A series of disappointing earnings releases last week drove the
number of technology layoffs to new highs, as the Channel Insider
Layoff tracker climbed to nearly 154,000 jobs lost or slated for
elimination since October 2008.
The rumors of Microsoft’s massive layoffs were put to rest when the
company announced its first forced reduction in its 35-year history.
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) plans to cut around 5,000 jobs over the next
18 months, beginning with 1,400 immediate layoffs. The world’s largest
software company said the staff reduction would mostly target redundant
positions throughout its 90,000-plus work force.
"We may eliminate up to 5,000 jobs, but we’ll also be adding several
thousand employees, [so] I expect to be down a net of 2,000 to 3,000,"
said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
Under recessionary pressures, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) announced the
closing of two assembly and test facilities, one in Penang, Malaysia,
and another in Cavite, Philippines. In addition, the world’s largest
semiconductor company plans to stop production at two production plants
located in Hillsboro, Ore., and Santa Clara, Calif.
Intel’s changes will affect between 5,000 and 6,000 employees
worldwide. Intel is working with the employees to place as many as
possible at other locations.
Intel will gradually close the facilities between now and the end of
2009, it said. A company spokesperson stated the closures are designed
to "align its manufacturing capacity to current market conditions."
AMD (NYSE: AMD), Intel’s leading competitor, announced “targeted
restructuring actions” that, with normal attrition, result in the
elimination of 900 jobs. The company had already announced a layoff in
November that affected 500 employees. AMD recently won regulatory
approval to split the company in two: one company for research,
development and sales, and the second company for manufacturing.
The biggest jump in January layoffs came when electronics retailer
Circuit City announced it was unable to restructure its debt and will
liquidate its remaining assets. The closure of the retail company will
result in the loss of 35,000 jobs nationwide.
The following is Channel Insider’s tally of layoffs since the recession officially began in October.
|Month to Date||Attachmate||120|
|Month Total||Adobe Systems||600|
|13,095||Sage North America||150|
|Month Total||Spot Runner||115|
|Pillar Data Systems||150|
|Total Since October||153,819|