Tag: job cuts

IBM to slash and burn staff – report

IBM logoFollowing lukewarm quarterly financial results last week, reports claim IBM is set to cut over a quarter of its workforce this week.
IBM has currently a workforce of 431,000 people, but Sky News claims  that Forbes’ reporter Robert X Cringely is forecasting the job cuts.
According to Cringely, around 26 percent of IBM will get calls from their managers telling them their jobs are surplus to Big Blue’s requirements.
IBM has neither confirmed nor denied the rumours.
The report claims that the reorganisation is called Project Chrome, and the majority of people losing their jobs will be in the USA.
IBM has been re-engineering its business and last year sold its X86 server business to Chinese giant Lenovo.
It has also been focusing more and more on cloud computing, in an attempt to trim costs and position itself as a market leader.


Samsung mobile suits get the axe

Samsung HQ Silicon Valley - MM picThe head of Samsung’s beleaguered mobile division has hung on to his job – as we reported earlier this week.

But there will be blood on the carpet, according to sources who told Reuters that JK Shin’s three chief underlings will get their marching orders soon.

Samsung is the biggest smartphone manufacturing company in the world and leverages its vertical business, which includes memory modules, LCD screens and other components.

DJ Lee, who heads up Samsung’s mobile marketing worldwide, is one of those to feel the pain, according to the report.

Samsung is facing increased competition from Chinese manufacturers and continues to be under pressure at the high end from Apple with its iPhone products.

Reuters reports that the local press will cull around 25 percent of its executive in the mobile segment.

Financial analysts believe that Samsung will record poor revenues for 2014.

Microsoft braces for job cuts

Steve BallmerMicrosoft Chief Executive Satya Nadella has issued an email warning that he will “flatten the organisation and develop leaner business processes”,

Normally that is the sort of announcement which is a prelude to huge job cuts, wringing of hands, and little voles being cast out into the cold and the snow.

But it seems that Nadella is in no hurry to make his full announcement. It seems that he is waiting until July 22 when he will announce Microsoft’s quarterly earnings.

After buying Nokia, Microsoft has 127,000 employees, which makes the outfit far bigger than Apple and Google. Nadella clearly needs to make some cuts, but this will mean Vole’s first major layoffs since 2009.

In a 3,105-word memo sent to employees today and posted on Microsoft’s website Nadella set out his vision for the company five months after taking over as CEO from shy and retired Steve Ballmer.

He described Microsoft as a “productivity and platform company” focused on mobile and cloud computing. This is a little different from Ballmer’s reinvention of Microsoft as a “devices and services” company, which could signal less emphasis on manufacturing hardware.

“Nothing is off the table in how we think about shifting our culture to deliver on this core strategy,” Nadella wrote in the memo.

Nadella has asked his managers to “evaluate opportunities to advance their innovation processes and simplify their operations and how they work”,

In other words, they will have to choose who will have to go.

He did not address the unprofitable Bing search engine directly in the memo. Investors want Microsoft to ditch the software, but Nadella so far has seen the software as having a point.

Panasonic announces job cuts

seppuku-p1000701Panasonic has announced that 5,000 of its staff will be axed over the next three years.

The Japanese company has said those in its automotive and industrial units will fall on Panasonic’s sword as the company scales back its operations and tries to recoup huge annual losses of $7.5 billion, announced in March.

According to Channel News Asia, the company, which has already cut 20 percent of its workers will now move to slash its staff of around 111,000 people by March 2016. The move is part of an overall strategy to recover its business after a flagging year.

In March, rumours circulated that the company would further salvage its business by cutting its plasma business over the next three years.

It is thought Panasonic’s TV business, which generated sales of $10.5 billion during its peak in 2009 and 2010, accumulated less than half of that amount in 2015 and 2016.

It announced that it would end plasma TV panel production at its main plant in Amagaskai in western Japan around fiscal year 2014.

IBM goes on axe rampage in France

ibm-officeIBM is said to be wielding the axe amongst its employees in France.

According to Reuters, the company, which reported a five percent decline in revenue to $23.4 billion for the first quarter of 2013, has said it will be trying to make up gaps through  $1 billion of accounting charges this year.

It also wants to ensure its profits are boosted by 2015, despite the critical global economic crisis.

Part of this saving will have a knock on effect on its workforce, with three trade union reps over in France claiming that the company plans to axe  up to 1,400 jobs in the country over the next two years.

