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CUNA Mutual Group to lay off 52 staffers
MADISON, Wis. (6/8/09)--CUNA Mutual Group Thursday notified 52 employees at its Madison, Wis., corporate headquarters that their positions will be eliminated in 30 days. The majority of the company-wide job cuts are back-office, non-customer-facing positions. The human resources and finance departments are the two areas most impacted by the cuts, Jim Buchheim, vice president of corporate communications, told News Now. CUNA Mutual has about 4,500 employees worldwide, with roughly 2,000 in Madison. To reduce expenses, the company also said it is moving to a cash-balance pension plan from a defined benefit pension plan--though employees will retain what has been accrued in their defined benefit pension. The company also is achieving expense savings through project reductions and eliminations, reductions in contracted work and company travel. However, CUNA Mutual is not using furloughs nor is it suspending the 401(k) company match, which is 5%. “The decisions that drove these savings were difficult, but necessary as we position the company to weather this economy and to take advantage of opportunities that will be available in the future,” Buchheim said. “These changes put us on track to achieve our 2009 financial plan and will help us maintain solid operating margins, strong capital and 'A'-level financial ratings. “Internally, we are emphasizing that change will continue at CUNA Mutual as we sharpen our product focus and continue to drive operational efficiencies,” he added. “For example, employees have submitted more than 1,000 expense-savings ideas--ideas that will help deliver ongoing savings and improvements.”
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