BlackBerry: Our restructuring is over - now we're hiring

BlackBerry's struggles in recent years have been well documented, as its share of the worldwide smartphone market has completely collapsed to less than 1%. It's not surprising that the company has to keep reminding the world that it's not dead yet, but despite its continuing woes, it insists that it's still "a leader in mobile"

BlackBerry has been in the midst of a major restructuring process for the last three years, as it reshapes itself to deal with the harsh realities that it now faces, in a world where many of its former customers have moved on to other platforms. From having over 17,500 employees in 2011, the company has dramatically reduced its workforce by around 60%, to just 7,000 staff today. 

But that restructuring is now, at long last, complete. In an internal memo seen by Reuters, Blackberry's chief executive, John Chen, told staff: "We have completed the restructuring notification process, and the workforce reduction that began three years ago is now behind us." 

More significantly, Chen also indicated that BlackBerry is now hiring: "Barring any unexpected downturns in the market, we will be adding headcount in certain areas such as product development, sales and customer service, beginning in modest numbers." 

He added that BlackBerry's recovery is going well, and that he expects the company to be cash flow positive by the end of this fiscal year. But he underlined the fact that there is "no margin for error to complete BlackBerry's turnaround to success". 

BlackBerry is not out of trouble yet then - but maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel. 

Source: Reuters | image via CNN Mexico

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25 Comments

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fusi0n said,
This is a very true statement..

Top of the world, then months away from bankruptcy, now one of the biggest companies in the world.

What Microsoft did was expected and happens every time someone acquires another company. Blackberry happened to implode many years ago and stopped innovating and could not afford to compete with R&D to support it's own operating system and design apps. No one needs Blackberry any longer and there is no reason to have one when better products are available.

Actually many people/companies still need Blackberry! Name one other phone that connects to a company Intranet! You won't find one. The company I work for has 100's of internal asp apps across the globe that are only accessible from within our corporate network, can't do that with another phone.
I know BES is a pain at times, but it gives a company full control over "their" devices.
I have the Q10 now, hands down it is the best phone I've used yet. My previous Bold lasted 3 years.... believe me, I've dropped it many times. 1st time my daughter dropped her iPhone the screen shattered.

So IMO BB phones are the best!

RaspiMan said,
Name one other phone that connects to a company Intranet

Any smart phone on the market now can do the same running either built-in VPN or an add-on app. It is also possible to setup certificate based edge traversal so the user does not need to bother connecting to VPN. Blackberry does include that feature with the BES, which is nice, but implementing it on other platforms takes a trivial amount of effort. Most companies do something like this.

How does everyone want to see a company to go down? They had a great product, many years ago. It'd be great if they came back and innovated new ideas.

fusi0n said,
How does everyone want to see a company to go down? They had a great product, many years ago. It'd be great if they came back and innovated new ideas.

Exactly, I never understand why people want to see a company disappear from the marketplace.

zhangm said,
Better they survive - competition between multiple companies only makes things better for consumers.

Exactly, competition is a good thing ;-)

I do not understand why so many people feel this way about BB. Why wish harm on a company (and its employees) just because you don't like their products? I can't see myself ever buying another BB again and I do not recommend their products to anyone. If enough people feel like me they probably will go out of business, but that is not something I am eagerly looking forward to. I am pretty indifferent about it. From a competition point of view, I prefer having more players, not less.

After all, someone needs to come up with well designed business features for Apple to copy. Lord knows innovation for large business has never been their strong suite.

Edited by sphbecker, Aug 6 2014, 3:10pm :

sphbecker said,
I do not understand why so many people feel this way about BB. Why wish harm on a company (and its employees) just because you don't like their products? I can't see myself ever buying another BB again and I do not recommend their products to anyone. If enough people feel like me they probably will go out of business, but that is not something I am eagerly looking forward to. I am pretty indifferent about it. From a competition point of view, I prefer having more players, not less.

After all, someone needs to come up with well designed business features for Apple to copy. Lord knows innovation for large business has never been their strong suite.


Thats the thing, they were the best until they stopped innovating. They need to just close so those employees can move on to other jobs.

It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but my next phone will be Blackberry Passport or it's descendant. That phone is simply stunning, imho.

Actually, I am the few people who prefer physical keyboard to touch screen input. But the new model of black berry must included the Chinese character input (Changjie) method within the physical key on board.

I think most people will admit a physical keyboard is better for typing than a touch screen (assuming it is a nice one like BB use). Anyone who says otherwise either types so little it does not matter or has never used a well designed physical keyboard.

The big question is if the user is willing to give up that much screen space for the physical keyboard. Slide out keyboards really do not work because of the center of weight issue (as soon with the BB Torch, which I had). As much as I wish my iPhone had a physical keyboard, I would not be willing to lose half my screen to fit it. Others may have a different opinion and that is fine, I think building devices both ways is smart.

I flashed my blackberry down the toilet to force IT to get me a new device - anything else than a blackberry. I got an htc titan 2 which is windows phone 7.5 and old but I can at least get things done :D