Oakton joins layoff list

Oakton joins layoff list

Summary: Technology consultant Oakton has seen a number of redundancies within the last six weeks as the company reviewed its position in the market.


Technology consultant Oakton has seen a number of redundancies within the last six weeks as the company reviewed its position in the market.

ZDNet.com.au understands that the percentage of the company's 1,200 workers which were let go sat in the low single digits.

According to a source, the cutbacks were made due to reduced demand for specific services. Clients have been ordering less and deferring or deciding not to go ahead with projects which had been proposed because they themselves had seen a reduced demand or wanted to take precautionary measures against the current environment.

The source said that the staff reductions were not across the board, but targeted specifically at the areas which were seeing a lower demand such as project management. Further cuts were not expected.

Oakton had already begun to be more cautious with headcount in October, when CEO Neil Wilson said that the company would slow down its hiring of staff due to economic uncertainty. He said the company intended to reduce its exposure to the finance sector and focus more on government contracts.

Oakton's clients have included Sydney Water, ING direct, Customs, Victoria Police and AGL.

Carefully monitored staff numbers have not been a habit of Oakton in the past, with its acquisition of Acumen in 2007 doubling its staff from 457 to 1,003. Since then it had built its numbers to almost 1,300.

Wilson admitted in October that this number had been slimmed down with "some roles that were not replaced" although there hadn't been any redundancies at that time. The cutbacks reflect activity in similar firms such as UXC, Kaz and Dialog.

For the full story on IT layoffs, see ZDNet.com.au's scorecard.

Topics: IT Employment, Outsourcing

Suzanne Tindal

About Suzanne Tindal

Suzanne Tindal cut her teeth at ZDNet.com.au as the site's telecommunications reporter, a role that saw her break some of the biggest stories associated with the National Broadband Network process. She then turned her attention to all matters in government and corporate ICT circles. Now she's taking on the whole gamut as news editor for the site.

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  • Unlucky

    I am one of the unlucky ones. Merry Xmas to me huh ?
  • Oakton Layoffs

    Single digit what does this really mean? Sounds like corporate spin. Over 30 people alone have been axed in NSW, the Information Management group in Vic have lost similar numbers. People are fearful of being placed on the bench for fear of losing their jobs.
  • On the bench or not on the bench makes no differences

    I have ppl in my team which have been at the client side doing billable job and still get axe by the company. I have so much faith in this company that i even buy their shares and the the company made me redundant. They just let ppl go even if the track record is good and earning money for the company. I think Oakton sucks. Don't tell me you value your people, you make me sick.
  • Gordon Gecko

    Pre oct, they had about 1400 people ( source: www.oakton.com.au). After oct layoffs, their website was revised to 1300 ppl- so about 100ppl were axed. I have been told their website now reflects 1200+ so another round was obviously evident since then around xmas time.