A Patch employee has emailed us to say that he (or she?) just heard from their manager that the company will be firing over 200 under-performing workers in ad sales next week.
This employee said that management had put these workers on a "performance improvement plan" and that these employees had failed that plan.
"My manager said [Patch is] getting more revenue from some network or something then these people are landing."
A second source briefed on Patch's plans confirmed that many ad sales people will lose their jobs next week as the company culls people who are not pitching in toward the bottom line enough.
This source characterized the cuts as part of the "normal course of business." This source was not aware of how many people would lose there jobs next week.
Patch is AOL's local news network of blogs. It has a poor cost structure, reaching about 10 million people per month on the backs of more than 800 editors. It lost $150 million+ in 2011.
We've heard about these "performance plans" from a number of Patch employees over recent months.
It's terrible for anyone to lose their job, and our thoughts are with those who are about to go through that hell.
(I've been laid-off before and it's pretty upsetting.)
Our hope is that Patch management will cut deep enough so that it only has to do it once.
200 people is about 20% of Patch's headcount. That number seems very high to us, but, given a chance to say fewer people would be let go, Patch PR declined to comment. So did Patch president Warren Webster.
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