Openreach has revealed plans to create at least 275 new engineering jobs in Scotland during 2021.
The company said the new roles, based in locations across the country, will enable it to continue improving service levels across existing networks while accelerating the roll-out of ultrafast ‘full-fibre’ broadband.
Currently, full fibre builds are already underway in dozens of locations across Scotland, including Aberdeen, Ardrossan, Edinburgh, greater Glasgow, Kilmarnock, Penicuik, Ellon, Inverurie, Kelty, Lanark, Findhorn and Elgin.
In total, 36 new engineering positions will open in Edinburgh and the Lothians and 40 will be available for the Glasgow City Region.
Elsewhere in Scotland, 47 new posts will open in Fife, 35 in the North of Scotland, including Perth and Kinross, 32 in Ayrshire and 17 each for Stirling, Clackmannanshire and Dumfries and Galloway.
The jobs drive is part of a national Openreach initiative to bolster engineering roles. Openreach said it plans to create 5,300 jobs across the UK, including more than 2,500 full-time jobs in its own service and network build divisions.
An estimated 2,800 positions are to be created in the telecoms company’s UK supply chain.
Openreach already employs more than 34,500 people, including more than 25,000 engineers who build and maintain its nationwide broadband network.
Of these, around 3,200 live and work in Scotland. Over the last two years, the firm has created more than 600 trainee engineering roles in Scotland to support its build programme and to deliver improved customers service.
The new trainee apprenticeship roles will be filled during 2021 and come with a starting salary of £21,845. Recruits can be earning up to £28,353 following 12 months of specialist training in one of Openreach’s world class training centres.
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Robert Thorburn, Openreach Scotland partnership director, said: “As a major employer and infrastructure builder, we believe Openreach can play a leading role in helping Scotland to build back better and greener.
“Our Full Fibre network build is going faster than ever and we’re now looking for people across the country to build a career with Openreach and help us upgrade broadband connections and continue improving service levels. We’re also investing in our supply chain, which will support the creation of thousands more jobs all over the UK.”
In a separate pledge, Openreach announced today it will also commit to upgrading all 27,000 of its vehicles to electric by 2030. Openreach’s vehicle fleet is the second largest commercial fleet in the UK, with more than 3,500 in Scotland alone.
Thorburn added: “We know the network we’re building can deliver a host of green benefits – from consuming less power to enabling more home working and fewer commuting trips – and we’re going to take that a step further, by committing to build and maintain that network using state of the art electric vehicles across our 3,500-strong Scottish fleet. We’ll have completely transitioned to EVs by 2030.”