Source: Layoffs Are About To Hit HP

Meg Whitman cubicle officeWhitman works in a cubicle just like the rank and file

Photo: AP and Flickr/ste3ve

It’s no secret that HP is considering layoffs and soon.Meg Whitman has even publicly hinted at them. Question is, how many employees will be axed?

One source at HP claims the job cuts are going to be massive.

While this is just one source, we know that tension inside the company is running high and so is the rumour mill.

Here’s what our source told us:

  • Layoffs are going to be significant. At least, they’ll be bigger than what Whitman has said so far. She’s said that layoffs would NOT be “broad-based” at least in China (whatever that means), but she didn’t say anything about the rest of the worldwide workforce.
  • Our source said HP wants to trim its workforce by 10%-15%. Given that HP has 320,000 employees, a 10% reduction would be 32,000 workers gone. However, that would include an early retirement program. We’d guess that this would include attrition, too, where new hires don’t come in when employees leave. That number sounds high and we don’t expect HP to promise it next week, because HP will also want to shift some jobs offshore. So, HP’s total workforce numbers won’t reflect all of the cuts.
  • We’re hearing that manufacturing staff won’t be hit as hard as others. That makes sense to us given that HP is more of a product company than a software or services company.
  • Speaking of services, keep an eye out for HP Services results, which one insider said is expected to have another abysmal quarter. HP’s outsourcing units could be particularly hit hard with whatever layoffs come and many of their jobs moved offshore. We’re hearing that people with 8-10 years of experience—or are at the top of the salary charts — are the most vulnerable.

UPDATE: We’ve got more info on how badly the services unit will be hit. Read about it here: HP’s Layoffs Will Squash This Important Business Unit, Employees Warn

We’ll find out in one week what HP is officially planning on doing. Given Whitman’s constant speeches about HP needing time, we might also hear that HP is not going to rip the bandage off in one fell swoop, but will do one modest layoff in 2012, shift more work to offshore workers, and trim the workforce more over time.

HP had no comment.

Don’t miss: The 7 Biggest Ways Meg Whitman Is Struggling At HP

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