Twitter doles out stock, cash bonus to retain talent: WSJ

Twitter Inc has been offering additional restricted stock and cash bonus to employees to prevent staff departure, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Twitter granted varying amounts of restricted stock depending on when the employees started working, intending to make up for the value they lost since joining the company, WSJ reported, citing people familiar with the matter. 

Since the fall, the company has also been offering cash bonuses to some employees ranging from US$50,000 (S$69,156)  to $200,000 as an incentive to keep them around for another six months to a year, the Journal reported on Wednesday.

Twitter has been struggling to keep talent at the company as stagnant growth and falling stock have raised questions over the company's future.

Inside Twitter's headquarters

Four top executives left the company in January, the biggest leadership changes since Jack Dorsey returned as chief executive last year.

After returning to the company he founded, Dorsey said in October he is giving a third of his stock in the company, about 1 per cent, to the employee equity pool.

Later that month, Dorsey spoke about "hiring and investing in talent" and the need for "bold rethinking." Twitter could not be reached for comment outside regular US business hours.

5 best tech firms to work for in Singapore

  • 1) Razer office is a gamer's heaven. Gamers who want to create, develop and test the newest and best in gaming accessories will find Razer a hardware heaven.
  • 2) Free lunch at ViewQwest
  • 2) Internet service provider ViewQwest's five-storey shophouse office in Bukit Timah Road has a homely charm that only its employees get to see.
  • 2) The top level is dedicated to recreation and relaxation. It contains a kitchen where lunch is cooked for employees every day, and a gym which boasts free weights, a squat rack and a punching bag.
  • 2) Lunch is free and a wholesome affair with meat or fish served alongside healthy servings of vegetables, quinoa or brown rice.
  • 3) Breezy California vibe at Facebook Singapore
  • 3) Facebook may be closing in on the 1.5 billion mark in the number of active users, but only a privileged few - relatively speaking - get to work in an office designed to keep workers happy and creative.
  • 3) Enter its Singapore offices in Cecil Street, and the United States West Coast vibe of its heritage is apparent. The design reflects the open, breezy concept of its headquarters in Menlo Park, California.
  • 3) Work spaces are cosy without being cramped, and recreational spaces are found across all four floors.
  • 3) All new hires, once issued their work passes and computers, get their peripherals - keyboard, headphones or mouse - from a vending machine. All they have to do is swipe their staff card, select what they need and the item pops out. There are meeting rooms of all sizes, all equipped with telescreens for quick and easy teleconferencing.
  • 3) Had a heavy lunch? Hit a button and your desk will rise so that you can work while standing. Every desk is adjustable, so there is no excuse for hunching over your computer.
  • 3) There are pantries on every floor, stocked with potato chips, instant noodles and a variety of nuts and cereal. The fridges are filled with bottled water, soft drinks, milk and fruit juices. And there is the requisite espresso machine.
  • 3) Pantry caterers change every few months, depending on staff requests.
  • 3) When The Straits Times visited last week, pastries and puffs from Paris Baguette were the breakfast of choice.
  • 3) Employees in Singapore do not enjoy the free lunches served to their colleagues in the US, but the fridges here are packed with frozen soups and sandwiches.
  • 3) All this, explains Mr Dan Neary, Facebook's vice-president for the Asia-Pacific, is not just about throwing benefits at staff.
  • 3) Rather, it's to create an environment in which Facebookers can collaborate and share ideas comfortably and openly.
  • 3) Facebook Singapore
  • 4) Backrub for Googlers
  • 4) The perks of working at Google are legendary and envied in tech circles, and things are not much different at its regional headquarters in Singapore.
  • 4) There is the free breakfast and lunch buffet served at the Goopitiam, its main cafeteria and eating area. The daily choices range from local cuisine to Western fare. And then there's dessert, which includes cut fruit, ice cream, cakes and pastries.
  • 4) Google Singapore's office takes up four floors at the Asia Square building in Marina Bay.
  • 4) Each floor has its own micro-kitchen, a pantry stocked with cereal, candy, cookies and other snacks. Cartons of milk and Florida's Natural fruit juice, cans of Nescafe, soft drinks and pudding cups line the shelves in the fridges.
  • 4) Sleepy Googlers can nip into a dedicated napping pod, or one of the many rest areas, for a quick shut-eye if they need to.
  • 4) Googlers can also sign up for sessions with a masseuse who comes in a few times a week. These sessions, understandably, are snapped up as soon as they become available, so Googlers usually have to book a week in advance to secure a slot.
  • 4) Google Singapore
  • 5) Ubisoft is among the few triple-A game developers to have a full studio in Singapore, which is a huge draw for game designers looking for a job in and of itself.
  • 5) Its premises in Fusionopolis span two floors. The central meeting point is a large open pantry and recreational space with a game lounge and a ping-pong table.
  • 5) Every day is casual Friday. Developers, coders and animators wear whatever feels comfortable.
  • 5) Gamers determined to make a name for themselves find the risk-taking company culture to their liking, as it gives them a chance to show off their creativity.

