Railroad company says job cuts increased because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Jacksonville-based CSX Corp. said June 17 it cut 86 jobs as part of a management realignment.
The layoffs last week, which affected employees mainly in Jacksonville, were part of a program to increase productivity and efficiency.
“The changes followed a careful review of our management organization that considered what work we should be focused on and whether that work resides in the right place in the organization,” the railroad company said in an emailed statement.
“The synergies achieved through these realignments unfortunately resulted in the reduction of some management positions across the company.”
CSX said the 86 employees were offered severance packages and assistance in their transition.
CSX has been cutting jobs throughout its operations in the Eastern U.S. since a new management team came in three years ago.
During a talk to an investment conference sponsored by Deutsche Bank last week, CEO Jim Foote said cutbacks have continued this year, with about a 7% reduction in the first quarter.
Foote said cost control initiatives and the “weak industrial economy,” which reduced freight volume, prompted the cuts before the COVID-19 pandemic.
“But when all of a sudden the bottom dropped out, you saw boom, we took the headcount again down,” he said.
Foote did not say how many jobs have been cut in the second quarter but said it included “train engine service employees.”
CSX reported 20,445 employees at the end of the first quarter.