Startups Caring of the Employees Left Overboard

Startups Caring of the Employees Left Overboard on Freepps Top Blog

Ecologists know: it’s not species or individual creatures that survive, it’s the ecosystem. The analog of it we can witness now in the economy. While many startups are compelled to leave their employees they cannot take care of anymore, because of insufficient funding or business optimization, many of them don’t leave their ex-workers or managers. And this behavior is probably rewarded by business evolution.

The company itself may feel hopeless to provide the formers with new jobs within it. But it does its best to give the best recommendations to them and publish them in human resource networks to help them find new jobs. Companies that act like this are Urban Ladder, ShopClues, Treebo, Zomato, and others.

Never Left Them

One of the most interesting examples of such responsible behavior was shown by Treebo Hotels, a service developed for aggregating budget hotel propositions. In July 2019, it had to lay off about 20% of its staff. But those thrown off the plane still had their parachutes from the company, so they didn’t fall hard. Treebo provided their exiting workers with new jobs; at least 65% of ex-Treebo employees found their new jobs at Bounce, Zest Money, Vogo, Myntra, Razorpay, or Meesho.

Of course, all of them had to relearn, but just a little bit. For example, Meesho - Sell on FB & WhatsApp is a digital marketplace; Razorpay is an online payment provider; so is Zest Money, and so on. Still, the companies that reemployed ex-Treeboers offer similar positions, requiring just the right sort of experience and expertise.

The culture will go on. For example, Meesho doesn’t seem to save cents on its employees. This eCommerce platform that advertises its shops on social media spends millions on recruiting, referral rewards, and other staff investments. It doesn’t need to absorb that care culture: it’s already there.

Zomato, in its turn, did the same in September, when it had to let go 540 employees after optimizing their merchant, delivery and customer support teams. Zomato took the responsibility to contact various organizations to help its formers find new jobs. The efficiency was over 50%, the company reports.

Startup Ethical Code

The difference between how startups act and how large companies may just throw their employees overboard is drastic. That’s understood. The startup forms specific moral bonds between its founders and first employees, as they go together through ups and downs. Besides that, startups have to care about their reputation more than companies already recognizable.

Another reason why startups act so carefully is their unpredictable future. Probably tomorrow they will hire again. How would they handle those whom they have refused not long ago? Will they strike back and destroy their reputation by just several posts on Facebook? They can.

Startup ethical code is similar to that of small tribes, where everyone is valuable, and no one should remain insulted or deprived. There are even companies specializing in hiring those laid off by other startups. Does such a project look like a loser club? Not exactly.

For example, ShopClues, an eCommerce platform, is one of the startups that gladly welcomed those laid off (with proper backstory, of course). It recruited about 50 former Letsbuy employees back in 2012, 25-30 more from UrbanTouch, and then about 15 persons who had worked for Wydr – Wholesale eCommerce App. Though Wydr was B2B-oriented from the beginning, made for businesses to find each other directly, and ShopClues is a B2C online marketplace, the newcomers from there easily joined the new project.

Now it’s time to pay debts, and a co-founder of ShopClues, Sandeep Aggarwal, has to lay off some of its staff. No doubt they will do their best to find new jobs for them; that’s a new culture, competitive and cooperative at the same time.

A Sign of the Time

This attitude, if it spreads further (and so far it does), may contribute to the shift in society basics we may feel, but don’t truly acknowledge. There has never been a time when an individual mattered more. Those who recognize where it leads will be the next big power. But no matter if they succeed (or aim for that at all), responsibility is where they start.

Paola Bray


Nerdy book club member. Apps and cats lover @freepps_top

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