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HP to Layoff 15,000 Employees

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the good-luck dept.

HP 448

William Robinson writes "ZDNet reports that HP is planning to layoff 15000 employees. IT, sales and services will be among the areas particularly hit, although the sweeping cuts will be felt throughout the company, according to a close source to the company." From the article: "HP is expected to announce the layoffs as early as Monday, but employees are not expected to be immediately notified of their status, the source said, noting such a practice is common in corporate America. More high-level discussions on the layoffs will occur late next week and employees may get a greater sense of their specific status sometime thereafter."

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448 comments

HP sucks (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087912)

fp

That sucks (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087914)

But at least I got a FP!

Re:That sucks (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088152)

A winner is you...NOT!

Vox populi, vox dei (2, Insightful)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087915)

"Starting this year, HP will strive to build every one of our consumer devices to respect digital rights."

I guess the market has spoken, where's Carly now?

Re:Vox populi, vox dei (3, Funny)

mcgroarty (633843) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087992)

"Starting this year, HP will strive to build every one of our consumer devices to respect digital rights."
Man. Now if only HP would respect my rights. I'll take the right to working PSC 2175 drivers for Tiger for one thing, or the right to scanner software that doesn't require an XP admin account. (Hello, vulnerability!) And here's hoping 99% of those layoffs come from the printer-scanner-copier division and the remainder consists of whoever team chose the jet engine for the ZD7000 notebook fan.

Re:Vox populi, vox dei (1)

fafaforza (248976) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088139)

The printing division is much more profitable for HP than the personal computer business, so I doubt they'll be meddling with the printer people too much. But obviously, cuts and restructuring will hit all departments.

Here they come. (0)

mcgroarty (633843) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087916)

Going on previous layoff stories, I give it about 30 seconds before the first "see how evil corporations are?" reply. However, not a one of the detractors has ever addressed the question of where these people would have gotten a similar job without companies like HP. And they condemn the CEOs and shareholders who created all these jobs for taking profits when the times are good, but would never accept the alternative -- advocating sacrifice from the employees when times are bad. And they certainly won't celebrate the 150,000 people who still *do* have jobs created by the likes of HP.

Re:Here they come. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087949)

Ass licking to keep your job at HP in the very faint hope that Slashdot posting is benefcial?

Re:Here they come. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087983)

I agree that it was a fantastic move.

Re:Here they come. (4, Insightful)

jbolden (176878) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087986)

People had good jobs (that is jobs that paid well relative to the wealth of their countries) before the rise of the modern corporation. Further economic theory indicates that wages will tend to stabilize at roughly the added value that employees bring to an economic enterprise, again this is independent of the existence of corporations or not. Oh and considering that jobs are created by CEOs and shareholders is like arguing that wars are won by kings.

Re:Here they come. (1, Interesting)

mcgroarty (633843) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088052)

Coaching it in terms of wealth "relative to the wealth of their countries" is about the least useful comparison you could make. The second highest quarter in any nation without a US style economy are worse off than our bottom quarter. If you're going to compare any two periods, look at people's quality of life, not their wage compared to their neighbors'.

Regarding wages stabilizing relative to employees' worth, what you say would only be true without external interference.

And comparing CEOs and shareholders to kings? Precious few kings ever brought the seed capital to create their kingdoms or funded quarterly losses in anticipation of future payback.

Re:Here they come. (2, Insightful)

jbolden (176878) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088234)

Coaching it in terms of wealth "relative to the wealth of their countries" is about the least useful comparison you could make. The second highest quarter in any nation without a US style economy are worse off than our bottom quarter.

Nonsense. Germany has worker protection and their 3rd quarter is better than our 3rd quarter. Their 2nd quarter is pretty close and their 4th quarter is far far better. Oh and the US hasn't had its major cities destroyed and a good chunk of the male working population killed within the last 100 years; so our economy should be far far healthier than theirs.

If you're going to compare any two periods, look at people's quality of life, not their wage compared to their neighbors'.

That's silly, technological improvements overwhelm differences in distribution of wealth. You need to subtract technology off and to do that you need to look at their wealth relative to the wealth of their society.

Regarding wages stabilizing relative to employees' worth, what you say would only be true without external interference.

Well yes.

And comparing CEOs and shareholders to kings? Precious few kings ever brought the seed capital to create their kingdoms or funded quarterly losses in anticipation of future payback.

And the CEOs and shareholders of HP did do that?

Re:Here they come. (1)

wfberg (24378) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088024)

Going on previous layoff stories, I give it about 30 seconds before the first "see how evil corporations are?" reply.

Riiiight.. So you're only avoiding the flamewar by pre-emptively taking the troll bait and posting some non-responses to straw man arguments?

Re:Here they come. (4, Insightful)

Jukashi (240273) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088026)

Good business plans dont require sacrifice, bad ones do. HP isnt in the shitter because 15,000 employees decided to slack off - management FUCKED UP. But they are in charge, so there is no way they're going to be held responsible.

A four month CEO is cutting R&D at a TECH company, firing IT workers, and hiring more managers - this is good?? I guess those 120 days on the job does give him the right to slash the pensions on engineers who have been their for 20+ years. After all, those idiots were trying to invent things to make the world better, when they should have been in business school....eck.

And I love this:

And they certainly won't celebrate the 150,000 people who still *do* have jobs created by the likes of HP.

Absolutely, and I'm sure if someone raped your daughter you wouldn't complain - you'd be celebrating that they didnt do it to your wife too!

Apologist.

Re:Here they come. (1)

mcgroarty (633843) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088073)

And they certainly won't celebrate the 150,000 people who still *do* have jobs created by the likes of HP.

Absolutely, and I'm sure if someone raped your daughter you wouldn't complain - you'd be celebrating that they didnt do it to your wife too!

Either you're making the king of all bad analogies, or I missed the part where he gave me the daughter in the first place.

Re:Here they come. (1)

Jukashi (240273) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088126)

If you want to argue semantics, then by your account the biological father could rape an adopted child, and thats ok.

The point here is that corporations don't give out jobs because they are nice people, they hire people. Now if someone gives you something and then takes it back, well thats a dick move.

If they promise you a pension and then take it back because they cant run a business for shit, well, that cant even be accounted for by witty speech. We are punishing people for working hard, and being loyal - this is disgusting and wrong.

Re:Here they come. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088177)

"or I missed the part where he gave me the daughter in the first place."

Yeah, think real hard how that might've happened. Take your time.

Right on! (2, Insightful)

John Seminal (698722) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088090)

Good business plans dont require sacrifice, bad ones do. HP isnt in the shitter because 15,000 employees decided to slack off - management FUCKED UP. But they are in charge, so there is no way they're going to be held responsible.

I don't know what happened to HP the past 15 years. When I was a kid, there was only one King of laser printers, and that was HP. Nobody made better laser printers in the world.

