This week, Hewlett-Packard announced that it would lay off an additional 33,000 workers over three years, adding to the 55,000 layoffs already planned by the company.
The majority of those cuts will come in HP’s enterprise sector. In addition to the cuts, the company will attempt to save more money by moving employees to “lower-cost locations,” according to Reuters.
Lower-cost locations offer benefits to both companies and employees: cheaper rents, the ability to stretch salaries further, and (depending on the city or state) relatively untapped pools of tech talent. But not all employees are willing to pick up and relocate from, say, San Francisco to Boise; any company that decides to shift operations to a new location needs to take some degree of staff attrition into account.
For tech pros, the announcement that their company plans on moving to another city or state is a kickoff for some major life decisions. Those who live in a metropolis, and don’t necessarily want to leave their home, generally have a better chance of quickly finding a new job than someone in a smaller city—especially if they have in-demand skills.
A “lower-cost location” may also lack the boot camps, educational opportunities, meetup groups, and mentors of the tech pros’ current town; that could make it harder to build skills and a career once the move is completed. And given that a company moving to a new city doesn’t necessarily increase its chances of longevity, there’s always the chance the tech pro could end up looking for a new position within a relatively short time of moving, anyway.
On a personal level, tech pros will also need to evaluate a potential move for its impact on friends, family, and life plans. A “lower-cost location” might be the only viable short-term move for some firms; but for tech pros, it’s not a sure thing by any means.