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Ford outlines £75m cost-cutting plan

Antony Adshead
Ford Europe has outlined its plans to cut costs by £75m as part of the company's global £9bn cost-cutting drive.

The motor manufacturer is adopting a three-pronged cost-cutting programme. Projects that are not judged to be important to customers or manufacturers or are not aimed at reducing costs will be cut back or dropped; assets will be "sweated" in an attempt to gain better value; and Ford will push for supplier and contractor discounts.

Ford Europe hopes to make savings of £75m in IT spending following ratification of cost-cutting measures at a meeting attended by senior company vice-presidents in early June.

A new dealer front-end for an "order-to-delivery" system will now only be rolled out to the five biggest European markets, while a payroll system upgrade will now be deferred for one year. A user self-service human resources system will also be deferred.

Richard Thwaite, IT director at Ford Europe, said, "With things like administration activities, where it is nice to have, for example, faster systems, but they are not critical, we will defer projects. IT is like any other department - we have to take responsibility and we are trying to make more efficient use of our spend."

Thwaite said his department would also look at ways of gaining economies of scale by sharing IT spend across other Ford brands such as Land Rover, Jaguar and Volvo.
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