How Elon Musk's takeover of Twitter could impact its 7,000-plus employees

Tesla CEO Elon Musk attends the start of the production at Tesla's "Gigafactory" on March 22, 2022 in Gruenheide, southeast of Berlin.
Patrick Pleul | AFP | Getty Images

The future is uncertain for Twitter employees after the board accepted a $44 billion offer from Tesla CEO Elon Musk to buy the popular social media platform and take it private on Monday. 

"Once the deal closes, we don't know which direction the platform will go," Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal told employees during a company-wide town hall meeting that was heard by Reuters

It is expected to take three to six months for the deal to close, the New York Times reports, but Agrawal said that between now and then, operations at Twitter will continue as normal. 

In a statement announcing the deal, Musk said he hopes to make Twitter "better than ever" by adding "new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans." 

He continued: "Twitter has tremendous potential — I look forward to working with the company and the community of users to unlock it." 

Here's what Musk's takeover means for Twitter's 7,000-plus employees

No layoffs 'at this time' 

Agrawal told employees that layoffs aren't planned "at this time" during Monday's meeting but did not comment on what would happen once Musk takes over the company later this year. 

The last time Twitter made significant cuts to its staff was in 2016, when the company eliminated about 9% of its employees, or 350 positions, with the sales and marketing teams experiencing the heaviest losses, according to CNN

Some Twitter employees aired their fears about the company's future after Monday's announcement on the social media platform. Edward Perez, a director of product management, said in a tweet Monday that the company is facing a time of "genuine discomfort & uncertainty."

"Most of us believe deeply that Twitter is much more than a tech platform; we have a deep responsibility to society. I hope our new owner gets that," Perez said.

A possible hiring freeze 

Hiring plans are still in flux after Monday's announcement – when asked about a potential hiring freeze during Monday's meeting, Agrawal said that the company is still figuring out their next steps before the deal closes, Bloomberg reports. "We don't have all the answers," Agrawal added. "This is a period of uncertainty."

As of Tuesday morning, Twitter still had more than 650 open roles posted on their website across departments. One of the biggest questions that remains unanswered in the wake of the deal is who Musk will appoint as Twitter's new CEO – Agrawal replaced co-founder Jack Dorsey a mere five months ago. Agrawal said during Monday's meeting that he would remain CEO until the deal closes, Bloomberg reports, but Musk could appoint a new leader after completing the deal.

Staff could be required to return to the office

Twitter re-opened its offices in March, but Agrawal said last month that employees can decide where and how they work, including being remote full-time. 

That arrangement could change once Musk takes over Twitter. While the Tesla CEO hasn't taken a clear stance in the return-to-office debate, he poked fun at Twitter's remote work policies in a since-deleted tweet about converting the company's San Francisco headquarters into a homeless shelter since "no one shows up anyway," according to Reuters

Tesla began asking some employees to resume in-person work as early as April 2020. It's unclear whether Agrawal addressed potential changes to Twitter's flexible work arrangement during Monday's meeting. 

Twitter did not immediately respond to CNBC Make It's request for comment. 

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