State Farm, one of the largest and richest companies in America, is set to close two Tacoma, Washington call centers, with hundreds of jobs getting the ax. The State Farm closing could leave as many as 800 people without jobs when all is said and done, although at least 400 people will be cut following the automobile insurance company closing its facilities. These financial services industry layoffs come as one the largest rounds of cuts experienced so far in 2018. The closures will also cause many workers to relocate to different facilities, on top of the State Farm job losses in 2018 previously mentioned.
The State Farm Washington office closing will take place before the end of the year, the company has said. About 1,400 people work at the two sites set for shuttering. About 600 of those workers will be relocated to State Farm’s DuPont office, adding to the already 1,000 workers there. Another 250 jobs will be sent to the company’s headquarters in Bloomington, Illinois and about 150 jobs are headed to Phoenix, Arizona.
The final tally will leave 400 people definitely without jobs when the State Farm closing is concluded, with as many as 400 others joining them if they are not selected for the Phoenix and Bloomington positions.
Spokespeople told reporters that the company is making the moves as part of a streamlining process.
The hit to Tacoma will be hard felt as the company is the 15th-largest employer in the city, even after the cuts.
A State Farm reorganization is also partly to blame for the cuts.
“Our decision to exit these facilities was based on several factors such as gaining efficiency through streamlining and improving processes, adapting to the rapidly changing needs and expectations of our customers, leveraging technology, and optimizing available space in our current facilities,” State Farm wrote in a statement to Q13 News.
More State Farm Closings Between 2018 and 2021
The State Farm closing of its two offices in Tacoma is added to the already long list of closures set to take place from now until 2021.
State Farm office closures will impact 11 locations across the country:
|Petaluma, California||Kalamazoo, Michigan||Medley, Florida||Frederick, Maryland|
|Parsippany, New Jersey||Irvine, California||Downers Grove, Illinois||Bakersfield, California|
|Tulsa, Oklahoma||Indianapolis, Indiana|
|West Lafayette, Indiana|
(Data courtesy of StateFarm)
“We understand the decision to exit these facilities directly affects our employees and their communities. While the exits will begin in 2018 and continue over several years, we are announcing this decision now in order to give employees time to make personal and professional decisions. The company will continue to have a strong local presence in these communities through our agents and local claims employees,” said Mary Schmidt, executive vice president and chief administrative officer, in a statement.
About 4,200 workers will be affected by the shutdowns.
The closings come on the back of a run of State Farm revenue decline. The company registered a $7.0 billion underwriting loss in its auto insurance business. Net income for the company dropped to $400.0 million from $6.2 billion in 2015, although those numbers don’t tell the whole story; the results in 2015 included the one-time gains in the stock portfolio tied to pharmaceutical deals. The underwriting loss from auto insurance, however, ballooned to $7.0 billion from $4.4 billion.
“State Farm leaving Tacoma in 2018. Hundreds face layoffs and uncertain futures,” The News Tribune, January 11, 2018.
“State Farm Insurance leaving Tacoma by end of 2018,” Q13 News, January 11, 2018.
“State Farm Announces Plans to Consolidate Facilities,” State Farm, May 4, 2017.
“State Farm Closing 11 Offices After $7B 2016 Underwriting Loss,” Precise Leads, May 9, 2017.
“State Farm Profit Falls on $7 Billion Auto Underwriting Loss,” Bloomberg, February 28, 2017.