October 2, 2023


Unlimited Technology

Better.com employees got severance checks before layoffs

TechCrunch reported Tuesday that a portion of the 3,000 or so Better.com employees who were set to be laid off this week received pay slips for their severance checks — before they were told they were going to be laid off.

The company uses the Workday payroll system, and the paychecks were put into the database on Tuesday, when the news of their layoffs was just hitting national headlines. No further information was provided to employees, an anonymous worker told TechCrunch. 

A company spokesperson confirmed to SFGATE that “despite careful planning, a small number of employees were unintentionally notified of their separation from the company ahead of schedule when severance payment information was made available through either our internal payroll system or their financial institutions.”

The spokesperson also said that the severance checks were placed into the Workday system early “to ensure that impacted employees received severance payments as quickly as possible.”

Better.com, which grew exponentially during the course of the pandemic and received a massive cash infusion from SoftBank and Aurora Acquisition in 2021, has endured turmoil from major real estate market changes, interest raises and the late-year PR crisis, which resulted in company executives resigning en masse and intense public scrutiny.

CEO Vishal Garg laid off 900 employees weeks before Christmas on a mass Zoom call, and temporarily took a leave of absence before returning in mid-January.

A Better.com spokesperson told SFGATE that “personal, one-to-one calls” will continue through this week for further information about the layoffs and the severance package workers will receive. In a statement made public Tuesday, chief financial officer Kevin Ryan said that laid-off workers will have at least 60 “working days” of cash severance and health insurance through March.

Source News