SunTrust says laid-off workers were not ‘on call’

SunTrust Banks on Tuesday sought to knock down a trade publication report that it requires recently laid-off information technology workers to be “on call” for two years.

The Atlanta-based bank didn’t dispute that about 100 workers are being let go, but it said that under terms of their severance deal they will only be expected to provide very specialized information — not frequent consulting help.

“It is a rare occasion when we need to call a former employee,” the SunTrust statement said. “The ‘continuing cooperation’ clause is designed to assist the company under scenarios that arise infrequently when we need access to knowledge possessed by a former employee, primarily related to regulatory or legal matters.”

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The statement added: “SunTrust has never used this provision to require a former employee to be ‘on call’ to help conduct day-to-day business in any way.”

Computerworld magazine’s website had reported Monday that the laid-off workers’ functions will be shifted to contractors – especially IBM and Infosys – who largely intended to carry out the work overseas or with workers temporarily in the United States.

The magazine had also reported that SunTrust workers were required to help train the contractors who would be taking their jobs. The report, which was subsequently reported in the AJC, cited information from unnamed affected workers.

Jonathan Segal, an attorney with the firm Duane Morris in Philadelphia who represents management, said executives leaving “high-level positions” are commonly required to be available afterwards to provide information that others would not have.

“There are times that a lower-level employee has institutional knowledge that is needed later. But it is the exception, not the rule,” said Segal, who is also legislative director of the Society for Human Resource Management in Pennsylvania. But a large group or entire division, “that would be unusual for it to be across the board.”

In general, employers should avoid severance terms that further upset those being laid off, Segal said. “What gets someone to a lawyer is often a question of, ‘I’m angry. I feel abused.’ And a lawyer can often find something on which to base a legal action.”

The AJC had over the past several weeks contacted SunTrust several times to ask about the story. The bank declined comment. On Tuesday, the bank issued a statement to the AJC and to Computerworld that implicitly confirmed the layoffs but took issue with the description of the severance package.

Other aspects of the severance deal, such as how much pay is provided, were not disclosed.

Last week, SunTrust reported a $537 million third quarter profit, down 7 percent from a year ago despite slightly higher revenue. The bank said that, excluding tax benefits that lifted the prior-year figure, the profit was up 20 percent.

In that report, SunTrust said it had 24,124 employees on Sept. 30, or 950 fewer than a year earlier.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Some objectionable comments have been removed from the discussion about this post.

 

 

Reader Comments 0

59 comments
sliderule
sliderule

It looks like unions will be making a comeback due to vicious management practices.  

Don't Tread
Don't Tread

"they will only be expected to provide very specialized information"


Right.  That's what a consultant does.

youwantmetopay
youwantmetopay

Why don't the laid off employees, when asked for help or advice, just give bad help or incorrect advice? After working hard for years (which didn't matter because they got laid off anyhow),  they can finally get to act lazy and/or stupid. 

They will feel MUCH better.

Buzzzz
Buzzzz

Has anyone commenting thought about where Apple, Samsung, etc........has outsourced the labor to assemble their phone/computer?  If you don't like the way they do business change how you do your business. 

bratt771
bratt771

I will be closing my bank account with Sun-trust today.  i will not do business with companies who

outsource to other countries.  Especially when it comes to my money and cyber crime.  I have to stay

safe.  If the company wont provide for my security then I must do it myself.  Goodbye sun-trust.

Ronin7
Ronin7

Don't have an account with SunTrust, but if I did, I'd close it.


A $537 million profit (3rd quarter)and they are outsourcing to cut costs.  When will the "executives" realize that

when we outsource all our jobs, they'll be no one to buy products or need loans from them.


Some guy will get a bonus for shoving all these people out the door and "cutting costs".

Karma won't be kind to SunTrust.

Alberta
Alberta

Give it a rest, people.  Bank of America has laid off THOUSANDS over the past couple of years.  Most recently, their entire division of Corporate Workplace's employees' last day of work was Aug 31.  All of their work was outsourced to a third-party provider.  Of course there was an information download to new, untrained novices with this 3rd party, and severance was tied to employee cooperation.  Also, BoA has outsourced thousands of jobs to India and God knows where else.  Need tech support?  Try understanding some of these folks.


