LOS ANGELES -- Ford Motor Co. is virtually finished cutting its North American engineering ranks.
"We're done," said Paul Mascarenas, Ford's vice president of engineering for the Americas. "About 800 people left" their jobs, he said.
Ford trimmed the jobs from the engineering organization, which includes product development, powertrain, design and research.
The cuts included agency employees. Mascarenas' statement does not cover manufacturing engineers who could be let go as Ford closes plants.
The cuts came as part of Ford's North American restructuring plan called Way Forward. Many departures came in the week after the Jan. 23 Way Forward announcement.
The cost cutting leaves Ford with about 12,000 people in its North American engineering organization, including powertrain, design, and advanced and research engineering. Product development engineering, the group that Mascarenas oversees, now has a little more than 8,000 people, he said.
The engineering staff reduction was included in Ford's plan to eliminate the equivalent of 4,000 white-collar jobs in North America during the first quarter of 2006.
That target is substantially complete, a Ford spokeswoman said last week. But there may be some more involuntary separations as people return from leave or as Ford idles plants slated for closure as part of its restructuring plan. It is possible that some of these remaining separations could affect engineers.
Ford idled the St. Louis assembly plant in March. The Atlanta assembly plant is scheduled to stop production in October.
Ford has said it will close 14 plants through 2012, including seven assembly plants.
As many as 30,000 hourly and salaried factory jobs will be eliminated during that period.
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