back to article HP cutting 1,300 (more) UK jobs, union claims

Unite, the UK's largest labor union, says that Hewlett-Packard plans to axe an additional 1,300 British jobs — a move that Unite decries as "butchery". "Despite significant profits HP appears hell-bent on continuing to butcher its highly skilled UK workforce," said Unite national officer Peter Skyte in a Monday statement. …

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Unhappy

Staf Morale

What Staff Morale.. It left our area when we (EDS) were taken over... Now we are to be sold off to an all encompassing wholly owned subsidiary of HP - www.synstar.com. So who do I work for???

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FAIL

europhobia

Hah, just another example of what you get when you do not align your laws with EU employment laws. Germany was out of the recession months before you as well...

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FAIL

Don't make me laugh

Tough laws to protect people from layoffs are an even bigger fail. France has tough laws that make layoffs difficult. The result? Our office hasn't hired anyone in years, because the US head office knows that they'll be hard and costly to get rid of if the economy tanks again, so we're just getting steadily smaller as people leave & aren't replaced. Same in the German offices. At least in the UK people have some chance of finding another job.

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Grenade

Morale at an all time low

I have to ask, cnsidering the last 2 years of hell that mark turd had put the UK workers through, was there any left?

Suck on this HP exces it's what you deserve after what you have done to a great company and the people that work(ed) there

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Coat

Goodness Gracious Me

Meet the new boss. Same as the last one.

HP are the greediest participants in the race for offshoring and profits. So greedy that it's not enough to send our jobs to India. They hammer the staff there with pay cuts and crap terms & working conditions too. They've even tried to claim they ship the jobs abroad not to save money but to improve customer service. That'd be like my selling a VW Golf and buying a Fiat Panda in a bid to improve reliability.

6,000 jobs gone in the last 4 years. The last worker need not turn out the lights. HP disconnected them long ago in a bid to save money already.

Coat because we'll all be outside soon.

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Thumb Up

Well said

"They've even tried to claim they ship the jobs abroad not to save money but to improve customer service. That'd be like my selling a VW Golf and buying a Fiat Panda in a bid to improve reliability."

A friend of mine that recently left HP for one of our competitors put it this way: "HP has no interest in being the best, it wants to be the cheapest."

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Just as an aside...

Fiat are more reliable than VW according to the latest German JD Power survey info....

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WTF?

Strange analogy

Erm, weird analogy that. VW rarely does well in reliability surveys (if you need a citation look up Which magazine or JD Power)! Admittedly neither does VW, however, last time I checked (2010) average cost of repair for a VW was £324, and for Fiat it was £237.

Basically, you are right even if your analogy is messed up; HP is trying to become more like Dell (cheaper). And it is very much like VW right now. That is to say, people perceive it as being a more quality product, even if it ultimately it is not.

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Linux

I meant a 1982 Fiat Panda..........

Being HP, and therefore not having had a pay rise for 3 years, seen my job downgraded despite having being promoted only a few months earlier and my (like everyone else) been invited to take a 5% pay cut - a suggestion that I had no hesitation in sticking two fingers up at, I'm not really in the market for a new car.

Another correspondent confirms that his Account is excluded from this particular cull. I would suggest that that is only because they've yet to agree who got the chop when last month's quota was announced.

HP is run by a clique of self serving Corporate swine that can't keep their noses out of the bonus trough long enough to see the shambolic results of their one size fits all greed. They even target net staff reductions on T&M deals! such is their blinkered pursuit of staff cut numbers.

Someone raised the question "why do you stay if you are so unhappy?". My answer is that I stay to get my redundancy. They've screwed us over on pay and bonuses. I am not going to resign and walk away without them coughing up on that just yet.

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Grenade

Best Shore

It seems that whilst we have to suffer best shore the current locations in Hungary and Bulgaria are chosen because the helpdesk staff earn as little as £6000 a year.

That to me stinks of slave labour and the more bad publicity that HP is given because of this the better for me.

