Friday, October 3, 2008

CarMax Reduces Staff As Sales Fall

I grew up in Michigan. My first Human Resources job was with an automotive supplier in Lansing, Michigan. We competed with Korean and Japanese forging companies for business with the big three in those days. Today, all the auto manufacturers are facing major challenges.

Congress just agreed to legislation allowing a bailout loan to GM and Ford for $25 billion.

Toyota is retooling their North American plants without doing layoffs at a cost of $50 million USD. (More on that later)

Bill Heard Chevrolet, a large auto dealer in the Southeastern United States closed their doors at 14 locations last week, very unexpectedly.

My home state of Michigan has the highest unemployment state in the nation. Times in the auto industry are tough.

Given the current state of the American economy including tightening credit markets, it is no surprise to hear a spate of bad news this week from the automotive industry. General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, Nissan, Toyota, and Honda all announced double digit sales drops.

According to the Tampa Bay Business Journal, CarMax, Inc. , a Fortune Top 100 listed company in 2008, announced that it is being forced to eliminate 600 positions from its work force at production superstores nationwide.

A third of the reductions are related to industry sales declines. The balance are being done to decrease costs and some departmental restructuring. According to CarMax, employees will be eligible for severance. Further reductions are not foreseen at this time.
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