By on May 16, 2017

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The Ford Motor Company is allegedly preparing for a sweeping reduction of its global workforce. Harder days for the auto industry have been a long time coming, but reports claim the impending layoffs are specifically related to shoring up finances and turning around the company’s lagging stock valuation — meaning Ford could be the canary in the coal mine or a lone company desperate to bolster its own profitability and get angry shareholders off its back.

While the automaker has not yet confirmed the cuts, there is every indication an announcement will be made soon. When confronted with the matter, representatives have been careful to make noncommittal statements and doubly cautious not to deny anything.

“We remain focused on the three strategic priorities that will create value and drive profitable growth, which include fortifying the profit pillars in our core business, transforming traditionally underperforming areas of our core business and investing aggressively, but prudently, in emerging opportunities,” Ford said in an official statement. “Reducing costs and becoming as lean and efficient as possible also remain part of that work. We have not announced any new people efficiency actions, nor do we comment on speculation.” 

Ford’s response to the media speculation was taken down from its website earlier today for unknown reasons.

Inside sources are saying Ford has set a $3 billion cost reduction goal for the end of this year as U.S. light-vehicle demand continues to slip after seven straight years of growth. According to The Wall Street Journal, North America and Asia will lose roughly 10 percent of their salaried workforce — keeping hourly workers on board to maintain production flexibility.

First-quarter revenue actually rose for the brand by 4 percent, to $39.1 billion, though profits were zapped by recalls, higher production expenses, and Ford’s continued investment in new mobility services. Shareholders faulted CEO Mark Fields for obsessing over future technologies and a lackluster market valuation. With shareholders unwilling to tolerate the declining stock price, despite Ford performing about as well as can be expected, measures had to be taken. It’s just unfortunate they had to be employment related.

However, Ford could also be getting inevitable job cuts out of the way early in a perfect two-birds-one-stone scenario. Michelle Krebs, an analyst with AutoTrader, told the Detroit Free Press Ford may be taking a prudent action to prepare for declining U.S. industry sales. “Belt tightening comes as no surprise with sales softening and profits squeezed,” Krebs said. “Ford has been under particular pressure to take action to boost its stock price. The board meeting last week likely added pressure to get specific about cost cuts.”

Those briefed on the plan say Ford will offer generous early retirement incentives to reduce its salaried staff by October 1st. Additional employment cuts are rumored but remain unverified or have been disavowed by sources.

[Image: Ford Motor Co.]

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41 Comments on “Ford Likely to Eliminate 10 Percent of Global Workforce: Report...”


  • avatar
    threeer

    Ford…providing a new type of “mobility” for its workforce…

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    “…people efficiency actions…”

    That’s rich.

    • 0 avatar
      redmondjp

      Brought to you by the same people who refer to their workforce as ‘human capital.’

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        I thought I’d heard all the lame euphemisms possible for “layoff.”

        That was a new one, though.

        • 0 avatar
          ect

          CEOs often like to fire people when the CEO might not make full bonus.

          In many executive bonus programs, achievement is measured against net operating profits per GAAP or IFRS. When you let a lot of people go, the reduction in operating costs counts towards your bonus achievement. On the flip side, the one-time cost of firing all those people is just that – an “extraordinary item” that come below the line, so doesn’t get charged against bonus achievement.

          In corporate America, CEOs make money by firing people. And that motivates a lot of mass layoffs.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    That headline made me think:

    Umbrella Corporation (Resident Evil)

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    The robots are coming!

  • avatar
    dusterdude

    I’m not sure if Dearborn has “leaned out” at all since 2005/6, but when I visited Dearborn a few times in 2005/6, I had general (not scientific) impression that it was at least 20% overstaffed — but not sure of “headcount” now vs. then ?

  • avatar
    PRNDLOL

    This plan will be known as ‘The Wade Fordward’.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “…Ford could be the canary in the coal mine or a lone company desperate to bolster its own profitability…”

    Everyone wants to bolster profits; Ford is the canary in the mine. GM will need to follow suit, but they won’t until it’s very late.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      I agree. There will always be a demand for their overpriced, cash cow, pickup trucks, but not so much for their other vehicles.

