P&G to Focus on Marketing; Slashes 17,400 Jobs Worldwide

23 March 2001

Procter & Gamble, the world’s largest advertiser, yesterday announced draconian job cuts across its global payroll, propelling its cost-cutting strategy into warp mode.

President/ceo A G Lafley played down the move as “phase two” of the company’s existing restructuring program. This will add a further 9,600 jobs to the 7,800 already sacrificed on the altar of shareholder value, in addition to the 15,000 jobs that disappeared after phase one in 1999.

Marketing is not likely to be exempted from the slash strategy, although Lafley said he attached more importance to ‘efficiency’ than job cuts in this regard. One reason for the job cuts, he averred, is to allow greater marketing support for the company's core brands.

"Without going into all the details, the world has changed dramatically in the past twenty or thirty years, and you have to have a strong TV program as a cornerstone of your entire marketing program," Lafley said, "but there's a lot of opportunity to innovate and improve other areas of marketing and sales execution."

P&G will offer voluntary redundancy packages to eligible employees and hopes that the majority of job cuts will happen through natural attrition. But some reductions, particularly in manufacturing, would be non-voluntary.

News source: Advertising Age - Daily Deadline