Companies all over the world are trying to limit overhead costs. Staff reduction is often the only option considered when cost saving is a priority, leaving many other costs unchanged. If people are forced leave, their office or work space remains, plus heating or cooling, not forgetting the total loss of their knowledge and experience, maybe to a competitor. The country also has an extra burden while trying to reduce deficits. If you are faced with hard choices, build into your plan something for your future growth. Your survival may depend on it.
There are many cost reductions that can be made inside any company. Energy saving should be high on the list, as it good for the company and good for the environment. Flexi hours can also be beneficial, especially in the wintertime. There are many companies that offer cost reduction programs, but reducing skilled staff should be last on the list. You may not feel much sympathy for the many thousands of bankers and civil servants which have lost their job, but the companies, organisations, and the country are the losers.
Technology can be used in very effective ways to keep staff and also reducing costs. Most skilled staff are used to operating a computer, working from home is only part of the solution. There are a number of very effective “Cloud” solutions that permit collaboration from anywhere in the world in real time. For smaller companies there are also free Cloud solutions, adding this together with normal email and Skype, they could be in the next office. I use a free Cloud solution to put password protected files in a folder and then just provide the link details. Customers can then change, modify any document, Word, OpenOffice, pdf, HTML etc, and return the changes via the Cloud safely.
Working from home
Do you already work from home? If you work at the week-ends, and take your work into the office on Monday, to share and discuss with other colleagues, a company Cloud solution would be highly effective. This post is not a solution, just ideas and thoughts you might consider before taking any action to dismiss your staff.