DANVILLE — Walgreen Co. officials have notified some employees at the company's service center in Danville that it may eliminate their positions and transfer the work to an outside vendor, according to a media official at Walgreen's corporate offices in Deerfield.
According to an e-mail from Jim Cohn with Walgreen Co., the employees were told Wednesday about the change that could affect 20 to 30 employees at the service center, which operates in office space that Walgreen leases from Genpact at 1907 E. Voorhees St. The workers provide benefits administration support for Walgreen's locations throughout the country.
Cohn could not provide the total number of Walgreen Co. employees who work at the service center in Danville. Some of the workers whose positions are being eliminated may have opportunities to be re-employed within the company, Cohn said.
Prior to 2010, Walgreen Co. employed about 700 people at the Voorhees facility that was called Walgreen Accounting Center. It handled all the accounting for Walgreen's more than 7,000 drugstores in 50 states plus handled other back office duties, like benefits administration support.
But in 2010, Walgreen Co. decided to transfer all of its accounting services to an outside vendor, Genpact. Genpact bought the Voorhees Street building from Walgreen Co. and in May of that year, more than 500 Walgreen Co. employees became Genpact employees, and Walgreen Co. became a client of Genpact, under a 10-year agreement.
But Walgreen Co. retained about 200 of the 700 workers who were handling other services for its Walgreens stores, including the employees providing benefits administration support, and Walgreen Co. leases space from Genpact for those employees.
Genpact is an international company with thousands of employees, providing back-office services, from accounting to human resources to debt recovery and more. Since obtaining the Voorhees Street facility, Genpact has secured other clients, in addition to Walgreen Co., that it provides back office services to from the Voorhees Street facility. Genpact also has leased space in its building to other companies, like Citigroup, which opened a call center there in 2012 to handle an increase in refinancing of mortgages.
But just last month, Citigroup announced it will close the call center, which employs 121 people, because refinancing has dropped off, and Citigroup doesn't need the additional support, according to Citigroup officials.