Employment Law

Sharpie, Rubbermaid producer Newell Brands cutting 7% of office jobs

A photo of a sharpie marker, pen, and a notepad on a table. (Photo: Kelly Sikkema / Unsplash)

Newell Brands, the producer of Sharpie, Rubbermaid, and other well-known products, is cutting seven per cent of its office workforce.

What’s happening at Newell Brands?

In a recent news release, Newell Brands announced an “organizational realignment” consisting of several changes, including:

  • Standing up a cross-functional brand management organization
  • Realigning business unit finance to fully support the new global brand management model
  • Further simplifying and standardizing regional go-to-market organizations
  • Centralizing various teams, including retail sales, manufacturing quality, and digital technology

“Through the organizational design changes, we expect to maximize accountability and ownership of financial results, drive consistency in how we work, reduce overhead cost structure and complexity, while investing in the capabilities we need to win,” President and CEO Chris Peterson said in the release.

“These actions will enable the company to operate with greater speed and agility. We appreciate our employees’ continued efforts during this transition as we take the difficult but necessary actions to strengthen and reshape the organization for sustainable, long-term competitive advantage and value creation.”

The consumer goods company added that it plans to “further optimize” its real estate footprint and pursue other cost-saving initiatives.

“Restructuring and related charges associated with these actions are estimated to be in the range of $75 million to $90 million and are expected to be substantially incurred by the end of 2024,” the release reads.

Impact on Canadian staff

It remains unclear if Canadian office workers will be let go by Newell Brands.

According to the company’s LinkedIn page, it employs more than 240 people in Canada.

Termination agreements for employees at Newell Brands

In Canada, non-unionized employees at Newell Brands are owed full severance pay when they lose their jobs due to downsizing, corporate restructuring, or the closure of the business.

This includes individuals working full-time, part-time, or hourly in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C.

People working “on contract” or as a contractor may also be owed severance pay — given that many employees in Canada are often misclassified as independent contractors.

Severance can be as much as 24 months’ pay, depending on a number of factors.

WATCH: Employment lawyer Lior Samfiru explains why you are still owed severance if you have been downsized on an episode of the Employment Law Show.

Before you accept any severance offer, have an experienced employment lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP review it and your employment contract.

If you don’t receive the correct amount, which happens often, you have been wrongfully dismissed and should take legal action.

Non-unionized employees in Canada have up to two years from the date of their dismissal to pursue proper severance pay.

Severance for provincially regulated employees
Rights to severance during mass layoffs
Severance entitlements during a recession

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Major layoffs continue

Newell Brands isn’t the only major employer reducing their workforce in 2024.

Other big names, including Instagram, Universal Music Group, Citigroup, BlackRock, Indigo, Discord, Google, Amazon, Twitch, Unity, and Xerox, have also pulled out the axe as they continue to navigate challenging economic conditions.

• Firm launches $130M class action against Shopify for breach of contract
Dehumidified Air Solutions in Ottawa closing, laying off 80: Reports
Where are layoffs happening in Canada?

Lost your job? Talk to an employment lawyer

If you have been fired or let go for any reason, contact the experienced employment law team at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP.

Our lawyers in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C. have successfully represented tens of thousands of non-unionized individuals.

In addition to severance package negotiations, we can assist you on a broad range of employment matters, including:

If you are a non-unionized employee who needs help with a workplace issue, contact us or call 1-855-821-5900 to get the advice you need and the compensation you deserve.

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