Employees at Twitter braced for widespread layoffs at the social media company on Friday, as new owner Elon Musk makes good on this threat to rein in costs.
In a letter to employees obtained by multiple media outlets, the company said employees would find out by noon eastern time if they had been laid off. The email to staff said job reductions were “necessary to ensure the company’s success moving forward.”
The email did not say how many people would lose their jobs, but previous reports at the company suggested Musk was seeking to cut staff by between 50 and 75 per cent.
Globally, Twitter has about 7,500 workers. Approximately 250 are in Canada, mostly in Toronto and Vancouver, but the company allows for remote work.
At least two of the company’s senior leaders in Canada are gone. Paul Burns, managing director of the company’s Canadian operations, and Michele Austin, Twitter’s director of public policy for the U.S. and Canada, announced their departures from the San Francisco-based tech giant on social media Friday.
The email to staff asked office staff to go home, and check their email for word of their employment status. “By 9AM PST on Friday Nov. 4th, everyone will receive an individual email with the subject line: Your Role at Twitter,” the email said. “Please check your email, including your spam folder. If your employment is not impacted, you will receive a notification via your Twitter email.”
As of noon, the company has given no official confirmation of how many layoffs, but many staffers were breaking news of their layoff on Twitter, under the hashtag #OneTeam.
Under U.S. law, employers with at least 100 workers are required to disclose layoffs involving 500 or more employees, regardless of whether a company is publicly traded or privately held.
In a tweet sent Friday while employees were learning if they’d lost their jobs, Musk blamed activists for what he described as a “massive drop in revenue” since he took over Twitter late last week. He did not say how much revenue had dropped.
Big companies including General Motors, General Mills and Audi have all paused ads on Twitter due to questions about how it will operate under Musk.