      Times are changing. Oil is dirt cheap, and forecast to stay that way for many lifetimes ahead.

      Buy a full-size 4-door pickup truck. It’s the sedan of future.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        I’ll pass, but thanks anyway.

        (If I’m dropping four-door-pickup money on a vehicle, it’ll be on something that doesn’t handle like the USS Nimitz.)

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          Well, I understand. It’s not for everyone.

          But it is for the people who can afford only one car that does it all; and I remember reading somewhere that the 4-door pickup truck was the ONE do-it-all vehicle that fit the bill.

          It sure is the vehicle of choice for illegal aliens in MY area.

          The 4-door pickup was the ONE vehicle for the masses that was way overdue, although some auto makers like IHC and Dodge has earlier versions of 4-door pickup trucks

          I had a 1962 US Air Force 4-door IHC flight-line pickup truck I bought in 1965 from Remarketing & Distribution, the arm of the Air Force that handled sales of surplus to the public.

          But it had no AC, and even in 1965, in this desert, it was a 2-season truck, Winter and Spring.

          These days? All the amenities! But they still handle and drive like a truck.

        • 0 avatar
          joeaverage

          Why not? Its always fun to park at the grocery store…

    • 0 avatar
      Adam Tonge

      Actually, GM is in a good place in terms of total global employees. They have way less employees than VW and Toyota, which sell about the same amount of vehicles. GM actually has under 10% more employees than Ford.

      • 0 avatar
        tekdemon

        That metric is a little misleading though since so many of GM’s sales come from their JVs with SAIC where a lot of the people working on building the vehicles may not be GM workers despite GM counting the volume as theirs. All the people building those Wuling trucks are boosting GM’s volume figures sky high.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    Don’t worry, Trump’s going to bring all our jobs back from Cheeeyyyyyyna.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      To this day, the problem remains finding qualified American citizens to do those jobs.

      There are millions of decent-paying jobs unfilled in America because there aren’t enough qualified American citizens who can do the work, or who just don’t want to work.

      In NM, there are tent-cities springing up in the desert for all the workers moving here to get in on the oil boom/fracking.

      It’s gotten so bad that the NM Legislature has chimed in on the tent-city problem.

      Nothing resolved so far.

      • 0 avatar
        bullnuke

        It is becoming increasingly difficult to entice qualified/minimally qualified folks to “go where the work is” as well as “show up as scheduled on-time” regardless of the level of financial compensation. Tough to get people very far from their seat playing World of Warcraft while munching on a Hot Pocket in mom’s basement.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Highdesertcat is a genius on all things economic, political, social and life, writ large.

        He uses his Toyotas to haul illegal Mexican laborers to mend the fences on his New Mexico ranch that he purchased in large part from government subsidies (government pension, social security, Medicare, etc.) while decrying Big Government and the benefits it provides to other people, even as he
        readily takes every taxpayer-funded perk available, while slamming “illegal aliens” and flying his “Don’t Tread On Me’ Gadsden flag and sporting his Trump/Pence 2016 bumper sticker, yelling loudly for/demanding that the wall be built, while he buys Toyotas for himself and giving Hyundais to his ne’er-do well nieces and nephews, while reading Breitbart while watching Hannity after listening to druggie and sexual deviant Rush Limbaugh on the radio all day in his Toyota while driving around his alleged ranch with a full tank of gas that he purchased with social security money to make sure the ditch digger illegals he demonizes but pays in cash to do the menial labor jobs his children and grandchildren won’t, before driving off to get government paid for doctors’ visits, medical procedures, surgeries, other treatments, and taxpayer-provided medications for his whole extended family, before going to bed after reading Drudge, Breitbart and Atlas Shrugged.

        Highdesertcat and those like him are MAGAing!

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Looks like there is something that irritates DeadWeight more than Cadillac.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          DW, thank you for the compliments, but I don’t watch Fox or Hannity. Can’t stand the constant interrupting of their guests.

          I do have a TV mounted over and behind my PC that is usually tuned to Bloomberg, CNBC, PBS, BBC or NBR, when I’m working.

          Don’t do Drudge (don’t even know who that is), Breitbart or Atlas — never been to any of them.

