Photo: Chip Somodevilla (Getty Images)
Layoffs have left their nasty mark on just about every corner of the tech industry this year. Well, almost every corner. So far, the industry’s biggest legacy names like Google, Amazon, and Apple have managed to skirt by relatively unscathed, but there are signs that’s changing. This week Meta, once amongst the most valuable companies on Earth, announced a company-wide hiring freeze.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg dropped the news during a company-wide Q&A with staff in late September, according to Bloomberg. In addition to the hiring freeze, Zuckerberg said teams should expect budget cuts, even amongst those still growing. The CEO reportedly told staff to expect less overall staff at the company next year. Overall, Bloomberg notes, the belt-tightening amounts to the first major budget cuts in Meta’s 18-year history.
The budget cuts don’t come as a surprise. Back in July the company, which just burned $10 billion on a metaverse that doesn’t exist, said it would slash hiring of new engineers by around 30%. Around that same time, a senior executive sent out an email to managers telling them to “move to exit,” poor-performing employees. And while layoffs haven’t happened yet, Zuckerberg’s signaled they are a possibility and even tried to encourage some lower-performing employees to do the dirty work for him.
“I think some of you might decide that this place isn’t for you, and that self-selection is okay with me,” Zuckerberg said in a leaked Q&A. “Realistically, there are probably a bunch of people at the company who shouldn’t be here.”