Motorola Mobility agrees to up compensation in China layoffs

Motorola Mobility will increase compensation for retrenched staff in China, but the employees say equal consultation opportunities they demanded have not been granted.

According to a EachNet report, Zhang Bing, a former Motorola employee, was informed by the company on Monday he will be further compensated with housing allowance up to his last day at Motorola and cash remitted for his untaken statutory annual leaves. These would amount to around 40,000 yuan (US$3,300) more compared with the previous scheme.  

In the previous plan, Zhang would only get salary paid for his last day at Motorola, compensation of monthly wages multiplied by "N+2" (N=years served at Motorola), and cash converted from all his unexpired options.

However, the deadline for retrenched employees to sign the documents to terminate the labor relationship is unchanged at noon, Aug. 21, 2012. If the employee does not sign the contract, Motorola will terminate the contract unilaterally, according to the e-mail sent by the company.

Kevin Si, its PR manager, told Xinhua news earlier that Motorola's compensation is higher than the national standard and the staff cuts abide by local regulations.

However, nearly 700 employees who lost their jobs in Motorola gathered around the company's building in Beijing on Friday. The company over the weekend decided to offer the deal sweeteners to retrenched workers in order to cool the fire.

Along with some other colleagues, Zhang decided to accept the revised plan and signed the termination contract.

However, other dismissed employees refused to sign the contract and declared that the revised layoff compensation scheme remains a unilateral notice which lacks equal footing of communications with the employees.

"The working union at Motorola also did not help us fight for our rights," another dismissed employee named Wang Tao said in a report.

Since Google spent US$12.5 billion to buy out Motorola Mobility this May, the search giant has adopted various new approaches in the money-losing phonemaker, including a huge staff-axing plan to fire as many as 4,000 people worldwide.

The company is tight-lipped on the precise number of layoffs in China, but local reports estimate the number will be more than 1,000 and primarily in the research and development department.

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