3 or 4 years ago, a friend purchased a HP computer, it had windows ME on it. She was in college, and she called me a few times while she was writing papers and got the blue screen of death. There was nothing that could be done to save the paper. Hours of work went down the drain. I know... I told her "save your work more often". But that computer was a horrific peice of crap. I did a clean install with the CD's thinking that might help things, but it took me a while to realize that Windows ME did not work well with that HP computer.

It is too bad HP merged with Compaq, at least Compaq made good computers.

It seems like there is a pattern. Merge two large companies into a super large company, then fire people and give managers bonuses.

Re:Here they come. (2, Insightful)

Momoru (837801) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088131)

HP isnt in the shitter because 15,000 employees decided to slack off - management FUCKED UP.

Do you consider perhaps that management fucked up by creating a bloated personnel heavy organization? Big companies grow out of control during good times by hiring tons and tons of people they may not really NEED. When times get tough expendible employees are just as fair game as other belt tightening measures IMO.

Re:Here they come. (2, Informative)

homer_s (799572) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088164)

Are these workers entitled to those jobs? They took those jobs knowing fully well what the rules of the game were - that the shareholders and management can fire them if they think that is in the interest of the corporation.
If those workers didn't like that, they could've:
a)taken different jobs or
b) started their own businesses or
b) write to their representatives to change the political system - a workers revolution and to each according to their needs.

Re:Here they come. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088070)

I give it about 30 seconds before the first "see how evil corporations are?" reply.
How about a "see how poorly American corporations are managed" reply? I once read, or heard somewhere (I can't remember where so this is probably just bs) that a Japanese CEO was remarking that laying off people is an easy and shortsighted solution to a problem. The hard part is correcting the core problems in your company or changing direction to get back into or ahead of the market. It makes no sense to layoff 15,000 people if in 2 years you're going to need to hire 10,000 people to fill most of those jobs. All of sudden you have to invest a huge amount of time and money to get the new 10k people up to the point where those 15k people were at say, 6 years ago. So, to get your company 2 years of better profits (and a higher share price) you've set the company as a whole back 2 years plus the amount of time to retrain the replacements. The alternative is to have lower profit margins for two years (maybe even operate in the red) so that when things pick up again, you can hit the ground running. Sadly, huge American corporations love to follow this "eat the seeds when starving" policy.

Re:Here they come. (1)

Kenrod (188428) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088114)


You could argue the reverse - in 2 years, HP may need to layoff even more people, and then you would have spent 2 years paying 15,000 employees you could have done without. Any company that waits 2 years to respond to market conditions won't last long.

It's also possible HP has already waited 2 years before doing these layoffs, and now it is even more obvious they need to pull the trigger.

Re:Here they come. (1)

mcgroarty (633843) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088120)

I'd be far more willing to listen to your Japanese CEO if most Japanese business weren't back to relying on the same style of loans that dashed their economy into the ground just a decade ago. With their government manipulating the economy with artificially low long-term interest rates, the rules are very different there. Government banking owns most of the country because of hyperinflation and most everything has to be done on credit. Quality of life and personal ownership are very different there -- people are taking out "generational loans" where they're promising their grandkids will finish paying for their houses, property transfer taxes are upward of 50%, and it all comes tumbling down any time the economy can't sustain double digit growth. And when companies fail there, as thousands do every month, it's the taxpayers who eat the loss through more inflation and taxes, not the shareholders.

Re:Here they come. (4, Insightful)

aussersterne (212916) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088156)

That's the brutal logic of capitalism and capitalists for you. I'd bet that 50% of the people on Slashdot see corporations/employers not as social institutions that are a component of the community, but rather as functional institutions that are part of a capital economy. The survival of "the economy" (i.e. capital flows) is seen as important; the survival of people is not.

Just watch any story about failing companies on Slashdot and you'll see just how many posters argue that a company that isn't profitable right now absolutely should go out of business because it "can't compete" in the "free market." Nevermind whether the company was competitive in the past or could be competitive again in the future with proper (i.e. less greedy and short-sighted) management, or the fact that in that "should go out of business" trope, hundreds or even thousands of lives may be ruined--when the improvement of lives is, ostensibly, the reason for commerce in the first place...

Capitalism is always short-sighted because the capitalists (in the orthodox sense--those people who have capital) will always see their holdings increase, regardless of the longevity of any particular enterprise. That's where this attitude of "bad business should fail" comes from--it's cultural brainwashing from those who control the economies through their wealth. It is their vested interest that unprofitable ventures should fail immediately, so that capital can be transferred to other ventures, in order to minimize losses and maximize profitability on an ongoing basis. If and investment in B will yield a 50% higher/faster return than an investment in A, capital will shift to B to maximize the profits of those who control, even if A was still nominally profitable, and even if thousands of non-capital-holding lives utterly depend on A. Capitalism is fundamentally anti-humanist that way.

...here *you* come, you mean..? (1)

mcc (14761) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088094)

And they condemn the CEOs and shareholders who created all these jobs for taking profits when the times are good, but would never accept the alternative -- advocating sacrifice from the employees when times are bad
Well, sure. Times are bad and the CEOs aren't sacrificing. So why should the employees?
However, not a one of the detractors has ever addressed the question of where these people would have gotten a similar job without companies like HP
Well, let's see here. Last I checked the board of HP didn't create the microchip, the computer, the desire and need for information processing hardware among the public, the demand for PCs, or the innovative and quality engineering that originally propelled HP into a position of power.

HP the corporate entity appears as far as I can tell to have just brought together some bright engineers and some manufacturing plants, and put the result within the reach of consumers willing to exchange currency for it.

Is it possible, at all, that somehow this transaction (the engineers designing the computers and printers and such, the plants that manufactured computers and printers and such off those designs, the consumers who decided the thus manufactured products were worth expending their money on) could have somehow come to pass and functioned in some way other than the specific system of a government-created incorporated entity (in this case named "Hewlett Packard") which acts as a legal personage and exclusively accepts all responsibility and blame for actions taken by employees and investors; is owned by a collection of "shareholders" chosen because they hold pieces of paper obtained through cryptic dealings in New York; and is run by a board chosen by those shareholders?

Because if this specific system (the government-licensed "corporation", the stockholders, etc) is in fact the only way that all those people creating and buying hewlett packard computers could have come to pass, then we can call the board of HP "responsible" for all the good things that have resulted from HP's existence. But I'm pretty sure there's more than one way this could have all happened. Which starts to make it seem kind of reasonable to start looking for other ways to think of the HP board. Like, "parasitic middleman".

There's this old (and usually just implied) idea that because something good happened in a capitalist or corporatist system, capitalism or corporatism itself gets to take credit for it. Regardless of the claims of libertarian theologists, I have trouble taking this seriously; capitalism doesn't create wealth, it only distributes it. Nevertheless, capitalism does do a pretty good job (compared to some other systems, at least) of not actually standing in the way of the people who are creating wealth. So that's good, I guess. But what just seems batshit loony to me is when some group of people tries to stand up and take credit for all the good things capitalism makes possible-- saying that hey, all those things we assume capitalism gets to take credit for? well actually I get to take credit for it-- and claim this credit because, um, well seemingly just because they're rich.

