30/11/2005

British Airways to cut management jobs

British Airways has announced plans to cut the number of management jobs by almost 600.

The measures, which are part of re-structuring plans, would see the company’s 1,715 management posts reduced by 35% by March 2008.

Senior management would face the heaviest cuts, with a 50% reduction from 414 jobs to 207. Middle management would see a 30% cut in jobs, from 1,301 to 911.

The jobs will be reduced in a series of phases, with 23% of the top executives set to leave the business by March 31, 2006.

BA said that the job cuts would save the airline £50 million, as part of its drive to achieve a £300 million cost reduction programme by March 2007.

Willie Walsh, BA chief executive, said that the decision to reduce management numbers had not been taken lightly. He said: “We have extremely talented managers and they have led the way in transforming our company during the last four years since the tragic events of 9/11.

"But it is essential that we streamline our business further and I believe it is right that we have started by looking closely at the number of senior managers we need to deliver a sustainable, profitable future."

Mr Walsh continued: "I said when we reported our second quarter financial results last month that our costs were up in most areas and that, as a result, we need to re-energise our efforts to deliver a competitive cost base.

"We must lower our costs so that we can fund future investment in our business. Today marks the start of a renewed effort to deliver our goal of a 10 per cent operating margin. I am confident that these measures, however difficult, will help to build a robust British Airways and one that will benefit from sustained profitability. This action will enable us to carry out the investment we need to make in our business in the coming years in order to deliver a more competitive and efficient airline."

(KMcA/SP)

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