilink signed major network “Swap” & “Modernisation” agreements with vendors like “Huawei” and “Ericsson”. The scope of these agreements include installation of 3G compliant network. Beyond modernisation, the vendors were also be responsible to ensure maintaining network KPIs, power commitment, fuelling services, level 1 & Level 2 maintenance and managed services.

Once contracts are fully in place, Mobilink, as part of group strategy, will outsource major technical activities, while in-house staff will, just be, carrying out level 1 maintenance on site intervention for core network, alarm monitoring and KPI (Key Performance Indicators) review.

While we aren’t sure yet but sources tell us that laid off employees will possibly be compensated as per international standards.

Mobilink is not the only Telecom company that has released its technical department, in fact, Telenor fired its entire department last year on similar grounds.

Shrinking opportunities for telecom professional are worsening, especially when Alcatel-Lucent (ALU) & and once giant, Nokia Siemens Network (NSN) are facing similar turmoil after loosing business.

Not to forget companies like Motorola and Nortel Networks have already wrapped up their businesses in the country.

By letting people go and find other options, these vendors are also adding unemployed skilled engineers in society. Such downsizing, (often termed as Right-Sizing by executives) is overloading the pool of unemployed resources in the country.

At this stage Government of Pakistan (through MOITT) and PTA must jump in, to devise ‘rules of game’, otherwise this brutal way for firing people will become a precedence for other telcos and the country would be flooded with several hundreds of highly skilled unemployed future-less telecom engineers.

Government should also take necessary measures to overcome power crisis, which adds up the OPEX of telecom companies by large and eventually causes such down-sizing.


  • Shahid Saleem

    As long as they follow the labour laws, the government has no case to intervene.

    I wonder why you never post about similar (and more) firings by small companies not in the tech sector. The companies are not MNCs and they usually do not follow labour laws, yet you never worry about those “little people” affected.

    If you want to be “pro pakistani” you have to be fair to ALL Pakistanis, not just the ones in the tech sector. They are NOT worth more than the lives of ordinary non-techie Pakistanis.

    • Raja Maja

      100% agreed

    • Ronnie Khan

      Pro Pakistani serves only Telecom sector as per their About tab so this is not the platform for other sectors, but the need is always there to make one to highlight such issues.

      About
      “First appeared on May 5th, 2008, ProPakistani is largely known for publishing exclusive and topnotch content relating to local telecom and broadband industry. With its professional editors, writers, columnists and reporters, hailing from telecom and broadband industry itself, along with those having years of journalistic experience – ProPakistani has become trust worthiest resource of telecom and broadband Industry of Pakistan.”

      • Shahid Saleem

        Then perhaps this site should stop camping on the name “pro pakistani” and instead change it?

    • TechieGuy

      If you cant make sense then you should rather stay quiet. As you no jack about telcos and I am serioulsy wondering what are doing on the technical forum.
      Go and write an article on Roznama jang for ordinalry people if that makes you happy.

      • While I agree with Mr. Shahid Saleem’s comment being out of place, your depiction of people outside the ProPakistani followers as ‘ordinary people’ is proud and pretentious.

        • Shahid Saleem

          And that is exactly the attitude displayed by the stories on this site.

    • Saleem Khan

      The name of this website and focus of this site totally conflicts. This site is only focusing on telecom or internal matters of telecom news but name is ProPakistani.

      I am amazed, how telecom can shed employees with no notice period. I do not know the labor law of country or how much company has to pay at the end of employment but companies must pay some amount as compensation on termination of contract with employees.

      • Shahid Saleem

        The law lets them release employees without notice but they have to pay compensation. There is NO WORD about compensation in the posted article so it’s not good journalism but that is beside the point.

        The law allows the employer to fire someone with zero days of notice.

      • AAA

        So many Shahids & Saleems gathered here…. Which one is genuine?????

        • Shahid Saleem

          asked the “genuine” person named “AAA”

  • Saad

    A company can not keep workers if it doesn’t have enough business. The real issue here is what is government doing for the unemployed, or is there the opportunity for new businesses which can employ these unemployed?

