Sensis Proposes Restructure For Digital Growth

Media Release, 21 February 2013

Sensis, Australia’s leading provider of directory and digital marketing services, for small-medium business, today unveiled proposed changes to its operations and business model to accelerate its transition to a digital media business.

Managing Director, John Allan, said the proposals, now the subject of consultation with staff and unions, were the next phase of an ongoing program to move Sensis from its traditional print-based business model to one better designed for the growing digital market.

Mr Allan said the proposed restructure will include the establishment of a new digital Customer Management Centre with 50 new roles, but is likely to result in an overall reduction of approximately 648 positions nationally. Those positions are expected to include around 391 back of house fulfilment and customer care roles which will be outsourced. Sensis currently employs approximately 3500 staff.

“Until now we have been operating with an outdated print-based model – this is no longer sustainable for us. As we have made clear in the past, we will continue to produce Yellow and White Pages books to meet the needs of customers and advertisers who rely on the printed directories, but our future is online and mobile where the vast majority of search and directory business takes place,” Mr Allan said.

“Already, more than 60% of our customers now are advertising online and in mobile apps, while our White and Yellow Pages digital services received 18.4m visits in January 2013.

“We need to simplify our operation and invest in areas that make us more efficient, and meet our customers’ growing demand for online and mobile services.

“Sensis needs to change in order to compete effectively, to deliver what our customers want and to achieve our ambition of being Australia’s leading provider of digital marketing services. 

“While these decisions are never easy, they are designed to position the company for future digital growth,” Mr Allan said.

Key changes under the proposed restructure include:

  • Establishment of a new  digital Customer Management Centre
  • Improved IT capabilities to strengthen digital innovation and delivery capabilities
  • Improved marketing and go-to-market processes, with reduced duplication.
  • Restructuring the Yellow Pages® sales operating model
  • Outsourcing certain back office functions to deliver around the clock support for the White and Yellow Pages customer care and fulfilment capabilities.
  • Reduced duplication of senior and middle management roles

“These changes will fundamentally change the Sensis business and position it for success in the long term. Right now that means making some tough decisions and I’m acutely aware of the impact on our people. 

“Not one of these decisions has been taken lightly and we are working with our staff and the unions to provide further detail of our proposed digital transition to ensure the best support for those affected by the resulting changes.” Mr Allan said.