Harley-Davidson To Keep Its York Plant Open. But Cut Half The Jobs.

yorkassemblyHarley-Davidson Inc. reached a tentative labor agreement that would keep open its York, Pennsylvania, factory while reducing the number of union workers by almost half. It’s a 7-year accord by which the assembly, metal fabrication and paint operations will be managed by an hourly workforce reduced from 1950 to 1100 employees (700 to 800 full-time and 200 to 300 used as needed). Harley said yesterday that “The proposed agreement provides a competitive wage and benefits package that is among the best in the area while at the same time meeting the company’s need for significantly greater cost competitiveness, flexibility and efficiency”

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13 Responses to “Harley-Davidson To Keep Its York Plant Open. But Cut Half The Jobs.”


  1. 1 Boss Hawg Nov 21st, 2009 at 8:52 am

    Sounds like the austerity plan to me. Should have been done a few years ago…stop thinking everybody is lining up to buy an HD at MSRP or above…be competitive or step aside.

    I have paid MSRP, but never above and you can bet your ass that my trade was inflated ($2,500.00) above wholesale/trade-in value with back-end money, discounts, incentives and free services at 1 point over prime (you better have a very strong Tier 1 beacon or better though for the dealer to negotiate with HDFS) when I do finance…negotiations my friends….

    Profit is not a dirty word and a bricks & mortar dealer does have to turn a profit. Add up the bottom line total…you save BIG $$$$ and the dealer makes a fair profit plus a point on the finance.

    Boss Hawg

  2. 2 Chopper Kid Nov 21st, 2009 at 11:21 am

    I would like to know if production has dropped that much or if there is also efficiently improvements in production.
    I just hope Harley isn’t going to go through a bigger stage of outsourcing.

  3. 3 BikerMarc Nov 22nd, 2009 at 8:33 am

    Talk about “right-sizing”. Appears to be needed in all areas of the company.

    BikerMarc

  4. 4 Freedomlaw Nov 22nd, 2009 at 9:03 am

    Boss Hawg, I read your email and it put me in a bad mood, and I am not even a finance guy. I have always been treated fairly by people selling me cars or bikes or I go to another dealer. No big deal.

    Have a great day.

    Clarke

  5. 5 Mike Kiwi Tomas, Kiwi Indian Motorcycles Nov 22nd, 2009 at 10:33 am

    Harley was looking at 3 or 4 other locations in the US to build a new factory which going off memory was narrowed down to KY. Is that still on the cards or was it most likely a negotiating tactic for consessions from the union as many suspected.

  6. 6 Boss Hawg Nov 22nd, 2009 at 12:33 pm

    Freedomlaw/Clarke,

    So sorry…not meant to upset or put anybody in a bad mood.

    All business owners must know their anticipated ROI and bottom line to be successful. Some do and some don’t…some gouge and try to close with prior “but what if” sales tactics….works for some and others (I am one of the others) it does not work for.

    Most retail markets advertise to late when sales are down cause that dog won’t hunt for 90 days…they think adverts will bring them immediate sales…a little maybe…when statistically, savvy consumers look at sales adverts for 90 days before buying…been there done that and still do it with retail stores (mattresses…how many do you have at home?) that are a staple needed commodity in the family household 100% and not a want item luxury like a motorcycle with 3% ownership.

    The worst is yet to come…my business starting sucking up in late ’06…saw it a coming…have closed 8 retail locations and keep 3 core stores running, though! I am a survivor and time is money as you very well should know….However, when others choose to play their games and waste my time…shame on them… because when I am buying I know what fair market value (wholesale, trade-in, and retail prices are with market conditions dictating) is and what most fair retail operating (fudge factors taken into consideration, too) costs run, it will be their loss.

    Like others have said…a little bit of something beats a whole lot of nothing…I tell people that it sure beats a sharp stick in the eye! Independently shop your perceived competitors and sell at ALL TIMES with a 30 day 120% price guarantee below their advertised bull shit sales prices. Let me ask you this…would you not be thoroughly pissed if you purchased a $20K motorcycle only to see another identical one go for “say” $17/18K at the same dealer a month later with no recousre on your behalf because you let yourself get screwed?

    Problem with most custom builders….EGO….they may build a nice bike, but most sure as hell have no idea the true costs going in and fair market value and what a product must cost and be sold for to endure potential liabilities…plus they sure as hell have issues being in the real business world….could tell you horror stories…just look at some of the builders…in prison, been in prison (they know who they are), some have killed themselves accidentally and some sucide and some killed by others…you are seeing the true men survive, though! That is why the custom builders market is where it is now and the HD market, too! Inflated and busted with no fair values!

    Ask my good buddy Jeff Nicklus if he does not follow up here…Jeff is an astute business man doing what he likes, making money and having fun..after all, we should…that is what life is all about along with being with your loved ones!

    Have a nice day and wish the industry well, Brother!

    Boss Hawg

  7. 7 J Nov 22nd, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    Cool- the union boys finally woke up.

    This is an example of why deflation is so much tougher to deal with than inflation- it’s a slippery slope down the hill.

    Naturally, we’ll see Harley pass on these savings to the consumer, in the form of lower prices and/or better product; After all, Buffet, et al, bailed out their debt, right?

    Uh huh…….

  8. 8 madpuppy Nov 23rd, 2009 at 4:42 am

    J, hahahahaha, Good one.

    Boss Hawg,

    Good post, I agree with you ! Have a grate holiday to everyone

  9. 9 Jeff Nicklus Nov 23rd, 2009 at 10:31 am

    Boss,

    As always you hit the nail on the head! I would comment on the subject but I don’t want to crash Cyril’s site on a Monday! LOL

    Over & Out,

    Jeff

  10. 10 maddog Nov 23rd, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    After the weekend of supposedly great slashed deals at ross myer hd dest daytona its easy to see why no bikes are moveing. take inventory from inside outside and mark it up 2to 8thous, then scream sale sale slash slash ha ha i visit there about every sunday and when i look at one at the price of 12.9,and then see it at the big sale for 16,9 makes ya wonder. comon ross you wanna sale bikes lets get real. some folks are more than just big sales visitors. gottcha red handed id go to ga now to buy one..

  11. 11 torra torra torra Nov 23rd, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    Harley has become the butt of most jokes in the industry and maybe just maybe they will begin to recognize the little blue collar folks that has kept this company alive through good times and bad times. If H.D. wants to stop the bleeding then they need to start offering the consumer some real value. How much longer will the buying public stomach high priced, one size fits all, come to our palace dealerships and get abused philiosophy? I know i’m sick and tired of it! I see more inovation and alot more value with Victory, and many of the imports.

  12. 12 Mr. Obama Nov 23rd, 2009 at 10:56 pm

    “Harley has become the butt of most jokes in the industry and maybe just maybe they will begin to recognize the little blue collar folks that has kept this company alive through good times and bad times. If H.D. wants to stop the bleeding then they need to start offering the consumer some real value. How much longer will the buying public stomach high priced, one size fits all, come to our palace dealerships and get abused philiosophy? I know i’m sick and tired of it! I see more inovation and alot more value with Victory, and many of the imports.”

    Those are wise words my Torra Torra brother.

  1. 1 Harley-Davidson York Plant Workers Approve New Union Contract at Cyril Huze Blog Pingback on Dec 2nd, 2009 at 5:23 pm
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