Ford's Salaried Workers Feeling the Pain

Frank Williams
by Frank Williams
fords salaried workers feeling the pain

The only thing worse than losing your job is having to sit around and wait to lose your job. Ask Ford's white collar workers. The Blue Oval Boyz have already announced plans to cut the salaried workforce by 15 percent; in some areas like product development it's as high as 20 percent. With the bulk of the cuts coming in late July, morale and productivity are lower than the chances that CEO Alan Mulally will earn less than $20m in any given year. The Detroit News reports "work has ground to a near-halt in some offices as workers fret about their futures and spend time browsing job postings on the Internet." (Hi guys!) Even those who aren't scheduled for layoffs are looking elsewhere for employment, not knowing if they may be shit-canned in the next round of cut-backs. Does it make sense to cut product developers and engineers while struggling to get new products to market? Oh… wait. They'll just import designs from Europe three years too late or let Mazda handle it. In fact, it looks like they'll do anything they can to save a buck as long as it doesn't interfere with executives' mega-salaries, perks and golden parachutes.

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4 of 18 comments
  • Rtz Rtz on Jun 30, 2008

    Ford Flex and what else do they have? Sales go down, down, down and they can't turn them around. Ford Edge? Too expensive. Ford Flex? Too expensive. What else do they have? A 20 year old design Focus(no one forgot about the wheels falling off) and a Fusion with no reputation. Any ex- Ford Taurus driver is too scared to touch it. No ones buying trucks or SUVs. The new has worn off that big 1970's looking Mustang. It would would sell more if it was electric. V6 and V8? A model that gets good range(economy model), and a high performance model. On board charger with adapter plugs for 110 or 220. If the battery is an issue, sell them in 50/100/200/300/400/500 mile range models. How much range do you need? There are some lower cost batteries out there, but these auto companies are too scared of change. They are piloting the Titanic through the night with white knuckles straight into the ice berg.

  • ZoomZoom ZoomZoom on Jun 30, 2008
    Qwerty : The thing about deep layoffs is that after losing productivity waiting for the axe to fall, there is an extended time afterward where productivity continues to be in the dumps. People are in shock as they learn friends are gone. Institutional knowledge gets lost. You find things that no one knows how to do because the one guy that always handled it no longer works there. People resist taking on new responsibilities because they think their plate is already full. A general malaise sets in. Months of potential work is lost. All of that is true, but it's even worse than that. The ones who are left have a sort of "survivor's guilt," however short-lived until the second (and third) round of cuts. Until those cuts, they are constantly looking over their shoulders, waiting, waiting, waiting. In the 80's, it started with the famous "days off without pay" that so many companies forced people to take. Then a couple months later, bam! The real layoffs hit. I knew somebody who got laid off by way of a letter that was faxed to her. Her boss was on the same floor...not in a distant city or something! Cold, yes. Indicative of management incompetence, ABSOLUTELY. But in the long run, maybe it was just as well, because the damage had already been done for years leading up to the layoffs.

  • Rix Rix on Jun 30, 2008

    How about some new slogans? "Job None"

  • Jeff Puthuff Jeff Puthuff on Jun 30, 2008

    Now that the new(ish) F150 is done (though waiting in the wings), they can dismiss the workers who developed that product/. Thanks for everything, fellas!