Boeing Will Announce Significant Layoffs In US This Week: Reports

According to news reports, United States plane making giant Boeing is poised to make an announcement of job cuts by this week. The company has last month announced its plans to reduce its global workforce by as much as 10 per cent. The total number of people employed by the company globally is about 160,000 employees.

The news reports quoted people briefed on the plans as well as a workers’ union.

Boeing has informed the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA) that the union should expect layoff notices by this week, said a spokesman for the union that represents 17,600 Boeing employees.

No comment on the news reports from Boeing were available in the media.\

Back in April, the chief executive of Boeing Dave Calhoun had said that the company had “begun taking action to lower our number of employees by roughly 10% through a combination of voluntary layoffs, natural turnover and involuntary layoffs as necessary.”

Boeing will need to make “even deeper reductions in areas that are most exposed to the condition of our commercial customers — more than 15% across our commercial airplanes and services businesses, as well as our corporate functions,” Calhoun had said in April.

Application for taking voluntary layoffs had been filed by about 1,300 of its members, SPEEA said.

Boeing planned to lay off thousands of workers, reported the Puget Sound Business Journal earlier.

The newspaper’s report was later confirmed by a union official. The report had stated that the aircraft maker had informed the union leaders that they should be expecting to see job cuts in the range of between 15 per cent and 20 per cent of its membership. The union is a representative body of engineers and technical workers in Washington State and southern California.

The impact of the novel coronavirus pandemic that has hit the global aviation industry has also hit Boeing as there has been a plunge in the demand for air travel as countries imposed travel restrictions and strict lockdowns in order to prevent the fast spread of the pandemic.

For the second time this year, zero orders were placed with Boeing in April while the company’s clients also cancelled another 108 orders for its grounded 737 MAX plane. The pandemic combined with the global grounding of its cash cow – the 737 Max planes,  has pushed Boring into its worst start to a year since 1962.

The outbreak worsened a crisis following the second of two fatal crashes that led to the grounding of the 737 MAX in March 2019. Calhoun said on May 8 he expected to resume production of grounded 737 MAX jet this month.

(Adapted from Reuters.com)

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