LONDON — Ogilvy has completed its voluntary redundancy process in the UK, and says less than 4% of its employees across the business have been affected, numbering at least 40 employees.

The agency initiated the redundancy process at the end of October as part of its process of “radical transformation". It was seen as a controversial move by many in the public relations industry.

The Holmes Report understands that, contrary to widespread initial reports, voluntary redundancy was not in fact offered to all staff across the UK business. The agency would not comment on which specific divisions were affected.

The 4% figure will likely be seen as much lower than anticipated inside and outside the agency, and it is not thought that any of the senior leadership team are leaving the business.

In a statement, UK CEO Michael Frohlich said: “As planned we have completed a limited redundancy programme affecting less than 4% of our workforce in select areas of the organization in the UK.

“These actions are part of Ogilvy UK's transformation, as we focus on strengthening the agency for the future by investing in the areas that will bring the greatest value to our clients and support our own growth as a business.”

One of those to leave the business as a result of the process is strategy partner James Whatley, who left on 30 November after seven years and has yet to reveal his next move. In his newsletter he wrote: “Truly, Ogilvy has been phenomenal for me… we've been through it this year and after seven years, this felt like a natural inflection point; take time to re-assess the landscape and find a fresh challenge (more on that another time). Truth be told, I joined Ogilvy with a five-year plan. Running over by a couple of years is good enough for me.”