Education, education, education…

Despite some online scepticism about the real reasons for Amazon’s strategic shift from Slough to Cork, it has caused some in the mainstream British press to pause for thought, given Amazon’s stated reason being a failure to attract a highly enough educated workforce.

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  • Markkus

    Although Bernard Lamb makes some good points about good written English, I don’t think that Amazon is relocating because its English workers write “it’s” when they mean “its”. How often do customer services staff write anything? The Register’s take on this – that Aamzon is moving to get the big grants and tax benefits – seems rather more credible.

  • abucs

    Well, whatever the reason, quality of education or business incentive, congratulations to the Irish government They are obviously doing something right.

  • smcgiff

    Government grants for employing employees fair enough – that seems a valid reason other than language to relocate – but doesn’t every government do this? Obviously not.

    But, surely the TAX break is a red herring. What corporate taxes do Call Centres pay?

    A call centre is usually a cost centre, not a profit centre. No profit – No Tax.

  • Graham Davies

    Amazon is relocating from Slough (Berkshire) to Cork (Ireland) because of the lack of foreign language skills in the Slough area. I used to be Director of the Language Centre at Thames Valley University (TVU), which has campuses in Slough and Ealing. The main language departments at TVU closed down in the 1990s due to lack of recruitment. Schools in England no longer have to offer foreign languages as a compulsory subject to children beyond Year 3 of secondary education.

    I have been a consultant to the University of Limerick in Ireland, where foreign languages are flourishing. I have also lectured at the University of Ulster, where foreign languages appear to be doing quite well.

    Ireland is due to become the main European distribution centre for Amazon. Foreign language skills in Ireland are considerably higher than in England – Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland being somewhat ahead of England in this respect.