IBM has yet to confirm that its heads in the US have okayed the pink slip practice, but the union reps have said the deed had already been communicated.

Pierry Poquet, secretary general of the UNSA union told Reuters that IBM head honchos were set to present the plan to cut between 1,200 and 1,400 staff in a meeting was planned for April 25.

The CFE-CGC union’s representative, Evelyne Heurtaux, backed up her pal saying she had also been told that there was a around 1,300 jobs slated for the next two years.

Sophos axes jobs

axeSophos is rumoured to be grinding the axe for another round of job cuts.

According to The Next Web around 150 people will be handed their pink slips as the company moves to restructure and focus on its highest growing and strategic business arms.

Although Sophos would not confirm the number, it hinted that the rumours were more than a whisper with a spokesman telling the Next Web that it was in discussion with those affected employees. It said some could also be given a lifeline and shifted into other roles.

“While it is difficult to make any reductions in our team, we are confident these actions will help to drive our long-term success, and allow us to drive greater value for our customers and partners,” Sophos said in an earlier statement.

It follows a similar round of job cuts in September last year, when 35 employees were expected to lose their jobs.

The axe grinding comes as Sophos announced job cuts earlier this year.

Morrisons to replace 700 staff with robots

morrisonsMachines could take the jobs of nearly 700 Morrisons back office staff.

The supermarket, which employs around 131,000 staff and has 490 UK stores, has reportedly embarked in four week consultation talks with with  689 cash office managers after looking at the machines to cut costs.

It follows the company posting a loss of £879 million in 2012, which was a drop of seven percent.

Last month it also announced that it had seen a pretax profit drop to £901 million in February this year compared to the £935 million made in 2011.

Over the past few months the company has been making changes in a bid to compete with its supermarket rivals.

In March it announced it would be moving into the online grocery delivering space. It is also planning to build up its army of 12 convenience stores, and snapping up  62 sites from the  administrators of Jessops, HMV and Blockbuster.

The supermarket claimed that using the new robots would speed up the cash counting process. It said it would continue to support those potentially affected throughout this consultation process.”

TNT delivers job cuts to 4,000 staff

tntTNT Express has said it will be driving away around 4000 staff within the next three years as it struggles to get back on its feet.

In a strategic memo released today, the Dutch delivery group, which was the target of a failed $7 billion takeover by United Parcel Service, has said the cuts, which will affect around six percent of its workforce, will save it around $287 million (€220 million) by 2015.

The company added that it would also be restructuring the business, which it hoped would knock another $195 million  (€150 million) by 2015.

The plans fall under the company’s “Deliver” strategy, which aims to help it turn its business around and rake in profits by 2015. Currently the company is failing on the money front, as a result of “challenging trading conditions and continuing price pressure”.

As well as the cuts and restructuring, the company has also said it will focus around reshaping the TNT  portfolio through the sale of China and Brazil Domestic and reducing exposure to fixed intercontinental air capacity. It will also look at focusing on TNT Express’ distinctive service proposition and increasing growth in its most profitable segments and invest in infrastructure and in business supporting and customer IT.

Commenting on the Deliver programme, Bernard Bot, interim CEO said the business faced difficult market conditions and strategic challenges. However he pointed out it had a “unique competitive proposition” – an unrivalled European network, worldwide connections, an integrated range of services and recognised dedication to customers.

However, he warned the strategy had to be executed correctly to ensure results.

Logitech axes staff

axeLogitech’s newly appointed CEO is making his position known, grinding the axe and getting the pink slips ready.

In an announcement today the peripheral company has said that it will be cutting approximately 140 positions, around five percent of its worldwide non-direct-labour workforce.

Bracken P. Darrell, who look over the head honcho job at Logitech last month said the chops were as a result of the company taking on an “organisational alignment” and making “strategic priorities” in a bid to make cost savings of approximately $16 to $18 million in operating costs in Fiscal Year 2014.

These include increasing focus on mobility products, improving profitability in PC-related products and enhancing global operational efficiencies.

The axe wielder said the job cuts would help with the new plan by “delivering additional cost savings that will contribute to improved profitability”.

Logitech is trying to turn around its flagging business which has faced increasing competition from the smartphone and tablet market.

Last month the company also announced that it would be flogging its Harmony remote business unit following a “disappointing quarter”.

BAE sharpens Axe for 3,500 US staff

axeThe pink slips could once again be rearing their ugly heads.

This time staff at BAE Systems’ US ship maintenance business are reportedly facing job cuts as a result of the government’s military spending cuts.

