Voluntary cuts scheme fails as 83 lose Intel jobs
Published 23/03/2011 | 05:00
MORE than 80 Intel workers have lost their jobs after the computer chip maker failed to get enough applicants for a voluntary redundancy scheme.
A total of 83 workers, some with more than 17 years' service, have been out of work since St Patrick's Day, after being told they were being made redundant on a compulsory basis.
The affected workers are due to attend meetings at the company's plant in Leixlip, Co Kildare, today to discuss the terms of their severance packages.
Staff said management made the shock announcement at a meeting last Wednesday.
The job losses come after the electronics giant announced last month it would seek 100 voluntary redundancies when it closed a factory at its Leixlip campus.
It said the 'Fab 10' plant, which opened in 1995 and employed 500 people, had not been running at full capacity for years.
Eighty per cent of the staff are being retrained and employed at a newer 'Fab 24' factory, which is also on the same campus, but the rest were offered voluntary redundancy.
The renowned American multinational confirmed yesterday that it had to impose the compulsory redundancies because it did not get enough applicants for the voluntary scheme.
But it would not reveal the number of employees who applied for the voluntary programme.
However, workers claimed it told them it got 30 applications, which, together with the 83 compulsory redundancies, would mean it is shedding a total of 112 staff.
It is understood that the terms of the compulsory severance deal are the same as those offered to voluntary applicants.
The deal is six weeks' pay per year of service, on top of statutory redundancy, but capped at 104 weeks' pay.
One worker who lost his job -- and who did not want to be identified -- said the compulsory redundancies were hard to take when the computer chip manufacturer was also hiring new staff.
He claimed the company did not offer the 83 staff, who were less qualified than the workers who moved to the new factory, any chance to update their skills.
"If there's no more work, there's no more work, but there were ample opportunities for those who moved and the rest of us were discarded," he said.
"We were willing to do a bridging programme that was offered to other staff in which you could work and go to college, or any training they wanted, but they didn't do anything for us," he added.
"As there are no further opportunities, we are now implementing an involuntary separation programme for 83 employees," said an Intel spokesman.
"The impacted employees were informed last week."
Meanwhile, 50 jobs are being created at mobile phone network 3 due to a surge in demand for smartphones.
It has begun recruiting new staff for positions in finance, product development and retail sales.
In addition, technology company Teradata Ireland plans to hire 30 accountants at a recruitment fair in Dublin tomorrow.