The rumours of RIM laying off employees this week is unfortunately true. We’ve been receiving several tips over the past number of days from various parts of the country, but a report in The Province confirms that 95 employees in RIM’s Bedford facility, which consists mostly of customer service reps, have been let go. Percy Paris, Nova Scotia’s economic development minister, stated that they’ll provide support to those impacted and that he hopes the layoffs are temporary.
However, some unsettling news on how the process was handled. According to one former RIM employee, she was sent an email the previous night to attend a meeting in the morning, specifically on the first floor, noting that “We’ve had all the telltale signs that more layoffs were coming and this really caused anxiety and stress among the workforce. You know from the email that if your meeting is on the first floor, it’s not a pep talk. It’s inevitable it will be a presentation of your package.”
Apparently during lay off day the employees who were being cut were gathered into a meeting room and were notified of their termination via teleconference by a RIM exec in Waterloo. The former employee said “It’s kind of like leading the lambs to the slaughter. You’re brought into a room with other people, some of whom you don’t know because they’re part of other teams. There is no individual attention, so you don’t really feel free to express your concerns and feelings or ask questions.”
Immediately following the teleconference the employees were escorted out of the building. Approximately 400 people work out of the Bedford office. The layoffs are part of an ongoing goal to save RIM a $1 billion by fiscal year end 2013.