Uber Fires 20 Employees in Wake of Investigation

Ride-sharing company still reviewing former AG Holder's report.

by on Jun.06, 2017

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is beginning to get the change in corporate culture he said was coming: Uber fired 20 employees today.

Uber fired 20 employees after the conclusion of an internal probe of harassment charges leveled against the company by a former senior engineer.

The firings were announced at a company meeting, according to multiple media reports, as a result of an investigation by the law firm Perkins Cole into specific charges by a former employees.

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The company didn’t name the employees who were let go. Some of the people fired were senior executives, according to the person.

The investigation is independent of the query conducted by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, which examined a broader range of problems.

(Uber fires autonomous vehicle chief Levandowski. Click Here for the story.)

Holder submitted his findings to the Uber board of directors already, but the board is still reviewing the report. The results of that investigation are expected to be released June 13.

Uber has dealt with a variety of issues in the last year, but the harassment claims may be the most damaging. Former Uber engineer Susan Fowler reported in February that she was sexually harassed by her supervisor during her time at Uber.

Not only did the human resources department ignore claims, but also they said her only options were to remain where she was at because her supervisor was very important or to transfer to another department.

(Sex harassment claim raises more problems for Uber. Click Here to get details.)

Bloomberg reported that law firm Perkins Coie allegedly reviewed 215 sexual discrimination charges at the company, and “took no action in 100 instances as it continues to investigate 57 others; meanwhile, 31 employees are in counseling or training, while seven received written warnings from the company.”

Uber CEO Travis Kalanick pledged to change the way the company was run – often described as a frat house-style atmosphere – including a move to hire a more season executive to take on the role of chief operating officer.

The ride-sharing company also recently hired Harvard expert Frances Frei as senior vice president of leadership and strategy. She will report to Liane Hornsey, who was hired to oversee human resources in the wake of the harassment allegations.

(Uber adds new freight-sharing service. Click Here for the story.)

Frei, who has been acting as an adviser to the company in recent months, is an author who specializes in helping organizations transform themselves. She is also known for her work on trying to close the gender gap at Harvard Business School, according to USA Today.

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