The Spiegel Group Plans to Eliminate Kansas Call Center

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The Spiegel Group will eliminate 670 jobs when it closes its call center in Wichita, KS, in a little more than two months as a result of declining volume companywide.

The company made the announcement Tuesday at the call center.

Debbie Koopman, vice president, corporate and investor relations for The Spiegel Group, Downers Grove, IL, cited increasing efficiency as a result of advances in technology and the fact that consumers in greater numbers are shopping on the Internet.

The center opened in 1994 and is scheduled to shut down on May 17. It is one of five North American centers that service The Spiegel Group, which includes Spiegel, Newport News and Eddie Bauer catalogs. The company sells apparel, accessories and home furnishings through its catalogs. The company will maintain call centers in Hampton, VA, Bothell, WA, Rapid City, SD, and the Canadian city of St. John, NB.

"We did an analysis and looked at a number of factors," said Koopman, who did not quantify the decrease in volume. "Time zones that we're trying to cover and where our locations are, capacity, fixed costs [as well as] functions at that center and other centers were some of the key things."

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