Fair warning, I just need to vent so there is no optimistic twist
at the end of this. If you're having a crappy day you should go
read something else instead. I just need to write it, you don't
need to read it.
I've lost another member of my team to a layoff, the third layoff
this year. My boss says that they're working through moving to a
new bank for their borrowing that will help them out more and give
them more flexibility as they work on building the business - but
in the short term the current bank is forcing them to make further
This time the story is that the bank's consultants that have been
reviewing our operations and making recommendations to the bank to
push onto us have told them that we have too many quality managers
(counting a long-time employee who's really only doing engineering
support as 'quality'). So the plan is to lay off my inspection
manager, move my QA manager into that role, reshuffle the QA
manager's work (probably mostly to me) and triage on from there.
I'm going to have to get creative in 'implementing' that plan to
keep things marginally on the rails - QC morale is already poor and
justifiably so. Ostensibly we'll be re-hiring him in a couple
months once things stabilize and the new financial backing is
I wish I believed that. With the usual losses and hirings my
department is down a total of six people since I started here, that
is one sixth. Even if it's not deliberate, effectively we're
getting whittled down. We continue to be asked to do more with the
people who are still here.
They've been offering this banking change as an excuse as to why
cuts are needed and why things are so financially tight and the
hope that things will get better Real Soon Now almost since I got
I am having doubts, have been having them for some time now, about
the ownership group (family-owned company) and how honest they are
or maybe aren't with themselves about the situation. That of course
affects how I take what I hear from my boss. He already knows that
I take a dim view of layoffs and terminations, he spent a good half
an hour talking about their financial repositioning, bits about the
ongoing process for trying to start a new facility out-of-state,
and then finally worked his way around to talking about the cuts
that are going to happen. He had to tell me about all of the
sacrifices the ownership have made to keep the company afloat, etc.
- not realizing that all of that just doesn't mean much to someone
who didn't inherit a company, still has student loans to pay on and
pay off, and really /must/ remain employed with decent health
insurance for his wife. I'm sure what they're doing feels like a
big sacrifice to them but they have a whole lot more to lose before
they would really feel it. Their perspective is very limited.
I was told a while back by a member of the ownership, who's also an
employee (in, basically, business development) that I should hire a
quality engineer. I told him that I didn't want to hire someone
only to have to then let someone else on my team go. I relented and
put together a job description, not expecting to get any decent
candidates, and lo and behold a guy with a frakking master's degree
and process improvement and Lean experience applies and seems
excited about the job after interviewing and a plant tour. We made
him an offer /one/ day before I was told about the layoff, but they
still want to hire him. Exactly as expected. Now I might have a new
quality engineer who will have to get up to speed and learn our
(many) production processes - and managing QC is a part-time job
for my QA manager and me to juggle.
I feel like I've been here before, with two different employers.
There isn't a lot to recommend it really. Both of those employers
no longer exist. For this evening at least anger and frustration
have now given way to depression.