Not "evil coporations", try "inept management." (1)

swb (14022) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088095)

It's inept management to shitcan 15k people, since it's inept management to "suddenly" find yourself with 15k redundant people who need to be shitcanned all at once.

But my guess is that someone's just assuming that they can can 10% of the workforce and nobody'll notice the difference and they'll net about a billion after expenses in extra profit.

Re:Here they come. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088229)

Going on previous layoff stories, I give it about 30 seconds before the first "see how evil corporations are?" reply. However, not a one of the detractors has ever addressed the question of where these people would have gotten a similar job without companies like HP. And they condemn the CEOs and shareholders who created all these jobs for taking profits when the times are good, but would never accept the alternative -- advocating sacrifice from the employees when times are bad. And they certainly won't celebrate the 150,000 people who still *do* have jobs created by the likes of HP.

Ohhhhhhhhhhhh, so you decided to be pre-emptive and post a negative comment before anyone else could? Good job! You really are on top of things!

Actually I think you miss the obvious point people make, when asked to make a sacrifice people generally like to see the CEO or their board members take a sacrifice as well. And no, I do not mean they quit with a 5 million dollar severance package.

One has to wonder, would you be so happy if you were one of the 15,000 that is laid off? Furthermore would you be happy if you were an HP employee who now turns back up to work Monday morning with the axe swinging over their head?

Why don't -YOU- approach your senior management and DEMAND to be the first to be laid off when times get rough. That way -YOU- can be happy that other ppl in that company will still be working!

Not going to do it? Didn't think so...

first post (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087917)

I'm the first post

Severance (5, Funny)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087920)

Severance expenses averaged $78,000 per person

I guess this averages out with management's planned $10 million per executive along with the $1000 normal employee package.

Re:Severance (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088001)

here's what will happen in 2030.

America will have fifty megacorporations. All of them will have one employee, a CEO. Everything else will be outsourced to other countries, and the CEO will bring in 150-200million a year as salary, without benefits.

Then all of a sudden the outsourced pieces of these corps will band together in india, china, korea, taiwan... and form identical megacorporations there, leaving the US completely out of the loop.

The world will say "pwned USA!"

Re:Severance (2, Funny)

Neoncow (802085) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088020)

here's what will happen in 2030.

America will have fifty megacorporations. All of them will have one employee, a CEO. Everything else will be outsourced to other countries, and the CEO will bring in 150-200million a year as salary, without benefits.

Those poor CEOs. How will they feed themselves when they are only paid enough to buy a loaf of bread?

Re:Severance (1)

cato kaze (770158) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088159)

What's incredibly sad is I think you may be serious, and there are people ignorant enough of how a business and the world works to think this would happen.

In related news... (5, Funny)

MrDyrden (833392) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087925)

HP to hire 15,000 new outsourced workers in Bangalore, India

Remember folks, outsourcing is good for the economy!

Re:In related news... (2, Insightful)

servognome (738846) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088011)

Remember folks, outsourcing is good for the economy!

It is for the economy of India.
And if history is any indication, it is for the US as well.

Re:In related news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088028)

Yeah, India's economy.

Re:In related news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088083)

Rejoice, suckers:

Diversity is your strength.

Remember, folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087930)

The economy is doing better. And the economy is doing better because fox news says it is.

Re:Remember, folks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088048)

Actually, FOX News is a parody news channel.

TGI Friday.. (4, Funny)

wfberg (24378) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087931)

Bob: "We find it's always better to fire people on a Friday."

Bob: "Studies have statistically shown that there's less chance of an incident if you do it at the end of the week."

The HP way (3, Interesting)

XNormal (8617) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087937)

HP is getting rid of anything that might distinguish it from a box-mover like Dell. Just look what it did with the technology assets it got from DEC and Compaq.

In the short term it should improve profitability. I'm not so sure about the long term, though.

Re:The HP way (2, Interesting)

GuitarNeophyte (636993) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088034)

Man, I hope that they get rid of the right ones. I've talked to their CRS's while lookin' to buy two different laptops and about 80% of the ones that I talked to were really knowledgeable... just that one that wasn't seeming to know what he was doing, but he at least passed me to someone who did, so I'd still count it as a good call.

There's too many other companies that I don't buy from specifically because of the fact that their Customer Service Representatives don't fully understand their own product (not talkin' about down-to-the-chip, but at least be able to tell me positives and negatives about using this technology over that one that the competitor has).

I'm about a month from being able to buy myself a new laptop (wanting them specifically, because their stuff is linux-friendly), so I hope they still have someone useful by the time I want one.

Luke
----
"Help your stupid friends not be so stupid. Send 'em to ChristianNerds.com [christiannerds.com] ."

RIP HP (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088039)

There are lots of good scientific devices companies. Hopefully in the long term we will have more companies like what HP was in 1970,80 or 90 emerge and do what the old HP used to do.

Re:The HP way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088098)

"Just look what it did with the technology assets it got from DEC and Compaq."

VERY good point, Actually it was Compaq who was the one to totally drop the ball when they GAVE AWAY the DEC assets. (think relational database which later became a little company called ORACLE!) Oh man, I could right novel on that one!

First Post (0, Offtopic)

YCrCb (707622) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087939)

For Once in my time here a nobody gets first post.

And I just bought an iPaq ;(

uh huh (1)

Nexcet (792231) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087941)

Seems to be out-source issue here. Go to the HP site and look under Jobs at HP. Do minor search. Seems like they have a lot of position openings at "India - Bangalore" hrmm..

Direct link to India job listings (3, Interesting)

reality-bytes (119275) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088013)

It does seem to be as the parent post suggests.

Just making a search using the term 'Service' at HP India produces 192 new positions.

Job Search HP India [hp.com]

(Scroll down if you don't have a vertical monitor / insane resolution)

Re:Direct link to India job listings (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088206)

Just making a search using the term 'Service' at HP India produces 192 new positions.

well whatever maths one may do
192 still doesnt add up to 15000

Re:Direct link to India job listings (1)

KenBot_314 (744719) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088208)

that really doesn't mean anything... they still have 200+ jobs listed in the US...

No Management Cuts (5, Insightful)

ElNonoMasa (820089) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087948)

HP's management team and business units will remain in their current form, with the restructuring mainly focusing on the workforce...
Makes you wonder what management team let it get non-competitive in the first place, and why are they not affected by the cuts?

Re:No Management Cuts (4, Interesting)

Will_Malverson (105796) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088006)

Makes you wonder what management team let it get non-competitive in the first place, and why are they not affected by the cuts?


