Openreach to hire 5,000 engineers to speed up broadband rollout

The Financial Times and Guardian have reported that BT Openreach is creating 5,300 new roles next year as it speeds up broadband upgrades, driven by the rush to upgrade broadband networks to full-fibre lines and wireless networks to 5G

Openreach, which has added a net 5,000 new roles since March 2017, will take on 2,500 new staff as part of the new round.

Speaking on the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme on 18th December, Openreach CEO Clive Selley said the current Government target is to achieve fibre broadband in a minimum of 85% UK households by 2025.

Openreach have laid a plan for a commercial build of 20 million, contributing the ‘overwhelming proportion’ of the build.

Selley argued that this will serve levelling up between urban and rural communities, as well as the north and the south, and is green.

They are currently operating at a rate of 40,000 homes a week, which will be increased to 50,000 next year.

However, he noted that for the one to three per cent of very hard to reach rural households, they might be better served by other lower cost solutions than fibre broadband such as satellites or fixed wireless communications.

Full articles:

The Financial Times - Openreach to create 5,300 jobs next year in broadband fibre push

The Guardian - Openreach to hire 5,000 engineers to bolster broadband rollout

The BBC - Today (18th December)

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