Now how many of you are going to go cancel your BoA accounts?  My guess is nobody.

Hank Kimball
Hank Kimball

@Alberta


I cancelled my BOA way back it was the worst experience ever next to Wells Fargo and Chase.

NightWatcher
NightWatcher

Got laid off recently.  They had me train my replacement although they would not tell me I was being replaced, I knew it anyway.  When a green new hire fresh off the street is suddenly ordered to learn from me the arcane details of a business critical software package 10 years old which nobody else in the company understands and has never before wanted to know how to use, I knew damn well I was being replaced.    Oh well.


The new hire got a quick demo and a simple test.  I knew the game was over one morning when I walked in to see all the locks being changed.   They dumped my whole team that morning, one of whom was out on FMLA.  So they stuck the knife in and twisted.

When the guano hits the air circulator at 4am (and it will), the new hire noob and management geniuses left behind can figure it out without me.  SLAs are no longer my concern.  

UGAGuy
UGAGuy

Dear Suntrust Executives,


Stop the PR spin.  If your ex-employee has to answer your phone calls and provide information about their jobs, that makes them "on-call."  Americans are tired of seeing their jobs shipped to foreign countries because CEOs are only concerned with padding their pockets with more money instead of caring about the well-being of their people.  Yes, corporations have to make money.  Yes, it is their job to be profitable.  However, the companies also have to provide a benefit that makes people want to do business with them and work for them.  It ISN'T a one-way street.  

Thenumber34
Thenumber34

All of you detractors are so stupid. If you stop doing business with Suntrust based on this principle and you apply it to other consumer related industries, then you're going to stop drinking Coke products, stop flying Delta, stop shopping at Home Depot, Wallmart, etc.

Suntrust cutting costs does help lower your costs as well. ....cost of mortgages and other consumer-related financial products.

I have no skin in the game as I'm not a Suntrust customer or employee, but I do have an understanding of simple economics.

PJ25
PJ25

@Thenumber34 When 90% of the population buys a new car based on what their payment is going to be, you can't expect a lot of understanding of economics out there. 


That said, I can't say enough good things about Delta Community Credit Union, Navy Federal and United Community Bank.  No need to bank with Suntrust if you don't want to. 

cc423
cc423

@Thenumber34 We bailed these banks out with OUR tax dollars and this is how they repay America? PLEASE.

buellerbuellerbueller
buellerbuellerbueller

A PR firm is now in charge of Sun-Distrust.   Move your money now.  Former pissed employees will hack the ST system.    And one more reason to boycott the Braves since they are aligned with these vultures.

goat diddler
goat diddler

I see Olivia just got in from her tuesday night cross burning...

Derp...

JDinMarietta
JDinMarietta

As stated here, go with the credit unions. They are great, especially Georgia's Own Credit Union who I've been with for nearly 20 years. They have a totally different feel and philosophy compared to the evil BOA or in this case Suntrust, who obviously you Cant Trust (especially when you work there).  If you are military or have family connections in the military you might be able to deal with USAA

Hank Kimball
Hank Kimball

I have my personal, business and children's accounts with ST I am leaving them 100% because of this and will tell all to do the dame social media UNITE!!!! 

GB101
GB101

@DforDawgs  This so called news is about a very large company making a change that results in 100 people being laid off.  As this report indicates, much of the hoopla (training replacements, being on call) is incorrect.  So, do you plan to stop doing business with every business that lays off one-tenth of 1% of its employees?

cc423
cc423

@GB101 @DforDawgs I plan on doing so with Businesses that were propped up with out tax dollars, yes.

Lynnie713095
Lynnie713095

Some of them gems I heard from ST IT management when I worked there: "no, I cannot join you guys for lunch because I may have to fire you one day.", "there is no such thing as work-life balance", we (mgmt) do not care if you are happy, only that you are engaged", and "you can see your family when you retire". That's just a sample of what I heard over the years. The biggest joke of all is that mgmt thinks they are good but really run a mediocre regional bank that is years behind in technology, mgmt philosophy and how to run a business in the Information Age.

