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Fidelity Lays Off Workers Here and Abroad

The reduction in jobs resulted from the Boston-based fund firm’s restructuring efforts. Some employees in the corporate human resource division, which serves Fidelity employees, were laid off.

June 5, 2008
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Fidelity Investments of Boston laid off an undisclosed number of workers this week, largely from its personal and workplace investing unit and human resource services unit.

The reduction in jobs resulted from the divisions’ restructuring efforts, said Anne Crowley, spokeswoman for the Boston-based fund firm.

“It was a very small percent of our overall workforce,” Crowley said, noting that Fidelity has 46,000 employees. “These business units have been involved in restructuring since the fall.”

In addition, some employees in the corporate human resource division, which serves Fidelity employees, were laid off.

The number of layoffs in Massachusetts was very small, Crowley said. Most layoffs took place in the firm’s regional sites in the U.S., though “a fair amount of the total number was outside of the U.S.,” she added.

In the fall, Fidelity merged its institutional retirement services business with personal investments into a new personal and workplace investing division.

At the same time, it spun off the human resources business, which covers employer services, into a separate business.

“These are not corporate-wide layoffs,” Crowley said. “Our division heads are given a lot of autonomy to run their divisions. On any given day, you could have one business unit deciding they have more employees than they need and another deciding to hire more.”

Fidelity is still hiring, she added.

“We have several hundred open requisitions throughout the company that we are hiring for,” Crowley said.

In February, Fidelity laid off more than 200 workers, largely because of duplication of roles created when the firm merged two divisions in the fall.

The firm also laid off about 200 employees in November.

As of April 30, Fidelity had more than $3.3 trillion in assets in custody, including managed assets of more than $1.5 trillion.

Filed by Sue Asci of Investment News, a sister publication of Workforce Management. To comment, e-mail editors@workforce.com.

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