Feeds

HP cancels Christmas in the UK and Éire

Stationery party cupboard is bare for British and Irish workers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Exclusive Hewlett-Packard has told its UK and Ireland-based staff that the computer giant won’t be funding their Christmas celebrations this year because of the worsening economic climate.

The company had originally divvied up £35 (€45) per head for its employees, who for much of the year have watched HP’s workforce dwindle under the helm of CEO Mark Hurd.

HP said in September it would axe 24,600 (7.5 per cent) of its workforce worldwide over the next two years.

Unsurprisingly, many HP staffers had been looking forward to letting their hair down at numerous Xmas bashes on the company tab.

But HP has now knocked Christmas funtimes on the head.

In a confidential memo addressed to HP staff and seen by The Register, the firm’s UK and Ireland managing director Steve Gill blamed the economy for HP’s decision to withdraw its Christmas party funds.

Here’s the bleak memo in full:

Since I provided this guidance the worldwide economic climate has significantly worsened and the challenges facing our organisation have increased inline with this.

As a result we have received specific instruction from our Worldwide Executive Committee that in light of the current economic environment, they are asking everyone at HP to more aggressively manage their cost structure to help ensure our continued success.

HP will not be funding any holiday celebrations or gatherings this year, including all company-expensed luncheons, after-hour parties and holiday gifts.

Therefore my original message relating to £ 35 / Euro 45 per head for team celebrations NO longer applies. To be fair to all teams, if you have already booked a celebration we ask you to cancel this immediately regardless of any payments made in advance.

We will continue with the Christmas lunches in our staff restaurants.

Please work with your management teams to ensure that everyone in the HP UK and Ireland organisation complies with this updated policy.

Regards, Steve

HP told us: "HP can confirm that we have announced to our employees to reduce our discretionary spending as part of our ongoing focus on operational efficiencies.

"These actions have been taken in order to keep the company competitive in the challenging economic environment."

If it's any consolation for HP's staff, they're in good company. According to The Guardian Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and Barclays Capital have all cancelled Christmas events while RBS has imposed a thrifty £10 limit at its gig.

The story is similar in the US, with some staff at Charles Schwab staff footing the bill for their own parties, Cisco more or less scrapping the idea altogether, and other companies pushing festivities back into January to get better deals. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Assange™: Hey world, I'M STILL HERE, ignore that Snowden guy
Press conference: ME ME ME ME ME ME ME (cont'd pg 94)
Premier League wants to PURGE ALL FOOTIE GIFs from social media
Not paying Murdoch? You're gonna get a right LEGALLING - thanks to automated software
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
Online tat bazaar eBay coughs to YET ANOTHER outage
Web-based flea market struck dumb by size and scale of fail
Amazon takes swipe at PayPal, Square with card reader for mobes
Etailer plans to undercut rivals with low transaction fee offer
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
US regulators OK sale of IBM's x86 server biz to Lenovo
Now all that remains is for gov't offices to ban the boxes
Ballmer quits Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
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.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.