That would be Carly, and she's already been affected. Affected to the tune of a $40M payout package, but since getting rid of her caused HP's total market cap to go up several billion dollars, getting rid of her was money well spent.

Re:No Management Cuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088186)

Sure, but the main reason behind all the Carly-Hate was because she was laying off people and cutting salaries and vacation time and building a thinner organization. The dislike of her had nothing to do with competitiveness.

HP's main problem is that they've become a bunch of old-school engineers and flashy salesmen working for a printer cartridge company. I hate to say it, but the proper decision would be to spin off the enterprise server business and then fire the rest of the whole lot.

Re:No Management Cuts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088202)

Just say Carla ..

Those kind of lay offs are bad news (4, Interesting)

anubi (640541) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087958)

An employees "usefulness" ranges from damn near useless to damn near indispensable.

The "indispensible" ones usually have the attribute of time urgency to get things done... and getting another job is now on their list.

The "useless" ones lounge around.

When the managers get around to announcing exactly who is gonna be affected, they get to choose among the useless ones, as the "indispensable" ones by that time already have jobs... working for their competitors.

Re:Those kind of lay offs are bad news (1, Interesting)

John Seminal (698722) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088155)

An employees "usefulness" ranges from damn near useless to damn near indispensable.

The "indispensible" ones usually have the attribute of time urgency to get things done... and getting another job is now on their list.

The "useless" ones lounge around.

This is a troll post.

So, you know who is useless? You are an idiot.

We need a new law, if a company lays off employees, they can no longer get visas or outsource any jobs. And we should arrest the CEOs as traitors, they are destabalizing the USA. If people don't have jobs, crime goes up. These CEOs are fucking greedy idiots, they are worthless as humans. Their kids should get the shit beat out of them in school. Not that the father would care, he would be too busy counting his money, and trying to hide his mistress from his wife.

People are exactly the same, no matter who or where. The guy who is homeless in India is no different from the CEO of GE, who is no different than a warlord in Afghanastan. It is human nature. It is why countries need to go after the Martha Stewarts and keep greed in check, it is why we need higher taxes for the top 10%, and why we need a 100% estate tax for anything over $1,000,000.

The pie is shrinking, and a very few number of people are stealing and cheating larger portions for themseleves. When they do this, the majority is left with crumbs.

If we are going to outsource jobs to India or Mexico, why not at least pay them the same wage? Why pay them so much less? There is only one reason, so the CEO can get a larger bonus check.

Don't blame the corporation... (0, Troll)

dada21 (163177) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087968)

...blame our state and federal governments.

Excessive regulations, ridiculous wage requirements, forced benefits, excessive taxation and inflation of the currency all combine to create a country that just can't compete.

Seriously consider moving to a free market like Dubai if you're facing a pink slip. Lots of high paying IT jobs in that freedom-loving city.

Re:Don't blame the corporation... (1, Insightful)

thrillseeker (518224) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088042)

The above is not a troll. Milton Friedman would get modded troll by the shortsighted dumb asses here.

Re:Don't blame the corporation... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088046)

Right... if only our country was more capitalist-friendly like... China. Why, oh why can't our government be more like China's!?

HP is the walking dead (3, Interesting)

randall_burns (108052) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087977)

Yes, they still employ 150,000 folks. However, the company is fundamentally addicted to H-1b/L-1 visas and has a lackluster recent record at serious technical innovation. For a company like HP to seriously thrive, they _must_ innovate. At this point, HP is more the preserve of bean counters than inventors.

30% Work Force Reduction (5, Informative)

premii (667023) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087984)

Thy are no planning, its already been started month ago, my team got laid off couple weeks ago. and before us, atleast 15-20 people got laid off out of around 200 people at Dearborn, MI location. and thy are planning to reduce atleast 30% of work force, and off shoring to Toronto, Malasiya and India, and replacing with cheap contract.

grim (1)

mr_tommy (619972) | more than 8 years ago | (#13087985)

Fucking disgusting what has happened to HP over the last 5 years. Compaq merger was a disaster. Carly was a disaster. Hewlett and Packard would be astonished at what their company is doing today. I feel really sorry for all the HP workforce that've had to endure this b/s.

Corporate America News (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087991)

Merger, Merger, Corruption, FUD, Massive Layoffs, Merger, FUD, Merger, Walmart, Corruption, Bush, Massive Layoffs, Merger, Merger...

Oh great.,. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13087993)


I just found out I am getting laid off.

On slashdot. ..sigh.

IANACEO (5, Insightful)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088005)

I'm not a CEO, but: "HP's management team and business units will remain in their current form, with the restructuring mainly focusing on the workforce, said the source, who declined to further delve into the effect of the layoffs in each division. The source noted none of the existing executives on the management team will be re-assigned to new posts, but members may be added to the team."

That doesn't make a lot of sense to me. So now you have 15,000 less people to lead/manage but you still have the same number of executives and managers. That seems to create a very top heavy structure and those tend to fall over both in the management world and the engineering world.

The more cynical side of me tells me that the execs and managers have more pull so would put up more of a fight if laid off. I'm sure the top level execs know the middle level ones at personal level so found it harder to laid them off. Instead, the little peons on the bottom who they barely know or care about can fend for themselves.

HP Services has roughly 65,000 employees, but analysts are predicting HP will lop off only about 8 percent here because the company is working on edging out IBM Global Services, EDS and Accenture for corporate contracts. "We estimate that HP has roughly 20,000 salespeople, with the majority in (enterprise server group) and Services, and that CEO Hurd is likely to look to streamline the organization, moving away from HP's current 'matrixed' selling organization to focus on more direct accountability," Sacconaghi said.

I really hate the word "accountability" when used in isolation. From my experience, if accountability is the only method being used to solve problems, people start playing politics and the blame game. Bueraucracy goes through the roof and everything has to be documented in case the problem doesn't get solved. You end up spending more time covering your ass than solving the problem. You also end up taking a toll on teamwork.

It seems to me that their current strategy is to lower costs so they can lower their margins to compete. Not a bad plan but there are other avenues. I know at my company, we're more than willing to pay more for better service and reliability. The initial contract cost isn't the only factor. We have to think about the cost of downtime.

Noncritical research and development (R&D) could also be impacted, analysts suggest. HP's R&D spending is nearly $1 billion higher than all of its relevant competitors combined, according to an independent benchmarking analysis done by Sacconaghi's firm. The comparison was designed to mirror the one that Hurd has professed as his method for bringing costs back into line. "We suspect that Hurd might be able to lower HP's annual $3.5 billion in R&D by $250 (million)-$500 million through the elimination of non-core projects, Sacconaghi said. So they're going to gut the thing that made HP great in the first place. I don't know what they consider non-critical R&D but a lot of innovations aren't obviously useful at first. Didn't a division of HP invent the optical mouse? I wonder if that was considered critical at the time.

