Lockheed opens doors to execs’ voluntary departure

Company adds financial incentives to trim directors and vice presidents

Lockheed Martin Corp. is going on a diet to reduce its overhead and improve affordability for its clients.

The giant defense contractor announced Tuesday that it is instituting a new program intended to trim the number of its directors and vice presidents, according to a company statement dated July 6.

Under its Voluntary Executive Separation Program, Lockheed Martin is offering unspecified financial incentives for those employees to leave the company by Feb. 1, 2011.

In addition to reducing overhead costs, “the program is intended to reduce layers of management and afford opportunities for talented individuals to take on broader assignments to continue to grow their careers,” the statement said.

This streamlining is expected to provide more immediate, direct communications within the corporation and with its customers, it added.
Lockheed said the voluntary program “is the latest in a series of moves aimed at refining strategic alignment, enhancing performance and lowering costs to keep pace with evolving customer realities and global security challenges.”

The company cited other recent actions it has taken to realign the business and hold down costs, including a major corporate reorganization, the planned divestiture of two units and a significant reduction in international trade show participation.

“We’re taking bold and responsible action to address the new reality of our business environment consistent with our customers’ need to improve efficiency and deliver additional savings,” said Lockheed Martin Chairman and CEO Bob Stevens in the statement.

“Our customers are facing increasing demands with constrained resources, and they’re relying on us to give them the very best value within these constraints,” Stevens said. “This was clearly expressed by our top U.S. Department of Defense leadership in the recent announcement of major cost savings and productivity initiatives.”

Lockheed Martin said it employs about 136,000 people worldwide. The corporation reported $45.2 billion in sales in 2009.

Lockheed Martin, of Bethesda, Md., ranks No. 1 on Washington Technology’s 2010 Top 100 list of the largest federal government prime contractors.

About the Author

David Hubler is the former print managing editor for GCN and senior editor for Washington Technology. He is freelance writer living in Annandale, Va.

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