They knew it was coming, but it still sent chills through the halls of Bank of America's headquarters in Charlotte, N.C. as word spread that employees were being laid off. BofA had announced earlier this year that it would reduce headcount by 30,000 jobs company wide by the end of 2012 in order to cut costs.
Approximately 15,000 employees work in Charlotte, and according to the Charlotte Business Journal, some of them learned this week that they were being laid off in the first phase of a massive cutback.
Bank of America refused to say how many headquarters employees would receive pink slips.
People familiar with the situation told the Charlotte Business Journal that layoff notices were circulated at technology and operations division offices yesterday afternoon. The paper said others mentioned the layoffs on Twitter. It's unclear how many employees have lost their jobs.
The bank has said it wants to cut some $5 billion in annual expenses by 2013 as part of Project New BAC, CEO Brian Moynihan's efficiency initiative. The current phase of the project focused on the bank's consumer-banking and support divisions.
A second phase next year reportedly will focus on the investment banking and capital markets divisions.
Sources say this is the first of three rounds of planned cuts and that Charlotte is expected to be hit hard during the first phase because it's where many consumer banking, technology and operations jobs are located.
The Charlotte Business Journal quotes one former BofA employee who has his own business as saying he's been getting pinged on social media sites by people wanting to know if he's hiring.