Nokia is going through a huge transition at the moment and it seems that those who will feel the upheaval the most is the company’s employees.
The latest tranche of cuts will affect employees in Finland, Hungary and Mexico as the company seeks to cut costs by moving its smartphone assembly work to Asia. The latest cuts bring to 30,000 the total number of job losses which have occurred since Stephen Elop took over as group Chief Executive in September 2010.
In the wake of the partnership with Microsoft, 4,000 jobs went in Finland alone last April while 3,000 employees were moved to Accenture. The latest job losses will take place in phases throughout 2012 according to a statement from the company. The statement also said it was reviewing the operations since closing its plant in Romania last year.
Nokia will be cutting the majority of the jobs (2,300) in Hungary, with 1,000 going in Finland and the balance in Mexico. Nokia is still the world’s top mobile phone vendor according to the latest figures from research firm IDC, but it has been on a downward slope for a number of years and will be doing well to cling on to top spot for 2012.
The latest financial results from Nokia do not make for pretty reading, as they show the company made a substantial loss of £800 million in the last quarter of 2011 as its smartphone sales shrank by a huge 31 per cent.
"Shifting device assembly to Asia is targeted at improving our time to market. By working more closely with our suppliers, we believe that we will be able to introduce innovations into the market more quickly and ultimately be more competitive," said Niklas Savander, Nokia executive vice president, Markets.
Nokia has recently launched its first wave of devices - Lumia 800, Lumia 710 and soon the Lumia 900 - featuring the Windows Phone operating system, and it will be hoping its shift to Asia will help drive the profitability of the new platform sooner rather than later.