Saturday, November 9, 2013

Intel set to lay off 300 employees

GEORGE TOWN: Intel Corp, the world's biggest chipmaker, is expected to part ways with some 300 employees in Malaysia by year-end.

Business Times has learnt that technicians and factory operators will be affected by the move, which is part of Intel Malaysia's strategy to compete better globally.

"We are rebalancing our manufacturing technician workforce to ensure that we adapt to the changes in technology and staff our factories with the right skill sets to support Intel's future business needs," a memo sent to all Intel Malaysia employees yesterday read.

"As announced today, we are redeploying employees who lack the right skill sets. It is a difficult but a necessary decision to ensure our factories are competitive," the memo added.

Intel's investment history in Malaysia can be traced to 1972 when the company set up its first offshore facility on Penang island.
The company has since expanded to Kulim in Kedah, where it has microprocessor and chipset operations and was last year reported to have a headcount of 9,000.

One source said based on past experiences, Intel is likely to pay affected employees one month's salary for each year of service.

While it is not known how many more jobs at Intel Malaysia will be affected, the company, however, yesterday informed its staff that its investment commitment to Malaysia remains.

"We have a strong and exciting roadmap ahead in the year 2014," the memo stated, listing the roles that are set to be assumed by the Kulim facility and in Penang, where a host of new products has been lined up for assembly testing.

"We ask that you continue to stay focused on your current and primary work. We need everyone to play their role in helping Intel to win. In us, lies the future," it added.

In September, Intel Corp had announced it was closing a factory in Massachusetts and scaling back operations in New Mexico, both in the United States. The company cut 1,100 jobs in total by the move.

Meanwhile, Intel Malaysia public relations & marketing manager, Azrena Mahmud, in a reply to Business Times queries said the company had recently concluded a review to align talent with organisational needs within its manufacturing operations in Penang and Kulim.

"As a result, an undisclosed number of employees will be offered separation packages," she said in a statement.

"The redeployment will take place within the fourth quarter of 2013. The identified employees will be offered market-competitive separation packages, along with comprehensive transition support, including counselling and career transition services where necessary," she added.

Read more: Intel set to lay off 300 employees

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