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Best Buy Gives Employees Reason to Quit

In these economic times, companies are more cost conscious than ever. Unfortunately, this also means that people are suddenly finding themselves ‘downsized’ out of work. Best Buy (BBY) is no different in trying to make it through the financial climate, but it is offering employees a rather generous incentive to quit their job.

According to the Business Review, nearly all of Best Buy’s 4,000 corporate employees were offered seven and a half months of severance pay, one year of employer-paid health insurance, one year of employer-paid life insurance and free access to outplacement services. Employees whose age and years of employment with the company add up to at least 60 receive 12 months of severance pay. This offer is also good for a limited time only for those who voluntarily agree to leave the company between now and January 5.

“We told our employees that ‘We recognize that the timing on this stinks,’” Said Best Buy spokeswoman Susan Busch. “‘We know it’s a really tough environment out there. We really want to be respectful of you, we want to give you some choice, we want to give you a generous plan so you can make some informed choices about what’s right for you.’”

While nearly all of the chain’s corporate staff were given the offer, supplies could be limited. After all, Best Buy can’t stand to lose all of its labor should they all choose to take the severance packages.

“Once we have a sense of how many people volunteer to participate in this program, we’re going to have to balance that out with some other decision across the company and decide what our next steps are, but we’re not going to speculate on what those next steps might be,” Busch added.

Best Buy’s shares fell 13 cents per share during the third quarter, which is well down from the same period in 2007 which saw a gain of 53 cents per share. Best Buy CEO Brad Anderson described the third quarter of this year the as the “most challenging environment our company has ever faced.”

  • michaelzehr
    Should be: Best Buy had a loss of 13 cents per share during the third quarter, well down from the same period in 2007 which saw a profit of 53 cents per share.

    If their shares saw a 13 cent loss in the third quarter that would be pretty awesome given what the market as a whole has done.

    Cynical aside: "We recognize that the timing on this stinks we want to give you some choice ..." but not so much choice as to extend the decision date into a time period when companies might be hiring so you could actually judge your chance of getting a job elsewhere. I think it would be pretty hard to make much progress on a job hunt between now and Jan 5. On the other hand, that is a pretty generous severance they're offering.
    Reply
  • hellwig
    Sounds like this is for coprorate employees only, accountants, advertising execs, etc... I can't imagine they have greater than 7-months turn-around for their cashiers or stockers, or their virgin-squad. Remember, when companies down-size, they get rid of the laborers first. If a manager has to cut X-dollars from their overhead, it's easier for them to fire two subordinates than to quit themselves. There will be massive layoffs and store closures, this is simply a trim-down of their coprorate overhead.
    Reply
  • NuclearShadow
    Honestly they need to give consumers a reason to go to Best Buy and quite honestly at this time there's no such reason. Either they must start providing a hot product that can't be found elsewhere or they need to slash their prices make make up the profits in sales. But we all know they are incapable of doing the first and will never be willing to do the second.
    Reply
  • Pei-chen
    Sounds like Best Buy expect the depression to last more than a year.
    Reply
  • Tindytim
    Am I the only one that though Before the Battle of Yavin, when I saw BBY?

    NuclearshadowHonestly they need to give consumers a reason to go to Best Buy and quite honestly at this time there's no such reason. Either they must start providing a hot product that can't be found elsewhere or they need to slash their prices make make up the profits in sales. But we all know they are incapable of doing the first and will never be willing to do the second.I agree and disagree.

    I buy the majority of my products online now a days, the prices are usually better, I have a large selection, and it saves me gas.

    However, there are times when I need things immediately, or I don't feel like waiting, in which case I don't mind paying a bit more to go into a brick and mortar. I usually go to Best Buy because they'll have what I want more than not, and usually at the lowest price I can find offline. I also will occasionally browse through Best Buy, maybe meet some random people playing Rock Band.
    Reply
  • jamesl
    yeah, I would never buy a monitor or tv online
    I want to see it in person, pick it up myself and have a specific person I can take it back to if there is a problem

    but video games, computer parts, music players ?
    sure, I buy those online
    Reply
  • malveaux
    Gah,

    Misleading article for people who immediately think, "Oh wow, some DUDE who just stands around can get 7 months pay for quitting? Frick'n cool, Ima go apply for a job, lOL!"

    They're talking about their employees who make good money, and even more important, have a lot of their funds tied up in insurance. It's cheaper to pay them off to leave than to watch them get fired, file work comp, possibly sue, and of course, send waves of poop through their ranks as people tend to flock together. You know where most of the 'theft' occurs? From employees. Fire a few, and watch your stock disappear real quick. Money gone, fast. Cheaper and safer to friendly-fire them by giving them money and saying "don't come back, kthx."

    Best buy sucks. They're not as crap as Circuit City, but they still suck. While they whine about economy and hard times, ask them how much they profit from unclaimed gift cards. It's in the millions. Total effing scam work that is.

    Cheers,
    Reply
  • V8VENOM
    Best Buy has employees??

    Oh you mean the ones that hide from customers and only "work" there so they get discounts?

    Yeah yeah, I know if BestBuy actually hire people that knew WTF they were talking about, they wouldn't be working at BestBuy.
    Reply
  • bunz_of_steel
    Maybe if they fired Brad Anderson their CEO the would instantly cut their losses by a few million! STFU Buy More.. I mean Best Buy. If you really want to cut your losses fire your friggin lame ars VP staff that is the biggest drain on the company. This packages is intended for salaried workers ... obviously but even at that I must admit it is a lucrative package if you look at it. A severance is not something companies don't have to offer. My company lays off workers once a quarter on a Thur or Fri and no severance packages will be offered to them starting in 09. oo.. unless your like a CEO, VP or somethin like that then you got the "golden parachute". Which means you can drive the company in the dirt and screw the employees out of their pension/401 and but you get full benefits for # years and full pay for up two years. Why don't we hear about them in the media??


    TSM
    Reply
  • frenchy
    yeah, I would never buy a monitor or tv online
    I want to see it in person
    Do what I do. Shop at Best Buy to find that TV you really like. Then right down the model number and shop around. Including online. I did that and I saved $256 for a 40" HD sony LCD from Amazon with free shipping compared to Best Buy. Something to consider.
    Reply