On Tuesday, June 6, Uber Technologies Inc. fired 20 of its Employees on charges of sexual harassment. The digital cab-hailing company stated that it had taken the decision following an investigation conducted by a law firm to look into sexual harassment allegations against those employees. Perkins Coie, a law firm was hired by Uber to look into all the claims of discrimination, bullying, harassment, and other employee concerns.

Employees fired on sexual harassment charges

As reported by the New York Times, nearly 215 employee complaints were investigated by Perkins Coie, some of which were filed as far back as 2012.

Uber stated that it will be taking action on 58 of these complaints and no action on 100. However, other investigations are still on track. Out of these 215 claims, the ride-hailing company said that 47 were related to sexual harassment, 54 were related to discrimination, 33 to bullying, 45 cases were of unprofessional behavior, and 36 of the cases dealt with other types of claims.

However, most of the claims were traced back to employees at Uber's San Francisco headquarters.

Apart from the removal of rogue employees, Uber, which is the world’s highest-valued venture-backed company stated to the staff that it would expand the employee relations unit so that these kinds of claims can be monitored and investigated in a better way. Apart from that, the company also promised to increase the scope of management training as most of the managers at Uber are first-time bosses and do not know how to handle tricky situations.

Uber takes step to improve employee satisfaction

A day before the ride-hailing service announced its decision to fire 20 of its staff members, it hired Frances Frei, a Harvard Business School professor to instruct and guide all the managers who are reporting directly to Travis Kalanick, the chief executive of Uber.

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Following the hire of Frei, it was revealed on June 6 that it also employed Bozoma Saint John, a former Apple employee who featured prominently in Apple’s product launches, as the company’s chief brand officer.

Additionally in order to maintain a healthy relationship with its employees, Uber has also proposed to come up with a confidential helpline for its staff so that they can report their concerns and claims without the fear of being targeted. It has also incorporated an internal system to track and log-in all staff complaints.

The company’s decision to fire 20 of its employees comes after a chain of events that unfolded this year which lead to questions being raised about the company’s leadership and business model. In February 2017, a former Uber engineer wrote in her blog post that the company failed to penalize her manager against whom she had raised charges of unwanted sexual advances.