Again, I'm not a CEO. I'm all for making an organization more efficient but I wonder if they're making the right cuts. It's sad to see the "Grey Lady of the Silicon Valley", the engineers' corporation get hacked to pieces.

Re:IANACEO (1)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088181)

I have to agree. HP seems to keep digging itself into a hole. At first it was only 6 feet deep. With Carly , it was deeper, this new CEO isn't helping. They're at the center of the earth.

IMO the core of any tech company is: research, support and sales. If you cut jobs in those areas, are the managers going to be making sales calls? Doubt it. Are they going to do support and research? They wouldn't know how.

If this continues, I can see something else happening to HP: its competitors get their old employees. The sales staff will likely end up at Lexmark, IBM, Canon, and company. Ditto for the sales and support. Keeping employees (particualry the good, loyal ones happy) stops stuff like this from happening.

Re:IANACEO (1)

alienw (585907) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088217)

R&D is only useful if it produces results for the company. They aren't doing it for charity, they want to make money. Given that they are currently losing money, they probably ought to cut back on R&D expenses. How much money did they make from the optical mouse, anyway? The only division which made money was the printer one. Doesn't look like they need too much R&D.

Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (2, Insightful)

John Seminal (698722) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088043)

HP is planning to layoff 15000 employees... but employees are not expected to be immediately notified of their status, the source said, noting such a practice is common in corporate America.

This all started with Bush Sr, and his NAFTA, to export jobs to Mexico. I remember the lies, how it would stregnthen the American workforce.

Now the current Bush is exporting jobs to India.

Anyone see a pattern of what the republicans are doing? They got the idea, they no longer need American workers. So they started transfering jobs outside of the USA.

How many more decades do we have before the USA is on par with Mexico in terms of wealth. We will have the likes of Ted Turner owning 2 million acres of land. We will become a nation where 4% of the population lives in gated and gaurded communities, and everyone else will live in an apartment, in places filled with violence, and we will be called sub-human.

Remember, it was not that long ago when families only needed one person to work, to pay the bills, to feed the family. The past 10 years, most families have both parents working. And in the next 10 years, we will see both parents working multiple jobs. But it is okay, I am sure Sony will have the next generation playstation by then.

How can any country justify having CEO's that make $10,000,000+ a year, and having janitors who make $5.75 an hour? It is like what happened with the World Trade Center, when the government was cutting checks to families of survivors. The valuable lives got checks in the millions of dollars, the janitors families got 1/10th of that. It is like Baseball, I remember being a kid when it was a big deal for a player to sign a 1 million dollar deal. Tickets were cheap. Hot dogs were cheap. Heck, the ballpark was a cheap evening, and you would get fed. Now players demand $100 million contracts, and there is advertising in every corner of the ballpark and hot dogs cost $4.50, parking is $15, tickets are over $40. Normal blue collar families no longer go to the ballpark, but that does not matter because teams found they can make more money selling the best seats to corporations. I guess it is a nice benifit for salespeople and executives, to go somewhere they believe is popular, even though they know little about the game or players.

I hope my kids don't have the future I think they will. A small studio, with advertising inside the apartment that can't be turned off. Working 6 days a week, 10 hours a day, and still not having enough to eat good food. And having a police that exists not to protect people, but to keep the poor out of the rich neighborhoods.

Money is evil. It makes people do horrible things.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (1)

CajunArson (465943) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088087)

Money is evil. It makes people do horrible things.
Good, then my recomendation to you is to quit your job so you are not polluted by any of this 'money' (and no going on welfare either!)
In fact since you care so much, you should actively go around to the HP workers who were not laid off and tell them to quit their jobs too to prevent them from being corrupted by money as well.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (2, Insightful)

jbolden (176878) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088105)

Republicans have always been the pro business party. That they would aim to screw the middle class in favor of the rich is nothing new or shocking. The problem is that the Democratic party no longer exists in any meaningful sense.

I'm starting to think more and more it might be a really good thing if abortion gets overturned. Then maybe the red state people can start voting their interests rather than their god and we can go back to having reasonable politics in this country. Flying to Canada/Mexico once in a lifetime for an abortion isn't a huge deal.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (1, Flamebait)

thrillseeker (518224) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088132)

Flying to Canada/Mexico once in a lifetime for an abortion isn't a huge deal.

Unless you're the baby.

Minor factual correction (4, Insightful)

TheNumberSix (580081) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088134)

I don't want to get in the way of your tear, but I think NAFTA was very much a bipartisan effort.

The idea had been talked about long before Bush I was in office, he had some discussions about it. President Clinton signed the NAFTA deal on Dec 8, 1993. And I believe it was ratified by a Senate and House, both with Democratic majorities. (57-43 Dems in the Senate, and 258-176 Dems in the House) You can check which party was in government in recent history at this link [gvsu.edu] .

Cheers.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (4, Interesting)

RoundSparrow (341175) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088183)

I hope my kids don't have the future I think they will. A small studio, with advertising inside the apartment that can't be turned off. Working 6 days a week, 10 hours a day, and still not having enough to eat good food. And having a police that exists not to protect people, but to keep the poor out of the rich neighborhoods.

I'm from the USA (native balding white guy, mid 30's), and know it pretty well - as I spent 2001-2004 living in a RV traveling the states working internet job via cell phones.

I have spent the last year living in Chile in a decent site city (200,000 people).

You pretty much describe Chile and MUCH of the world "outside the USA" from what I have studied ...

Have you considered that maybe this is just the natural rebalance of wealth?

Frankly, the USA as it was from WW2 - 2000 could prove to be unsustainable... at least without some form of rebalance. Even if the average person in the USA were knocked down by 50% income... still better off than MANY places in the world.

And JAPAN in the 1980's and 1990's took a lot of the real wealth... cherry picked Hollywood, etc. Turned Tokyo into a city more expensive than NYC as quick as they could.

BTW, here in Chile the latin american tradition of close family is more responsible for the 'small studio' part... they actually share a house with many generations of the same family living under one roof. More family ties, less stress, more simple pleasures. The point is, there are cultural reasons too - not just financial.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088209)

Money is evil. It makes people do horrible things.
So you think that money is the root of all evil? Have you ever asked what is the root of money? Money is a tool of exchange, which can't exist unless there are goods produced and men able to produce them. Money is the material shape of the principle that men who wish to deal with one another must deal by trade and give value for value. Money is not the tool of the moochers, who claim your product by tears, or of the looters, who take it from you by force. Money is made possible only by the men who produce. Is this what you consider evil?

When you accept money in payment for your effort, you do so only on the conviction that you will exchange it for the product of the effort of others. It is not the moochers or the looters who give value to money. Not an ocean of tears not all the guns in the world can transform those pieces of paper in your wallet into the bread you will need to survive tomorrow. Those pieces of paper, which should have been gold, are a token of honor--your claim upon the energy of the men who produce. Your wallet is your statement of hope that somewhere in the world around you there are men who will not default on that moral principle which is the root of money, Is this what you consider evil?

