When it comes to Hewlett-Packard and layoffs, nothing shocks me any more. So, it’s tempting to react with a big fat yawn to the news the company has increased the estimate of its latest round of layoffs to 29,000 from 27,000.
Employees would, I guess, have somewhat mixed feelings about this. During the last earnings call, executives revealed that they had been surprised when a larger-than-expected number of employees were accepting the company’s offer of early retirement.
Seems they can’t find the door fast enough.
All this said, the big number continues to astound me. As I wrote last Spring, before HP announced the latest restructuring this spring, the company had announced layoffs of 93,105.
“Could they top 120,000?” I wondered. If the latest number holds, then yes, yes they can! A staggering number of a company that remains relatively financially healthy and profitable over that time. Nobody is holding a gun to HP’s head making them do this to avoid insolvency.
What is less clear is whether continuing to embrace a non-stop policy of constant churn — hire, fire, repeat! — is going to lead this company back from the edge.