HP Probes Employee Exodus to GM

Susan Hall

Though General Motors announced in October that it would take on 3,000 IT workers from Hewlett-Packard who had been doing its outsourced IT work previously, HP’s not so happy that a batch of IT workers in Austin, Texas, decided to move to GM on their own.

HP has petitioned a Texas court to depose two former HP managers about why 18 people "resigned en masse and without notice" and "immediately began working for General Motors in Austin in GM's new IT Innovation Center." It claims the two managers, Gregg Hansen and Todd MacKenzie, might have violated employment contracts that prohibit them from soliciting other workers to follow them, according to InfoWorld.

GM announced this fall that it was bringing 90 percent of its outsourced IT work back in house. It said it would hire 500 workers in Austin, which was to be the first of three planned “innovation centers.” The company has dozens of job openings posted at the center, according to The Austin Business Journal.

HP says at least four teams within its organization were affected by the sudden departures. It says six direct reports of Hansen, a former director of information technology III, and three direct reports of MacKenzie, a former director of information technology I, were among those who up and left, the Business Journal says.

“HP expects that additional resignations will follow as the departed employees will likely seek to build out their teams by filling in with subordinate employees from HP,” the court papers say. 

It’s not clear what HP hopes to accomplish by deposing the two managers, but according to a Bloomberg Businessweek story, HP already has lost dozens of high-ranking employees to GM.

With HP in the midst of massive layoffs — InfoWorld reports that by Oct. 31, the end of its fiscal year, the company had cut 17,800 of the 29,000 it plans to lay off — the exodus to GM seems unsurprising.

Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Jan 3, 2013 8:46 PM hoapres hoapres  says:
This is America and people can go from one employer to another. Reply
Jan 7, 2013 8:31 AM PowerToTheEmployees PowerToTheEmployees  says:
It shocks me that Employers are shocked by the moment of staff during uncertain times. I' personally could loose my job at a moments notice, pay cuts, 1.2% raises, claw backs on training budgets and anything to improve the bottom line. Now they are mad that employee's move to greener pastures????? I hope the courts will laugh at them right to the door. Its sad to say but companies need to get in touch with reality. We are not numbers! Your service depends on us. Just be nice to people once in awhile since they already give their blood to you. Reply
Dec 17, 2013 2:38 PM Joe Joe  says:
Tsk, Tsk...Too bad HP !! Just like when you called me at 4:30pm on a Friday telling me to meet my area director at 9:00am on Monday, then WHAM...Goodbye !! Some heads up that was. After two and a half decades of faithfull service you chose me and not the dozen or so people that milked the system doing barely enough to get by. Good ridence HP. Bill and Dave would be ashamed of what's happened to one of America's greatest company. Reply

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