Positions Eliminated at McCombs School, Further Cost-Saving Measures Expected

Supervisors in the McCombs School of Business have notified 16 people that their positions have been eliminated as a result of the current budgetary crisis, with a final employment date of Jan. 31 for the affected positions. Staff reductions at the school were announced Sept. 15 and finalized on Monday, Nov. 2.

The school's human resources director, Del Watson, in coordination with the university's Human Resource Services department, will provide assistance to affected staff members with career services programs. Counseling will be available through the Employee Assistance Program. Affected employees will be given "special consideration" status in the hiring process for future positions at the university.

"Our priority is to ensure that individuals are treated with dignity, respected for what they have contributed to the school and assisted in their job search," McCombs School Dean Tom Gilligan said.

Unit heads within the school held group meetings with those not affected by the staff reduction to answer questions about the impact of the reductions upon work load and staff morale.

"While we are especially concerned for those directly impacted," Gilligan said, "we also recognize that everyone feels the effects of the reduction in some way or the other. This is a time for us to listen to concerns, be supportive and help teams readjust."

Gilligan said the staff reductions are expected to make up about 20 percent of the overall cost-saving measures the school will implement to ensure the continued success of the McCombs School during difficult economic times.

"Two priorities remain paramount to our mission even as we struggle with the budgetary challenges," Gilligan said. "First, the McCombs School is populated by a tremendously productive and committed community of professionals, and we must reallocate the resources necessary to reward and retain our very best faculty and staff.  Second, new faculty are central to the prominence of our school and the new initiatives we are undertaking in our strategic plan. This means we must continue to proactively hire the very best scholars available."

Gilligan said that with prudent planning the McCombs School can emerge in a stronger position to meet its goal of becoming one of the most prominent business schools in the world, while educating the next generation of leaders.