JCPenney's 43,000 Job Cuts Were Twice The Amount That CEO Ron Johnson Stated

Business Insider

There were bound to be job cuts when JCPenney flipped its management team and announced its transformation in late 2011.

But, as it turns out, the number of job cuts was higher than expected.

JCPenney reported 116,000 full-time and part-time employees as of February 2, 2013 in its annual statement with the SEC.

The company's annual report from the year prior stated that it employed 159,000 full-time and part-time employees as of January 28, 2012.

That's 43,000 fewer workers — or a decline of 27 percent.

Which is odd, considering CEO Ron Johnson said JCPenney had slashed 19,000 jobs since he took over while testifying under oath earlier this month.

That's about in-line with the other numbers he has provided.  Johnson previously said that when he started in November 2011, the company had 134,000 employees. 

Why the discrepancy?

The company said that the year-end figure of 159,000 was "inflated by an unusually large number of seasonal hires," according to James Covert at The New York Post, who first noticed the difference.

JCPenney has reduced expenses by $386 million by cutting salaries and benefits, according to the filing.

Here's what JCPenney had to say about the job cuts in the 10-K filing with the SEC:

As part of our cost reduction initiatives, we have significantly reduced our corporate and operations headcount, including management level employees, and distribution and field employees.

These reductions, combined with our voluntary early retirement plan initiated in 2011 and voluntary departures of employees, have resulted in a substantial amount of turnover of officers and line managers with specific knowledge relating to us, our operations and our industry that could be difficult to replace.  

We now operate with significantly fewer individuals who have assumed additional duties and responsibilities and we could have additional workforce reductions in the future.  

In addition, our business has shifted towards a decentralized management structure that distributes significant control and decision-making powers among our senior management team and other key employees, some of whom are located in satellite offices.  

These workforce changes may negatively impact communication, morale, management cohesiveness and effective decision-making, which could have an adverse impact on our operating efficiency. 

We've reached out to JCPenney for comment and will update this post accordingly.



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