This year, tech companies have been hit by global economic uncertainty that is slowing growth and leading to widespread layoffs, even as business IT spending in some fields, like cloud computing, seems to be on the rise.
According to TrueUp’s tech layoff trackerThere were 1,405 layoffs at tech companies globally in the first week of December, affecting 219,959 people.
As headwinds in the global economy began to emerge at the start of the year, many tech companies responded to fears of an impending recession by restricting hiring. The bad news is that amid rising interest rates, the ongoing war in Ukraine, high fuel costs, supply chain problems, and falling sales of personal PCs, most of those freezes come with job cuts, as companies seek to cut operations costs.
While enterprise IT spending is still forecast to grow over the next year as companies use tech to battle expected recession, bright spots offered by enterprise spending on cloud infrastructure and SaaS applications haven’t been enough to completely lighten the overall picture for tech industry giants. The exchange rate and declining PC sales slowed Microsoft’s September quarter net profit growth to its lowest level in five years. Alphabet’s September revenue fell 6%, despite a significant increase in cloud services revenue.
The overall macroeconomic environment is also showing signs of influencing cloud infrastructure spending. AWS revenue for the September quarter grew 27.5% year-over-year, but slowed from 33% growth in the previous quarter and 36.5% growth in the previous quarter.
As the economic outlook for 2023 is unlikely to inspire much optimism among business leaders, the number of job losses TruUp recorded will likely continue to rise.
Below is a list of some of the most notable technical layoffs that have occurred in the industry in recent years. This list is updated regularly.
Dec 8: Airtable – 254 Employees
Airtable, a low-code business software developer, announced layoffs of 254 employees, approximately 20% of its workforce, from business development, engineering, and other teams. Along with the downsizing of individual teams, Airtable will be leaving its Chief Revenue Officer, Human Resources Officer, and Chief Product Officer.
Dec. 2: Amazon employees cut to 20,000
Sources say Amazon plans to lay off up to 20,000 employees in the coming months, roughly double what the New York Times previously reported in November. The layoff plans come after the retail and cloud computing giant took on staff during the pandemic. The 20,000 employees account for about 6% of the company’s workforce, or about 1.3% of Amazon’s total workforce of 1.5 million, including part-time workers in global distribution centers.
November 22: hewlett packard HP
HP will increase its headcount of 6,000 employees to between 4,000 and 6,000 by the end of fiscal 2025, reducing its global workforce of 51,000 by approximately 12%. The layoffs will be part of HP’s forward-looking strategy announced in conjunction with quarterly results. On a conference call with analysts, HP President and CEO Enrique Lores said the strategy would bring in at least $1.
The company could save $4 billion by the end of fiscal 2025, addressing so-called “short-term market headwinds” and mitigating weakness in HP’s core markets. In the third quarter of this year, the company’s personal systems, consumer, and commercial segments declined 13%, 25%, and 6%, respectively. The number of laptops and desktops also decreased by 21% overall.
November 17: Cisco – 4,100 employees
Cisco announced layoffs of 4,100 employees, or about 5% of its 83,000 employees, despite record quarterly revenue of $13.6 billion.
In an 8-K filing for its fiscal first quarter, the company announced a restructuring plan “in order to rebalance the organization and enable further investment in key priority areas. This rebalancing will include talent movement options and restructuring.” The company said it will make some real estate changes as well.
Speaking to analysts after the results were posted, Cisco CFO Scott Herren said:Don’t think of this as a headcount action that is motivated by cost savings. This really is a rebalancing.
Nov. 15: Asana—97 employees
Asana’s chief operating officer (COO), Anne Raimondi, took to LinkedIn to announce that the company was reducing the size of its global workforce, estimated to be over 1,600 employees, by around 9%, equating to 97 job losses. The company said in a statement that the layoffs are “part of a restructuring plan to improve operational efficiencies, reduce operating costs, and better align Asana’s workforce with current business needs, top strategic priorities, and key growth opportunities.
Asana posted a net loss of $62. 6 million for the quarter that ended July 2022, despite a 51% increase in revenue
Amazon: November 14 – 10,000 employees.
According to the New York Times on November 14, Amazon plans to cut about 10,000 jobs. According to the report, the layoffs will affect only a fraction of Amazon’s 1.5 million workforces but will affect both technical and corporate employees. Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but its most profitable division, Amazon Web Services (AWS), has shown signs of slowing growth since the start of the fiscal year.
Speaking to analysts on Amazon’s third-quarter results, CFO Brian Olsawsky explained that the decline was due to macroeconomic conditions forcing Amazon customers to cut costs.
Earlier this month, the company sent out a memo to all employees announcing the suspension of employment for all positions at Amazon.
Zendesk: November 10 – 350 employees
Announced 10 layoffs to reduce operating costs.
According to a recent filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), one CRM software provider is laying off 300 of its 5,450 employees worldwide.
In a statement filed with the SEC, the company said,This decision (of the layoffs) is based on cost-cutting initiatives to reduce operating costs and increase Zendesk’s focus on key growth priorities.
The 4,444 layoffs will cost Zendesk an estimated $28 million, primarily due to severance pay and employee benefits costs, an SEC filing showed.
Salesforce: November 9 – 950 4,444 employees
On November 9, CRM software provider Salesforce announced that it would lay off approximately 950 of its approximately 73,000 employees worldwide. The announcement comes less than a month after the company laid off at least 90 employees, mostly contract workers.
