10.02.07

Rumour: Novell Layoffs Next Month

Posted in Novell, Ron Hovsepian, SCO at 11:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Further to the previous post, which spoke about revealing comments, here comes another rumour that can get people at Novell upset. The following I did not know: does Novell intend to lay off employees next month?

You people aren’t acquainted with Novell. It is one of the worst-managed companies ever–employees who have tried to to innovate usually find instant defeat. If anyone from Novell is patrolling blogs it is certainly not a company-managed effort. In fact, most employees are stressed about the upcoming October layoffs.

Can anyone confirm this? Having just searched the Web, the 2005 layoffs are all that comes up [1, 2, 3]. There was certainly nothing about new layoffs in the press (not recently anyway) and Bruce Lowry fought against our arguments that Novell is losing staff, despite the fact that we recorded evidence of layoffs in this site (some of them this year).

If the above is true, then Bruce will have to eat humble pie. I can’t say that we’ll have “the last laugh” because unemployment is nothing to joke about and the misery of Novell developers, as opposed to management that sold out, is not something which I would — personally — take any pleasure in. I’ve said it before (probably elsewhere) and I’ll say it again: Ron Hovsepian deserves to be sacked for not realising the consequences of that terrible deal with Microsoft. He should have listened more closely to Jeremey Allison and some of the other prominent developers. He received warnings about this deal.

What should Novell ideally do? The company seems to be trapped now, but maybe it can apologise and escape this irrevocable deal somehow. It’s unrealistic, surely, and it would take a long time to recover, but Novell will probably drop into oblivion if it believes that a ‘second-class Windows’ (OOXML translator is not OOXML, Mono is not .NET, Moonlight is not Silverlight) will be appreciated by clients.

Novell seems to be lacking leadership and inspiration. Even Novell’s key evangelist, Reverend Ted, is clearly irreplaceable (Novell sought a replacement days ago) and he has moved on to podcasting elsewhere. Good luck to Ted!

If staffing reduction is anything to go by and if the above rumour is true, then Novell might be the next SCO. Earlier today I notices that Sam Hiser had created a new category in his blog, aptly named “SCOVell”.

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8 Comments

  1. Fred Flintstone said,

    October 3, 2007 at 4:46 pm

    Gravatar

    All you need to do is look at last year’s annual report. Novell set aside some $60M in funds for “restructuring.” There have been a couple of small layoffs here and there, but the “big one” is just around the corner. Many of the Novell folks in Provo have been transitioning work to India and other off shore locations.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 3, 2007 at 4:52 pm

    Gravatar

    This is something that we covered before, along with layoffs in Denmark and Novell’s renting of office space in the United States. It’s just surprising that the press is mum on the issue.

  3. DistRogue said,

    October 6, 2007 at 1:26 am

    Gravatar

    If that’s the case at Novell, then thank God for the openSUSE community, right?

  4. phil mccrackin said,

    October 9, 2007 at 8:24 pm

    Gravatar

    I work at Novell. And yes, layoffs are coming. The last word I heard was around 400 from Provo. They will happen the week of Oct 15th, 2007. There are over 500 people at the Novell office in India now. Most of them fresh out of school and looking for experience, so in two years they can bail for a newer job that requires the experience that Novell just gave them. I don’t understand why the execs don’t see that since it’s been happening for years. I guess it’s just that they want to see the dollar amount, instead of what reality is. *sigh*

  5. I.P. Freely said,

    October 10, 2007 at 5:27 pm

    Gravatar

    Confirmed. Layoffs are taking place today. Nice work Executives!

    The MSFT deal was a mistake in the eyes of the community, I am not so sure that it is a mistake in the eyes of those customers who are taking advantage of the agreement. Regardless, it hindsight is 20/20. There have been numerous execs at Novell who have taken the company down too many blind alleys.

    The company isn’t growing. Allowing CPT to come in and run/ruin the company has been a huge mistake. Even if an employee were not laid off, the writing is on the wall. It is time to look elsewhere.

  6. MR EX NOVELL said,

    October 11, 2007 at 10:44 am

    Gravatar

    I left Novell in March because it was obvious to me that Novell has ZERO commitment its employees in PROVO. I didn’t think Moral could get any lower but it has since I left.

    The recent Lab that was set up to Aid the MS/NOVELL agreement could have easily been set up on PROVO. But no, they went for the more expensive location in Boston- here’s the press release.
    http://www.novell.com/news/press/microsoft-and-novell-open-interoperability-lab

    The next move will be moving ALL of Technical support in PROVO off shore. Its already been happening for GroupWise. GroupWise and the Novell CLient technical support moved to INDIA years ago. Now GroupWise development is in Mexico. Pity Novell employees aren’t in the UAW eh? Maybe they should join up?

  7. Starfish mama said,

    October 16, 2007 at 2:43 pm

    Gravatar

    yup – i’m the wife of one of the victims of a rumor – oh wait, I mean the real-for-sure layoffs. Happened today. Dh started with WordPerfect in 1990, then got sold to Novell (I mean the company was sold – ha!), then Corel, then back to Novell. It’s been a long ride, but it ended today . . .

  8. lbrist said,

    October 23, 2007 at 1:53 pm

    Gravatar

    I just heard about this today, does anybody know if they’re implementing any type of employment firm to help get those that are/will be laid off employees placed???

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