Boeing employees work on the vertical stabilizer of a 767 cargo plane in the Boeing factory on May 17 in Everett. Boeing cut nearly 1,600 jobs in the state in April, the biggest one month drop since January 2003. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Boeing employees work on the vertical stabilizer of a 767 cargo plane in the Boeing factory on May 17 in Everett. Boeing cut nearly 1,600 jobs in the state in April, the biggest one month drop since January 2003. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)

Boeing continues to cut jobs, citing need to stay competitive

EVERETT — The Boeing Co.’s workforce in Washington dropped by 1,582 in April.

That is the biggest month-over-month decline for the airplane maker since January 2003, when it cut approximately 1,800 jobs in the state, according to The Daily Herald’s analysis of employment data on Boeing’s website.

At the time, the company was struggling through a downturn begun with the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, which sent airlines reeling as would-be flyers opted to stay grounded. Commercial aviation further was hammered by rising fuel prices, a global recession and other market challenges. As airlines canceled and delayed orders for new jetliners, Boeing slashed its Washington workforce from 80,000 in the fall of 2001 to 62,000 one year later. It bottomed out at 52,763 in June 2004.

Boeing executives say the need to curb costs in a competitive market is driving the current paring down of jobs. In 2016, the company cut its global workforce by nearly 11,000. Most of that reduction — 7,357 jobs — came in Washington, where Boeing makes nearly all its commercial airplanes.

Company leaders have said they expect to reduce jobs at about the same rate in 2017. Through the first four months of the year, Boeing has shed 2,823 jobs around Puget Sound, dropping to 69,058 on April 27, the most recent data available.

After the downturn in the early 2000s, the company’s workforce in the state peaked at 87,023 by October 2012. At the time, it had 175,742 employees around the world, with the vast majority in the United States. Its global payroll by late April had 144,976, a decline of nearly 31,000.

Most of the job reductions since early 2016 have come through buyouts, retirements and selective hiring freezes. The company had avoided major layoffs until this year. So far, it has issued 1,162 layoff notices to workers in Washington. That total includes a limited number of notices issued twice. The company has declined to say exactly how many workers have been affected.

Dan Catchpole: 425-339-3454; dcatchpole@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @dcatchpole.

Talk to us

More in Herald Business Journal

Striking Starbucks employees talk to a woman who wanted to use the drive-thru but was turned away due to the strike on Wednesday, June 15, 2022, on Broadway in Everett, Washington. Workers at the 37th and Broadway store spent their morning picketing because a fellow employee had been fired the previous day in what the workers believe is an act of union busting. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Everett Starbucks workers go on strike after employee fired

The employee and her fellow union members claim she was fired for supporting the union. Starbucks denies it.

X
Property values soar 32% in Snohomish County due to hot housing market

Assessed values are up all across the county since last year. The impact on tax bills won’t be known for a few months.

Everett
Port of Everett hosting annual open house after pandemic hiatus

Also, Rustic Cork Wine Bar plans to open a second shop at Fisherman’s Harbor — the latest addition to the port’s “wine walk.”

Holly Burkett-Pohland, the owner of Burkett’s Home & Gift, outside of her new store front on Friday, June 17, 2022 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
New Everett gift store debuts in former J. Matheson space

For years, Holly Burkett-Pohland wanted to expand a business founded by her mother in 1978.

A Kenmore Air Cessna 208 Caravan. (Kenmore Air) 20220613
Kenmore Air to start daily flights from Paine Field to San Juans

Service begins July 14. Flights to Friday Harbor and Orcas Island airports take about 25 minutes.

Seattle Space Needle sues coffee chain over use of logo

The logo for Local Coffee Spot features a mug of hot coffee whose rising steam bears striking resemblance to the iconic tower.

Logo for news use, for stories regarding Washington state government — Olympia, the Legislature and state agencies. No caption necessary. 20220331
Foes of state’s capital gains tax drop plans for initiative

I-1929 sponsors say they are confident a lawsuit challenging the legality of the tax will be successful.

Arlington
Smoother sailing: Arlington airport gets grant to fix runway

A $2.3 million federal grant will pave the way for a project to resurface the airfield’s main runway.

Workers build the first all electric plane, the Eviation Alice, on Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2021 in Arlington, Washington.  The plane is designed for regional travel and to carry nine passengers. (Andy Bronson / The Herald)
Eviation moves tests of electric passenger plane to Moses Lake

The Arlington company said a bigger runway and flatter terrain are better suited to early testing of the commuter aircraft.

An artist's rendering of the new Funko warehouse in Buckeye, Arizona. (Funko) 20220407
Funko warehouse layoffs begin this week in Everett, Puyallup

The layoffs, announced in April, are part of a plan to move distribution operations to Arizona.

Rendering of the front entrance of Spruce Elementary School in Lynnwood. (Edmonds School District)
Police: Edmonds schools sent $2.7 million check to fraudster

Police say the fraudster posed as a contractor for a new elementary school. A bank caught it at the last second.

Looking north, an aerial view of Paine Field in Everett. (Paine Field / Snohomish County) 20220605
Paine Field development plan envisions an expanded terminal

Once Sea-Tac Airport reaches capacity, the Everett airport is on the short list to absorb unmet demand by passengers.