Have you ever looked for the root of production? Take a look at an electric generator and dare tell yourself that it was created by the muscular effort of unthinking brutes. Try to grow a seed of wheat without the knowledge left to you by men who had to discover it for the first time. Try to obtain your food by means of nothing but physical motions--and you'll learn that man's mind is the root of all the goods produced and of all the wealth that has ever existed on earth.

But you say that money is made by the strong at the expense of the weak? What strength do you mean? It is not the strength of guns or muscles. Wealth is the product of man's capacity to think. Then is money made by the man who invents a motor at the expense of those who did not invent it? Is money made by the intelligent at the expense of the fools? By the able at the expense of the incompetent? By the ambitious at the expense of the lazy? Money is made--before it can be looted or mooched--made by the effort of every honest man, each to the extent of his ability. An honest man is one who knows that he can't consume more than he has produced.'

To trade by means of money is the code of the men of good will. Money rests on the axiom that every man is the owner of his mind and his effort. Money allows no power to prescribe the value of your effort except the voluntary choice of the man who is willing to trade you his effort in return. Money permits you to obtain for your goods and your labor that which they are worth to the men who buy them, but no more. Money permits no deals except those to mutual benefit by the unforced judgment of the traders. Money demands of you the recognition that men must work for their own benefit, not for their own injury, for their gain, not their loss--the recognition that they are not beasts of burden, born to carry the weight of your misery--that you must offer them values, not wounds--that the common bond among men is not the exchange of suffering, but the exchange of goods. Money demands that you sell, not your weakness to men's stupidity, but your talent to their reason; it demands that you buy, not the shoddiest they offer, but the best that your money can find. And when men live by trade--with reason, not force, as their final arbiter--it is the best product that wins, the best performance, the man of best judgment and highest ability--and the degree of a man's productiveness is the degree of his reward. This is the code of existence whose tool and symbol is money. Is this what you consider evil?

But money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver. It will give you the means for the satisfaction of your desires, but it will not provide you with desires. Money is the scourge of the men who attempt to reverse the law of causality--the men who seek to replace the mind by seizing the products of the mind.

Money will not purchase happiness for the man who has no concept of what he wants: money will not give him a code of values, if he's evaded the knowledge of what to value, and it will not provide him with a purpose, if he's evaded the choice of what to seek. Money will not buy intelligence for the fool, or admiration for the coward, or respect for the incompetent. The man who attempts to purchase the brains of his superiors to serve him, with his money replacing his judgment, ends up by becoming the victim of his inferiors. The men of intelligence desert him, but the cheats and the frauds come flocking to him, drawn by a law which he has not discovered: that no man may be smaller than his money. Is this the reason why you call it evil?

Only the man who does not need it, is fit to inherit wealth--the man who would make his own fortune no matter where he started. If an heir is equal to his money, it serves him; if not, it destroys him. But you look on and you cry that money corrupted him. Did it? Or did he corrupt his money? Do not envy a worthless heir; his wealth is not yours and you would have done no better with it. Do not think that it should have been distributed among you; loading the world with fifty parasites instead of one, would not bring back the dead virtue which was the fortune. Money is a living power that dies without its root. Money will not serve the mind that cannot match it. Is this the reason why you call it evil?

Money is your means of survival. The verdict you pronounce upon the source of your livelihood is the verdict you pronounce upon your life. If the source is corrupt, you have damned your own existence. Did you get your money by fraud? By pandering to men's vices or men's stupidity? By catering to fools, in the hope of getting more than your ability deserves? By lowering your standards? By doing work you despise for purchasers you scorn? If so, then your money will not give you a moment's or a penny's worth of joy. Then all the things you buy will become, not a tribute to you, but a reproach; not an achievement, but a reminder of shame. Then you'll scream that money is evil. Evil, because it would not pinch-hit for your self-respect? Evil, because it would not let you enjoy your depravity? Is this the root of your hatred of money?

Money will always remain an effect and refuse to replace you as the cause. Money is the product of virtue, but it will not give you virtue and it will not redeem your vices. Money will not give you the unearned, neither in matter nor in spirit. Is this the root of your hatred of money?

Or did you say it's the love of money that's the root of all evil? To love a thing is to know and love its nature. To love money is to know and love the fact that money is the creation of the best power within you, and your passkey to trade your effort for the effort of the best among men. It's the person who would sell his soul for a nickel, who is loudest in proclaiming his hatred of money--and he has good reason to hate it. The lovers of money are willing to work for it. They know they are able to deserve it.

Let me give you a tip on a clue to men's characters: the man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it.

Run for your life from any man who tells you that money is evil. That sentence is the leper's bell of an approaching looter. So long as men live together on earth and need means to deal with one another--their only substitute, if they abandon money, is the muzzle of a gun.

But money demands of you the highest virtues, if you wish to make it or to keep it. Men who have no courage, pride or self-esteem, men who have no moral sense of their right to their money and are not willing to defend it as they defend their life, men who apologize for being rich--will not remain rich for long. They are the natural bait for the swarms of looters that stay under rocks for centuries, but come crawling out at the first smell of a man who begs to be forgiven for the guilt of owning wealth. They will hasten to relieve him of the guilt--and of his life, as he deserves.

Then you will see the rise of the men of the double standard--the men who live by force, yet count on those who live by trade to create the value of their looted money--the men who are the hitchhikers of virtue. In a moral society, these are the criminals, and the statutes are written to protect you against them. But when a society establishes criminals-by-right and looters-by-law--men who use force to seize the wealth of disarmed victims--then money becomes its creators' avenger. Such looters believe it safe to rob defenseless men, once they've passed a law to disarm them. But their loot becomes the magnet for other looters, who get it from them as they got it. Then the race goes, not to the ablest at production, but to those most ruthless at brutality. When force is the standard, the murderer wins over the pickpocket. And then that society vanishes, in a spread of ruins and slaughter.

Do you wish to know whether that day is coming? Watch money. Money is the barometer of a society's virtue. When you see that trading is done, not by consent, but by compulsion--when you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing--when you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors--when you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don't protect you against them, but protect them against you--when you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice--you may know that your society is doomed. Money is so noble a medium that is does not compete with guns and it does not make terms with brutality. It will not permit a country to survive as half-property, half-loot.

Whenever destroyers appear among men, they start by destroying money, for money is men's protection and the base of a moral existence. Destroyers seize gold and leave to its owners a counterfeit pile of paper. This kills all objective standards and delivers men into the arbitrary power of an arbitrary setter of values. Gold was an objective value, an equivalent of wealth produced. Paper is a mortgage on wealth that does not exist, backed by a gun aimed at those who are expected to produce it. Paper is a check drawn by legal looters upon an account which is not theirs: upon the virtue of the victims. Watch for the day when it bounces, marked, 'Account overdrawn.'

