Comments about ‘Employees say hundreds laid off at Novell's Provo office’

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Published: Monday, May 2 2011 1:00 p.m. MDT

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Utes Fan
Salt Lake City, UT


Excellent points, but be assured that there are plenty of highly competitive and profitable "family friendly" technology companies in Utah. I have worked in software development since 1993 and have had to work more than 40 hours only rarely - maybe only a few weeks of the year. Granted, we should not get complacent, but putting in tons of hours does not make an organization much more effective - in fact, too much work and not enough life balance can hurt innovation, productivity, and employee morale. It isn't worth it. Tons of overtime and weekend work in technology is the biggest over-hyped, over-rated nonsense. EVERY project I have seen that demanded much more than 40 hours has not fared well in the market. Employees leave, have little heart for their project etc.

Oahu, HI

Sorry about the people who lost their jobs in nonretail closed on Sunday Work, Its the start of a slide down a slope.

For the Paycheck to Paycheck People the slop is steep and quick.

It will damage or destroy familys and teat faith.

I know some people would love to go back, evan for less wages and Bennies.

The people it hurts worse is the older workers. We wish everyone well.

Oahu, HI

This is just the ebb and flow of business and the worker, be it be it Lumberman, Miner or White Collar has No control over his/her fate.

Not long ago two Car Parts Chains Merged and thousands of people lost their jobs.

The Honolulu Advertiser was bought out by the Star Bullain (that lost a customer).

One TV Station bought out another and there are unployed Barbies and Kens all over the place. Its business.

I have a friend who has a degree in Communications, Works Security at Target.

Left the Degree Off her App sso she would be over qualified.

Nows the Time to Check your years supply.

This is America we have Unemployment, WIC, EBT, Section 8, Student Loans, etc. Most people get through it.

Good luck to All.

Anon 64
Oahu, HI

Theres a Teachers Shortage in Hawaii and you can get a repo house at a good price.

Where one soor closes another opens.

Central, Utah

"TRUTH | 7:53 p.m. May 2, 2011
Salt Lake City, UT
I was a rep for Microsoft back in the day when we bundled Word with Windows free at the expense of Wordperfect.....We worried when Novell purchased Wordperfect and thought they would do the same....they never did and died as a result! ....Novell channel was the most formidable competitor at one time, too bad....now its Apple turn and because Gates burned Jobs once before, Jobs will return the favor!"

Not only was Word Perfect (which I still use) a victim of Microsoft's aggressive marketing ... ever hear of things like dBase. Our company took the hit too with a business product that sold for $498. Microft sold theirs fo $98 until they had ruined the competition --- then they upped it.

We had documentation in our package that cost us $75 so there was no way to sell for $98 even though several evaluations said it was better.

Who knows who will be strong tomorrow or who will be gone.

Durham, NC

dBase didn't go down because of Microsoft.... Ashton-Tate was actually business partners with Microsoft at the time, was co-developer of then Microsoft/Ashton-Tate SQL Server. I know, I was part of the product management team at the time. It was silver parachutes, a really bad release of dBase (4.1), and Borland that ran what was an outstanding company into the ground. Quality mattered, and we messed up, big.

But that just goes to show how complex the industry is. I agree with all the comments above about how savage the industry was in the 80's and 90's. I rode the wave with the best of them. My resume has the names of the best of them on it. I made a ton of money in the process - it was good for me.

But like many, I burned out, and found out that no matter how much I made, it didn't change much. I took one downturn to try something else, and it has worked out beautifully. To those that just lost their jobs, look at this as an opportunity to get doing what you really want to do.

Bountiful, UT

While this is terrible news, I'm confused at why this is news and when Comcast laid-off 95% of their call center only to go on hiring binge the next week to claim the $2000/person tax credit so that they could make $800,000 off of ruining the lives of 400 people, no one said anything.

Where's Stockton ???
Bowling Green, OH

@Moderate...and had you paid attention somewhere in your span of education...you'd relize that mergers do impact economic conditions and most generally are done because of economic conditions either to positively or negatively change courses for the companies envolved...You can't blanket a merger as not related to economic conditions. You are totally short on the uptake with such a shortsighted and narrowly naive simplistic response.

St. George, Utah

all those layoffs hmmmmm can you say outsourcing ?

mountain man
Salt Lake City, UT

If you have a job....be grateful for it. There was a time when working for Novell was the pinnacle of success. The same could be said for word perfect.
Change. It is the only constant that seems to never go away. My grandfather worked his entire career at one place. The Newspaper. What made it possible?
Computers had not been invented. Today, I don't think there is a newspaper employee alive who doesn't feel like each day could be his last day....because of this...the internet. good luck...to all affected by this. Doors will open!

