Exxon to cut white collar workforce: press
US major ExxonMobil could be cutting payrolls at home by as much as 10% in a cull of underperforming staff, the Bloomberg news service reported June 21.
Citing sources familiar with the matter, as well as statements from the company itself, Bloomberg reported that headcount reductions over the next three to five years would be based on performance reviews.
“Our annual performance assessment process has been occurring over the last several months,” Exxon spokesman Casey Norton said in an email to the news service. “Where employees are not contributing to their highest ability, they may need to participate in an improvement plan. This is an annual process which has been in place for many years, and it is meant to improve performance. This process is unrelated to workforce reduction plans.”
Exxon announced in 2020 that it would trim head counts by about 14,000 globally by next year. And with extraordinarily low crude oil prices during the height of the pandemic last year, the company opted to halt bonuses and stop contributing to employee retirement plans as a cost-saving measure.
About 40% of the company’s 72,000 employees globally work in the US.
After four consecutive quarters in the red, Exxon announced Q1 earnings of $2.7bn, compared with a $610mn loss during the same period last year. Spending was $3.1bn, $4bn lower than Q1 2020. Cash flow, meanwhile, was $9.3bn, driving debt reduction of more than $4bn.
Along with other companies with a large operational footprint in the US, the company said the blast of sub-freezing temperatures in February took a $600mn toll on all of its business segments. Anglo-Dutch major Shell for instance recorded a $200mn hit as a consequence of the storm.
ExxonMobil recorded an average oil-equivalent production of 3.8mn b/d during the first quarter, a 3% improvement over Q4.