ActewAGL is spilling and filling 135 jobs on top of abolishing 25 vacant positions and making 14 full-time staff redundant.
One union representing workers says the timing of the news is appalling as people with jobs affecting more than 100 families go into the Easter period uncertain of their future.
David Smith, an official from the Professionals Australia union, which represents engineers at ActewAGL, said there were no guarantees all the 135 staff would remain employed at the territory’s largest electricity and gas provider. "They may not have the attributes for the new jobs to be created," Mr Smith said.
There was the potential for a number of staff to be rehired on a lower-paying classification as a part of the restructure mainly targeting white-collar staff in the electricity network side of the business, such as engineers and technical professions. "They should be reviewing the use of external consultants and contractors," Mr Smith said.
"Part of the reason they’ve done this [hired contractors] is because they didn’t have enough staff.
"We understand they will replace people who have put in a new IT system rather than keep them around to run it."
The union had not been informed about the breadth of the restructure during discussions in the past six months, Mr Smith said.
ActewAGL chief executive Michael Costello said a major redesign of the enterprise’s electricity business prompted the restructure.
"Of the 135 people who will go through the recruitment and selection process as part of the proposed restructure we expect that only 14 will be without a job," Mr Costello said. "These 14 redundancies equate to 1.5per cent of ActewAGL’s workforce of 900 employees.
"This is happening because our industry is changing at a rapid pace and we need to face this change head on so we can continue to deliver the cheapest and most reliable electricity supply in the country." ActewAGL had started a four-week consultation period "for the proposed restructure" under which 135 employees would be required to go through a recruitment and selection process.
"We will continue to look for ways to improve efficiency and productivity," Mr Costello said.
"The company’s finances remain sound.
"We’ll also continue to look at ways to grow."
He said ActewAGL would try to find a suitable alternative role for those people who were unsuccessful in staying at the organisation.
"ActewAGL will also seek to find suitable redeployment opportunities with its related entities, these being ACTEW Corporation, AGL and Jemena," he said.
"In addition, we are also providing support to affected employees through the Employee Assistance Program and confidential counselling/coaching to anyone who would like to talk to someone independent about the proposed restructure."