When you have made evil the means of survival, do not expect men to remain good. Do not expect them to stay moral and lose their lives for the purpose of becoming the fodder of the immoral. Do not expect them to produce, when production is punished and looting rewarded. Do not ask, 'Who is destroying the world? You are.

You stand in the midst of the greatest achievements of the greatest productive civilization and you wonder why it's crumbling around you, while you're damning its life-blood--money. You look upon money as the savages did before you, and you wonder why the jungle is creeping back to the edge of your cities. Throughout men's history, money was always seized by looters of one brand or another, whose names changed, but whose method remained the same: to seize wealth by force and to keep the producers bound, demeaned, defamed, deprived of honor. That phrase about the evil of money, which you mouth with such righteous recklessness, comes from a time when wealth was produced by the labor of slaves--slaves who repeated the motions once discovered by somebody's mind and left unimproved for centuries. So long as production was ruled by force, and wealth was obtained by conquest, there was little to conquer, Yet through all the centuries of stagnation and starvation, men exalted the looters, as aristocrats of the sword, as aristocrats of birth, as aristocrats of the bureau, and despised the producers, as slaves, as traders, as shopkeepers--as industrialists.

To the glory of mankind, there was, for the first and only time in history, a country of money--and I have no higher, more reverent tribute to pay to America, for this means: a country of reason, justice, freedom, production, achievement. For the first time, man's mind and money were set free, and there were no fortunes-by-conquest, but only fortunes-by-work, and instead of swordsmen and slaves, there appeared the real maker of wealth, the greatest worker, the highest type of human being--the self-made man--the American industrialist.

If you ask me to name the proudest distinction of Americans, I would choose--because it contains all the others--the fact that they were the people who created the phrase 'to make money.' No other language or nation had ever used these words before; men had always thought of wealth as a static quantity--to be seized, begged, inherited, shared, looted of obtained as a favor. Americans were the first to understand that wealth has to be created. The words 'to make money' hold the essence of human morality.

Yet these were the words for which Americans were denounced by the rotted cultures of the looters' continents. Now the looters' credo has brought you to regard your proudest achievements as a hallmark of shame, your prosperity as guilt, your greatest men, the industrialists, as blackguards, and your magnificent factories as the product and property of muscular labor, the labor of whip-driven slaves, like the pyramids of Egypt. The rotter who simpers that he sees no difference between the power of the dollar and the power of the whip, ought to learn the difference on his own hide-- as, I think, he will.

Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to be the tool by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of men. Blood, whips and guns--or dollars. Take your choice--there is no other--and your time is running out.

Re:Started by Bush Sr, continued by his son (1)

Crisses (776475) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088212)

You can't expect anything better from Humanity than it being itself and inventing poor reflections in it's image. Money was barter. You spend time -- a limited commodity -- making it. So money is a reflection of a portion of your lifetime. Money does not make people evil. Money in itself is not evil. It's disrespect for others that allows people to be greedy and hoard other people's money. It's as prevalent and disgusting as the rush to live forever. People suck up as much money as they can in the disillusionment that somehow they can buy longevity, pay to make their miserable lives worthwhile. I'm not worried about the advertising on the walls of my children's cramped apartments -- I am VERY worried about the food supply. One is bad -- the other is akin to murder. We have no regard for our planet or our fellow people. Stealing people's money is literally stealing their life. ---- In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decisions on the next seven generations. --Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy

And to think.. (4, Insightful)

Ryouga3 (683889) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088057)

Hewlett-Packard (HP) was once known for how much they cared about their employees.

It just goes the show that short-term, bottom-line only thinking really isn't good business sense.

Re:And to think.. (1)

puppetman (131489) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088200)

Their bottom line would be alot better if they hadn't bought that dog of a company, Compaq.

I wonder how many employees that they brought on with Compaq vs how many they are laying off now.

People always complain about inefficiency in government, but I've seen big public companies waste millions and millions. Most of these employees will get a decent severence package, and have their health insurance paid for by HP for a while. Next year, they'll announce that they are hiring 10,000 to keep up with the new boom in the technology industry.

Layoffs - evil but necessary? (1)

Anonymus Bosch (893140) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088067)

If you think of the modern corporation as a machine for making money then it makes sense to re-engineer its cogs periodically.

Unfortunately the cogs in this case are people. Where I work they laid around 100 people off 3 years ago and there is still a lingering feeling of resentment. However, the company is now profitable , so at least some people got to keep their jobs - better than everybody hitting the unemployment line, right?

Fortunately for us and unfortunately for uncreative management, layoffs are not a panacea - they've got to keep a few of us monkeys around (at least in the forseeable future), right?!

"to layoff" - there is no such verb!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088084)

to layoff

There is no such verb, you illiterate clod! Tell us where you work so we can arrange for you to receive a note from your boss demonstrating the correct use.

verb this ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088154)

http://www.answers.com/layoff&r=67 [answers.com]

The verb lay off has 2 meanings:

Meaning #1: put an end to a state or an activity
Synonyms: discontinue, stop, cease, give up, quit

Meaning #2: dismiss, usually for economic reasons
Synonym: furlough

McNealy was right? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088096)

Sounds like the echoes of two garbage trucks colliding...

And of course they fire a lot of skilled workers (4, Insightful)

ShatteredDream (636520) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088102)

It's been my experience that people who do the non-specialized business work tend to think that their "leadership" is invaluable to the company, when in reality it is easily reproduced. An engineer can rise to the occassion and be a good leader, but a person whose formal training is just "business" or a MBA and a liberal arts background cannot just rise to the occassion and be a replacement engineer. Leadership is something that is half nature, half nurture. Most people I've ever known, myself included, who are good at leading have a very strong natural knack for leading and organizing.

Personally, I would want efficiency-minded former engineers to head an engineering company I was the CEO of. I'd want these former engineers because they'd know what's bullshit and what's not and that'd keep my company's ass farther away from the fire. We're sentient beings, not hive workers. To paraphrase Heinlein, specialization is for insects, there is no reason why someone who spent most of their career as an engineer cannot have a good sense for business and be a good business leader.

Since the buck clearly doesn't stop at the CEO's desk in most situations, I don't see why stockholders waste tens of millions of dollars of their company's money on them. At a company like HP, the CEO is naturally going to be detatched from most of the company's operations and excuse me, but I just don't see why any company would sacrifice anyone who could contribute to R&D of new products when cuts in middle and upper management employment and salaries would yield decent results.

Which is more likely to bring a higher ROI: firing many of the people capable of making new products and keeping many of the middle managers and their upper management ilk, or trimming top down? Maybe if HP put many of those people on some good projects, they'd do a lot of good for the company. It'd be ironic if several groups from the 15,000 who get laid off end up founding companies that make the next iPod, Tivo or something like that.

