General Motors on Monday began the process of cutting 4,000 jobs currently held at its operations in the United States and Canada.
It follows the automaker's announcement last November that it would idle three vehicle plants (plus two component plants) in North America due to slowing sales of sedan models built at the plants.
The latest job cuts mean GM will have cut more than 14,000 jobs in the U.S. and Canada since the November announcement.
The cuts are part of an overall strategy to save the company roughly $3 billion by the end of 2019 and as much as $6 billion by the end of 2020. The savings are necessary as GM faces the steep costs of investing in new technologies, namely electric and self-driving cars, Chairman and CEO Mary Barra said in a statement, NBC News reported Monday.
There are also concerns of a slowdown in the market in the next couple of years.
“This is about making sure that GM is lean and agile,” Barra said.
The cuts mostly affect salaried staff and include both blue- and white-collar positions.
Citing sources within GM, NBC News reported that the automaker had initially sought to reduce its workforce through voluntary buyouts, with the targeted number being 17,700 positions. The sources said the take-up rate was initially slow but has ramped up in recent weeks.
GM's announcement comes only a month after Ford said it would make significant job cuts in Europe, drop slow-selling models and potentially close some plants. Tesla also last month said it would cut 7 percent of its workforce, believed to be about 3,000 staff.