Enniskillen has been branded “the new India” by some social media commentators after it was revealed the 800 call center jobs due to be created in the town over the next three years would have an average salary of less than £15,000.
While news of the investment was widely welcomed last week, once the dust settled many on social media began expressing concerns regarding the low average wage of the positions. The roles, which will be created by customer service giant Teleperformance at its Carran Business Park site, will pay an average of £14,700, a figure which works out £2,000 less than the living wage and £1,000 more than the minimum wage.
The average salary for a call center in the U.K. is £19,000, with the top end in London coming in at £32,500. The lower end of the U.K.-wide average scale is £16,622. However, in the North, the average call center salary is £17,000, with the low end of the scale estimated at £14,665.
Formally announcing the Teleperfomance jobs, Finance Minister Arlene Foster said, “We hope these roles will appeal to those wanting to progress their career, or those who have left the job market and who want to come back in to work again, and also for young people just starting out in the working world.”
CEO of Teleperformance U.K. and Ireland Alistair Niederer added the roles would be tailored to people’s skills and there would be an opportunity for career development at the company.
However, following the announcement many took to social media to express unhappiness regarding the wages, with some branding the salaries “disgusting” and “ridiculous.” Fermanagh Green Party Assembly candidate Tanya Jones also expressed concerns. Cautiously welcoming the jobs news, Jones said the average salary “will do little to help Fermanagh’s low-pay problem.”