Union: HP plans to 'butcher' 1,300 more UK jobs

Unite, Britain's largest union, has strongly condemned an announcement it says was made to HP staff on Monday stating that 1,300 will lose their jobs

HP is planning to cut 1,300 jobs in the UK as part of the consolidation and automation push it announced earlier this year, according to Britain's largest union.

Unite said the plans were announced to staff on Monday. HP said in June that it expected to shed 9,000 employees around the world, but it did not specify at the time as to where the cuts would fall.

"Despite significant profits, HP appears hell-bent on continuing to butcher its highly skilled UK workforce," Unite national officer Peter Skyte said in a statement on Monday. He pointed out that the cuts are separate from another 934 UK job losses announced in July. In addition, HP has made 4,000 job cuts over the previous two years, which led to a string of strikes.

"It is increasingly difficult for HP employees in the UK to plan for their futures when the threat of redundancy is continually hanging over their heads. Morale is at an all-time low. Lax employment protection in the UK compared to other European countries means that the UK is bearing the brunt of cuts, as it's quicker and cheaper to sack UK people and export their jobs abroad," Skyte said.

According to Unite, the cuts "mainly involve the export of jobs to HP locations outside the UK". The union also noted that HP's latest quarterly results show increasing revenues. The company is on track to make nearly $130bn (£82bn) in revenues this year, Unite said.

HP refused to confirm or deny the figures given by Unite. The technology company's locations in the UK include Belfast, Bracknell, Birmingham, Bristol, Derby, Erskine, Hook (Hampshire), London, Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Peterlee, Sheffield, Uxbridge, Warrington and Washington.

"HP is in consultation with the appropriate representative bodies within the UK regarding potential workforce changes which were announced June 1st, 2010," HP said in a statement sent to ZDNet UK on Tuesday. "This is an initiative to transform HP's enterprise-services business to benefit clients through new offerings and improved service delivery."


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