Friday, April 15, 2011

Chart of the week: a decade's worth of layoffs in Big Pharma


Yesterday, Derek Lowe linked to Matthew Herper's posting of Challenger, Gray and Christmas' listings of ten years of pharmaceutical industry layoffs. I've done the tabulation here.

The chart speaks for itself; Derek notes that he was part of the numbers in 2006. I'll note that for each of the above years after and including 2006, I believe I can name someone I know who was laid off. (Big surprise, really.) A historical (and unfair and possibly inappropriate) comparison: the Battle of Antietam had 23,000 casualties. Operation Overlord is listed with 14,000 to 19,000 casualties (for both sides).

Unfortunately, the numbers don't do a breakdown between R&D and sales forces, etc. But I suspect that it was in 2007 that the site-wide closures (here's looking at you, Ann Arbor) that started really hammering chemistry employment. Of course, there is also churn where people are laid off and immediately rehired elsewhere; this series of comments by Rick puts together a nice summary of that activity.

Best wishes to all of us.

2 comments:

  1. "Derek notes that he was part of the numbers in 2006. I'll note that for each of the above years after and including 2006, I believe I can name someone I know who was laid off."

    Not only people who were laid off but don't forget people who couldn't get into the industry or re-hired from one year to the next.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am wondering if there were any UK folks unlucky enough to secure the Holy Trinity...that is laid off by Merck (Terlings Park, 2005), then GSK (Stevenage, 2008), then Pfizer (Sandwich, 2011).

    I know one person that did the first two, but all three? That would be pretty harsh.

    There are of course many other permutations in the UK involving AZ and Organon and Millennium and Roche!

    ReplyDelete