Per Crunchbase News, Uber's Chief Financial Officer Nelson Chai sent out a company-wide email earlier this month to announce a bit of deflating news: They would ax work anniversary balloons from their yearly expenditures.
Why? Well, “Uberversaries,” which highlight work anniversaries for employees, were costing the SF-based company $200,000 in helium balloons, alone, per year. Or, to put that figure into a more digestible nugget, roughly the annual salary of a staffed senior software engineer.
And, given the recent helium shortages that've grossly inflated the costs of such party staples, that figure could've soared in the ensuing months.
"It's not only a great way to find dollars we can invest back into the business, [but] it's also more environmentally friendly," Chai said in a company-wide emailed procured by Crunchbase News, via an anonymous source, perhaps nodding to the cost-cutting measures of a company-wide savings campaign, stamped with its own internal hashtag, to boot: #FindTheMoney.
Employees will now be given celebratory stickers to honor work anniversaries, in lieu of sky-high-priced balloons
This tidbit of news comes after over 400 employees were laid off in the company’s marketing department in July, and after the company posted its single-biggest quarterly loss to date of $5.2 billion last month. Uber has, as of this article’s publishing, still put a hold on hiring new software managers and product managers.
These are reasons enough to pop the balloons from the budget.
But Uber employees can breathe a sigh of relief, nonetheless. Aside from this one left-of-center cutback, the company did not denote they’d remove current employee upsides like free in-office food, unlimited vacation days, and discounts for Uber Rides and their sister food delivery product Uber Eats.