Bill66
Bill66

Go with small community banks.

Hank Kimball
Hank Kimball

Screw all the biggies...Wells Farto, UnSuntrust, Bank of Americana, etc... go with Delta Credit Union or one of those others.

Olivia_Coleman_Bernard31
Olivia_Coleman_Bernard31

Suntrust is just getting rid of their "deadbeats" like they should. Watch many other companies to follow SunTrusts lead as they are slowly discovering and having to admit that "Diversity and Inclusion" just don't work.

uh...huh

H1BS
H1BS

@Olivia_Coleman_Bernard31


If they were deadbeats, they would have fired them long ago.  If they were deadbeats, they wouldn't want them "training" their replacements and require it for their severance. If they were deadbeats, they wouldn't feel the need to tie them down for 2 years (as generally only required of CEO's and top tier management). As for diversity, they are firing "Jones, Williams, and Smith's" for "Gupta's, Gupta's, and Gupta's".  Get your facts straight.  

Lynnie713095
Lynnie713095

Sounds like SunTrust would be a good career choice for you. Tell me how the old boy network works out for you.

Hank Kimball
Hank Kimball

All secure info will be on servers in India how wonderful!!! I just went through this with New York Life they are outsourcing their entire IT dept. to TATA in India so now the Indians will have all that secure data just makes me soil myself. The power company in California just outsourced EVERYTHING to them too. Someone needs to stop this madness. Infosys and TATA need to be stopped. IBM is their own worst enemy so there!

Gamma Paw
Gamma Paw

Amen to all these comments. As one of the one hundred, I thank you. :)

H1BS
H1BS

Regulatory help?  Really?  Call in the regulators!  SunTrust thinks they have an issue.  Let's get this over with now, not 2 years from now.


Perhaps if you would take this 2 year clause out of your severance package, you wouldn't need help for legal issues either.

AJCJ
AJCJ

These pretzels are making me thirsty!

Laurie8750
Laurie8750

Suntrust can kiss my butt.  I'll let some other bank make money off my deposits.

H1BS
H1BS

You fired your "highly specialized" workers, yet want their "highly specialized" help to save you down the road for free.  Haven't they already sacrificed enough thankless nights, weekends, holidays, and family celebrations on your behalf?  Now you want them to give you more without pay?  These folks earn their pay based on the incredible "off hours" service they provide to keep the bank running.  You never noticed because they kept things running smoothly. 



Mike_In_Smyrna
Mike_In_Smyrna

The article does not mention custom service - the elephant in the room is IT personnel.  The old IT job is not what it use to be.  The market is flooded with IT people with yesterdays skills wanting the big $$.  If you have IT skills and people skills you stand a chance.

Super Elf
Super Elf

Tell the Braves to pull the naming rights to the park. BOYCOTT!

Super Elf
Super Elf

Press 1 for Hindi, 2 for indian 3 for pakistani 4 for ooga booga 5 for spanish and 6 for english. Press 7 if you wish to transfer your funds to another bank-BEEP!

SFG
SFG

Wow so is my confidential bank data going to India with Infosys or just a call center over there?  It is telling that they don't know what their people do well enough or document stuff to figure out who they might really need?

Meaty Urologist
Meaty Urologist

@SFG SunTrust has been sending data over to 3rd parties in India for years now.

GB101
GB101

@AlwaysReady Good idea.  I understand that Wells Fargo has publicly stated that it will never have a layoff; never outsource jobs overseas; never buy anything that is not 100% American-made.

Intelibird
Intelibird

Can't stand using any company's Customer Service when it is obviously located in another country.  You are talking about having delayed responses to questions, foreign sounding voices using American names, no immediate supervisor/manager to speak with, etc.  


The overall feeling is that these companies don't value their customers very much.

canon ball
canon ball

No Big Deal...HOME DEPOT  did it for  some department employees under the NARDELI  fiasco which nearly ruined the company.

It is just the Corporate mindset for American Companies.  Nothing matters except the bottom line and the CEO and Vice-Presidents Bonuses....