Thursday, March 12, 2009
Dell reduces workforce nationwide
WKRN Channel 2 News Local Dell workers lost their jobs Wednesday. In the Mid-State, Dell employs around 3,000 people at facilities in Donelson and Lebanon but that number is shrinking. The computer company is laying off employees around the world but won't say where or how many. Dell does not issue press releases about the job cuts, and its employees are contractually bound not to speak out. Dell spokesperson David Frink said Wednesday the layoffs were part of the company's efforts to streamline. "We've been streamlining our business for more than a year and said as recently as two weeks ago that we'd continue to do so," he said in a statement released to News 2. "We'll confirm that Dell is reducing its global workforce as part of its ongoing initiative to remain competitive. Workforce reduction is difficult, but this is a deliberate part of Dell's ongoing focus on competitiveness. We recognize the reduction is significant for affected and other employees, and are working to minimize consequences. Affected employees will be offered competitive severance packages, including career counseling and outplacement services." News 2 spoke with several current and former Dell employees who were afraid to speak out about Dell. They were afraid the company would take action against them. "It's in the severance package, you can't say anything negative about them," a former Dell employee told News 2 anonymously. He said he was one of 84 laid off in February. The Dell location in Donelson has been around for nearly 10 years. In 1999, Metro government gave Dell a nearly $50 million tax break to build their campus near the airport. In a statement, Nashville Mayor Karl Dean said, "The city views Dell as a great corporate citizen, but, like everyone else, they are going through a difficult economic time. The agreement Metro Government has with Dell is based on their employment level. At this point we don't know the specific number of jobs affected in Davidson County, and so it's unclear whether or not this agreement will be impacted. Once specifics are available, we're certain that is something that will be discussed." The Round Rock, Texas-based company has been shifting work from its own factories to contract workers in the last year as the personal computer market has declined.
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