  • Ahmad

    Dear Aamir FYI, Telenor has not Fired any Employee, only out-sourced the Security department as per vendor requirements.

    • yasir

      then how O& M tasks are performed over there in Telenor/

    • omer

      In Telenor they don’t fire people but they have very easy tool of CoC that can be used any time even against VPs….

  • Ahmad Umar Pirzada

    My heart goes out for all of them, porr souls.
    How much difference in OPEX just hundred or two hundred employees can make? 10 Million or at max 13 Million, I believe that when you talk about firms that post revenues in Billions; Millions are not the figures to bother about

  • Ahmad Umar Pirzada

    My heart goes out for all of them, poor souls.
    How much difference in OPEX just hundred or two hundred employees can make? 10 Million or at max 13 Million, I believe that when you talk about firms that post revenues in Billions; Millions are not the figures to bother about

    • Bilal

      I feel sorry for them. But this is the real world. Businesses are there to make money. Not like state owned companies like PIA, steel mills etc.
      Hope these guys get compensated well. I guess the vendor who’s taking over the network will hire back almost all of them. This is usually part of the contract in such situations.

  • Kamal Shah

    It is against the law to lay off more than 50 employees in a single go, A notification has to be submitted to the provincial government and approval must be granted by the above mentioned authorities. “That Is The Law”

    • maddy

      I aint arguing that but can u cite source?

    • Shahid Saleem

      50% not 50 employees. Which law are you quoting???

  • Castor Mini

    “At this stage Government of Pakistan (through MOITT) and PTA must jump in, to devise ‘rules of game’, otherwise this brutal way for firing people will become a precedence for other telcos”

    Please give me a break and preach this toss up to someone else. The PTA and MOITT are the very reason that this has happened. They allowed rampant and cut throat competition. Brutality is not the way in which people are fired to rationalize a business but is the price competition. Thats the core reason.

    Government must not intervene in private enterprise and especially in a case whereby their policies of giving away too many licenses has caused this. The same is the case for CVAS holders, PEMRA cable operators, TV channels (really no country can afford to have 100 news channels).

    • Amjid

      PTA, MoIT, Govt. … What are these things any idea, do they have something to do with telecom, they talked of 3G sometimes back. What happened to that. Rotten, stolid, corrupt. Don’t expect any thing good.

  • Its realy bad …

  • umar

    140 Employees are fired! NOT 100

  • Asma Khan

    more to come tomorrow/friday and then they are planning for 350 by August-2013 and now some are saying may be 500-600 by this year end, which means almost half.

    • chand

      does they only have 1000 to 1200 employee in Pakistan?

  • Faisal

    Bad news for Telecom industry… One more industry going down because of Government ignorance. Not to mention the textile industry, already left thousands un-employed people… its just the beginning.

  • Yasir

    Wake up to the pitfalls of global finance.

  • haris

    labour day ka tohfa :)

  • From Finance

    Mobilink achieved its revenue targets Y2013, that too 108%, is there a just cause to fire people ?

    • Ericsson

      Yes offcourse :) I’m ericsson :P
      Taking you forward….

  • Noor

    i also feel sorry for them but you people not know the fact, from the last 2 years Mobilink users were facing badly network outage in all over Pakistan and till now, can anyone tell me how to keep them in the Org if they are failed to perform their KPIs, there core job. if Mobilink is losing business in their presence than there is no
    need of such team. they are responsible to provide un-interrupted service not
    for outage.

    • hisham

      Its the hardware/equipment they are using which is responsible for network outages. No company can progress by its downsizing/right sizing whatever you may call it. Take the example of Wateen as now its edge of bankruptcy after series of their claimed rightsizing. The

  • Why it is always lower crowd to get affected? They could have fired no good VP-IT and could have secure job of 30 workers. Fire another set of [no-good] directors and save all 100 ‘actual’ workers.

  • AJK

    First it was wateen and now its mobilink. The author is absolutely correct that there should a strict action against these companies for destroying the future of Professional Engineers. My fully support to the affectees and I hope they will have a bright career ahead of themselves.

