In recent months, several tech companies have announced cost-cutting measures, with Amazon, Apple and Google-parent Alphabet all announcing hiring slowdowns or freezes.
For the tech sector, the pandemic boom has turned to a post-pandemic bust, as increasing interest rates rock share prices and inflation cuts into profits.
The sector shed 9,587 jobs in October, the largest monthly total since November 2020, according to data from consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas cited by Bloomberg.
Total job cuts announced by US-based employers jumped 13% to 33,843 in October, the highest since February 2021, a report said.
PayPal has announced it will cut back around 7% of its total workforce, or about 2,000 full-time workers, as the digital payments company contends with what it calls ‘the challenging macro-economic environment’.
PayPal said it will make the cuts over several weeks, with some of its organizations affected more than others.
The company did not further specify. PayPal is the parent of Venmo, Xoom and Honey, among other brands. The company is based in San Jose, California.
‘Over the past year, we made significant progress in strengthening and reshaping our company to address the challenging macro-economic environment while continuing to invest to meet our customers’ needs,’ PayPal President and CEO Dan Schulman said Tuesday in a statement.
‘While we have made substantial progress in right-sizing our cost structure, and focused our resources on our core strategic priorities, we have more work to do.’
News gathering app Dataminr announced the axing of 20 percent of its staff in November 2023 thanks mainly due to advancements in its artificial intelligence platform.
Google’s parent company Alphabet is axing 12,000 jobs in the latest round of white collar layoffs sweeping across the tech sector.
Sundar Pichai, Alphabet’s CEO, said the losses affect teams across the company including recruiting and some corporate functions, as well as some engineering and products teams.
Pichai said in the note: ‘I am confident about the huge opportunity in front of us thanks to the strength of our mission, the value of our products and services, and our early investments in AI.
‘To fully capture it, we’ll need to make tough choices. So, we’ve undertaken a rigorous review across product areas and functions to ensure that our people and roles are aligned with our highest priorities as a company. The roles we’re eliminating reflect the outcome of that review. They cut across Alphabet, product areas, functions, levels and regions.’
The Facebook-parent said in November it would cut 13% of its workforce, or more than 11,000 employees, in one of the biggest tech layoffs this year as it grapples with a weak advertising market and mounting costs.
Like its peers, Meta aggressively hired during the pandemic to meet a surge in social media usage by stuck-at-home consumers.
But the pandemic boom-times have petered out as advertisers and consumers halt spending in the face of rising costs and rapidly increasing interest rates.
After plunging billions into CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s Metaverse vision with little to show for it, Meta has been faced with rising costs and shrinking profits.
Meta, once worth more than $1 trillion, is now valued at $256 billion after losing more than 70% of its value last year alone.
‘Not only has online commerce returned to prior trends, but the macroeconomic downturn, increased competition, and ads signal loss have caused our revenue to be much lower than I’d expected,’ Zuckerberg said in a message to employees, according to Reuters.
‘I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that.’
On a short call, a red-eyed Zuckerberg addressed employees but took no questions.
He stuck to a script that closely followed the wording in the morning’s blogpost and called the increased investments in e-commerce a ‘big mistake in planning.’
Twitter laid off half its workforce across teams ranging from communications and content curation to product and engineering following Elon Musk’s $44 billion takeover.
The cutbacks affected around 3,700 employees, who learned their fate by email last week.
However, Bloomberg reported Twitter was reaching out to dozens of employees who lost their jobs, asking them to return.
In April, Dropbox made 16 percent of its staff, around 500 people, unemployed.
Streaming giant Roku ditched 10 percent of its workforce in September.
In January, cloud-based software company Salesforce announced it will lay off 10% of its employees or about 8,000 workers.
CEO Marc Benioff cited a rough period for the tech sector as well as over-hiring during the coronavirus pandemic leading to the decision.
Several weeks ago, it quietly laid off hundreds of employees.
‘Our sales performance process drives accountability. Unfortunately, that can lead to some leaving the business, and we support them through their transition,’ a Salesforce spokesperson told CNBC in a statement in November.
Salesforce had 73,541 employees at the start of last year – it is the largest employer in the San Francisco area.
Salesforce said in an August filing that headcount rose 36% in the past year ‘to meet the higher demand for services from our customers’.
Amazon said it would lay off 18,000 corporate and technology jobs in what will be the largest job cuts in the company’s history.
Amazon reportedly lost $1trillion over the year after its stock plummeted from a high during the pandemic.
The move comes after the company put a hiring freeze in place, affecting major teams including Prime Video, Alexa and Amazon Fresh.
‘We’re facing an unusual macroeconomic environment, and want to balance our hiring and investments with being thoughtful about this economy,’ Beth Galetti, senior vice president of people experience and technology at Amazon, wrote in a memo, seen by the Wall Street Journal.
Intel Corp’s CEO Pat Gelsinger told Reuters ‘people actions’ would be part of a cost-reduction plan.
The chipmaker said recently it would lower costs by $3 billion in 2023, before ramping that up to $10 billion by 2025.
The adjustments would start in the fourth quarter, Gelsinger said, but did not specify how many employees would be affected.
Some Intel divisions, including the sales and marketing group, could be reduced by up to 20%, Bloomberg News reported last month, citing people with knowledge of the situation.
Intel had 113,700 employees as of July, when it slashed its annual sales forecast by $11 billion after missing estimates for second-quarter results.
Intel, based in Santa Clara, California, declined to comment on the job cuts when reached by DailyMail.com in October.
Intel has been stung by shifting market trends, including the decline of traditional personal computers as smartphones and tablets rise in popularity.
Last quarter, global PC shipments, including desktops and laptops, declined another 15% from a year ago, according to IDC.
Microsoft in January initiated layoffs of 10,000 employees, citing slowing customer demand and a negative economic environment.
‘We’re also seeing organizations in every industry and geography exercise caution as some parts of the world are in a recession and other parts are anticipating one,’ CEO Satya Nadella said in a company memo.
The layoffs affected nearly 5% of Microsoft’s global workforce.
Microsoft previously laid off under 1,000 employees across several divisions last year, according to Axios.
In a statement, Microsoft executives said: ‘Like all companies, we evaluate our business priorities on a regular basis, and make structural adjustments accordingly.