Atmore loses $500,000 in jobs

Published 6:49 am Monday, April 11, 2005

By By Lee Weyhrich
About $500,000 in jobs were lost in Atmore when communications provider Trinsic, Inc cut 24 jobs.
Human resources compliance officer for Trinsic Stephen Van Pelt, said the cut in Atmore was part of a larger national cut.
"We had a lot of reductions, it impacted about 107 people," Van Pelt said. "I think our board along with management decided to slow down our network deployment and we've had to make an effort to regionalize the company to just certain territory."
The job loss was primarily in sales-related jobs that would be affected by the shift in focus.
"We had some sales teams in different locations – Atlanta, Fort Lauderdale, Nashville and Orlando – each of those were impacted and we had groups in each of our main offices in Atlanta, Tampa and Atmore, and when you total the people in those offices it was 107 people," Van Pelt said. "For Atmore there were about 24 layoffs. It was certainly a hard decision to come to to do this. It wasn't done without a great deal of thought given to it."
Van Pelt said the primary reason for the cut was due to new government regulations.
"The regulatory part has not been kind to us," Van Pelt said. "Here we're primarily a service center. As customer accounts go up and down that impacts the number of people we have. We used to have a nationwide footprint that we could sell local and long distance service to, and with the regulatory changes we don't have that any more. We're trying to continue offering service in areas where we can get a service agreement that is attractive and areas where we can get our own network deployment. That was the reason we had to slow down our sales deployment."
Though the loss of jobs in Atmore was major it was small compared to the national job loss for the company.
"The bulk of the payroll was in other locations," Van Pelt said. "The total payroll was a little over $5 million for the company. For the Atmore area there was a little over half a million dollars in annual payroll."
According to Mayor Howard Shell the growth Trinsic has seen in recent years far outweighs such a small loss of jobs.
"Since Vanity Fair left, Trinsic increased to almost 600 employees and that has certainly had a positive impact on the City of Atmore," Shell said. "Twenty-four people is insignificant considering the amount of growth they've had.

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