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Sykes Enterprises to close Amherst call center, lay off 89

Sykes Enterprises, a Tampa, Fla.-based operator of call centers, is closing its Amherst location and laying off its 89 workers there, effective March 31, according to a notice filed with the state Labor Department that was made public this week.

A Sykes representative said Friday morning that the company plans to offer the employees the chance to reapply to work from home for the company as a customer service representative, in account management or other positions. The company statement did not say how many of the 89 employees Sykes would hire.

But the company says it has thousands of SkyesHOME employees around the country who earn comparable pay and benefits to on-site workers, without the cost of commuting.

Sykes had operated the facility at 251 John James Audubon Parkway, near North Forest Road, in a building owned by a Pittsburgh real estate firm, since 1996.

The notice said Sykes is closing the non-union facility for economic reasons. This is the third of three WARNs, or Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notifications, the company has filed since May.

The initial notice said Sykes would lay off 71 workers by September. A second notice from September, amended in December, said 36 workers out of 131 would go by March 31. The final notice from January said 89 out of 89 workers would lose their jobs.

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