Another Bad Day in Silicon Valley
March 17, 2003 2:54 PM   Subscribe

Applied Materials to Slash 14% of Its Work Force How many of you work in the Silicon Valley semiconductor business? How do you feel about an industry giant like AMAT having yet another layoff? Or, if you work for one of AMAT's competitors, what does this do to your own sense of job security?
posted by Captain Ligntning (6 comments total)
If you work in the Valley, times are tough. Period. My company recently downsized, er, reorganized, er, had a staffing change, and things aren't looking too great for the near future.

On the other hand, we somehow managed to turn a profit for this past year.

I feel very little security in my job right now. But I'm happy to be employed. I've heard too many stories of talented people out of work for 18 months...
posted by lalas at 3:13 PM on March 17, 2003

Wait a minute, Silicon Valley still has a semiconductor industry? Or, rather, any industry at all?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:16 PM on March 17, 2003

First the bubble burst, and now it's letting out a long, slow fart.
posted by letitrain at 3:19 PM on March 17, 2003

Or, if you work for one of AMAT's competitors, what does this do to your own sense of job security?

Going to war in Iraq gives me all the job security I need.
posted by four panels at 3:31 PM on March 17, 2003

thank goodness war is coming. that'll fix everything.
posted by quonsar at 3:32 PM on March 17, 2003

My wife works for Applied Materials, and all I can say is this is nothing new. They have been shedding jobs for well over a year... the only reason this cut stands out is because it's one of the few that have been of the size that they have had to report it. They've mostly gotten rid of 500 people here, 500 people there... always just under the limit of what they have to report to investors. This doesn't count all the people they've lost through attrition, by not rehiring for vacated positions.

They have frozen promotions and raises since 2000, and she has one week a month of "shutdown days" which have caused her to lose a quarter of her salary. In addition, she has had only one profit sharing bonus of 5% in the past three years... profit sharing used to be very substantial at AMAT. And, of course, her options are in the toilet.

I'm pretty certain my wife will make the next cut, as she does something unique and specifically required for contractual purposes, but I feel sorry for those people who will lose their jobs on this cut. The first cuts around 2000 had generous severance packages and people were given benefits for choosing to go, but this time around, there won't be any nice parachutes... those people are going to be thrown into a truely lousy economy for their industry.

I have a feeling more people will be renting U-Hauls and leaving the valley sometime soon...
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:45 PM on March 17, 2003

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