Author Topic: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?  (Read 3896 times)

oldtoyota

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Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« on: October 11, 2013, 11:52:12 AM »
In most companies where I've been, they dropped hints about layoffs. I am thinking they probably hoped people would jump ship in order to reduce the company's unemployment payments.

Do you think this is the case?

I worked at one company where it seemed like they tried to keep it a secret...but I was close to the revenue numbers so I knew in advance even though no one told me.


jba302

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2013, 12:02:44 PM »
There is a federal requirement, and many states have additional requirements, regarding notice of layoffs. If the layoff qualifies under the guidelines and appropriate notice is not given, it will extend the benefits.  So in some cases, they simply have to.

Numbers Man

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2013, 12:16:10 PM »
They drop hints. Things like your travel is restricted or office supplies are being rationed. Or departments in your organization are being transferred to low cost areas. They don't replace people that are leaving. HR shows up in your building for a meeting or two before the bloodletting commences. Your boss wants you to write out a detailed list of what you do. All of a sudden cross training is in vogue; one of the lesser paid folks that you are cross training will soon have your job. There's a lot of closed door meetings around the office. Sales are down or you lose a significant customer.

basd

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #3 on: October 11, 2013, 12:26:21 PM »
Or they hire a consultant.


Tyler

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #4 on: October 11, 2013, 12:31:40 PM »
You can usually see it coming if you look at cash sensitivity of the company.  However, large corporate layoff decisions can sometimes be political and have nothing to do with cash flow.  And there are SEC rules that prevent large public companies from telegraphing big moves internally before they are announced to the public (to prevent insider trading).

As an example, my entire 80-person group (a sub-division of a large, well-known electronics company) showed a new product at CES one week and was completely shut down the next with no warning (noon meeting to tell you to pack your things by 5).  The president just changed his mind on the product we developed.  They had to provide 90 days severance to meet layoff notice requirements, but the order to pack your bags was out of the blue to most everyone. 

epowers

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2013, 01:06:43 PM »
It depends on the company.  In my limited experience, no warning is the norm, but I work at a small company, where many decisions seem to be made on a whim.

Numbers Man

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2013, 01:16:39 PM »

lsalinas

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2013, 02:01:48 PM »
In my experience you will see signs, as others have described.  Whether or not there is an official communication or not depends on the company like Tyler described.  I hope you or a family member isn't facing a potential layoff! 

oldtoyota

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2013, 02:47:30 PM »
I am not facing a layoff, thank goodness!

I became curious about my question after reading a few other posts here.

chasesfish

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2013, 07:19:05 PM »
They drop hints. Things like your travel is restricted or office supplies are being rationed. Or departments in your organization are being transferred to low cost areas. They don't replace people that are leaving. HR shows up in your building for a meeting or two before the bloodletting commences. Your boss wants you to write out a detailed list of what you do. All of a sudden cross training is in vogue; one of the lesser paid folks that you are cross training will soon have your job. There's a lot of closed door meetings around the office. Sales are down or you lose a significant customer.

all of the above, or if the bobs show up

Jamesqf

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Re: Do Most Companies Drop Big Hints About Layoffs?
« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2013, 08:46:32 PM »
I think it depends on the company.  I have never been in an actual layoff, but have seen two extremes.  One was a downsizing with several rounds of "we'll give you $X to go away" (I took the second round).  With the other (a startup), we got called to a meeting about 9:30, to hear "The Venture Capitalists are shutting us down.  Pack up everything by 5, your final checks will be at reception."