They even have the audacity to admit staff attrition in India is huge and that they are losing money having to constantly train new staff.

Mean while, UK workers face what amounts to a pay cut each year as we dont get cost of living pay rises and the new boss is off swanning round the globe meeting as many people as possible.

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FAIL

How ironic

We just came from meeting with our account manager this morning and unleashed on him a bitch session about HP support standards going into rapid decline of late, and off-shoring has been part of that.

We managed to get rid of Dell years ago because of their shite support, and while part of the premium you pay for HP gear is the better quality, part of it was their (at one time) superior responsiveness in terms of support.

It's starting to get to the point where we're wondering why we're paying the premium - maybe we should go with the crappier Dell gear, which is still adequate, and use some of the cost savings to keep onsite spares. No point paying for value-add in terms of support when we're not getting that value.

This is in Australia, btw, so things are not different in old Blighty, by the sounds of it - or maybe they're finally getting the gumption to wind things down over there now.

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Anonymous Coward

It's the same everywhere

All the big IT firms are doing the same thing. IBM have had even more savage cuts but do it on the quiet. Not sure why the same cuts that were announced in June being announced again is such big news. What is strange is how aggressively HP are recruiting in some areas. You'll see a lot of these cuts end up in people moving roles or taking voluntary redundancy.

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Anonymous Coward

These cuts...

...are in addition to the ones announced i n June. What a shite place this is to work, I wish they would just kick me out and have done with it. I know it seems sad but some years ago I used to look forward to Monday mornings so I could go do some fun work.

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Army of Salesmen

HP say they are going to recruit something in the order of 40,000 new Sales people.

No idea what those people are going to be selling when the people who actually create and support the products and services are gone.

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Bronze badge

You are making the mistake of thinking that...

HP cares about it's employees.

The sole remit of the senior management is to make the company as efficient as possible and return as much value as possible back to the shareholders. If a bloated workforce is an obstacle to achieving that efficiency then guess what is going to happen. Sure, it may not be ethical, and it may not be nice for you employees, and it sure as hell might not even be legal... but guess what, it's going to happen.

HP have always wanted to be one of the big players, but in my experience of dealing with them they have never seemed to deliver the goods in terms of product or service. If they are to compete then they need to focus on what they do best (which isn't much) rather than diluting their core industry base by trying to be another IBM or Oracle.

For all you people at HP that are going to moan about these cuts.. if it is that bad, what are you still doing there?

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Alert

Not really disagreeing, but...

First off I don't think anyone deludes themselves into thinking that leadership should love their employees. One of my management professors in college told our class "never love an organization, they are incapable of loving you back" and that bit of wisdom has been, IME, absolutely true. There is a Machiavellian spectrum to how companies treat their employees (is it better to be loved or feared), and HP borders on the sadistic end of it. You don't *have* to abuse your employees to get your balance sheet in order - it is, however, one way to go about it.

Speaking as a leader in HPES where most of these cuts are coming from, HP's problem really has little to do with too many worker bees (meaning the people who actually support our clients), and I don't think I'm exaggerating (much at least) when I say that we could lay off all our worker bees and still not meet our financial targets. Despite laying off tens of thousands of employees, somehow we've managed to increase our levels of management post-EDS acquisition and there is absolutely no shortage of useless bureaucrats - entire orgs of them in fact - taking home paychecks and providing nothing more than a stumbling block and making messes that others have to rework as their value.

Ultimately, the issue is that our uppers have absolutely no clue who is making money vs. who is losing it... and since they can't be bothered to find out they just roll cuts down the hill to everyone the same way they did salary reductions, the same way they did job reclassifications. Doing this screws the "good" orgs just the same as it does the bad. I remember hearing a story one time about us laying off one of the lead techs in the middle of onboarding a new client - costing us financial penalties and essentially derailing our client relationship. You can't assume that these actions have no impact on the bottom line.

Business is business, no doubt... but bad business is bad business too.

