As CenturyLink adjusts to a changing market, the company announces plans to cut expenses. And part of that includes reducing its employee headcount.

Between now and November, some employees at Century Link may have to consider looking for a new job.

News 8 obtained an internal memo written by the company's chief executive officer, announcing the company's plan to reduce the number of its employees within the next two months.

According to the letter, much of their required cost savings must come through lowering their headcount. The company plans to approach these reductions on both a voluntary and involuntary basis.

Wisconsin workforce officials say if companies reduce their workforce, they usually send out letters, but only under specific guidelines:

"If it's a sizable amount or if it impacts a significant number of people," said Beth Sullivan, manager of the Western Wisconsin Workforce board in La Crosse.

This means CenturyLink's decision to reduce its number of employees, may impact those working in La Crosse.

"If a company does downsize, and has to do it, we have services where we can go in and meet with the HR manager at the company, and offer services to their employees while they're still employed," Sullivan said.

Workforce officials say 180 days out from their layoff date, employees who may potentially lose their job, might have some options:

"We could go on site to the company and offer workshops during noon, before or after shifts happen, help get people's resumes up to date, help them with interviewing skills, they can come here at anytime and begin services to look for new jobs," Sullivan said.

If La Crosse ends up with some laid off workers, depending on their skills, they may have an easier time finding a new job. That's because if anything, the city has a worker shortage.
"We have a demographic problem, we do not have enough workers to fill the skill needs of the jobs that are out there today, plus that takes into account no new growth, so we really do have to increase the population of the workforce in this area in order just to keep up with the replacement jobs from the baby boomers and any new jobs that might be happening,"Sullivan said.

News 8 reached out to CenturyLink employees here in La Crosse, but they were told not to comment on the issue.

Company officials sent News 8 a statement saying they are not focusing on a specific group of employees or states at this time.