The vast accountancy firm that is PwC, who used to be known as Price Waterhouse Coopers, is getting rid of all the desk phones for its 18,000 employees in the UK. PwC has 20 UK offices and they're all be expected to use only mode mobile phones by the end of this summer. This is all part of their move to flexible working.
A spokesperson for PwC said this move was one of a number of policies designed to improve their profits and increase their efficiency. PwC was looking forward to another record year with revenue already at £3.58bn in 2017 with the 953 equity partners averaging a distributable profit, before tax of £652K.
An unidentified spokesperson for PwC is widely reported as having said, “With landline usage falling rapidly we believe that the more mobile focused policy is a more efficient way of working and supports our people is increasingly flexible working style more effectively.” If she actually managed to say that sentence she was doing really well – it’s almost not pronounceable.
PwC staff have already got company mobiles – aka iphones- and many of PwC's employees already use them exclusively instead of desk phones according to the firm. PwC also provides other perks including Office 365 for home use.
As well as desk phones being removed meeting rooms and offices will have a new conferencing equipment and speakerphones that can be used with mobile phones. Other areas such as security, client meeting rooms and reception areas will still have landline numbers and desk phones.
PwC started to ditch desk phones a few years ago during the refurbishment is Leeds office. All of its offices in the UK and are being re-designed to be more open, with most of the troops having hot desking rather than having a fixed seat.
A cynic might suggest that PwC was responding to their sacking by BT last year following BT’s Italian scandal. However, it would seem more sensible to see the move, as advertised as a cost cutting, efficiency drive.
Many small companies have long been reliant on mobile but increasingly large business is following suit as it recognises all of the benefits associated with the move.