It is hard to find an industry that has not been impacted by Covid-19 but few industries have been more affected than the travel industry. In a leaked video, Uber exec, Ruffin Chevaleau, tells employees that Uber’s business is down by more than half. She then proceeds to layoff 3,500 workers. "With trip volume down, the difficult and unfortunate reality is there is not enough work for many front-line customer support employees," she said. "As a result we are eliminating 3,500 front-line customer support roles. Your role is impacted and today will be your last working day with Uber."
While job loss is becoming all too common, it is never fun to hear you are being let go over a Zoom video call, especially one containing thousands of your co-workers. Uber did comment that they understood a Zoom video call was not an ideal way to hear this news but they wanted to get the word out as quickly as possible so employees did not find out through the “rumor mill”.
Sadly, Uber was not the first to implement Zoom firing during this time. According to The Verge, scooter start up, Bird, also fired 406 employees over a one-way Zoom call. Apparently, Bird workers were told to login to the Zoom call where "a disembodied voice read a script informing the person that they’ve been laid off".
On the bright side, Uber employees were also told that they would remain on payroll until a date in their severance package. In the end about 3,700 Uber employees (about 14% of their workforce) from 46 countries were let go. Lyft has also laid off about 17% of its workforce due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Were you laid off by Uber over a Zoom video call? If so, we would love to here your experience and what you plan to do next on our forum!