Salesforce, like many tech companies, initially imposed an employment moratorium to avoid layoffs. However, that policy was rescinded in September and, despite experiencing a relatively successful year financially, the company has been facing pressure to cut costs since activist hedge fund Starboard Value took a stake in the company and immediately called for Salesforce to increase its margins.
Meta: Nov. 9—11,000 people
Three days after it was first rumored that Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg was planning to dramatically reduce the company’s headcount, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, confirmed that it was preparing to cut 11,000 jobs, impacting 13% of its global workforce.
In a statement, Zuckerberg said that the company had already sought to cut costs across the business, including scaling back budgets, reducing perks, shrinking its real estate footprint, and restructuring teams to increase efficiency.
The news came mere weeks after weak performances from Facebook and Instagram saw $80 billion wiped off Meta’s market value and its share price drop to less than a third of what it was at the start of the year.
Twitter: November 3 – 3, 750
New Twitter owner Elon Musk is showing off his newfound power over the social media giant by firing about half of Twitter’s 7,500 employees just one week after the deal with the company closed. Didn’t waste time. According to former employees, the layoffs completely drained the entire team, including Product Trust and Safety, Politics, Communications, Tweet Curation, Ethical AI, Data Science, Research, Machine Learning, Social Benefits, Accessibility, and some key points. aspects. engineering team.
Musk also fired Twitter's senior executives, along with several company executives, including its vice president of consumer product development.
He justified the job cuts by tweeting: “Regarding Twitter’s reduction in force, unfortunately, there is no choice when the company is losing over $4M/day.” The tweet has since been deleted.
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.
Ten days after the initial round of job cuts was confirmed, several outlets reported that Twitter had also eliminated between 4,400— 5,500 contract workers without notice. According to a number of news media reports, most contract employees only found out they’d been terminated after losing access to the company’s email and internal communications systems.
Stripe: November 3 – 1, 100
Stripe announced laying off 1,100 workers or about 14% of its workforce. In a memo sent to employees by Patrick Collison, Stripe’s CEO said the cuts were needed amidst “stubborn inflation, energy shocks, high-interest rates, slashed investment budgets, and tighter startup funding.”
In 2021, the San Francisco company became the most valuable startup in the United States, with an enterprise value of $95 billion. However, according to a Wall Street Journal report in July of this year, Stripe reduced the intrinsic value of its stock by 28%, lowering its intrinsic value to $74 billion.
F5: October. 21-100 people
Despite quarterly revenue growth of 3% year-over-year, F5, a Seattle-based security and application delivery company, announced that it would cut approximately 100 jobs or approximately 1% of its 6,900 global workforce. In a statement issued by GeekWire, a spokesperson for F5 said the company is constantly evaluating how to focus its resources to best meet the needs of its customers. “Given the current macroeconomic situation, this week we announced internal changes that reduce several positions in the company,” the statement said.
Microsoft: October 17 – 1, 000
After Microsoft nearly doubled its payroll budget in May to retain staff, Microsoft laid off about 1,000 workers. The layoffs impacted staff at the company level, global regions, and across company departments, including the Xbox division, Strategic Missions, Technology Organization, and Edge teams.
Microsoft said in a statement on Oct. 17,Like all companies, we regularly assess our business priorities and restructure accordingly. We will continue to invest in our business and hire in key growth areas in the year ahead.
This latest wave of job cuts came three months after Microsoft laid off less than 1% (around 1,800) of its 180,000 workforce and removed open job listings for its Azure cloud and security groups.
Oracle: Oct. 14—201 people
Just months after Oracle acquired healthcare data specialist firm Cerner for $28.3 billion and announced the first round of layoffs, the company announced it was cutting a further 201 jobs in an attempt to find around $1 billion in cost savings.
According to its Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) filed in California, the jobs cuts impacted data scientists and developers. Despite the layoffs, Oracle said its Redwood Shores campus would not be closing as a result of the job cuts.
Habana Labs, owned by Intel: Oct 11 – 100 people.
Israeli AI chip developer Habana Labs announced that it has laid off about 100 people, about 10% of its total workforce.
Since acquiring Intel for $2 billion in 2019, the company has grown from 180 employees to over 900 in the past three years.
In a statement, the company said making “adjustments to its workforce” was a requirement for adapting to the “current business reality” and ensuring the company could “improve its competitiveness.”
The reduction in Intel’s headcount doesn’t stop at Habana Labs. Although the chip developer’s parent company is yet to confirm just how many employees will be impacted, on Intel’s third-quarter earnings call, CEO Pat Gelsinger told investors, “[Intel] is planning for the economic uncertainty to persist into 2023.”
Gelsinger later confirmed to multiple media outlets that these measures will include job cuts that will affect its global employees. Intel has roughly 120,000 employees worldwide.
DocuSign: Sept. 28—670 people
A week after electronic signature company DocuSign announced the appointment of its new CEO, the company revealed it was laying off approximately 9% of its workforce to support its growth and profitability objectives and to improve its operating margin. In January, DocuSign reported having 7,651 employees. About 670 of these workers are expected to be affected by the job cuts.
According to filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the cost of restructuring DocuSign will be between $30 million and $40 million.
Twilio: September 14 – 850 people.
Twilio announced plans to cut 11% of its 7,800 employees from 800 to 900. In a letter posted on the Twilio blog, CEO Jeff Lawson partly blamed Twilio’s rapid growth over the past few years, saying the layoffs were “sensible and necessary.” The cuts will primarily affect R&D and Twilio’s “go-to-market areas,” Lawson said.
Increased demand for cloud services and a series of acquisitions, including data protection platform Ionic Security and free messaging service provider Zipwhip, nearly doubled the company’s headcount during the pandemic.