BANGOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Verizon Customer Service Call Center in Bangor has announced plans to close its doors early next year.
It is the only Verizon call center in the state.
"Some people just took it with a grain of salt. Some people were just kind of a little confused," Kenneth Goodman one of the 218 employees impacted by the closure said.
Goodman says most employees found out in a meeting at around 3 p.m. Wednesday.
"This was a very difficult but necessary business decision," Verizon said in a statement. "We value our Customer Service employees. They are highly trained, highly skilled and experienced and they will be encouraged to stay with the company. "
"The main message we're sharing with employees is: they have jobs with Verizon Wireless if they're willing to relocate," Verizon Public Relations Manager Michael Murphy told NEWS CENTER on Tuesday.
Employees who choose to relocate to another call center in another part of the country will be offered a relocation assistance package in the area of $10,000 per employee according to Murphy.
"I'll probably end up relocating as much as I don't want to. I love the state of Maine. This is the way life should be, and you just don't find that anywhere else. Then again you don't really find a company like Verizon anywhere else either," Goodman said. Still, he says he is weighing his options.
Employees who wish to visit another call center to explore the area and new work environment will be offered assistance to defray travel costs.
Eligible employees unable to relocate or who do not secure other assignments with the company will be offered individualized separation packages and outplacement help.
"Our hope is that everyone will stay with us and stay with the business. Certainly, employees will make choices and if they chose to stay locally we've hired an outplacement firm to work with them on that next step in their career," Murphy said
The company will vacate its building at 6 Telcom Drive officially on March 24. Verizon says it will go up for sale in 2017.
"No matter how it all works out, I think it's going to work out in everyone's favor," Goodman said.
The center is just one of many across the country closing their doors due to a consolidation effort. It is expected to impact a total of 3,200 employees nationwide.