BYJU must lay off 3,500 employees "Overemployed" During pandemic: Report
Edtech major BYJUs may lay off up to 3,500 staff during the current financial year as it looks to consolidate teams and increase regional focus, sources familiar with the development said.
According to one of the sources, BYJU’s had “overwhelmed” people at the time of the Covid pandemic due to sudden jump in online education, but demand has now fallen, for which the company has to make the course correction.
“There have been no job cuts at this time. The company is in the process of restructuring and assessing demand across various units. About 1,000 people already had notice periods and another 1,000 have not completed their performance improvement parameters. Assessment is still ongoing. About 3,000-3,500 may be affected because of the whole exercise,” a source, who did not want to be identified, told PTI.
The sources said this will be the last layoff on BYJU’s payroll and the entire exercise will be over by the end of October.
“The final phase of the restructuring intends to optimize the business by bringing together several divisions and creating a clear accountability-driven structure. The 3,000-3,500 is an estimate and not the company’s target,” the source said.
When contacted, BYJU’s spokesperson said, “We are in the final stages of a business restructuring exercise to simplify operating structures, reduce cost base and better cash management. BYJU’s new managing director in India, Arjun Mohan, will complete this process in the next few weeks and will steer a renewed and sustainable operation forward.” The sources said several business units were set up to meet the growth requirement during the pandemic and few product trials were conducted but they did not perform well.
“There will now be a simple organizational structure split between K12 education and other competitive exams. It will focus on consumer behavioral services. Regional teams will have more accountability. There will be a strong focus on hybrid models and learning centers to be run in a decentralized manner with regional focus,” the source said.
The redundancy exercise is expected to affect 300-400 mid-level employees.
“Most of the business that was built during Covid was focused on new customers. BYJUs are going through the same phase as other big tech companies where there have been layoffs due to course correction and to build sustainable business models. BYJUs will increase focus on existing customers,” the source said.
With this, the total number of employees at BYJU’s will fall in the range of 31,000-33,000 compared to the 50,000 workforce at the group level that it announced in October 2022.
The sources said most of the employees under third-party payroll and across subsidiaries like BYJU’s Future School, formerly Whitejat Jr, were affected.
The total number of reductions also included those who left the organization voluntarily, they said.
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