Instead of handing out pink slips in the mire of an economic slowdown,
Agilent Technologies Inc. said Thursday that it will temporarily reduce employee
pay by 10 percent companywide, claiming that the move will save it about $70
million per quarter.
The network-testing and monitoring-equipment company said it has already
slowed hiring and reduced discretionary spending after demand among its major
customers dropped dramatically over the past four to six weeks.
Agilent said the temporary pay cuts began April 1 for its 200 senior
managers, and they will affect the rest of its employees May 1. The pay
reduction will last through at least the third quarter, but, pending 'business
conditions,' it could be extended through the fourth quarter, the company
'We're trying to avoid across-the-board layoffs in response to cyclical
market conditions,' Agilent president and CEO Ned Barnholt said in a press
release. 'We value our work force, and we need to be ready to meet demand as
business conditions improve.''
In addition to the temporary pay cut, Agilent said it will not replace
positions lost through attrition, it will reduce its temporary work force and it
will limit travel to customer-related activities.
The company added that it will miss its second-quarter forecast, as it
expects to generate less than $2.9 billion during the period.
Agilent shares hit a new 52-week low of $27.76 apiece