Lured by generous exit packages, Didi employees scramble to be fired

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Following the reports of lay-offs and heavy losses, ride-hailing company Didi is rumored to be offering downsized employees large paychecks, sparking a scramble to be fired.

Tencent Tech (in Chinese) cited anonymous employees as saying the package is N+2, which equals to the amount of an employee’s annual income divided by 12 plus two monthly salaries. The actual reward was said to be “far more than three monthly salaries,” as not only basic salary but annual bonus was also included in the calculation of annual income.

Update: A Didi spokesperson told TechNode that the company rigorously follows regulations governing employment practices.

Rumors about Didi’s compensation schemes first came out of Chinese professional networking platform Maimai on Thursday and immediately spread through microblogging platform Weibo (in Chinese), with anonymous employees commenting that: “everyone wants to be fired after they became aware of the scheme.”

“Didi is the most genuine and generous employer I have ever been [employed by],” said an unnamed leaker, posting to Maimai as “a Didi Chuxing employee.” He added downsized employees were even allowed to remain in the company to the end of March to allow them time to look for new jobs.

In a nationwide public outcry and government scrutiny, Didi has faced mounting pressure to improve the safety of both drivers and passengers on its platform since the second half of 2018. This contributed to record-breaking losses of over RMB 10 billion (roughly $1.48 billion) in 2018, as the company invested more money to promote compliance by recruiting qualified drivers with subsidies to offset labor shortage.

Didi took a further step recently to lay off 15% of its employees this year, amounting to around 2,000 people, as the company announced non-core businesses would be re-evaluated and curtailed if necessary.

Meanwhile, Didi rival Hello Transtech announced on Weibo (in Chinese) on Friday that it had launched its carpooling service in over 300 cities across the country. The Shanghai-based mobility firm has been backed by e-commerce titan Alibaba since late 2017. It received nearly RMB 4 billion in the latest funding round led by Primavera Capital Group and Ant Financial in September.

Didi’s carpooling service Hitch has been suspended since September following the murder of two female passengers by drivers last year.

Update: This article has been updated after a Didi spokesperson provided comment on Feb. 26.