Thread regarding Prudential layoffs

Serious question

Do any of the younger workers really see a long term career here? I have to be honest and say that when I began 7 years ago I had high hopes of it. But now I’m not so sure - especially with all these “transformations” we keep hearing about. I’m just curious to see others’ take on it, especially those who have been here 5 years or less.

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Post ID: @OP+185GX8lZ

8 replies (most recent on top)

If you are a millennial or Gen Z, just move to China, they are hiring, you will love it

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Post ID: @13ewz+185GX8lZ

7 years in you absolutely should be looking at external opportunities. Long term careers (5+ years) are incongruous with the goals of the supposed “transformation”. Do not get complacent. Congratulations on what you’ve achieved, but seek the next step elsewhere while you still have a role.

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Post ID: @Fhik+185GX8lZ

Not sure why my first sentence split there – it was correct before I hit the submit button. It should read "I'd like to bring up some points, mainly from my observations of being a Pru employee for less than 5 years. Large companies that have been around awhile (e.g. Pru for 145 years) are naturally going to evolve slowly.

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Post ID: @bwaz+185GX8lZ

I'd like to bring up some points, mainly from my observations of being a Pru employee for 145 years) are naturally going to evolve slowly. My primary rationale for that is that corporate America was very different, culturally speaking, decades ago versus now. When you use to consistently hear stories of Pru employees retiring with years of service >20, >30, years, I believe it is because they worked at Pru during a time period in which it was socially expected to be loyal to one's company. There are negative externalities of this, chiefly that people do (generally speaking) indeed get complacent and lazy in their roles over time, and as another poster said, the direct result is having a plethora of associates with hugely bloated compensation packages that are not in-line whatsoever with their antiquated skillset and the value they bring to the enterprise. This is especially true when you think about the rapid evolution of technology in the last 20-30 years, where these associates have honestly not kept their skills up to date. In other words, Pru is paying a substantial market premium for these employees and these associates certainly could not match this comp anywhere else (which is why they stay). I can even attest to this, as I routinely encounter incompetence all over the workforce; a shocking amount of VPs and senior leaders don't even know how to use the financial systems; the only real skill you could say they possess is knowing Excel – they think knowing how to write some formulas or create a pivot table is the pinnacle of business analysis. For all intents and purposes, they have become button pushes, merely just repeating the process that was given to them and never changing anything. So you had, and still have today, this entire class of middle-managers that are probably earning >$200k a year when all things are considered, but spend their days during this pandemic setting up arbitrary meetings to pass the time, pretend to be contributing when in reality it's ineffective micro-managing, and pretty much not doing much besides running on their treadmills at home – they don't actually do anything, produce anything, and certainly don't manage well. Yet it doesn't matter, ironically, mainly because of my next point: that the institution possesses so much influence and money supply (~$1.7 trillion AUM), and the business model does fundamentally work well, that Pru is profitable largely in spite of the total sum of its inefficiencies – associates can fumble processes around, mistakes can happen, but none of the incompetence actually materially affects business results – it's like the company runs on auto pilot in some aspects and that these inadequacies are largely just rounding errors. In modern times, job mobility is far more common and accepted. So, you have this cultural divide between the past and future, where Pru is trying to shed its weight via options like VSP/ restructurings/job eliminations/lay-offs/etc. But, and this is the point I want to emphasize the most, companies like Pru are essentially at the beck and call of interest rates. Historical analysis does demonstrate that the overall trend is for the insurance sector to experience higher degrees of profitability when we are in a rising interest rate environment. In that way, you understand why Pru is focusing so much energy on cost cutting right now – they're basically trying to remain stable until the next business cycle flips the switch (in case you weren't aware, we have been in a low interest rate climate for many years now). In my opinion, sentiment on Pru (even evidenced on boards like this, comments even in this thread) is negative. If you're a contrarian, like myself, then you believe that interest rates will revert to mean and rise sometime in the future (no idea when that starts, but I imagine it begins at some point in the next ~5 years and the cycle could easily last 20+ years). Like the old stock market aphorism, buy when there is blood on the streets. Maybe Pru isn't quite there yet, maybe there will be a wash out in 2021/2022, or maybe the washout already happened this year (when the stock crashed >50% to ~$40) but longer-term, I believe that the industry and company will grow once more. All of this as a long-winded way to answer your question – yes, I believe this company offers long-term career opportunities. Why? Well, because trends tend to follow ~20 year cycles. The company is just now implementing what society as a whole has learned and refined over the last 20-30 years (a poster above said that the company is outdated, but as just one example, is this situation really too dissimilar to how Apple operates – do they not also patiently wait for technologies and features to be vetted before taking the leap themselves?). The dead weight of the past (e.g. the senior financial analyst being paid twice their market rate but functionally only knowing Excel) is now being replaced by the next generation of highly competent and talented workers (they know Excel AND Anaplan, for example). That means their skillset will likely be leveraged for the next trending period of time (20-30) years, until the next macro trend develops and matures. So the cycle begins anew (as the skills that are relevant now become obsolete, we will similarly be replaced, but it practically means we could have a strong career for 20-30 years before that occurs). Just my two cents.

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Post ID: @btkw+185GX8lZ

LOL. Why would you stay with an outdated behind the times company for 5 years? In 5 more years you will be at year number 10. Will you get cut for the same reasons you have stated above? PRU has tons of dead weight, young and old. PRU employees that have been there for 10,20,30 years are a product of an outdated, behind the times company. Staying at PRU will ensure you the same future. Offering the VSP was a way for PRU to avoid and increase in employee displacement costs and avoid dealing with the publicity of doing a large layoff. There was no upside to accepting the VSP. The package was the same offer employees would receive in an ordinary layoff. in fact those that left under VSP do not qualify for Unemployment. My advice to young employees looking for a future, work for companies where you can learn valuable skills.

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Post ID: @9rws+185GX8lZ

Depends on the division I think. Which are you in? Not all have opportunities unfortunately

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Post ID: @4vow+185GX8lZ

Young professional male in the company 5 years. I do see a future. The VSP got rid of a lot of dead weight, which has created career growth opportunities that would have taken another decade or so to create through organic retirement. There is still a lot of dead weight that didn't avail of the VSP, but if the rumour mill is to be believed, these will be taken care of in 2021 via a non-voluntary separation package. Those in the company greater than 15-20 years are on bloated salaries that aren't anywhere in line with the value they provide Pru, it's high time the swamp was drained and the younger, lower paid, population can step up.

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Post ID: @3ftf+185GX8lZ

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