Tech Firms Ask Workers to Stay Home

May 30, 2002 ( - Three well-known tech companies are asking employees to stay home around the July 4 holiday as part of cost-cutting moves.

Hewlett-Packard Co. and Sun Microsystems Inc., both computer makers, will shutter company operations completely during the July 4 week, according to a Reuters report. In both cases, employees have been asked to take vacation days during the period; Sun workers also have the option of using unpaid leave.

Meanwhile, Web address and security provider VeriSign, Inc. is requiring workers to take three days of paid time before the end of June and three days during the first week of July.
“Many employees already take that week of July 4 off anyway, so we decided to make it companywide,” Verisign spokesman Brian O’Shaughnessy told Reuters.

Verisign also is also considering closing down during the Labor Day holiday or Thanksgiving, he said.

H-P told employees in an internal memo obtained by Reuters that the “summer holiday closure” would “help improve efficiency and enhance our ability to execute through the current US market softness.”

H-P last year had asked employees to take time off of their choosing and also announced layoffs to save costs during the economic and technology downturn, and Compaq Computer Corp, acquired by H-P earlier this month, had a similar closure last July.