McDonald’s Corporation, the well-known fast-food chain, is undergoing a major restructuring this week that is impacting its entire organization.
The restructuring has led to hundreds of layoffs, and for some employees, reductions in their compensation packages, according to sources familiar with the situation.
These changes have affected staff members in the United States and other countries, at the company’s Chicago headquarters, field offices, and across various departments, including marketing and operations.
A Multipart Restructuring Process
The restructuring process has occurred in several phases throughout the week, as revealed by internal company communications. McDonald’s temporarily closed its U.S. offices and began informing some corporate employees about layoffs on Monday.
The company also offered certain employees the opportunity to stay with the organization, but with reduced compensation packages. These changes included alterations to job titles and benefits such as bonuses and equity grants.
While the restructuring has led to layoffs and reduced employee pay, others have experienced promotions or role changes. Nearly ten U.S. operations, finance, and marketing officers received new roles or promotions, as detailed in an internal company email sent on Thursday.
Businesses Across the U.S. Economy Cut Jobs Amid Recession Concerns
The current wave of job cuts in various sectors of the U.S. economy, including white-collar positions, is fueled by concerns about a potential recession.
Layoffs that began in the tech sector last year have now spread to other industries, with companies such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. recently trimming their workforces.
In a Thursday email, McDonald’s informed U.S. restaurant owners and operators about its plans to close field offices in the upcoming months. The company explained that these offices are underutilized, as most field staff spend their time in restaurants. Instead, McDonald’s will adopt a single, national structure overseeing its ten field offices.
McDonald’s Acknowledges Growing Business Complexity
In an email to restaurant owners and operators, Joe Erlinger, president of McDonald’s USA, stated, “While the McDonald’s Brand is in the strongest position it has been in years, we also recognize that our business has grown increasingly complex in recent years.” This acknowledgment highlights the challenges McDonald’s faces in managing its expanding organization.
McDonald’s recently instructed its U.S. employees and some international staff to work from home temporarily, allowing the company to deliver staffing decisions virtually. This directive also required canceling all in-person meetings with vendors and other external parties at the company’s headquarters.
Layoffs and Emotional Farewells
U.S. employees who were laid off have officially left the company but will remain on McDonald’s payroll until June 15. After this date, they will be eligible to receive severance.
Those affected by the layoffs range from senior employees with decades of experience at McDonald’s to individuals who have only been with the company for a few years.
Some laid-off employees have shared emotional farewell messages with their colleagues and restaurant operators, including one long-time director who posted a haiku on LinkedIn as a goodbye.