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Anonymous Coward

Redundancy

I'm waiting to be pushed rather than jumping.

Besides, like most HP staff at the coalface I haven't been given a training course in over ten years, not even for the HP equipment we've been told we'll be supporting in the future.

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Anonymous Coward

Regarding Redundancy

Those headcount reduction targets have to be satisfied. If you're serious about wanting to leave, you might want to consider going out and getting something new lined up and then volunteering for the reduction assuming you know your boss pretty well. Trust me, we get double screwed if we lose someone to attrition because attrition backfill rarely happens. If we're going to lose you one way or the other, we might as well get target credit for it.

Now... that's something I have seen happen before, and it's a move I'm considering making. No promises that your boss wouldn't react differently/poorly but if you've been on good terms with them it *might* be worth a try.

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Stop

Employment law, or costs?

"Lax employment protection in the UK..."

Well maybe that is true. But also costs, in the form of just about everything we buy, are higher here too. Taxation, which Unite is keen to increase, is higher here than in other countries. I wonder if they realise that. By supporting additional and higher costs here, they are causing jobs to be sent overseas.

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People are still surprised?

Anyone performing work for or on behalf of HP must already know what a bunch of money grabbing bar stewards they are. HP hold down wages and slash contract rates in the name of cost cutting but it's clear that the "cost cutting" is a thinly veiled exercise in finding cash for the executives' bonuses.

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Unite "Claims"

Why is it that every news story I've seen on this seems to indicate that this is merely a "claim" from the Union?

We all received an Email from HP Corporate spelling out the cuts. This is real, not something that Unite made up. I quote:

"Due to the ongoing need to manage costs and achieve industry competitive structures in what continues to be an economically challenging environment, we have started consultation with the Employee Representatives for WFM in H1 2011. We have identified that up to 1299 roles could be impacted across the UK organisation as a result of a variety of change programmes broken down as follows:"

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Employee Value

Well at least HP displayed a modicum of honesty recently: normally they, and companies like them, spout off that "Our People are our best / most valuable asset" etc.

In a recent high-level publication they actually listed Employees about 5th in the order of priority.

I don't know where the idea comes from that the workforce is bloated, on my account at least (which has always been both large and profitable) we are running at absolute bare-bones staff and struggling to keep up. The customer keeps wanting to pay less while we lose staff, gain non-productive paperwork and yet are still expected to deliver "Gold Service".

There's simply no room for staff cuts here - thankfully an update today implies our account is exempt from THIS particular round of fantasy cuts.

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FAIL

HP sales teams shat in the nest and the employees are paying the price

HP can only trade on their reputation for so long - and I think the use-by date went past a couple of years back.

We stopped buying HP a few years back when they shafted us on a 200k SAN deal - selling us stuff which never worked as sold along with software which just plain old didn't work at all, then dicked us around for 4 years promising fixes which never showed up.

Their printers are even worse. The last ones we bought (colour laserjets) cost 5 times HPs quoted running costs, let alone the 10% extra over competitors costs we knew we were in for (managers quote "But you can't get fired for buying HP" - he got fired).

I will happily never buy another HP product again and just plonked about 400k down in a competitor's lap after being very impressed with both the SAN equipment's reliability and the support offered on previous test purchases.

Now if I could just do something about Redhat's almost-unfit-for-purpose clustering software... (but at least THEY answer the phone, unlike Suse!)

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Unhappy

Roll on monday

A load of us will be getting the bad news this coming Monday, after another con-call on Friday just to piss us all off a bit more over the weekend. Just get it over with you bar stewards.

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WTF?

Did you just call us all bar stewards?

n/t

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Horrible Company

Like many have said, a glorified reseller which "Invents" bugger all, and shafts its employees worse than Ron Jeremy.

I have not ever met one happy HP employee, and I have worked with a lot of them from various areas from HPUX to EVA to Openview employees.

Contrast with what was Sun where I was an employee (IBM too), where nearly everyone had at least some pride for the company and the engineering/academia it stood for.

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