MIAMI — In a memo sent out to employees Friday, January 16, Frontier Airlines announced it will outsource a total of 1,300 jobs at its Denver hub and Milwaukee station.
Since Indigo Partners officially bought Frontier at the end of 2013, the airline has been undergoing a massive transformation into an ultra-low-cost-carrier as it tries to regain profitability.
With the recent announcement, Indigo Partners explained that its latest change–the outsourcing of 1,300 employees–was a “difficult but necessary decision to transition the management of these departments to business partners who specializes in these areas.”
Denver will see the most significant cuts; 1,160 frontline airport jobs will be outsourced. Swissport International–an airport ground service firm–will provide ground staff, ticketing agents, and other airport positions in Denver. Current employees who wish to apply for positions at Swissport will be given priority, but it is very likely that they will receive lower wages and less benefits than if they were employed by Frontier. If employees wish not to join Swissport, they will be given a severance package.
The move to outsource Denver was expected by industry analysts and employees throughout the company. Word of the decision was leaked late Thursday night, ahead of the internal memo.
Meanwhile, Sitel a self proclaimed “world leading outsourcer” will take over about 140 jobs at Frontier’s Milwaukee reservation center, but it remains unclear at this time if the jobs will remain in Milwaukee or if they will be moved to Nashville.
Frontier responded by stating: “Today’s announcement is by no means a reflection of the service or level of work provided by our team members. The business partners we have selected are high-quality organizations and employees will be given priority in interviewing. These changes continue to be part of a comprehensive company wide strategy that is crucial for Frontier to successfully compete in the marketplace as an ultra-low cost carrier allowing it to offer customers much needed relief from high airfares nationwide. Low fares are only achieved through low costs.”
Frontier’s announcement comes after United Airlines has received immense criticism for long flight delays and improper handling of baggage after it outsourced its work in Denver. Plus, United came out last week and said it looking into outsourcing baggage handling and ticket/gate positions at more than two dozen stations around the system this Spring, but the airline says it also plans to insource some other work at other stations that were victims of outsourcing in 2014 such as Honolulu.