Intel CEO Brian Krzanich responded to angry employees after the company’s earnings call, stating that this is the way a “meritocracy works.” In a room full of employees, Krzanich sensed the unhappiness among them but took the side of the company, says a report from Oregonlive.

Intel CEO Calls Recent Layoffs A Need Under 'Meritocracy' [REPORT]

Intel employees confused

Krzanich faced light questions during Intel’s conference call on Wednesday. Analysts asked various questions related to inventory forecasts, capital spending allocations and the outlook for the PC market. However, back home, Krzanich had a tough situation in dealing with the distressed workers. The employees are not miffed with last month’s layoffs as the chip maker has laid off several employees over the past decade, and now they are getting familiar with the ups and downs.

Instead, they were confused because the layoffs were not conveyed to them in advance. Also the chip maker changed its criteria for deciding who would stay and who should exit. Further, the employees were discontent that the chip maker has shut down all the options for the laid-off employees to be hired again if things improve.

Replying to the employees’ concerns, Krzanich said, “I know from my email people feel like they got caught or surprised, but this is the way a ‘meritocracy works,’” and hr added that Intel will keep on following the same strategy in the future as well.

Why is Intel quiet on layoffs?

Intel did not release any further information on Krzanich’s encounter with employees on Wednesday. The Oregonian, citing postings on internal blogs, said employees argued that this time Intel changed its layoff policy as the performance-based layoff policy was not in play this time. Krzanich, in a memo to employees last month, informed them that Intel will balance the cuts with hires in other segments. The company said the global work force will remain the same at approximately 106,000 this year.

As of now, Intel has not provided any details on the latest round of layoffs, which were first noted by The Oregonian/ Oregon Live last month. But an employee who is part of the team handling the layoffs said the layoffs form around 3% of the company’s total workforce. Intel has 18,600 employees in Oregon.

Sales at Intel are dropping, which is why the chip maker is lowering its employee count. At the beginning of this year, the company forecast 5% growth, but on Wednesday, it said annual revenue will be down 1% this year.