The move marks the first time since July 1994 that Sun has announced job cutbacks.
"We're consolidating our software and OEM sales forces," a spokeswoman said today. "A couple of hundred people have the option of looking for [other] jobs inside Sun or leaving."
The spokeswoman added those who are being impacted already have been notified. She hesitated to use the words "job cuts" or "layoffs," and instead said the workers were being "reprofiled" or "redeployed." The company has about 27,000 employees.
In April, under chief operating officer Ed Zander, Sun announced a major reorganization that called for eliminating individual operating companies and moving to a set of divisions focused on products, technologies, and services.
At the time, Zander said the new structure would allow Sun to "respond to and capitalize on new markets and new opportunities quickly and effectively." At the time, Sun also said it didn't expect any job cuts to result from the reorganization.
"'Reorg' is another word for 'layoff' at Sun," one worker said, adding that such moves do not happen often at the company.