Dish Cuts Staff, a Sign of Things to Come?

April 14th, 2020 by · 3 Comments

Amid all the pandemic-related economic disruption out there has been a meteoric rise in the unemployment rate. The perception is that this is mostly due to hourly and contract workers in ‘non-essential’ industries. But here in telecommunications and internet infrastructure, which is pretty much holding the world together right now, we’re safe… right? Yesterday,  Dish Network offered an opinion to the contrary.

According to reports yesterday, Dish Network says it has cut ‘staff and is re-evaluating its business to cope better with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.’ Few details were given about who and how many, except that the re-evaluation is across ‘every aspect’ of the business and particularly in the ‘In Home Services’ area of the busienss. The market responded by taking the company’s share price down by 4.6%, as this suggests greater vulnerability that had been anticipated.

Where else might this be true across the sector? Or would longer term underlying pressure on Dish’s have caused this anyway? It’s hard to tell from one data point, but with earnings season kicking off in a week or two, I suppose we are going to know soon enough.

Dish has also been preparing to dive into the wireless space, quickly building out a national 5G-capable network. I wonder how those preparations are going under current conditions, as such work requires a smoothly functioning ecosystem.

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Categories: Jobs · satellite · Wireless

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3 Comments So Far

  • Steve says:

    Do you see someone like CenturyLink making a bid for Dish to get into the wireless sector on the cheap?

  • Anonymous says:

    It will be very predictable who uses the “pandemic” as a screen for their cost-cutting measures they were looking to do anyway, at the expense of people and customer service.

    Service providers who cut their people at the drop of a hat anyway, or as part of standard operating procedure throughout the year are not generally progressive or well-performing companies anyway. It represents a total lack of creativity and leadership that its the first thing they default to every time the going gets tough. What’s worse is its almost always cut most in customer-facing support and enablement organizations (exempting sales). As a customer of one of these mediocrities, be sure that sinks in.

    I have zero respect for those who regard their people so poorly, and you can dispense with the scripted form letter “we do not come to this decision lightly.” B.S. We all know who they are.

    I remember early in my career being with the original Qwest and they announced layoffs “due to 9/11” within a month of the event – well before any economic effects had really been felt other than Nacchio’s stock dropping. Dirty secret? They were doing layoffs before then, too, but this was a chance to really cut deep while deflecting attention away from their ongoing lousy performance and mishandling of the USWest acquisition. They had it all drawn up before 9/11 ever happened, and I guarantee Dish did too.

    The names have changed a few times since then (as they perform their other smokescreen of buying each other out), but the disregard for their most valuable assets and poor leadership hasn’t.

  • Charlie never had any real plan to build a cellular business. He was hording spectrum. He can’t compete. His satellite and OTT TV lines of business are getting beat up. He squandered the Sling acquisition. He doesn’t have $25B sitting around to spend on a 4g/5G nationwide build out.

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