Convergys closing in New Glasgow

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Employees at the New Glasgow Convergys were told today that the company is closing the location on Sept. 28.

Convergys

PR specialist Brooke Beiting said the employees were given notice and told they can apply for work at home positions or other internal positions. If employees were to relocate however, the nearest location is Cape Breton. No severance will be given.

The location opened in October 2001. Right now there are 300 people working there.

The company was a major full time employer in the town.

After the closure of the call centre in New Glasgow, the companies only remaining location in the province will be in Cape Breton.

Bad news travelled fast throughout Convergys today as employees heard they would be losing their jobs in September.

Many sitting outside the call centre hadn’t yet heard the news directly from the source, but they were already thinking about how it would affect the employees and the county.

Michele Ferguson, of Westville, has been at Convergys for four years after getting laid off from Bell Aliant.

“I managed to go through it once. I’ll manage to go through it again,” she said.

Coming only three months after Michelin’s announcement that it would be shutting down part of its production, many Convergys employees were questioning what it would mean for jobs in this county.

“The county is going to be hit hard,” Ferguson said.

She believes neighbouring businesses will feel the loss with several workers heading to Sobeys, Giant Tiger and the dollar store on their lunch breaks.

She questioned if she, and others, would be able to find jobs.

Her children are grown, a daughter graduating from a nursing program and a son finishing high school, but she was worried about how others are going to manage.

“Who is going to hire someone at (age) 60?” one employee said, adding that there are several couples working at the centre, forcing them to lose their entire household income.

It wasn’t only about the loss of a job. For one woman, she was losing her friends.

“We’re a big happy family,” she said. “I’ve called in sick twice in nine years.”

Several employees declined to comment as they hadn’t yet received notice, and we’re still processing the information. 

“Today’s news of Convergys closure comes as a shock and is definitely a big concern for our region. This is a significant number of jobs and income that these employees and their families need and count on,” says New Glasgow Mayor Barrie MacMillan.  “Our community is still hurting from the Michelin layoffs so this is another hit to Pictou County and to northern Nova Scotia. The loss of these jobs impacts many people and many businesses.”

 Convergys has been a significant employer to Pictou County residents since 2001 and a good corporate citizen supporting many community initiatives, he said.

“These are critical economic times for Nova Scotia and we are at a crossroads where strong action is needed at all levels-regional, provincial and national. Job losses such as these reverberate throughout the community,” says Mayor MacMillan.

He called on the county to remain strong.

"We have strong entrepreneurial leadership many vibrant businesses, substantial community resources and quality of life assets. We are committed to providing an environment that supports business through strong infrastructure and collaboration."

Organizations: CONVERGYS

Geographic location: NEW GLASGOW, Ontario

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Recent comments

  • Julie
    June 12, 2014 - 12:58

    Do any of you know if the company has organized a job fair for other companies to come in to recruit some of your employees?

  • mark
    June 04, 2014 - 11:03

    Firstly: I feel for all the people working at Convergys and their families. I wonder what the ripple effect to other business in the region and in specific New Glasgow and Stellarton will be. Taking into consideration similar circumstances in other, similar, areas I guess that another 25 to 40 people will have to fear for their employment. After all there is less money to spend. I can only hope that the provincial government will open up to ideas for employment development. Nova Scotia has a great workforce, great location and (digital( infrastructure. Maybe it is time for the politicians to do an extra step, more of an effort to get business things going into the right direction. Maybe one day people will come from the west to Nova Scotia in stead of the other way around as is at current.

  • johnny.smoke
    June 04, 2014 - 08:36

    Nothing new here folks just move along.Just add to the Michelin exit, add to the stinky Maritime Steel exit, add to the Trenton works exit, just to name a few. But hey folks we have a new jail, a new elementary school, so all is not lost if you work for th government. However if you do not then better book your flight to Alberta before all of the jobs are taken by immigrants .

