A new wave of layoffs primarily targeting Ford Motor employees in engineering roles in the US and Canada are expected to take place this week as part of the company’s latest cost-cutting efforts. Leaders of the teams impacted by the job cuts received confirmation on Monday, according to CNBC News, while employees are expected to be notified over the next few days.
Ford declined The Verge’s request to clarify how many employees would be affected by the layoffs. Roles are expected to be cut across all three of Ford’s business units — Ford Blue (the company’s arm for vehicles with traditional combustion engines), Ford Pro (its commercial vehicle services and distribution business), and Model e (focusing on electric vehicles).
“People affected by the changes will be offered severance pay, benefits and significant help to find new career opportunities”
The layoffs are related to the Ford Plus growth plan announced in 2021 — restructuring efforts designed to reduce costs, according to T.R. Reid, Corporate & Public Policy Communications for Ford Motor, in an email to The Verge.
“Delivering on the plan includes adjusting staffing to match focused priorities and ambitions, while raising quality and lowering costs. The actions we’re taking this week in the US and Canada are mostly (but not only) related to engineering roles,” said Reid. “People affected by the changes will be offered severance pay, benefits and significant help to find new career opportunities.”
Ford CEO Jim Farley claimed in February that the automaker has an annual cost disadvantage of $7 billion to $8 billion compared to its competitors. “We can cut the cost, we can cut people, we can do that really quickly and we’ll do whatever we need to,” Farley said at the time. Farley plans to reduce expenses related to those overheads by “mid-decade.”
In the SEC filing for Ford’s first-quarterly earnings report this year, the company estimated that it would incur charges between $1.5 billion and $2 billion in 2023 that primarily relate to “employee separations and supplier settlements.”
This isn’t the first wave of job cuts linked to Ford’s restructuring plans. 8,000 roles were cut from the Ford Blue business arm in July 2022 in a bid to remain “fully competitive with the best in the industry,” and 3,000 employees and contract workers from departments across the US, Canada, and India were laid off in August 2022. An additional 3,800 employees in Europe were laid off in February this year as part of the company’s shift to EV production.