21 February 2024

HomeTechnologyWhich tech giants are behind biggest layoffs across the globe?

Which tech giants are behind biggest layoffs across the globe?

Which tech giants are behind biggest layoffs across globe?

Which tech giants are behind biggest layoffs across the globe?

WASHINGTON: (Web Desk) After suffering the burden of layoffs, thousands of Google employees found themselves in a river of outright destruction.

One Googler learned he’d lost his job of 17 years when his key card failed. Vice president of UX Bobby Nath woke up to find himself locked out of his Google Nest, which was synced to his work account. Friday’s Google layoffs, which eliminated 6 percent of the company’s global staff, are the latest in a wave of tech downsizing that began early in the summer of 2022 and has accelerated since.

The “technology industry” is a squishy and contentious category, and layoff causes vary. They include a widespread reality check on overexuberant pandemic-era hiring, a decrease in advertising dollars in the wake of inflation, a decrease in venture capital in the wake of higher interest rates, and—in the case of Twitter—Elon Musk being Elon Musk.

According to Layoffs.fyi, the tech sector lost around 150,000 jobs in 2022 (including at Meta, Twitter, and Uber), and more than 50,000 cuts have been announced in 2023. These numbers, site creator Roger Lee notes, are probably undercounts. (Lee, also the co-founder of a startup that provides 401(k)s for small business, explained his methodology to me in an email: “I post any tech layoff news that’s been reported on by the media, announced by the company, or verified in some other way.”)

In alphabetical order (sorry, Alphabet), here are the companies that have announced the highest numbers of jobs cut (as best we can tell) so far in 2023:

  1. Alphabet, parent company to Google: 12,000 jobs cut (6 percent of the company’s workforce)

Google’s layoffs on Friday were notable for their swiftness—and for the company’s ability to keep cuts under wraps (in comparison to Amazon, whose cuts were leaked early). Cuts included long-tenured staff who joined during the company’s “do no evil” days.

Layoffs will be particularly challenging for Silicon Valley workers in the U.S. on H-1B visas but will also affect offices worldwide. They come in response to both industrywide trends and new competition: The New York Times reported that Google has flagged the rise of A.I. writing tool ChatGPT as an existential “code red” and is reshuffling priorities accordingly.

  1. Amazon: 18,000 jobs cut (1.2 percent of the company’s workforce)

Amazon announced in early January that it would cut a total of 18,000 workers, including 2,300 headquarters staff who got the news last week. (Some layoffs that started rolling out in November 2022 are included in that count.) The layoffs will primarily affect human resources, device, and store teams.

  1. Amdocs: 700 jobs cut (2.5 percent of the company’s workforce)

Not itself a household name, Amdocs provides back-end software and services to major telecom companies like AT&T, T-Mobile, Comcast, and Dish. The company actually appears to be doing well right now: Stocks are high, and revenues are up.

  1. Black Shark: 900 jobs cut (90 percent of the company’s workforce)

This Chinese gaming phone startup makes smartphones that look like Gameboys; it was planning to make a virtual reality headset next. Instead, it has been shedding jobs since a failed acquisition deal with media giant Tencent last June.

  1. Capital One: 1,100 jobs cut (2 percent of the company’s workforce)

At the other end of the size spectrum, Capital One just announced large cuts to its “agile” team, which managed technology projects, prompting the Wall Street Journal to wonder if tech-sector layoffs will spill over and drive engineering layoffs in large corporations in other sectors.

Many jobs lost in the “tech sector” were not actually software engineering jobs, and Capital One is still hiring for in-demand technology skills like machine learning and cybersecurity. As in any restructuring, teams responsible for struggling products or “nonessential” services (like helping Capital One engineers manage their time or helping Amazon workers enjoy their jobs) should probably worry first.

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