I'm not saying that many of them shouldn't have been laid off, just that it is incredibly stupid to fire people who can make products if assigned properly, but not cut back severely on upper management's pay and the ranks of the middle managers. When Sun laid off a number of its Solaris and Java developers, but didn't fire McNealey, that loud mouth imbecile, I just shook my head. In order to save money and face, our shiny suit wearing business elite would rather fire people with very hard to find engineering skills that could make or break the success of their products than cull the ranks of their own.

This economy is on fire! (4, Interesting)

bigberk (547360) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088108)

HP is firing 15,000 employees on top of the 3,000 jobs they already have cut since November.

IBM announced cutting 10,000 to 13,000 jobs in Europe just last month.

Ford and General Motors can't sell cars and are at risk of defaulting on their debt -- their credit rating has been cut down the minimum by ratings agencies.

So is this the freight train of a bull economy everyone is raving about? I'm an amateur financial enthusiast but I strongly suggest anyone thinks twice before buying any mutual funds in this climate. Stocks are at 4 year highs and future prospects don't look positive at all

Re:This economy is on fire! (4, Funny)

joelsanda (619660) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088170)

So is this the freight train of a bull economy everyone is raving about?

You're probably critical of Bush, too. Why, Rumsfeld and Bush alone have created more than 130,000 full-time jobs in Iraq.

Re:This economy is on fire! (1)

HermanAB (661181) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088188)

Well, before reality sunk in, the US economy was running on fraud. IMHO the US economy has been in the dumps since about 1995. It should shake off the dead wood and slime balls any time now...

Glad I left in May (1)

PornMaster (749461) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088119)

I left HP's services organization in May, and I have to say that it was a wonderful move.

I worked for them for 4 years, and there seemed to be no interest in employee development. I was making a good salary, but found no interest in spending a few thousand a year to develop skills and interests among the talented employees. The reason I stayed as long as I did was the fact that I was on an account contracted for a long enough period of time, that my job appeared safe, but with HP, I felt like I was "playing not to lose".

Come again!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088149)

A business merger that failed to live up to the hype and left the company for the worst!? Why I've never heard of such a thing.

Why didn't they just send back all their H-1bs? (0, Troll)

Baldrson (78598) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088165)

H-1bs are preferred over US employees [slashdot.org] . Now we see that outsourcing is also preferred over US employees. This won't stop till US politics and society is restructured to stop the globalizers from selling-out the country that made them -- both here and abroad.

Corporations have no god-given right to their property-rights [zazona.com] . They were given the environment that provided their property rights by the US's citizens who defended not only defended those property rights with their lives and tax dollars, but were the source technologically creative culture these globalizing traitors now sell-out to foreign competitors with the cooperation of corrupt politicians.

PS: This isn't to say this movement of labor off-shore isn't welcomed. The less power companies like HP have over the US the faster the US will recover from the slide to third-world status created by these Frankenstein monstrosities.

Of course they won't know right away (2, Insightful)

Chris Snook (872473) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088171)

It really ought to be a matter of common sense that employees won't know their status immediately. Someone decides at a high level that they're going to change their priorities, and each division needs to cut their spending by a certain percentage. That percolates down, with managers at each level deciding which portions of their organization are most valuable and efficient. Sometimes whole divisions will be cut or merged (with cuts delegated down) and often the cuts will go down to the individual employee level. As much as it sucks to be uncertain about this, employees now have some warning and time to prepare their resumes and ask their contacts in the industry about positions while management carefully weighs how to do this in a manner that will best serve the company, so that they won't have to do anything else of the sort in the foreseeable future.

If you think about it, having the CEO and VPs make check marks on a list of people they've never even met and announce that without warning would be far, far more evil.

Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088175)

The headline in India today was "HP hires 15,000 new employees"... so which is it?

"lay off", not "layoff" (3, Funny)

adrianmonk (890071) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088176)

Being one of the resident curmudgeonly grammar freaks, I feel inclined to point out that "layoff" is a noun, and "lay off" is a verb (phrase). Therefore, it isn't possible to "layoff" someone; instead, you must lay them off.

TFA? (4, Interesting)

torstenvl (769732) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088179)

Has anyone read the article? Because it seems the link is bad. I get "Hurd signs on as new HP chief" as the story, and a quick search for "layoff" fails, as does a search for "15".

As for the layoffs... well... I really believe in free, borderless markets. I really really do. But I think we can take a lesson from the EU, and require an adherence to a minimum set of criteria before granting full trade privileges. Giving other markets power without responsibility is a bad thing; without some sort of market synchronization we're just shooting ourselves in the foot.

What if we could say "Okay, India, we'll have completely free trade with you if you become a member of WEFTA (World-Encompassing Free Trade Agreement) and have your economy up to minimum standards within five years."

Maybe a four-tiered system could be made:
  • Tier 3:
    • We disapprove of counties' economies and market practices
    • Trade is negotiated on a case-by-case basis
    • Superfluous trade is discouraged
  • Tier 2:
    • Friendly trade partners
    • Large-scale trading allowed
    • Protectionism discouraged
    • Reflects current US/EU (e.g., Boeing/Airbus subsidies)
  • Tier 1:
    • Similar to current US/Canada relations
    • Mostly free trade
    • Would be mostly for candidate WEFTA members
    • Expectations of attempted synchronization to WEFTA standards
  • Tier 0:
    • Full WEFTA member
    • All members compliant with WEFTA labor regulations
    • Free movement of goods, services, people, institutions, without visas or import/export taxes
    • Would be like current trade relations between any two US States


This is a bit more complicated than the current EU system, but the idea is the same: Don't let our jobs, our money, our very economy go to those who aren't gonna play by the rules. Small economic variations in WEFTA would exist and would be allowed (it's cheaper to live in a small town in Ithaca, NY than it is in Beverly Hills, CA) for free-trade regions but this $1-an-hour-factory-in-Mexico phenomenon wouldn't exist to pull jobs from the lower rungs of the U.S. (or any full WEFTA member) economy.

If only we could get our Congress to get their charbon and acier together. ;-)

Global shift (1)

Andrew Tanenbaum (896883) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088196)

Previously it was the US and GB providing technology to the world. Now it's the opposite - the world provides technology for HP - and people expect that the same amount of people are needed to be employed for the latter as the former? Good grief.

Thank goodness ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13088205)

I was irked when HP spun off its test equipment business as Agilent. HP had a long, proud history as a test equipment maker. It seemed like the tail wagging the dog.

If HP is in trouble now, then I am glad that Agilent is well away from it. Maybe if HP goes bust, Agilent can buy back the name.

These headlines have been the norm (4, Insightful)

Wansu (846) | more than 8 years ago | (#13088219)



... for the past 5 years. And yet, the smug, smirking, puffy pundits continually tell us what fabulous shape the economy is in. No doubt most of these HP jobs paid well. The US has been hemoraging high paying jobs for 5 years. And I thought the recession of the early 90s was bad. That recesion was characterized by 4 figure layoffs. If headcount is a good measure, this recession is 10 times worse.

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