  • Kvo
    June 04, 2014 - 00:55

    Being a former employee of Convergys in digby & Truro NS this is not a suprise they are not a very reliable company and the last 2 i worked in were outsourced i know this will effect people now but in the long run its better for us we dont have to rely on a flaky company.

  • Ali. P
    June 03, 2014 - 18:12

    The pr release doesn't precisely match what we were told but they are "looking into" whether there are opportunities with Convergys for us to migrate to. And thanks Kat for being so sympathetic to fellow community members. That will look great on a resume.

  • Jaso
    June 03, 2014 - 17:58

    It's a sad state of affairs in PC..... What are the other ghost towns doing to survive?

    • Bill A
      June 06, 2014 - 15:06

      I can tell you what the are not doing... that is wasting money on little structure in the downtown area stating how great everything is, and erecting bell towers, or they are not sprucing up the downtown with a biker clubhouse opening up woohoo.

  • Brandy
    June 03, 2014 - 17:11

    Does anyone know how many will be able to work from home?

  • Yvette B.
    June 03, 2014 - 15:44

    I was one of the original people hired here in New Glasgow and started September 10, 2001 and am still one of the very few still remaining. I always said I would go down with this ship and I guess I will. Thank you so much for the opportunity and to all those wonderful people I have met over the past 12+ years. So many great people and such a great loss to our small community. Good luck to us all. Oh and Kat there are 300+ people that will be affected, so the job hunt just got even harder, sorry.

    • krysten
      June 03, 2014 - 17:23

      my heart breaks over this news! My mother has been at convergys for years! :( and not even a severance pay. My hat is off to all the workers that stuck by that place all this time.

    • Yvonne
      June 04, 2014 - 07:41

      I agree Yvette. The big thing that everyone is forgetting is that when we had started in September 2001, was that Convergys had signed a 10 year contract with our government. They had held in their for 3 extra years. We had all originally expected the doors to close in 2011. I am so sorry for every ones loss; however, when one door closes another will open.

    • Bill A
      June 06, 2014 - 15:02

      I worked there for just about 8 years from 2001 on and I appreciated the opportunity Convergys gave me to feed, cloth and house my family. I was given an opportunity to work elsewhere and took it, but if it wasn't for that I would of still been there with ya's. I am sure you will all bounce back and land on your feet. Even if your adventure take you out of Pictou County. Yvette who could say no to you once they meet you. :)

  • Concerned Pictou County Resident
    June 03, 2014 - 15:14

    This is really sad, once again for Pictou County! The private sector is hit again but the NS government does not seem to care they are too busy trying to get another paid holiday so we have to work harder to make ends meet as a private company to pay for it. If the government would give up some of there sick days, breavment days, personal days or some of their vacation days, they might be able to help the rest of us out in the province. Nothing ticks me of more than government employees with all the benefits and days of they get, and I have to go work to pay for them because a private company would not make it if they had to give all this paid time and days to their employees. I would to know what this province pays on average a day to people who are abusing the system as a government employee and families on welfare, where both parents are home that are able to work. It is at the point now that if you don't get paid from the province of NS your punished for just working here.

  • David
    June 03, 2014 - 13:39

    Millennium1 Solutions is hiring CSR's in Bridgewater. It's not easy to relocate, but with Michelin also located there, perhaps it's a good fit for some people.

  • Kat
    June 03, 2014 - 12:37

    Oh great. My job hunt just got that much harder. Its hard enough trying to find a job here, even with as much training as I have, now I have to compete with 100 extra people. PC is going to hell in a hand basket.

  • Kat
    June 03, 2014 - 12:37

    Oh great. My job hunt just got that much harder. Its hard enough trying to find a job here, even with as much training as I have, now I have to compete with 100 extra people. PC is going to hell in a hand basket.

    • Brett Anderson
      June 04, 2014 - 13:24

      As i said Pictou County is dieing & its the worse place too live in canada