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WeWork has started global layoffs as the coronavirus pandemic ravages the office industry, with sales, physical product, operations, and other groups seeing cuts on Thursday.Other venture-backed competitors, including Knotel, Industrious, and Convene, have laid off hundreds as the pandemic drives down demand for office space.Earlier this month, WeWork’s outsourced cleaning provider, JLL, laid off some cleaning staff in response to the pandemic. For more WeWork stories, click here.
WeWork laid staff off on Thursday in cuts that could continue for the next month. Affected departments ranged from business operations to sales to physical product, which includes design. The layoffs came via Zoom calls, as has become the norm across downsizing companies under shelter-in-place orders.People who were laid off, who spoke under the condition of anonymity because of nondisclosure agreements, described departmental executives delivering the cuts via a script to their respective groups – chief sales officer Nick Worswick talked to the sales team, and chief product officer Hamid Hashemi spoke to physical product, for example. The executives then handed the call to human resources. The latest cuts come on top of thousands of jobs the coworking company has slashed after its IPO imploded last year. The laid-off employees received the same severance as those affected by the November cuts: four months of salary and benefits.
The total number of cuts was not communicated to employees, said multiple sources.In November, employees were laid off en masse, with New York employees reporting to WeWork’s Chelsea headquarters with their company-issued electronics to turn in over the course of a day.Now, the layoffs appear to be rolled out over days and weeks. At an all-staff meeting earlier this month, CEO Sandeep Mathrani said the cuts would finish by the end of May, Bloomberg reported. “
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