Layoff. Reduction-In-Force. Headcount Reduction. Downsizing. No matter what you call it, letting go of employees is one of the most difficult and sensitive activities that companies face. And yet, more than 85% of Fortune 500 companies have downsized at some point, and virtually every sector of the economy has experienced a reduction-in-force. Like any other organizational change, layoffs can happen in more and less effective ways. Conducting layoffs in a thoughtful, organized and compassionate manner is important for several reasons.