  • Sarmad Munir

    Pakistan has no employment rules. Chinese companies are thronging the market and bringing in Chinese engineers to work. Even in India the same companies are forced to hire 80% local engineers & 50% Executives are from India.

    Current firing is everything to do with the Chinese Companies as they are offering the same services that were earlier in house at a very low cost by bringing in Chinese guys and cutting down on the number as well.

    That’s why we need good people in parliament to create such policies and laws that create opportunities for Pakistani Youth. Dont blame the Businessmen, blame each of yourself you vote for MNA’s and MPA’s who are busy in filling up their pockets

    • Shahid Saleem

      And that is why you should not vote PPP or PML-Q.

    • Amjid

      A suggested correction in concept: Chinese actually don’t carry out the same services. They promise and sign off the contract to do so but actually again sublet the same work to a sub con. Then taking advantage of the corrupt lot, amply found in Telcos who get their shares or percentages in managed services, they get all payments in time, on the sub con side they penalize, delay and deduct payments.
      Other less known impact is: Badly maintained equipment, worst services and theft in fueling to compensate or overcompensate for deductions in payments. BUT WHO CARES.
      Dishonesty will kill us all

    • disqus_gInETt5sVQ

      Agreed with Munir and same thing also applied by Pakistan “Companies are forced to hire 80% local engineers & 50% Executives from the same Country which thery are doing business”…

  • Saad Durrani

    There is this problem with Propakistani. It mixes its news reports with opinions. Secondly, and if I am not wrong, you can terminate an employee at any given time by either giving him a month’s notice or salary of 30 days. If Mobilink laid off people in the morning without any pay, then all 100 employees can go to the court and everyone can pitch in to hire a good lawyer. But if they paid 30 days of salary, then it is kosher.

    • Saad Durrani

      And as far as I know, Telenor did not fire the entire technical team. They ended the contracts and asked the employees to be hired under Huawei. Again, I could be wrong.

    • mtrjk

      Saad you live in dreamland and talking about idealism. May you be fired in your life (if not already so) than post your comments after that incident about yourself. Is there a law in Pakistan and if yes has it been followed in true spirit like in developed countries like USA and Europe for their citizens? I am afraid in Pakistan citizens have no rights and obligations.

      • Shahid Saleem

        Sadly for you, you are wrong. See consumer courts in Lahore: they WORK.

        • mtrjk

          Do employees go to consumer courts got their rights? sawal gandum jawab channa

          • Shahid Saleem

            Since Mobilink fired the people WITH compensation as per the law, the employees have no reason to go to court. All your speculation about laws not being followed is just pure nonsense on your part: THEY HAVE BEEN FOLLOWED TO THE LETTER.

            As far as things not working in Pakistan, consumer courts are an example of something that works, at least here in Lahore. Court cases are decided by judges and often won by ordinary consumers. So, it is not like nobody obeys the law in this country, as you think.

            • mtrjk

              The real compensation for any employee is to retain it if company has not booked losses in last one year or so. Mobilink as pretended by many was not in loss at all. Second compensation for any employee is to either outsource it if company’s vision has changed or transfer it to some other department. Mobilink has only announced 4 salaries against 7 years of service apart from provident fund which was retained by company. 7 years means you have given your prime age with full of energy and enthusiasm. You are totally bookish in this case and does not understand the employee values and corporate culture in order to safeguard their employees and its repo in the market. Again consumer courts are totally a different subject. May you once in your life experience the employment matter in the court of law to get real understanding of implementation in Pakistan.

              • Shahid Saleem

                However angry you are, you cannot point me to any law (manmade or divine) that says you are guaranteed employment or adjustment in some position instead of outright firing.

      • Saad Durrani

        Labour courts do work. However, it all depends on the contract you sign. Good employers in Pakistan lay off their employees with a month’s salary. It has not happened to me, but it has happened to my friends. Lastly, good people do not wish ill to others.

  • Saleem Khan

    Why we hardly read a news when companies generate employment and gives hundreds of jobs to the people. Why our writers gets so biased that starts poking nose in internal matters of the companies…how much bonus they gave, how much increments they gave, how much management changed inside…etc etc etc.

