The 5,000 or so employees at Bombardier Aerospace in east Belfast will have suffered a sleepless night last night after their Canadian parent company announced job losses across the group as it embarks on a reorganisation.
In a similar strategy to that recently adopted by B/E Aerospace, which employs around 800 people in Kilkeel, Bombardier is reshuffling its global operations into three divisions, commercial aircraft, business aircraft and aerostructures/engineering services.
The job losses are expected to be limited to support/office roles such as human resources and finance. And, as is frequently the way with big manufacturers, the 'complementary labour force' of contractors and temps will also see some cuts. Jobs lost/jobs gained is a hardy perennial of journalism – and Shorts/Bombardier has provided more than its fair share of such stories.
One ex-business journalist has joked that a former colleague was permanently stationed at the Airport Road West base of the planemaker, microphone in hand and shivering or sweltering in his trench coat, depending on the weather.
No matter how technology progresses, and how the working methods of journalists evolve, it was the same yesterday when reporters rushed to see what employees might have to say. Bombardier Belfast came through past crises – here's hoping it emerges from the latest stronger than ever.