Companies that have cut down their workforce in 2016

  • Tripda

    Rocket Internet's carpooling app, Tripda announced earlier this month that they would be organising a global shutdown of the platform.

  • Autodesk

    Autodesk a design-focused software announced early month that they will be laying off 925 positions, around 10 per cent of their entire workforce.

  • Yahoo

    Recently tech giant Yahoo confirmed that would be shedding 15 per cent of their entire workforce, and its also exploring other "strategic alternatives".

  • Yahoo

    Employees in Yahoo's Singapore office were notified of the layoffs on Feb 18.

  • Rakuten

    e-commerce platform Rakuten announced in Feb 2016 that they would be shutting down all their operations in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia.

  • Rakuten

    The platform probably faced a significant number of challenges in Malaysia, and they will be withdrawing to focus their efforts in countries like Japan and Taiwan.

  • Bombardier

    Bombardier will be cutting their workforce by about 7000 over the next two years.

  • Bombardier

    They will be cutting 580 jobs from their Belfast operation this year and potentially another 500 the following year.

  • Shell

    Multinational oil and gas company, Royal Dutch Shell operates in more than 70 countries and employ more than 94,000 people worldwide.

  • Shell

    Given the fact that oil prices have dropped by almost 70 per cent in less than two years, the company has already started cutting 10,000 jobs to try and recover from all their losses.

  • Devon Energy

    Devon Energy, a US oil producer, mentioned that 700 people would lose their jobs by the end of the Feb 18, 2016, and this is all in response to the current commodity price environment.

  • Top Glove

    Malaysian company Top Glove is currently the world's largest maker of natural rubber gloves with operations in 27 countries. The company announced that they would cut their foreign labour by 5 per cent due to rising costs and increasing automation.

  • Barclays

    Some 100 Barclays employees in Singapore were axed on Jan 21 in a drastic cost-cutting exercise which saw the bank exit multiple businesses across Asia.

  • Standard Chartered

    Global bank Standard Chartered had laid off a number of people in Singapore late last year as it axed 15,000 jobs globally.

  • Standard Chartered

    Its previous workforce globally was at 86,000, and currently employs about 7,000 staff in Singapore.

  • HSBC

    HSBC has announced that they will be freezing salaries and freezing hiring in 2016 globally in the battle to cut costs, affecting 3,000 Singapore employees.

  • Resorts World Sentosa

    According to a report on Straits Times, more than 30 employees at Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) have been laid off earlier in February.

  • Resorts World Sentosa

    However, the lay offs was due to overstaffing and it is not an isolated case. There are currently about 12,000 people working at Resorts World Sentosa.

  • Maersk

    Maersk Line, one of the world's top container shipping companies, recently merged its Singapore and Hong Kong regional offices. Last November, it also shared new plans to reduce its network capacity and announced that it will be cutting 4,000 jobs.

  • STMicroelectronics

    STMicroelectronics will cut about 1,400 jobs and close its loss-making set-top box business, including 670 in Asia.

  • Goldman Sachs

    Goldman Sachs has been reducing the size of its investment-banking team in Singapore by about 30 per cent compared with the start of last year, according to a report from Bloomberg.

  • Credit Suisse

    Credit Suisse announced 4,000 job cuts globally, although no layoffs are expected in the Asia-Pacific region yet.

  • Royal Bank of Scotland

    Royal Bank of Scotland has also announced that they could be cutting as many as 80 per cent of the jobs in its investment banking unit over the next 4 years, and last year laid off "hundreds" in Singapore.