Apple has clarified that all employees in Cork who had their fixed-term contracts terminated early will be able to apply for a position with the tech giant when it resumes its opt-in Siri programme shortly.
However, Apple declined to say how many jobs will be available in Cork when the revised programme begins again at its headquarters in Hollyhill.
As first reported by the Irish Examiner, Apple recently stopped listening to Siri worldwide, terminating the fixed-term contracts of more than 300 third-party employees in Cork.
The headquarters in Cork will be a primary site for the Siri grading programme, the company confirmed in a statement:
On August 20, staff at Globetech, an Apple vendor company in Cork with an address at the Cork Airport Business Park, were told that their services were no longer needed as Apple had ceased voice grading work.
As first reported by the Irish Examiner, Globetech staff were each expected to listen to more than 1,000 recordings collected from Siri per shift before the programme was suspended by Apple.
The Irish Examiner understands that staff at Lionbridge, another third party company also carrying out this voice grading and transcription work on behalf of Apple, also received their notice around this time.
However, they were advised that their contracts would come to an end on September 10. Lionbridge refused to comment when contacted by the Irish Examiner.
Solidarity TD for Cork North Central, Mick Barry, had called on Apple to clarify if employment on the new Siri programme will be offered to all staff who lost jobs at both facilities: "I am calling on Apple to issue a statement clarifying that employment on the new programme will be offered to all 300 workers who lost jobs through no fault of their own and that employment opportunities at Holyhill will be offered to employees and ex-employees of both Globetech and Lionbridge in the run-up to the programme’s relaunch."
According to Apple, third party contractors will no longer be used to listen to audio samples of the Siri interactions when the programme resumes.
Last week, the company also apologised to customers and promised it would longer retain audio recordings of Siri interactions.