U.S. tech companies yank job offers, leaving college grads scrambling

U.S. tech companies yank job offers, leaving college grads scrambling

June 22 (Reuters) – One by one, during the last week of May, Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) called some members of its incoming class of new hires who had recently graduated from college and revoked job offers in 15 minutes. calls, according to some of the recipients.

“It was traumatic,” Iris Guo, an inbound associate product manager who lives in Toronto, told Reuters. She received the bad news on a video call at 10:45 p.m. that her post had been removed. Since then, she has scrambled to find a new job so she can get her US work visa.

More than 21,500 tech workers in the United States have lost their jobs so far this year, according to Layoffs.fyi, a website that tracks job cuts. The number of tech layoffs in May alone soared 780% for the first four months of the year combined, according to relocation services firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

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But recent college graduates like Guo, who graduated from the University of Waterloo and studied financial and computer management, represent a new dimension of cutbacks, with their nascent careers being wiped out before they even start. The trend reflects a new austerity sweeping through some parts of the tech industry, such as crypto and venture capital-backed companies.

For crypto companies, the belt tightening is due to the recent drop in crypto prices and venture capital-backed companies are also cutting costs to avoid going back to the market for additional funds, said Kyle Stanford, senior analyst at venture capital on Pitchbook.

Crypto firm Coinbase Global Inc (COIN.O) laid off 18% of staff this month, payments firms Klarna and Bolt Financial collectively laid off more than 900 people, while big names like Meta Platforms Inc, Lyft Inc (LYFT.O ) and Uber Technologies Inc (UBER.N) have said they will delay or freeze hiring.

In what appears to be a trend counter to the Great Resignation of 2022, when legions quit for new jobs, some tech job seekers now face cost cuts and hiring freezes amid four-decade high inflation, a war in Ukraine and the current pandemic.

For those about to join Twitter, the whims of billionaire Elon Musk have also caused stress. Musk has agreed to buy Twitter for $44 billion, but recent tweets from him have raised questions about when and if the acquisition will be completed. read more

To be sure, hiring in the technology sector as a whole has remained strong, according to experts from recruitment and consulting firms. Tech roles in the health and finance industries are strong, as well as in the information technology field, said Thomas Vick, Texas-based regional director for the technology practice at staffing firm Robert Half.

But for the incoming class of new hires out of college, losing their job offers now is especially damaging, as they said they are locked out of companies like Meta Platforms, Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google and other tech giants, which have already have secured their new cohort of recruits.

Lucas Durrant, an electrical engineering graduate from Canada, was set to start his new job as a software engineer at Bolt last week. While on vacation a few weeks ago, he received an email saying his offer had been rescinded. Bolt announced that he would begin layoffs at the end of May, citing economic conditions.

“It feels a bit like a race against time before we see a bigger economic downturn,” Durrant said. “Very soon, I will also compete against people graduating in 2023.”

LIMITED OPTIONS

At least 40 recent college graduates have lost job offers in recent weeks, according to LinkedIn posts and Google spreadsheets that have circulated online to help those affected find new positions.

As of Tuesday, 22 recent graduates were listed on a spreadsheet with terminated offers from Twitter and nine people were listed on a separate spreadsheet for Coinbase.

In a statement, Twitter said it recognized that the rescinded offers could put candidates in a difficult position and said it is offering compensation to those affected.

Coinbase noted a June 2 blog post that said the decision to rescind a series of offerings was not taken lightly, but was “necessary to ensure we are only growing in the highest priority areas.”

Chloe Ho, a recent graduate of the University of California, Davis, and originally from Hong Kong, has until September 29 to find a new job or be forced to leave the United States. Ho had accepted a position as a content marketing specialist for an online grocery company called Weee! before the charge was rescinded.

As a non-US citizen who needs a new employer to sponsor her work visa, “my options are very limited,” she said.

Ho said he’s canceled his lease on a new apartment in the San Francisco Bay Area, backed out of vacation plans with friends and will now spend the next three months networking for a new daytime job and applying. in the evening. “I had planned everything around this job,” he said.

Many affected graduates took to LinkedIn to express their disappointment, detailing how rescinded offers changed plans for moves to other countries, and requesting referrals to new companies.

Graduates who spoke to Reuters said they were surprised by the level of outreach of people offering to help. Still, the pain of losing her dream job has lingered.

A recent college graduate who was set to join Coinbase and did not want to be named due to his ongoing job search said that just a week before he lost his job offer, he had received an email from Coinbase with the assurance that The company does not plan to walk back existing offers.

“I was disappointed for several reasons. I didn’t think the leadership would make that decision,” she said.

While companies may be saving some money in the short term, they risk “potentially catastrophic” reputational damage, said Brian Kropp, distinguished vice president of Gartner’s human resources practice.

“Just think how unfair it is to the people you’re rescinding the offer from,” he said. “You are putting them in a painful situation.”

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Reporting by Sheila Dang in Dallas Editing by Kenneth Li and Matthew Lewis

Our standards: the Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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