RIM Cuts 2,000 Jobs

BlackBerry is cutting 2,000 jobs, more than 10 percent of its global workforce, to reduce its operating expenses. It is also reshuffling its management team.

RIM noted that its "workforce reduction is believed to be a prudent and necessary step for the long term success of the company and it follows an extended period of rapid growth within the company whereby the workforce had nearly quadrupled in the last five years alone." Following the cuts the company will have about 17,000 staff worldwide.

Affected staff in North America and "certain other countries" will hear the bad news this week, while those in other global locations will have to wait while RIM works through the local labor law procedures.

The company, which announced in June it was planning to cut staff following a relatively disappointing first quarter, plans to outline the financial impact of the cuts when it reports its second-quarter earnings on September 15. (See RIM Lowers Guidance Amidst Poor Q1.)

As part of its revamp, RIM is reorganizing its senior management responsibilities. Fresh-faced Thorsten Heins is taking on the expanded role of COO, Product and Sales (instead of just product engineering). All engineering functions (hardware and software) are now in Heins' hands (try saying that quickly!).

Joining the senior team is Patrick Spence, a RIM sales veteran who becomes managing director, Global Sales and Regional Marketing, reporting to Heins.

Other job details include:

  • Robin Bienfait adds responsibility for the Enterprise Business Unit to her role as CIO.

  • Jim Rowan expands his role to become COO, Operations, with responsibility for manufacturing, global supply chain and repair services (but don't call him if you drop your PlayBook and it stops working…) As part of his new role he will oversee the Organizational Development and Facilities Management functions.

  • CFO Brian Bidulka is working with Rowan on the Cost Optimization Program that includes the job cuts.

  • David Yach, who is CTO, Software, is to "focus on current and future software platforms, as well as the surrounding developer and application ecosystem."

    All those changes mean it's time for current COO Don Morrison to use the exit door as he is retiring from the company.

    — Ray Le Maistre, International Managing Editor, Light Reading

  • sarahthomas1011 12/5/2012 | 4:58:11 PM
    re: RIM Cuts 2,000 Jobs

    The job cuts support the fact that RIM isn't changing fast enough. If it were keeping up with the market, it probably wouldn't have to make cuts as drastic as this one.

    krishanguru143 12/5/2012 | 4:58:10 PM
    re: RIM Cuts 2,000 Jobs

    RIM should focus on the BES as well as an app for the phones themselves.  They don’t need to be in the smartphone market and could easily get by on the BES software and making the client free but charging by the device on the BES side.

    quicktime 12/5/2012 | 4:58:06 PM
    re: RIM Cuts 2,000 Jobs





    Who is next to cut?

    inauniversefarfaraway 12/5/2012 | 4:57:58 PM
    re: RIM Cuts 2,000 Jobs

    These guys hired a lot of former Nortel workers... These are generally folks that suffer from groupthink. They can tell you your plane is the best, flying right, how to improve it, except they just can't notice that the plane is flying into a mountain. Sadly, it looks like RIMM, just like Nortel will become something stupid people do in groups. Duh!

    It doesn't surprise me that they just aren't "seeing" the change going on in the smartphone market. These guys are the same, they figure that with a few bells and whistles added on they will seduce customers back, their formula will withstand the competition. The customers ain't comin' back...

    They have completely missed the changing paradigm. 

    What happens with a lot of consumers is that the moment they pick up an iPhone, it becomes instantly obvious that RIMM is in big trouble. If a groupthink organization like RIMM is so inebriated with their vision and solution, there is no way they can best Apple. This is because they don't get how the product is fundamentally different than their own.

    They would probably be better off just cloning the iPhone and asking questions later, much like other competitors have done. Sadly, they don't even have the brains to land on this reality.

    It is going to end badly for them. Even if they were capable of flawless execution, which they've kind of shown they suck at, a change of this magnitude is usually lethal.

    The other products they just cloned and will likely do better. Isn't that hilarious!

    Sign In