At the beginning of the week telecom company, Verizon announced that 10,400 employees have chosen to take buyouts that the company has offered. This equates to roughly 7 percent of the firm’s global workforce and is part of an effort to slim the giant telecom down—and save $10 billion in the process—in front of its push to adopt the much-anticipated 5G networks.
It was in September that Verizon originally posited the offer, a package which included up to 60 weeks of salary, with a bonus as well as benefits. The value of each package, of course, would depend on how long the employee worked with Verizon. All in all, there would be 44,000 total offers made.
In a note to employees, CEO Hans Vestberg said, “For those who were accepted, the coming weeks and months will be a transition. For the entire V Team, there will be opportunities to work differently as we prepare for the great things to come at Verizon.”
Vestberg goes on to say that these changes have been adequately strategized and long-anticipated. He also assures that customers will not experience the seamless changes, commenting that their financial and operational strength will provide them more opportunity to improve speed, agility, and flexibility all for the sake of improving customer service.
While this might seem like quite the impressive buyout, it is actually not the largest buyout in the history of the company. In 2003, Verizon also offered a buyout to 152,000 workers; 21,600 people volunteered to accept it. That is an overall take-up rate of 14 percent. This buyout, while much larger, only offered a two-week severed package.
It might be worth noting, first of all, that the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics considers “voluntary buyouts” to be similar to layoffs. This means those employees who opt in will be held in such regard in terms of unemployment. Layoffs and discharges, right now, are at the lowest rate they have ever been during a time when job openings are setting new records. As such, this is a good a time as any to start a new career (especially if you have a half a year or more of salary to live on for a while).