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Grab Reduces 5 Percent of Workforce Due to Coronavirus Pandemic

June 16, 2020, 06.51 PM – Southeast Asia’s Grab is laying off 5 percent of its workforce as the company reels from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Grab Co-Founder and CEO Anthony Tan announced the difficult decision to lay off 360 Grab workers, which has also affected Grab Indonesia.

A spokesperson for Grab Indonesia has confirmed the layoffs in the country. Employees affected by the layoffs were notified via e-mail on June 16.

Also read: Indonesian Government Eyes Economic Rebound in 2023

Anthony has vowed to not carry out additional layoffs this year.

Similar to many business entities, Grab has had to swiftly maneuver its business activities and performance amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Every country in Southeast Asia has confirmed Covid-19 cases, with Indonesia being the worst-hit in the region.

Read also: Indonesia's Covid-19 Cases Near 40,000-Mark

Southeast Asian countries have also undertaken a lockdown-style response in a bid to curb the spread of Covid-19, and this has severely impacted online transportation companies like Grab.

Anthony Tan said in his statement that Grab has felt the impact of the coronavirus pandemic since February.

Grab cuts spending

In the past few months, Grab has taken an efficiency-centric approach by cutting spending, reducing wages of senior management members, and reviewing the company’s cost component.

Grab has taken the additional steps of stopping non-essential projects and consolidating the company to operate more efficiently.

The company has also restructured its workforce to better meet business demand.

Going forward, Grab will focus on its primary services which include ride-hailing, expedition, digital payments, and financial services.

It is also looking to expand its partnership with small businesses through their merchant services.

Grab’s CEO has opted for a constructive approach to the company’s recent development by allowing its staff to personally contact him via e-mail or Slack.

“Thank you for sharing your talent and drive to Grab. Thank you for enriching the lives of fellow ‘Grabbers’, customers, and partners with your contribution. You will always be a part of the Grab family,” wrote Anthony in his closing e-mail.

In spite of the layoffs, Grab has voiced its support towards its affected employees.

The company said it remains committed to meeting diligence attributed to the workforce change such as paying the termination fee, offering extra Covid-19 help, and bonuses for work conducted in 2020.

Read also: Government Orders Jakarta Firms to Adjust Working Hours ahead of the New Normal

Grab has taken the extra mile by ensuring that each affected employee is a shareholder of the company.

Other services for its former employees include health insurance coverage throughout 2020 or the equivalent sum in cash, assistance from Grab’s Talent Acquisition team, and access to an online life coaching session.

Former staff members can still access the ‘Grabber Assistance Program’ which offers emotional support of up to three months for those impacted by the layoffs. 

(Writer: Wahyunanda Kusuma Pertiwi | Editor: Reska K. Nistanto)


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