Nokia has announced it will be cutting 7,000 jobs worldwide as part of a major restructuring plan as the company phases out Symbian and focuses on Microsoft's Windows Phone. The good news is that the 3,000 employees Nokia had working on Symbian will continue their jobs at consulting and outsourcing firm Accenture, which is now in charge of its development, but a further 4,000 will have to face what CEO Stephen Elop called a difficult reality and head home.
The bulk of the cuts are taking place in Denmark, Finland and UK. Nokia will try to cushion the blow for those affected and also mentioned the possibility of long-term re-employment for talented workers. Personnel reductions will occur in phases until the end of 2012, linked to the rollout of Nokia's planned product and services portfolio, and all employees affected by the reduction plans can stay on the Nokia payroll until the end of this year.
Nokia also said it would consolidate its research and product development sites, "so that each site has a clear role and mission". All in all the restructuring plan is expected to reduce operating expenses for devices and services by 1 billion euros, or $1.46 billion, for 2013 compared to 2010.
The measures are part of Nokia's new strategy to use Microsoft's Windows Phone platform software in a new line of handsets and regain market share in the smartphone sector. Although the Finnish company is still the world's largest phone maker by volume, it has seen its market share fall sharply over the past few years to the likes of Apple's iPhone and a raft of devices powered by Google's Android operating system.