The other concerns the need for the company to make sizeable reductions In its overall operating costs In the The compensation and benefit improvements include substantial base salary Increases for eligible General Salary Role employees; more liberal adjustments In the cost-of-living allowance formula; advances in specific benefit programs, including ajar changes in the retirement plan that will provide Important increases for present and future retired employees; insurance and health care plan improvements; and additions to the vacation schedules.
The attached bulletin will provide you with details of these changes, and the forthcoming Issue of Metal News will publish additional Information. If you have further questions, your salaried personnel activity is ready to help you. On the company’s part, these improvements in compensation and benefits reflect optimism about the future of the steel business and Honeymoon’s place in It They are also indicative of Honeymoon’s commitment to provide each of you with fair and competitive compensation for the work you do.
On your part, we hope that this expression of confidence will be reflected in your positive response to the challenges facing us. One of these challenges is the present downturn in the national economy. The steel industry historically has been a cyclical business with peaks and valleys, and today Wentworth Steel is in one of those valleys a period of severely reduced sales. This economic downturn comes at a time when we are faced with increasing sots and the need for billions of dollars in Investment to meet government regulations and to maintain a strong competitive position in the marketplace.
Therefore, at the time we are announcing improved compensation and benefits for both our hourly and salaried employees, the company must also make a concerted effort toward reducing Its overall operating costs, and specific actions are being 1 OFF *Restrictions on the use of overtime. *Reduction in the use of temporary salaried employees. Travel and related expenses. *Restrictions on employee relocations. Reductions in purchasing and supply costs. *Limitation on the use of non-company meeting facilities. Limitation on Our cost reduction program also must include a reduction in our salaried work force. While we are taking many other actions to lower costs, it is impossible to avoid eliminating some Jobs and some personnel. To minimize the impact on our salaried workforce, open positions that have not been filled may be eliminated; some employees will be offered transfers to other components in the company where there are open positions, and some employees will retire early. For those employees who are laid off, efforts will be made to provide assistance in their Job search.
Reductions in personnel are very difficult decisions to make because of their effect on individuals. Management’s responsibility, however, is to maintain a healthy business, and cushion the impact of required lay-offs. I am confident that both the improved compensation program and the cost reduction program will contribute to making the company stronger and more competitive in the long run. And the more competitive the company’s position is, the more secure will be its employees in the owing years.
In view of the current economic situation and a complete retooling of the steel industry to meet foreign competition, our industry and our company face challenges in the sass that are even more difficult than those we have faced during past downsizing. To meet these challenges will require dedication and hard work from all of us. I am personally soliciting your best efforts and your cooperation in finding new, better, and more economical ways of doing your Jobs. Wentworth Steel has many strengths, and I believe the sass can be a period of progress and opportunity. Carl Wentworth