Today was not a good day to be a Merck employee. The company announced less than expected earnings for the most recent quarter and layoffs of 4,400 positions worldwide, including 1200 temporary and 3200 permanent. This is a company that prefers not to take these kinds of measures, so it is disappointing to see them reach such a situation. Morale, to be honest, was extremely low today as more people spent their day trying to come up with some likelihood of being in one of those 4,400 positions. The one positive I’ve noticed is that management has indicated this means positions, of which some are vacant as employees have moved on but the position has remained available. This actually reduces the number of people being removed, such as in one organization, where about 25% of the positions were actually vacant. The IS organization itself is budgeted for around 150 positions, which appears to be in line with many of the other organizations.
Coincidentally, tonight as also the night of an RAA dorm storm, where alumni return to speak to students in their residence halls about life after Rutgers, careers, and any other topics students express a curiosity about. So as I wonder about my own immediate future, I also had the pleasure of discussing the future with current Rutgers students. All in all, it was a successful program and while the students were more shy than in the other dorm storm I’ve attended, we were relatively pleased.