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Financial Times: Shell to cut up to 30% of IT jobs worldwide


By Sheila McNulty in Houston

Published: April 28 2004 3:13 | Last Updated: April 28 2004 3:13  


Royal Dutch/Shell said on Tuesday it would cut up to 30 per cent of it 9,300 global information technology employees, and move some of these jobs to countries such as Malaysia and India by 2006.


Lisa Givert, a Shell spokeswoman, said the move was part of an overall revamping of the IT operations, now concentrated in the UK, the Netherlands and the US, which has been in the planning stages for two years.


The revamp also will include developing a standardised global IT system and infrastructure for all Shell companies, as well as a rationalisation of IT applications to limit the number being used across the group.


Ms Givert said the changes were aimed at making Shell IT operations more efficient. The company already has operations in Malaysia and has signed agreements with two vendors in India  IBM and Wipro.


Malaysia, where Shell already has about 1,000 people in a technology support centre, has been working for years to develop itself as a global IT hub.


India already has made a name for itself as a global outsourcing hub, particularly for software.


Moving jobs to those countries will be cheaper for Shell, as technology workers earn far less than counterparts in Shell’s key IT operating centres in the West.


The move comes as the company is under enormous pressure after cutting its proved reserve estimates by 20 per cent.


The news angered Shell shareholders, some of whom demanded new management, forcing out Sir Philip Watts, Shell’s chairman. 

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