Feeds

Penny-pinching HP cuts 10% pensioner discount

Company sued over axed rebate scheme

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

A retired Hewlett-Packard worker is suing the computer giant, claiming it short changed pensioners on a promise to gift discounts for its goods.

According to a report in The San Francisco Chronicle, the lawsuit, filed by Los Altos resident Mark Leonard, alleges that 3800 Hewlett-Packard workers haven't received rebates since they were designated as former worker from its testing equipment Agilent Technologies spin-off in 1999. Through the case, which is at its heart about a retired employee seeking to defend HP's much vaunted corporate culture against cost cutting measures, Leonard is asking HP to restore the rebate program.

Under the rebate program HP gave a 10 per cent rebate on goods such as computers and printers for workers who had 15 years at the company and were 55 when they retired.

Leonard, who is looking for other people to join him to launch a class action lawsuit, worked as an engineer at HP for 23 years until 1999, after which he was reclassified as an Agilent employee even though the firm didn't exist when he retired. He also argues that his department, which investigated chip-making technology, was taken apart before the Agilent spin-off.

Hewlett-Packard told the Chronicle that unlike pension payments, the rebate program was subject to change, and described the lawsuit as having "no merit".

A wide-ranging cost cutting program is underway at HP which, as previously reported, involves reducing the spaces of workers' cubes, or working area from eight feet by ten feet to eight feet by eight feet. The program also involves asking mangers to cut the number of temporary staff they use by 20 per cent and to scale back on off-site meetings, travel expenses and equipment purchases.

Following on from disappointing quarterly result in January, last week HP said it is cutting 2 per cent of its workforce worldwide, or about 1,800 employees.

The disappointing results were attributed by HP to a slowdown in the economy and a weakening in consumer and corporate demand. In better times, we can't see that HP would make an issue of giving a 10 per cent discount to certain pensioners, which is hardly going to cost it more than a tiny fraction of the amount it spent on consultants advising on the failed PricewaterhouseCoopers acquisition. This looks very like penny pinching. ®

Related Links

San Francisco Chronicle article

Related stories

HP slashes Q1 forecasts
Sun and HP launch cost-cutting programs

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Fast And Furious 6 cammer thrown in slammer for nearly three years
Man jailed for dodgy cinema recording of Hollywood movie
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?