Captain Kirk
Lehi, UT


I doubt that the downfall of Novell and WordPerfect had much to do with the competitive nature and hours worked by the employees.

The problem was leadership.
Novell and WP were completely outmaneuvered by Microsoft's leadership and business strategy ... not by the work of the rank and file.

There were plenty of good ideas and work being put out by the employees at Novell but the leadership did not know how to take advantage of it.

Kind of reminds me of Xerox. Xerox always had very smart people and great technology but could never really capitalize on much of it.

South Jordan, UT

The story of Novell and WordPerfect is not new, nor is it unique. And if you think that the engineers at either of those companies didn't feel the same kind of performance pressure that other technology engineers have dealt with at other companies, then I have a bridge over Utah Lake I would like to sell you.

The brutal truth is that the tech industry is highly competetive, and always changing. You can be top dog in your field this year, and on the trash heap in a year or two if you don't continue to innovate, or if you make the wrong decisions. In the case of both WordPerfect and Novell, there were some wrong turns and bad decisions that eventually multiplied into company killers.

LDS Aerospace Engineer
Farmington, UT

...and thousands of Rocket Scientists laid-off at ATK.

In other news -- In-N-Out burger is now open in Centerville.....

The Rock
Federal Way, WA

I work for Boeing. At one time Boeing produced its own jet engines (now Pratt and Whitney) and owned its own airline (now United Air Lines). Boeing was forced to spin off these two units. Boeing today only manufactures air frames.

Microsoft put a lot of good companies out of business by predatory practices.
One small company had a nice data compression utility. Microsoft went to them and offered to buy their company for ten cents on the dollar. If they did not accept the offer, Microsoft threatened to write their own utility, include it in their operating system for free; thus, eliminating the market.

Software companies should be forbidden from publishing both applications and operating system. They should have to choose one or the other. Novel's Netware had their market eliminated when Microsoft included networking software in their operating system.

Publishers of operating systems have a significant and unfair advantage over all other competitors. The playing field needs to be leveled.

West Valley, UT

Let's check the facts here.

Jobs being lost during this "recession" are mostly in the middle of the payscale. Managers, computer programmers, bank agents, teachers, sales reps, etc. They offered 9-5 hours and good benefits.

Jobs being added during the "recovery" are mostly at the bottom of the payscale. Fast food cooks, cashiers, gas station attendants and the like.

It's a big shift towards the bottom and just another blow in the war against the Middle Class. Another 5 years of this and median household income will fall below $35,000/yr.

Above all else, this is the issue we need to be addressing. The average American is getting poorer every year. Soon we won't be able to afford more than the essentials, which will only lead to more job loss, as consumer spending is still the #1 driving force of our economy.

shakespeare's fool
Pleasant Grove, UT

My sympathies and prayers go out to those who lost their jobs. I hope you soon find a new job that you love and that replaces the income you just lost.

hymn to the silent
Holladay, UT

Folks...blaming the work habits of somebody else for your own demise is juvenile. There's always a way to find the balance between family and work...and those that have a balanced life, single or married make the best employees. Successful people get better and faster at what they do, and they don't blame some nebulous force of nature when they lose their jobs...they simply reinvent themselves to suit their values.

Cedar Hills, UT

I worked at Novell for 17 years and loved the company. Yes there were the layoffs - usually twice a year at least - but all in all Novell had great middle and front line management (in my opinion) and a great working environment. I am sad to here of this layoff - 800 is huge - and I have to wonder if Provo really lost that many. Hopefully going forward, the new company can regain its footing and the Provo facility can slowly add head count and products.

Cedar City, UT

to 10CC: A few of your comments:

"I had a family and was used to being a productivity leader in my company, not below average."

"single workaholics"

"individuals with little to no family obligations"

"The good people in Provo & Orem who were fathers & mothers, scoutmasters and church leaders didn't stand a chance"

"They were also usually single or without children."

Wow! Sounds like you have an ATTITUDE! and too much PRIDE! and a STIFF NECK!

The real reasons why companys are downsizing, rightsizing, mergings, etc. isn't to get rid of a perfect LDS fellow like yourself. It's because of the recession. And during a recession we all have to work harder to keep our jobs. And longer hours, too.

Don't blame the single 20-somethings.

Zadruga Guy
West Jordan, UT

For those who will be job hunting, there are a number of companies in Utah County that have open tech and corporate services positions, including the company I work for, Ancestry.com. We have been growing rapidly the last five years.

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