          But other than that, your summation is mostly accurate, except that I made my money the old fashioned way. I worked for it. And that seems to bug you.

          Or is it just plain old jealousy on your part for a guy who joined the Air Force with just the clothes he wore and made it this far in life?

          I never figured you for a touchy feely ‘crat though.

          I didn’t vote for Trump, either. Never thought he could win. There was NO path to 270. And then there was……

          But you are right. I’m happy to see the changes being made to America. Much overdue!

          Good while it lasts, or until the next ‘crat gets elected into office.

          If Trump runs in 2020, I will vote him!

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I’m a true independent.

            You read me completely wrong.

            You bemoan illegal immigrants (Mexicans took urrrr jeerbs!) as if they are a triple-threat, while bemoaning big government, only to interrupt yourself and speak of all the BigGov benefits you bag, while you hire Mexican day laborers (all of whom I literally and absolutely doubt you verify their immigration status or work status) to work your “ranch” in that dusty, irradiated desert that is New Mexico.

            You bemoan the system, as a stealthy Trump cheerleader (just admit the obvious; you just eat up his rhetoric and BS about how he was going to MAGA for the “little guy” and “drain the swamp” – we know you by your consistent, steady stream of obvious praise of Trumpigula The Petty Emperor Wearing No Clothes – and how he was going to kick down the truly downtrodden and abused even further into the dirt to make the Joe The Coal Miner Types in West Virginiaaaa and Ranchers RANCHING TAXPAYER OWNED LAND ON MASSIVELY SUBSIDIZED LEASES on the plains feel better about their plight) even though you worked the system and worked in the system all your life – YOU GOT YOURS HDC, AMIRIGHT? Government Healthcare, government pay, government pension, and he!!, you now even get to use slave-labor from DOWN MEXICO WAY to do much of the hard work you and hour family can’t or won’t do and then turn around and B!TCH about those same laborers and “the subsystem” as you fapp to Trump & Bannon rhetoric.

            You LOVE America while dissing “lazy American workers” while you buy your nieces and nephews vehicles either imported from other countries or whereupon the profits flow to foreign corporations, and also curiously diss “dirty illegal immigrants” that you exploit to further your own economic situation and comfort.

            You’re the confused, cranky, irrational old man that yells at his representative to tell the government to keep its hands off of your government paid-for healthcare, dude.

            You’re your own man, and you did it your way… a modern day John Wayne.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            DW, I thought you were an Independent, from previous comments we shared.

            But your comment about me reads more like the whining of a ‘crat who lost his job on account of Trump.

            My parents were both LEGAL immigrants, and that’s why I despise people who waltz across the border into the US and squat, as if they own the fvcking place.

            Even Mexico won’t let Americans stay there illegally or indefinitely. I know, I had to register being in-country for the months I was there. Ditto with Germany. And Portugal.

            Yep, to me Trump is exactly what America needed, and voted for. But it is only good for as long as it lasts, then it’s back to the same old schit of the past forever.

            I like what I see Trump do. I can see why the ‘crats and GOP are so upset. And the Fake News Media? Fugettaboutit!

            Trump bypasses them every day. Trump won’t get anything done that’s going to last beyond his term(s) in office.

            But Trump has a fantastic family. And so do I. Except Trump has a lot more money than I do.

            I still sense resentment on your part for someone who played by all the rules of the system, and beat them.

            My Rep and I were in the USAF together. I would never yell at him. He’s a great guy!

            I have to pay $115 every month for my Medicare, so it ain’t free. And it ain’t all that great either. Lots of places do not accept anything government health care.

            And you’re right, I did it my way. It was long. It was painful. In the early years I was living from payday to payday.

            But that’s all behind me, and I vowed I would never let my offspring have to suffer like my wife and I did.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “I like what I see Trump do”

            – You mean like brainlessly leak top secret information to the Russians?

            – You mean like successfully banning Muslims from entering the USA?

            – You mean like successfully cover up the “Russia thing” by firing Flynn and Comey?

            – You mean like kicking China’s azz all over the Pacific for trade imbalances and currency manipulation?

