British Airways has confirmed it is offering voluntary redundancy to 1,400 senior and middle managers in a bid to cut its wages bill by £170 million.
Staff have been offered the option of applying for voluntary redundancy but unions warn that compulsory redundancies will follow if not enough people take up the offer.The airline wants to reduce its wage bill by £170m - amounting to approximately 3 per cent of the total 42,000 workforce.
Letters offering severance deals to managers on salaries from £40,000 to £250,000 will be sent out this month, with managers expected to leave by the end of the year.
In a statement, the airline said: “We are in the worst trading environment the industry has ever faced and we must take action to offset the combined effects of the continuing global economic downturn, weakened consumer confidence and high fuel prices.”
A spokesman added that employee costs were now second only to fuel costs, which are expected to rise by £1 billion this year to more than £2 billion.
“We are determined to maintain a competitive cost base and we will continue to review all areas of the business,” the spokesman said.