When it comes to layoffs, 1/3 of total staff seems to be a magic number. Portland based Jive Software, which is backed by Sequoia, laid off around 40 people today, a third of their total staff. This follows massive employee growth over the last year. Twelve months ago the company had around 60 employees.
One employee, Chris Kalani, had resigned and his last day was this Friday. But according to his blog he was walked out today along with the others. And as usual, standard human resources procedure meant he and the others couldn’t use their computers again. In a new twist, they weren’t even allowed back to their desks to collect their personal items.
We’re tracking layoffs under the DeadPool tag.
Update: I spoke with Jive CMO Sam Lawrence, who confirms the company had a Reduction in Force today. He won’t confirm how many people (or who) was laid off, but did say that Kalani’s blog post was inaccurate and overstated. He also confirms the company is financially healthy and remains profitable, but that they felt this was necessary given changing market conditions to “stay ahead of the curve.” Lawrence also said that employees who were let go were absolutely allowed to take their personal items with them.
Those of us who went through the last downturn will remember this: the first companies to let people go are often the ones who survive.