    Dear, it is as per contract with employee what companies do. Both parties can terminate contract and it is right of company to say bye or hi to the people. Also, if company is outsourcing projects then an employment is also getting generated for those outsourced projects…its a matter of shift of resources from one area to other. Work never stops and stays in demand… people should stay employable so can get new offer.

  • Amjid

    Chinese actually don’t carry out the same services. They promise and sign off the contract to do so but actually again sublet the same work to a sub con. Then taking advantage of the corrupt lot, amply found in Telcos who get their shares or
    percentages in managed services, the Chinese get all payments in time no matter the KPIs are met or not. Any way KPIs are there just to fool everyone to believe all is well. On the sub con side the Chinese penalize, delay and deduct payments.
    The results are: badly maintained equipment, worst services, down time and above all theft in fueling to compensate or overcompensate for deductions in payments.
    BUT WHO CARES.
    KPIs are forged and all bad is made good. No one believes the end user who regularly complains of bad services. He is told that his handset has a problem (Mr. Zong) or the Network is being upgraded for the great great benefit of the user (Mr. Telenor) and u know Network upgrade is really a difficult task, more difficult then the Mars Rower Project, the France – England Channel Tunnel Project and what not. They will never admit that its the immense corruption and extremely bad management, a feature of Chinese companies that is responsible for all the problems.

  • mtrjk

    My wife who worked in Mobilink for 7 years and twice awarded as best employee of the year in her career and once best team award by the Zohair Khaliq. Promoted last year and this time around got more than 95 score in appraisal, terminated without any notice or ground preparation. Mobilink’s appraisal system is rogue, vague and fake process. No feedback is given by the supervisors for improvement or warning for improvement until next appraisal. Companies are destined to fail when they do like this to their employees. Russians have not done good in Pakistan and outside their own country so how they can do good with Mobilink which was one of the profitable multinational business in the country with biggest human resource number. But those companies who don’t value their employee dont get value in itself in the end.

    You can not do everything legal and say, I haven’t done anything wrong e.g. Talaq, Aaqnama, khulla, Qatal during war of the opponent or you may be killed, eating/ drinking unprohibited where there is no other option for availability of other halal food. These are extreme measures for any individual or a company and must avoid under 99% circumstances. What if one morning someone’s father say talaq talaq talaq to his wife although its purely legal and father’s right to say but every legal thing is not to be performed unless a matter of life and death…

    • Shahid Saleem

      You are right, just because something is allowed does not mean it should be done. However, if a manager is told to get rid of X employees, no matter the quality, then they will do it. Even if some of the employees are excellent ones. If they have to reduce head count, they will.

      I note you did not mention compensation to your wife. You ONLY have cause to complain if she did not receive compensation in exchange for firing without notice.

      • mtrjk

        Then where is the role of appraisals, are they only a time wasting exercise for HR and merely a gimmick for the employee? You must learn about corporate values and cultures all over the World. Employees are given a chance to improve through suggested corrective actions (trainings/ guidelines/ feedbacks and other recommendations by their line supervisors). Small companies dont have corporate values and cultures so that is why you would not choose a small company to work for due to its compensation and job insecurity. Big companies should beahve like big companies not like smaller kiryana or general store where you can fire your helper whenever you want.

        • Shahid Saleem

          When they have to reduce headcount, for whatever purpose, that’s it. They have to do it. I’ve seen people with 3+ years of experience working up the ladder in companies like Netscape fired just like that.

          The fact that your wife had high appraisal means she’ll land on her feet, assuming there’s work for her. That’s it, move on.

        • Saad Durrani

          Having worked for a small company, I would say smaller companies are much honest in its dealing. If they do not have money, they will tell straight on your face. Large companies in Pakistan spend their time in policies and ‘pretending’.

    • Shahid Saleem

      Keep in mind, that no one is guaranteed a job. Not public sector or private sector. NO ONE.

  • faisal

    We need VAS L1/L2 engineers, position will be based in UAE or KSA. Please send resumes on [email protected]