Hawker Employees Receive Layoff Letter

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UPDATE: Friday, November 04, 2011

Employees at Hawker Beechcraft have received a letter indicating some workers will soon be loosing their jobs.

Bill Boisture, Hawker Beechcraft CEO, said affected employees will be given a 60-day Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notice (WARN) on November 11.

"This is a rough time for our company, community and employees," Boisture said in the letter.

Boisture said the company must resize due to a struggling economy.

"The airplane markets in which we compete are showing little sign of growth, and the key indicators that could trigger such growth are stubbornly low," Boisture said.

Boisture said the company will continue to transform through major shifts in work, changes in process and focus on first-time quality.

The full-release is attached above.

Update: Thursday, November 03, 2011

A machinists union leader says Hawker Beechcraft sent layoff WARN notices to 88 of its employees. There's still no official confirmation of the layoffs from Hawker Beechcraft, but International Association of Machinists business representative Rita Rogers says the union was notified a couple days ago. Rogers blames the layoffs on parts disruptions.

Hawker Beechcraft CEO Bill Boisture spoke candidly about parts disruptions in the company's third quarter conference call earlier this week. The company announced last year it would begin outsourcing thousands of parts to Mexico. Boisture says the slowing of parts coming from Mexico is slowing final assembly of some planes, including the King Air.

"The King Air disruption occurred because we moved piece parts and sub assemblies from our older higher cost facilities here in Kansas to both third parties and our own operations in Mexico," said Boisture.

Rogers says parts from Mexico aren't being delivered to Wichita on time and some parts aren't made to specifications. She says when those parts arrive, some of the work has to be redone. Boisture says he expects the disruptions to end soon.

"And so we're expecting that to smooth out by the end of the quarter and be in much better shape by the time we enter the first quarter next year," said Boisture.

Rogers says she doesn't believe the 88 Wichita workers would be let go if there hadn't been so many delivery delays. Hawker's third quarter deliveries have fallen by 22 percent compared to the same period last year due. Company officials say supply disruptions from Mexico have played a part in the delivery decline.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Several dozen Hawker Beechcraft employees will soon be losing their job.

Rita Rogers, business representative for the International Association of Machinists union, said 88 employees recently received layoff warn notices. She said the employees are part of the machinist union bargaining unit, including sheet metal assemblers, planners and inspectors. Some of the workers returned to Hawker in June after previous layoffs.

Rogers said parts delays could be to blame for the downsizing.

A Hawker spokeswoman said the company has no comment at this time.

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