N Brown-owned womenswear business JD Williams has outsourced its Manchester-based call centre, affecting 550 employees.

All employees will move across to Serco, which handles contact-centre services for other high street names and is also based in Manchester.

In a 10-year partnership, Serco will handle JD Williams’ sales and customer service, including customer order management and retention, and inbound and outbound sales.

The outsourcing of its contact centre operation took place this month following a strategic review of JD Williams’ customer-service requirements four months ago.

JD Williams’ collection was given a more contemporary look for Autumn 2014 to help appeal more to older women. In September, JD Williams launched its first TV ad campaign, starring ITV presenter Lorraine Kelly.