In recent times, the smartphone market has been pretty competitive, with more and more new smartphone manufacturers popping up all around the world especially in China. This has caused other smartphone manufacturers which have been in the business for a long time such as LG and HTC to lose out on the market and their handsets, especially their most recent flagship smartphones the LG G5 and HTC 10 respectively, haven’t been selling very well. According to some market watchers, this has caused South Korean electronics company, LG to downsize its staff.
In LG Electronics mobile communication department, its staff has been reduced from 7,321 at the end of the first quarter to only 7,016 at the end of the second quarter. These figures represent a 4.2 percent decrease in the departments workforce, translating to around 305 people no longer working in LG’s mobile communication department. For comparison, at the end of 2015, LG Electronics staff in its mobile division numbered at 7,460, significantly higher than its workforce at the end of the first quarter of 2016. With the upcoming launch of the LG V20, staff numbers may decline further if the upcoming smartphone fails to perform well in the market. However, the average length of service of LG mobile communication staff has been increasing over the year. At the end of 2015, the average length of service was 8.7 years and that figure rose to 8.9 years at the end of the first quarter. This figure rose a further 0.2 years to 8.9 years at the end of the first half of 2016.
While LG Electronics mobile division hasn’t been doing too well, other departments in LG have been able to pull through. One such department is LG Display, which produces displays for smartphone and television manufacturers. While its operating profits have been dropping by quite a large margin in recent times, the department plans on making a huge investment to start manufacturing flexible OLED displays. OLED curved displays have an advantage over the typical LCD display as OLED technology will show more saturated colors, such as a darker black. The OLED screen also has more flexibility as it can be folded and bended hence enabling smartphone manufacturers to bend it into a curved screen for their devices.