Key Insights: 

  • Last week’s mass layoff at Better.com harkens back to the early days of the pandemic when Black workers were laid off at twice the rate of white workers. 
  • Black professionals continue to struggle to gain representation in tech and are statistically more likely to be looking for new job opportunities than employees of other races. 


The adage that the Black workforce is the last hired and the first fired rang with a bitter truth at the start of the pandemic across industries,  especially in tech when tens of thousands of employees were let go in mass layoffs, in which Black workers lost their jobs at more than twice the rate of white workers. 


After almost two years  since Covid-19 first began circulating, Better.com’s CEO Vishal Garg’s tactless mass layoff harkens back to that earlier time. 


On the heels of a $750 million cash infusion through a private investment in public equity (PIPE) transaction involving SoftBank among others, the New York-based online mortgage lending company laid of 900 employees (nine percent of its staff)  in a now infamous three-minute Zoom call. 


Perhaps in this post-pandemic world, our empathy has also eroded during what for many has been a two-year-long Zoom call of remote work. 


For many Black workers, who have struggled with higher rates of unemployment, even those that have secured jobs, two-thirds are looking for new opportunities


Fired Better.com employees got the shorter end of the stick and the company has sent a message to other tech companies of worst practices.