The British arms producer could reportedly be making 3,500 – around 70 percent – staff redundant as a result of the US’ navy putting a halt on maintenance work on 13 ships. However, according to Bloomberg the cuts could also have a domino affect on on the company’s suppliers.

It has not been a good week for BAE.

Yesterday the company, which employs around 93,500 across the world, announced that it had made a loss in 2012.

Underlying profit fell six percent to £1.89 billion in the year, while pre-tax profits has dropped to £1.4 billion from £1.5 billion.

It was also bad news for sales, which fell seven percent to £17.8 billion from £19.2 billion in 2012, which the company said was a contributing factor in the failure to a merge with European defence firm and Airbus owner EADS.

The company said the losses were as a result of US defence cuts, as well as reduced military activity in Iraq and Afghanistan.

John Lewis culls managers to focus on online

axeJohn Lewis has become the latest company to wield the axe, announcing that it will be slashing 325 department manager jobs in a bid to focus more on its online growth.

The company, which was hailed by the government as a model of “responsible capitalism” for the whole economy, has made the decision to chop these jobs as it moves to focus on it its online offerings.

It has set up its Retail Revolution’ plan in a bid to ensure it stays ahead of the game and doesn’t end up in the same black administration hole as some of its competitors.

However, this won’t be any consolation to the staff who are set to lose their jobs, in the biggest cut made by the retailer since 2009 when it culled 700 call staff jobs.

Each John Lewis has about 10 department store managers looking after sections such as womenswear, beauty or furnishings. In a bid to cut costs John Lewis is planning to replace these with one or two more senior managers in 28 of its 40 stores.

They have given those in question a month to put their views and proposals forward as to why they should remain at the company before a  90-day constitution in March.

Last month the company hinted that online was where it wanted to be, appointing Mark Lewis as online director. It said at the time it hoped that Mark, who had previously been CEO at Collect+ and spent six years at eBay in roles including UK managing director and European marketplaces director, would continue the growth and development of its online business.

Symantec swings axe at management, plans to rely on resellers

axeSymantec has said it will be culling management jobs as it tries to reorganise its business and save money.

Despite the company announcing a four percent  rise in its fourth quarter profits, at $1.79 billion, CEO Stephen Bennett said he was unhappy with the way the company’s management is run.

He said in previous restructuring exercises Symantec had targeted front line employees and spared the jobs of higher level staff. This meant that the company was left with “too many” layers of management, which wasn’t beneficial.

Speaking to the Dow Jones, Bennett said the axe would swing on three separate occasions, and by the end of June there would be fewer bigger jobs within the sales and  marketing sectors. The company also plans to merge some product lines, which could suggest the axe grinding here, too.

Although he did not divulge how many pink slips will be issued, he admitted the company had saved around $275 million of its budget for severance pay, which the Dow Jones reported could mean 1,500 layoffs, based on the company’s past severance spend.

Bennett said the company will rely on resellers to help it sell consolidated product lines.

However, he hinted that, as a result of a smaller product portfolio, partners could also eventually be reduced.

Co-op Group hit by job cuts, scrapped IT system

Co-operative_headquarters_manchesterIt’s been a bad week for the Co-operative Group, with stories of job cuts and full-year profits almost written down to nothing.

The sorry story starts with the Co-operative’s banking arm, which reportedly spent its money on an IT system that could be scrapped. Sources told the Times that the cost of doing this could set the bank back by  £200 million – almost the cost of its full year profits.

The company had taken on the Finacle IT platform upgrade project in 2009 as part of  a £700 million integration programme linked to its partnership with the Britannia Building Society.

However, it has since had second thoughts about the system following a potential purchase deal of 632 branches from Lloyds Banking Group.

If the buy goes ahead, according to the Times, the Co-op will scrap the system and instead adopt the infrastructure currently used by Lloyds. This could land it with a huge hole in annual profits, which are set to be announced in mid-March. Last year’s earnings by the bank stood at £201 million.

A section of its retail arm is also struggling.  According to the BBC, the company has announced that 338 jobs could be slashed in the Midlands after plans to close its Fashion and Home department stores.

The announcement comes after the group reported “substantial losses,” and “changing retail behaviour” at its department stores in Derby, Ilkeston and Chesterfield, in Derbyshire; Coalville and Wigston in Leicestershire; and Stafford.

However, the Group said it will try to turn some of these stores into different entities, which could help keep job losses to a minimum.