Twitter laid off 30% of its talent acquisition team today, two months into a companywide hiring freeze. A Twitter spokesperson confirmed these layoffs but declined to share the exact number of employees affected.
The company spokesperson added that employees will receive severance packages (but declined to share specifics) and said that the remaining recruitment staff will be reprioritized due to decreased hiring. Twitter is pausing most hiring and backfills, aside from the most critical roles.
Hiring freezes aren't out of the ordinary in the midst of massive acquisition deals, but aside from Twitter's impending $44 billion takeover by Elon Musk, the not-particularly-profitable social platform has found itself in a precarious economic period. It's estimated that over 30,000 tech workers have been laid off in the last two months, and social networks aren't immune to the market downturn. Competitors like Snap and Meta have also taken precautionary measures to manage their overhead in a time of economic upheaval. Just last week, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg told employees that they should prepare to do more work with fewer resources.
Twitter's executives have also witnessed some serious reshuffling since Parag Agrawal took over for Jack Dorsey as CEO. After the deal with Elon Musk was announced, Agrawal let go of consumer GM Keyvon Beykpour and revenue product lead Bruce Falck.
Agrawal has made a number of other key personnel changes since assuming his new role in December. At the time, Twitter lost its chief design officer Dantley Davis and head of engineering Michael Montano. A month later, Twitter lost two more leaders, chief information security officer, Rinki Sethi, and head of security, Peiter Zatko.
"Some have been asking why a 'lame-duck' CEO would make these changes if we're getting acquired anyway," Agrawal tweeted. "While I expect the deal to close, we need to be prepared for all scenarios and always do what's right for Twitter."
Agrawal himself will also likely lose his short-lived CEO role if Musk's acquisition goes through.
In a recent all-hands call with Twitter employees, Musk said that he's not concerned with what title he'd have at the company, but that he wants to be heavily involved in product. At that meeting, Twitter employees voiced concerns about potential layoffs in response to the macroeconomic environment.
“Right now, costs exceed revenue. That’s not a great situation,” he said regarding potential Twitter layoffs. As CEO of Tesla, Musk just laid off nearly 200 employees and shuttered the company's San Mateo, California office amid broader job reductions. Still, it's unclear what influence Musk would have on Twitter's workforce if the deal even closes.
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