Most notable IT layoffs of 2008

A look at this year's job cutbacks at Cisco, HP, Dell, Sun and other top technology companies

And the hits keep on coming

As the current economic crisis continues to unfold, Network World is keeping a eye on the industry's financial fluctuations. As more companies make cutbacks, we will keep updating this slideshow with the latest news.

Level 3 levels off workforce

The service provider said in December that it will cut 450 jobs in North America by year end, equaling about 8% of its staff. The move will result in a restructuring charge of $12 million to $15 million for Q4, the company says. The news comes on the heels of Level 3's announcement that Jeff Storey, formerly head of Leucadia National, was taking over as president and COO, replacing Level 3 co-founder Kevin O'Hara, who resigned in March. Read the full story .

Not music to Sony's ears

Sony said in December it plans to cut 8,000 jobs, close factories and reduce electronics investment by nearly a third in response to the current economic conditions. The recession and the strong yen, making Sony's products more expensive overseas, have been a double whammy. The electronics maker says it expects the moves to save it $1 billion over the next fiscal year. Read the full story .

AT&T to cut 12,000 employees through 2009

AT&T will lay off 12,000 workers through 2009 as the company reorganizes and faces a tough economic environment, the company said in December. The carrier will spend $600 million in its fourth quarter 2008 for severance payments to those workers, which represent about 4% of the company's workforce. The company tried to soften the blow by saying it will add employees in some areas, such as wireless, video and broadband, in order to meet customer demand. Many non-management employees who are affected will have a guaranteed job offer as stipulated in union contracts, AT&T said. Read full story .

Adobe feels economic slowdown

Hit by the global economic slowdown, Adobe Systems said in December that it would cut 600 jobs as it also lowered its revenue expectations for the fourth quarter. The job cuts will be made worldwide and account for about 8 percent of Adobe's total workforce, which stood at 7,623 at the end of September. The economic slowdown led to slower-than-expected sales of Adobe's new Creative Suite 4 software, which includes products like Photoshop and Dreamweaver and went on sale during the fourth quarter in North America and Europe, the company said.

"The global economic crisis significantly impacted our revenue during the fourth quarter," Shantanu Narayen, Adobe's president and CEO, said in a statement. Read the full story .

Economy, competition force Palm's hand

Struggling smartphone maker Palm laid off employees worldwide in November, but declined to say how many workers were affected. A Palm spokeswoman said: "It's generally the result of challenges facing the company and the industry, and better positions us to achieve profitability and long-term growth." Palm had already let go of more than 200 employees according to Q1 and Q3 financial filings. Competition from smartphone makers such as Apple and RIM have put pressure on Palm's business. Read the full story .

Sun reorganizes, cuts up to 18 percent of workforce

Sun in November said it would be laying off 15% to 18% of its employees as part of a restructuring plan aimed at saving $700 million to $800 million a year. The cuts amount to 5,000 to 6,000 people. The company also said its top software executive, Rich Green, was leaving as Sun reorganizes its software business -- "a recognition of the comprehensive role software plays in the company's growth strategy." Read the full story .

Nokia to lay off about 600 employees

Facing a weakening economy worldwide and new competitors, Nokia in early November said it planned to cut about 600 employees.The bulk of affected workers -- 450 -- will be in sales and marketing in Nokia's Markets unit, the manufacturing, distribution, and sales and marketing group created earlier this year as part of a company-wide restructuring. One hundred of those people will be in Finland, where Nokia is headquartered. Nokia also plans to let go of about 130 people who do long-term research for Nokia Research Center. Read full story .

BT cutting jobs as enterprise services business profit feels squeeze

British telecom operator BT Group said in November it will lay off 10,000 workers as it seeks to cut costs and improve the profitability of its services branch. Most of the job cuts will come from indirect labor, such as subcontractors and offshore workers. BT has already let go 4,000 workers and the remaining 6,000 cuts will be complete by the end of its financial year on March 31, 2009. The cuts represent a 6% reduction in workforce. Read full story .

