Interviews with companies who just had mass layoffs

How does this work?
And how is the interviewee supposed to feel about this?
Also what if this is just a diversity hire?

I have heard from a few recruiters for major companies, that have also just had mass layoffs, as soon a few days since the layoffs became public as happening. It’s awkward and you don’t know how to feel about it.

What questions can you ask?


Honestly, I would avoid those companies as much as possible. I am seeing that happen and am steering clear.

If you are in that situation, I would ask about the financial health of the company (do some research to see if currently or recently went through bankruptcy). With the pandemic, I would ask if their e-commerce business changed in any way or whether they were able to do curbside pickup, etc. By asking those types of questions you should be able to gauge whether or not the company has recovered or still recovering.

I would also find a way to ask the ideal org structure to glean if they are rebuilding their staff because business is improving or if it’s a diversity hire.


this is a bit old and I’m sure that @yneedsajob has made their decision, but I disagree.
I think that in a pandemic and economic collapse, you have to secure all bags. My policy is take all interviews always because the industry is small and you never know where that person who interviews you will end up, and if you’re interested in the job then take it.

As for being a diversity hire, I can see how wondering about that would be a crappy feeling, but also if you’re a POC, then you’ve lost opportunities due to racism for sure and I would encourage you to monetize the hell out of white guilt. If a factor like race has worked against you for years and suddenly it works for you? GET IT.

Lastly, I think everyone in the industry should assume that every company could collapse at any moment and to never expect any form of job security. Layoffs are super common in fashion even outside a pandemic, and the biggest point I would make about companies hiring post layoff is that they’re likely trying to lower their payroll costs per job by doing that, so it’s CRITICAL that you start salary negotiations at the top of your range and fight for a solid wage.


totally agree with you! As of right now, I’ve had 2 interviews, one with a huge company that had massive layoffs, and smaller one who also had massive layoffs, so I couldn’t judge either, as they seemingly took the same approach. Been in the industry long enough to know to take what I can get, but I’m still looking at the everything with magnifying glass, mainly because the company I was with, completely fell apart from pandemic, and it was a shock that they were completely not together.


I wouldn’t feel guilty if I were you. Companies lay people off; it’s part of their cycle. No biggie. there’s restructuring, and sometimes they just need fresh ideas/faces. Congrats on getting the interview, I hope it’s a good fit and that you get the job.