When the Sprint and T-Mobile merger was in the works, one of the acquisitions T-Mobile obtained was an assortment of Sprint locations with in-store repair stations (and workers). T-Mobile decided, at the time, to fully embrace in-store repair, even upgrading some existing T-Mobile stores to repair stores.
The company partnered with Assurant for these repair locations, and workers who were on the repair side of things were technically Assurant employees.
It now appears that T-Mobile no longer wants to handle repairs in-house. As of this morning, all in-store repair is ending, and repair employees are being laid off by the insurance partner Assurant.
Last night at 9PM Eastern, an email was sent to all in-store repair employees informing them not to go to work today, but instead attend a Zoom call. That call is where the company let everyone know they no longer had jobs.
Update 9/27/22: A user on Reddit shared a recording of the Zoom call that employees were told to join. It is embedded below.
Employees affected by the layoff are able to apply for positions at T-Mobile itself, and one employee we spoke to says they have already secured a Mobile Expert role in the same store they worked repair. However, positions were not promised to the employees being laid off.
Assurant is offering the laid off employees 2 months of pay and a currently unspecified additional severance, as well as offsets for the employee health insurance.
The news first broke on Reddit, where a former employee with friends in the industry informed them of the layoffs. Many in the comments confirm the news, with one user saying “Yup me and thousands of people just found out we are fired no notice we all just lost our jobs”.
We here at The T-Mo Report can also independently confirm the news, and have acquired both the email Assurant sent to employees as well as an email sent by T-Mobile’s President of Consumer Group Jon Freier.
The Assurant email is full of corporate-speak that implies the news is great for the company. Assurant and T-Mobile have actually extended their partnership contract by years, but in the process they have removed in-store repair completely.
As part of our new multiyear agreement, T-Mobile’s device repair program will be offered at our nationwide network of nearly 500 Cell Phone Repair (CPR) by Assurant locations…
Unfortunately, this change will impact many in-store repair technicians. As always, we will treat everyone involved with dignity and respect, providing resources and support through this transition, including severance and outplacement support, as well as referrals.Part of an email from Assurant to employees
Meanwhile the email from Jon Freier, which you can read most of here, confirms the news, and frames it as a positive for the company going forward. Freier mentions that customers will now have the option to go to any of the 500+ CPR locations around the country to have repairs done same-day.
T-Mobile has been laying off quite a few people as of late. One could argue that this round of layoffs is technically by Assurant and not T-Mobile, but the impact is all the same.
Hopefully the laid off employees find work quickly, and we wish them all the best.