Twitter is investigating why some staff in Europe have not received their November salaries in a timely manner amid sweeping cuts and layoffs across the company since Elon Musk’s takeover.
Twitter staff in the UK received an email just before 1 pm London time on November 25 telling them their pay date would be November 28. Alongside the email, sent from the EMEA Payroll Team, staff received their usual monthly payslips. However, staff in the UK and Germany appear not to have been paid on time.
“It has come to our attention that some of you may not have received your November 2022 salary yet in your bank account,” an email sent to current and former staff reads. “The payments have gone through our Twitter bank account, and as usual, with no change to the process.”
The email says this “might be a delay in Interbank settlement” but adds the company is “actively investing [sic] with our bank and will keep you posted.”
Four independent sources in the UK and Germany told Ars Technica that they had not received payment on the morning their salaries were due.
The sources included current and former staff—the latter of whom should still be paid per the terms of their release from the company.
Usually, Twitter staff are paid on the 28th of every month. If the day falls on a Monday, staff typically see their salary as a pending payment on Friday, with the cash hitting their accounts by midnight on Saturday.
Twitter has already been criticized by former staff for not paying their expenses on time. Former Twitter employees who incurred expenses while still working for the company are owed thousands in expenses that are gathering debt on their personal bank accounts. Much of Twitter’s payroll staff resigned in mid-November after Musk’s work-long-hours-or-quit ultimatum.
While staff in the UK and Germany have not been paid, those in the Netherlands and Ireland have been—suggesting that the problem is one of staffing and operations, rather than a systematic refusal to pay workers. “The company is just not run well,” said one former UK staff member affected.
One former Twitter employee shared screenshots of their bank accounts showing their salary not being paid had pushed them into an overdraft. The former staff member is also owed expenses from the company incurred while they worked there. “First you are told you are out, but we are going to try to save your job,” the former employee said. “Then you get told you will be paid so you can’t start work or get paid for jobs, otherwise you’re fired. Now it’s payday, and direct debits are starting to be taken from a virtually empty account.
“I feel ashamed I trusted the words of the senior staff who now all got their money and are happily enjoying it, while the rest of us suffer like this. That is one very harsh way to push people to quit rather than wait for their severance packages.”
By midday UK time, some staff members reported they were being paid with a payment reference atypical of how Twitter would usually pay their salaries—though one former employee estimated around 80 percent of workers had not been paid by around 1 pm UK time, based on conversations held in a Slack group containing former and current employees.
One former staff member shared a screenshot with Ars showing a payment had been made, then reversed, this morning. Another ex-Twitter employee said that “at least 20 people” had to make calls to their mortgage providers because of a lack of funds because their salary did not arrive in time.
As of 6 pm UK time, some staff in the UK still had not been paid, according to those with access to the group. Some received an email suggesting that receiving banks were undergoing anti-fraud checks.
Others reported that payments were coming from different banks that Twitter would not usually use to pay salaries—in contradiction of Twitter’s earlier claims to staff that “as usual, with no change to the process.”
Twitter did not respond to a request to comment on this story. It is unclear whether it has any communications staffers still employed after layoffs.