One of the news items that shook 2018 in the automotive industry was the closing of five General Motors plants in North America, including the facility in Oshawa, Ontario. The effects of the decision will be felt for many months; for some 4,250 employees, those effects become all too real starting today.
As reported by Automotive News, the layoffs are part of the restructuring plan developed by GM to increase efficiency and profitability. The first of the affected employees were to be notified as of this morning. The 4,250 job cuts won’t be implemented all in one go, but will span several weeks. It also remains to be seen which departments and sectors are affected, and in what order the cuts will be rolled out.
"We are not confirming timing. Our employees are our priority, and we will communicate with them first."
- General Motors statement
To provide a bit of perspective, recall that GM announced that cuts were coming in November 2018. Since then, around 1,500 contract workers have been let go, and another 2,250 employees agreed to buyout packages. At that time the company said cuts would total about 8,000 workers, and the 4,250 reported on today fit into that total.
The restructuring plan being implemented by the automaker should allow it to save $6 billion by 2020. Most of that will in turn be reinvested in the development of electric vehicles and autonomous driving technologies.