Famously employee-friendly Toyota (TM) has never done layoffs in its existence, but the global slump is putting that track record on the line. The automaker, which has dipped into the red, is trying everything it can to reduce costs without sacking any workers. Among the measures: wage freezes, the elimination of bonuses, worker buyouts and shorter work weeks.
While it may be unrealistic to hope that the US (or global) auto industry returns to its peak for a long time, if Toyota can pick up share from failing automakers (perhaps if one of the Big Three goes bankrupt, or if there’s consolidation), then it may soon again justify maintaining the size of the workforce.
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