AMD lays off 500 staff as financial troubles continue

Advanced Micro Devices said in November that it plans to lay off 500 staff, the second round of job cuts to come from the company this year. "We can confirm a worldwide reduction of 500 positions across various departments, levels and locations," AMD spokesman Mike Silverman said in an e-mail. Battered by a resurgent Intel and product delays, AMD has struggled to turn a profit in recent quarters. Read full story .

TI feels effects of mobile phone sales slowdown

Texas Instruments in October reported that its third quarter earnings fell 26% from the year before's Q3 to $563 million and sales fell 7.5% to $3.39 billion. In an attempt to right itself financially, the company said it will cut its work force by 650 people in six countries from a business unit that makes mobile phone chips and is suffering amidst slowing cell phone sales. Read full story .

Cisco cuts back in Texas

Cisco confirmed that it is to lay off 129 jobs at its Richardson, Texas facility. The company filed a letter with the Texas Workforce Commission that the staff reductions would be happening, reports the Dallas Business Journal. The job cuts are part of a decision to halt operations within its Broadband Telephony Services unit at the facility, the Journal reports and the cuts will occur between Oct. 8 and Dec. 8. Cisco said the layoffs are not related to the trouble economy. Read the full story .

HP-EDS layoffs: Saw this coming

HP was expected to announce layoffs as it integrates Electronic Data Systems into its corporate fold, but the size of announced job cuts on Sept. 15 ( 24,600 employees over the next three years) was a shocker. The layoffs will amount to about 7.5% of HP employees during those three years, with almost half of the cuts from the U.S. workforce. Although the job cuts are among the biggest in recent memory in IT, by comparison IBM shed 150,000 jobs over five years in the early 1990s.

This year so far has seen a spate of job cuts across IT sectors. Some of the most notable are documented in the following slides.

Nokia goes first

Early in January, rumors began to spread that Sprint Nextel was going to announce a major round of cutbacks, but meanwhile on Jan. 15 mobile-phone maker Nokia said it was laying off 2,300 workers at a plant in Bochum, Germany, and moving production to European sites that would cost less to operate. Read more .

Sprint Nextel has its turn

Three days later, Sprint Nextel confirmed layoffs, saying it would cut 4,000 workers from its payroll and close about 125 stores after it lost more than 100,000 customers in the 2007 fourth quarter. Read more .

Boohoo for Yahoo

Less than a week later, rumors surfaced that Yahoo was about to announce layoffs, which it confirmed at the end of the month with word that its fourth quarter sales were up, but profits were down. Yahoo said it would cut about 1,000 jobs in February. Read more .

Siemens slims down

Siemens in late February said it would axe 3,800 jobs at its Siemens Enterprise Communications subsidiary, with 2,000 of those in Germany, as part of an ongoing plan to transform that division from a telecommunication equipment unit into a telecommunications software provider. Read more .

Nortel's nasty Q4

The 2007 fourth quarter also proved rugged for Nortel, which announced a day after the Siemens news that it would cut 2,100 jobs and move 1,000 positions to "higher growth and lower-cost geographies." Read more .

Dell dumps nearly 9,000 people

In April, Dell reaffirmed plans announced last year to reduce headcount by 8,800, but said that the layoffs may be higher than what it had announced in 2007. The company had eliminated 3,200 jobs by the end of its 2008 fiscal year in February of this year. A month later, Dell gave a revised layoff number of 8,900. Read more .

AMD chips away at its work force

Financially struggling Advanced Micro Devices was next in line, with news in May that it would lay off 10% of its global workforce of 16,800. Read more .

AT&T lets loose managers

AT&T sent about 4,650 employees, mostly in management, packing as part of its "next step" to streamline operations following the merger of parent company SBC, the old AT&T and BellSouth. Read more .

Sun continues to restructure

As part of a previously announced restructuring plan, Sun laid off about 1,000 employees in the U.S. and Canada in July as part of a total reduction of 1,500 to 2,500 employees globally. Read more .

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