Amid growing global uncertainty global tech majors are looking to halt all expansion plans. While US BigTech Microsoft early last week announced to cut about 1% jobs, now many tech companies are rethinking their staffing needs, with some of them instituting hiring freezes, rescinding offers and even starting layoffs.
Microsoft Corp, Google and Lyft Inc are among some of the top companies to pull back. Recently Google paused hiring for the next two weeks, while Lyft is shutting down a division and trimming jobs. Here's a look at some of the top companies that are tapping the brakes.
Alphabet Inc, Google's parent company, has been decelerating its recruiting efforts. Chief executive officer Sundar Pichai told employees this month that—although the business added 10,000 Googlers in the second quarter—it will be slowing the pace of hiring for the rest of the year and prioritizing engineering and technical talent. “Like all companies, we're not immune to economic headwinds,” he said. The hiring pause announced Wednesday is part of that slowdown, Google said, “to enable teams to prioritize their roles and hiring plans for the rest of the year.” It had nearly 164,000 employees at the end of March.
Amazon.com Inc. said in April that it was overstaffed after ramping up during the pandemic and needed to cut back. “As the variant subsided in the second half of the quarter and employees returned from leave, we quickly transitioned from being understaffed to being overstaffed, resulting in lower productivity,” Chief financial officer Brian Olsavsky said. Amazon is subleasing some warehouse space and has paused development of facilities meant for office workers, saying it needs more time to figure out how much space employees will require for hybrid work. The company had 1.6 million workers as of March, making it the biggest employer in the tech world.
Apple Inc. is planning to slow hiring and spending at some divisions next year to cope with a potential economic slump, according to people familiar with the matter. But it's not a companywide policy, and the iPhone maker is still moving forward with an aggressive product-release schedule. Apple had 154,000 employees in September, when its last fiscal year ended.
Carvana Co., an online used car retailer, laid off 2,500 people in May, about 12% of its workforce. In an unusual move, the executive team will forego salaries for the rest of the year to pay severance to those who were let go, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company had more than 21,000 full-time and part-time employees at the end of last year.
Coinbase Global Inc., a cryptocurrency exchange, told employees it was cutting 18% of staff in June to prepare for an economic downturn. It also rescinded job offers. “We appear to be entering a recession after a 10+ year economic boom,” CEO Brian Armstrong said in a blog post. “While it's hard to predict the economy or the markets, we always plan for the worst so we can operate the business through any environment,” he said. The company ended the quarter with about 5,000 employees.
Compass Inc, a real estate brokerage platform, is eliminating 450 positions, about 10% of its staff, according to a filing last month. The company had nearly 5,000 employees at the end of 2021.
Gemini Trust Co., a cryptocurrency exchange founded by Bitcoin billionaires Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, announced a 10% staff reduction in June.
GoPuff, a grocery delivery app, is laying off 10% of its workforce and closing dozens of warehouses. The cuts will affect about 1,500 staff members—a mix of corporate and warehouse employees.
Lyft told employees it was reining in hiring in May after its stock dropped precipitously. The company went further this week, announcing plans to shutter its car-rental business and cut about 60 jobs. Lyft had about 4,500 employees in 2021. Archrival Uber Technologies Inc., meanwhile, has been more upbeat. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told Bloomberg in June that his company was “recession resistant” and had no plans for layoffs.
Meta Platforms Inc., the parent of Facebook, slashed plans to hire engineers by at least 30%. CEO Mark Zuckerberg told employees that he's anticipating one of the worst downturns in recent history. The company had more than 77,800 employees at the end of March.
Microsoft told workers in May that it was slowing down hiring in the Windows, Office and Teams groups as it braces for economic volatility. The company had 181,000 employees in 2021. More recently, the software maker cut some jobs—less than 1% of its total—as part of a reorganization. This week, the company said it began eliminating many job openings—a freeze that will last indefinitely.
Netflix Inc., the streaming giant, has had several rounds of highly publicized layoffs since it reported the loss of 200,000 subscribers in the first quarter. In April, it began scaling back some marketing initiatives, then cut 150 employees in May and 300 in June. Last quarter, it reported $70 million in expenses from severance and shed an additional 970,000 subscribers. Netflix had 11,300 employees in 2021.