Google Withdraws Job Offers To Thousands Of Contract Workers

The United States based global tech giant Google has decided to withdraw its offers for temporary jobs to thousand people who had agreed to work at the company on temporary and contractual basis because the company itself is faced with a drop in advertising revenue because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“We’re slowing our pace of hiring and investment, and are not bringing on as many new starters as we had planned at the beginning of the year,” Google said in an email to contracting agencies last week.

The company told the firms that it “will not be moving forward to onboard” the people that the agencies had recruited to work at Google.

According to reports, this decision of the Google impacted more than 2,000 people globally. These people had signed up to offers with the agencies for becoming a contract or temporary worker.

Compared to the 123,000 full-time employees of the company globally, Google employs more than 130,000 contractors and temporary workers which serve as a shadow work force. High salaries and generous perks are given to the full-time staff of Google but the company pays much less payments and much lesser benefits for the temporary and contractors. And even though they work alongside of the full time workers, the contractual and temporary workers of the company are also offered different set of protections.

And this disparity has been highlighted by the coronavirus pandemic crisis.

The company announced in April an extension for paid leave policy for employees to for caretakers, including parents looking after children whose schools are closed, from 8 weeks to 14 weeks. Further the company also allowed a spending of $1,000 for equipment and furniture like standing desks and ergonomic chairs was approved for those employees who are working from home according to an announcement by Sundar Pichai, chief executive of Google’s parent company Alphabet, on Tuesday.

But the company did not offer any severance or financial compensation to many of the contract and temp employees who had signed up to work at Google prior to the coronavirus pandemic hitting the United States. This was preceded by weeks of uncertainty as repeated postponement of their start dates was made by Google during which time none of them were paid by Google or the agencies hiring them.

What is ironical is that many of the candidates who signed up to become temporary or contractual workers of Google gad even left stable, full-time jobs after receiving an employment offer from Google. Such people are now left to fend for themselves and look for work.

According to reports, some such people who are Americans, reportedly claimed that the rescinded offers have complicated and even delayed their ability to receive unemployment benefits. This is because such people left their jobs on a voluntary basis.

The company planned to “significantly” slowdown the speed to recruitment for the current year, Pichai told employees in a memo in mid-April, except for some areas that the company considered to be of strategic importance. And at that time, a company spokeswoman had said that the plan of the company was to bring on board those people who it had already hired but who had not yet started working for the company.

(Adapted from NYTtimes.com)

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