Research Activity Paper 1

Research Activity Paper 1 - Research Activity Paper#1...

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Research Activity Paper #1 MGMT-410: Human Resource Management July 21, 2009 Layoffs, Layoff Avoidance Measures, and Human Resources Involvement Jonathan Martin is a very good friend of mine who I had the pleasure of working with in years past. Jon and I were both part of the Information Technology department were we wore several hats in supporting our clients. Before starting work at Cook County Treasurer’s Office, Jonathan was laid off four times in a span of seven months. The dot-com veteran has been through it all: The conference with his manager and human resource representative; The company-wide announcement which was announced by a crying CEO; The “Sorry that we have to let you go” meeting while working offsite; And the fourth job lasted only 6 days. It certainly was a rough market for anyone in the Information Technology field during the dot-com crash. Can companies do that? Unfortunately, thanks to the Employment-At-Will Doctrine that allows employers to discipline or discharge employees at will , they can and do 1 . There is very little that protects employees. However, Jonathan survived and understanding the implications of laws that an organization has to follow, helped position himself to survive in those difficult situations he experienced. Layoff is the temporary suspension or permanent termination of employment of an employee or (more commonly) a group of employees for business reasons, such as the decision that certain positions are no longer necessary or a business slow-down or interruption in work. Originally the term “layoff” referred exclusively to a temporary interruption of work, as when factory work cyclically falls off 2 . However, in recent times the word layoff can also mean a permanent elimination of a position. Layoffs have been called by other names to soften the blow of being laid off such as downsize, rightsize, smartsize, redeployment, workforce reduction, workforce optimization, simplification, force shaping, reduction in force, and RIF 3 . But plain and simple it’s a way for the organization to fire you with or without just cause. The one key with layoffs is it is difficult for everyone. A recent survey of workers who have survived corporate layoffs in the past six months finds that 74% feel their productivity has declined. In addition, 64% feel the same about their co-workers. The bottom line: They believe the quality of their company's products or service has suffered because of layoffs 4 . Did you know that employers are required to give employees and local governments 60 days of advance written notice of plant closings and mass layoffs? This is one of those instances where learning the laws can help you survive or prepare yourself in a difficult layoff situation. The Workers Adjustment R e s e a r c h A c t i v i t y P a p e r # 1 Page 1
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and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) of 1989 gives workers and their families time to plan for a transition caused by a loss of employment 5 . But there are restrictions to this:
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Research Activity Paper 1 - Research Activity Paper#1...

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