Like most companies, technology companies this year have also been hit with the global economic crisis which many experts say is fuelled by the Russian-Ukraine war and the impact of covid 19.
This has resulted in massive layoffs across the sector with a total of 1138 layoffs at tech companies globally, affecting 182,605 people, according to TrueUps tech layoff tracker.
Below is a list of top tech giants that have announced job cuts this year or embarked on massive layoffs.
It didn’t take long for Twitter’s new owner, Elon Musk to lay off almost half of the company’s staff. This was just a week after officially closing the acquisition process to take over the company.
“…the Nov. 4 layoffs only affected “15% of our Trust & Safety organization (as opposed to approximately 50% cuts company-wide), with our front-line moderation staff experiencing the least impact." Twitter's then-head of content moderation, Yoel Roth said.
These job cuts also affected the company’s only African office in Ghana’s capital, Accra. According to reports, employees were fired with the exception of one.
While these layoffs represent the biggest workforce cull Twitter has seen, it’s not the first time this year the company has sought to slim down its employee base. After initially implementing a hiring freeze, in July 2022 the company went on to lay off 30% of its talent acquisition team.
On Tuesday (November 15), the company notified regional authorities in California that it would lay off about 260 workers at various facilities that employ data scientists, software engineers, and other corporate workers. Those job cuts would be effective beginning on Jan. 17, 2023.
Amazon would not specify how many more layoffs may be in the works beyond the ones confirmed through California's Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act, also known as WARN, which requires companies to provide 60 days’ notice if they have 75 or more full-time or part-time workers. Amazon employs more than 1.5 million workers globally, primarily made up of hourly workers.
The online retail giant, like other tech and social media giants, saw sizable profits during the COVID-19 pandemic, as homebound shoppers purchased more items online. But revenue growth slowed as the worst of the pandemic eased and consumers relied less on e-commerce.
In June this year, Netflix announced it laid off 300 employees in the second round of job cuts after losing subscribers for the first time in more than a decade.
The cuts amounted to about 4% of the streaming giant’s workforce and mostly affected US employees. They came after the company cut 150 jobs last month.
“While we continue to invest significantly in the business, we made these adjustments so that our costs are growing in line with our slower revenue growth,” Netflix said in a statement.
Netflix said in February it had lost 200,000 subscribers globally at the start of 2022, and projected a decline of 2 million users in the upcoming quarter.
The company blamed the drop on a range of factors, including increased competition, the economy, the war in Ukraine, and the large number of people who share their accounts with non-paying households.
On Wednesday, November 9, the CEO of Facebook's parent Meta, Mark Zuckerberg announced the company is laying off 11,000 people, about 13% of its workforce, as it contends with faltering revenue and broader tech industry woes.
Zuckerberg said that he had made the decision to hire aggressively, anticipating rapid growth even after the pandemic lockdowns ended.
“Unfortunately, this did not play out the way I expected,” Zuckerberg said in a statement. “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. I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that.”
Meta, like other social media companies, enjoyed a financial boost during the pandemic lockdown era because more people stayed home and scrolled on their phones and computers. But as the lockdowns ended and people started going outside again, revenue growth began to falter.
In June 2022, Elon Musk confirmed that the salaried workforce at Tesla Inc. would be cut by about 10% over the next three months, but said the overall reduction in the electric-car maker’s headcount would only be some 3.5% as hourly staff numbers are still expected to grow.
“We grew very fast on the salaried side,” Musk said in an interview with Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait at the Qatar Economic Forum on Tuesday. “A year from now, I think our headcount will be higher” in salaried and hourly workers, but for now the reduction will be 3% to 3.5%, he said in a report by Bloomberg.
The comments brought more clarity to the situation with Tesla’s staffing, after Musk made varied internal and public statements about reductions over the past month.