            – You mean like getting the funding for that Mexican wall?

            The list of sh!t sockpuppetpotus has f^cked up is much longer than the list of stuff he has accomplished.

            So far, all I’ve seen him do is weaken the USA.

            “NATO will reportedly put a time limit on speeches at an upcoming summit with Donald Trump, in an attempt to maintain the US President’s attention span.”

            “The pattern has become clear: A foreign official comes to President Trump. They speak. The official leaves with what he or she wants, and Trump emerges chastened, having reversed a major policy, or both.”

            “presidents are not supposed to brag about the powers of their office. They’re supposed to pursue the national interest. But even in private, Trump appears obsessed with using the presidency to prove how important and successful he is.”

            “It’s a vicious cycle. The more he uses his office to stroke his ego, the more he reveals how unsuited for it he is. The grander he tries to appear, the smaller he looks.”

            #Sockpuppetputus reflects badly upon the USA and its institutions.

            Support for him reflects badly upon his fan-base.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @DeadWeight – He relishes in pizzing people off.

            Unfortunately 85% of Republicans still think that sockpuppetpotus will be good for America.

            The Russians and Chinese love him.

            America’s trusted allies, not so much.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Trump and those that support him, largely (not all, obviously – but even those who I will give the benefit of the doubt to are being played), are bullies who pick on the weak.

            I say this as someone who is absolutely not a snowflake or otherwise a pushover, or SJW, or whatever the flavor du jour term used by those in the Breitbart-sphere to paint ALL who aren’t Trump-groupies is.

            I pick apart those in lofty places who are hapless/incompetent (General Motors and Cadillac Executives) and/or evil.

            Trump and Highdesertcat and those in that camp bully very vulnerable and downtrodden people (legitimate refugees, hard-working immigrantswho send 1/2 their net income back to their families in places like Mexico, kids whose families can’t afford even the modest price of a school lunch – which might be the only nutritious meal they get in the form of a milk carton, some fruit, protein, etc during most days of the year, etc.).

            Trump and Highdesertcat enjoy placing their boots on the faces of the vulnerable, downtrodden and those who aren’t as strong, for whatever reason (often the cruelties of life’s randomness), and who have no voice or recourse.

            Trump, Highdesertcat and those like them are hateful individuals. They are bitter towards the weak and vulnerable.

            It is apparent and clear for all to see.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @DeadWeight – This sums up why HDC is a #sockpuppetpotus fanboy.

            “Conservatives, argues researcher Philip Tetlock of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, are less tolerant of compromise; see the world in “us” versus “them” terms; are more willing to use force to gain an advantage; are “more prone to rely on simple (good vs. bad) evaluative rules in interpreting policy issues;” are “motivated to punish violators of social norms (e.g., deviations from traditional norms of sexuality or responsible behavior) and to deter free riders.”

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            Oh HDC.

            You’re showing your 4ss as well as your self entitlement.

            GFY.

            Sincerely,
            tresmonos

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Thanks, tres.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    The one time I visited one of the (many) Ford offices for business, I was amazed by the sheer size of it. It seemed like there were a hundred people or more in one room that was (to my eyes) the length of a football field. Desks and short Steelcase moveable walls. And this was just part of their EDI staff.

    It made the company I worked for seem like a little gnat, with our 12 person IT staff.

  • avatar
    skor

    As the hardware gets smarter, the meatware receives pink slips. Its the future of nearly all manufacturing.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      Much of a the meatware wants CEO-pay for doing any kind of work.

      It’s been a problem for a long, long time in America, ever since people were told they could be anything they wanted to be, regardless of qualifications, and forgot about their humble station in life.

      Even college grads often choose the wrong degree instead of the degrees that are and will be in demand well into the future.

      • 0 avatar
        skor

        I know countless people like you who thought they were ‘irreplaceable’….guess what happened to them? Do you control substantial amounts of capital or resources? No? You’re screwed along with the rest of us.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          “Do you control substantial amounts of capital or resources?”

          I have enough. Decades ago I started squirreling away cash money, like so many people who keep their liquid assets out of sight.

  • avatar
    arcuri

    Paychecks for not having a job. Welcome to the future.

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