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Elon Musk reportedly prefers to hire people who've never been laid off

Elon Musk prefers job candidates who have 'never been laid off no matter the reason' X recruiter says.
Elon Musk has conducted his fair share of layoffs. LEON NEAL
  • Elon Musk avoids hiring people who've been laid off, a person involved in hiring at X told Fortune.

  • Musk still approves new hires at the social-media company, the person said.

  • The billionaire laid off half of X workers when he bought Twitter in 2022.

Elon Musk reportedly still has a hand in hiring at X — and he's got some clear preferences.

In an anonymous interview with Fortune, a person involved in hiring at X broke down how to get hired at the company.

Musk, who handed over the title of CEO to Linda Yaccarino last year, used to be involved in directly interviewing potential hires. He has since taken to reviewing applications and giving yes or no answers to hires, the person said. Musk has also been known to approve new hires at Tesla and SpaceX.

One red flag for Musk is a candidate who has previously been laid off. The billionaire doesn't care why the layoff occurred either, the person told Fortune.

"If you've been laid off, you shouldn't even waste your time applying," they added.

A spokesperson for X did not respond to a request for comment.

Musk has laid off his fair share of workers. When he bought the social-media company, then called Twitter, he cut its workforce in half, chopping the headcount within hours of taking over. And despite Musk's preference for avoiding workers who'd been involved in mass layoffs, the X owner said he later rehired some of the workers he'd laid off.

"There's no question that some of the people who were let go probably shouldn't have been let go," Musk said last year, adding "If you do it fast, unfortunately there's going to be some babies thrown out," he added.

Despite the layoffs, the company received thousands of applications for its internships last year and Musk fans made up a large portion of the candidates, Fortune reported.

More recently, X has begun hiring again and has dozens of positions listed on its careers page. The company said it's even establishing a new "trust and safety" center in Austin, Texas.

Do you work for one of Musk's companies or have insight to share? Reach out to the reporter from a non-work email and device at gkay@insider.com

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