Google is cutting off 12,000 workers, or approximately 6% of its workforce, becoming the latest tech giant to cut personnel as the industry’s economic boom during the COVID-19 epidemic comes to an end.
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google’s parent company Alphabet, told employees of the layoffs in an email that was also posted on the firm’s news blog on Friday.
It’s one of the company’s largest-ever layoffs, and it joins tens of thousands of other job cuts announced recently by Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook parent Meta, and other internet companies as they tighten their belts in the face of a bleak market outlook. Just one month, prominent corporations reported at least 48,000 job losses.
Microsoft has announced 10,000 job layoffs, accounting for approximately 5% of its workforce. Amazon said this month that it is laying off 18,000 people, a percentage of its 1.5 million-person workforce, while commercial software firm Salesforce is laying off 8,000 employees, or 10% of the total.
Last autumn, Facebook parent Meta announced the elimination of 11,000 jobs, or 13% of its workforce.
Elon Musk cut employment at Twitter after acquiring the social media company last fall.
Smaller companies are also feeling the effects of job reduction. Sophos, a cybersecurity corporation based in the United Kingdom, lay off 450 employees, accounting for 10% of its global staff. Coinbase, a cryptocurrency trading platform, let off 20% of its workforce, or approximately 950 employees, in its second wave of layoffs in less than a year.
Despite signals of a slowing economy, employment in the United States has remained strong, with another 223,000 jobs added in December. However, the IT sector has grown extremely quickly in recent years due to increased demand as people began to work remotely.
CEOs of a number of companies have been blamed for expanding too quickly, although those same companies, even after the latest wave of job losses, are still considerably larger than they were before the pandemic’s economic boom began.
Both Pichai and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella emphasized the importance of capitalizing on their advances in artificial intelligence technology in their layoff announcements, reflecting renewed competition between the tech titans sparked by Microsoft’s growing partnership with the San Francisco startup OpenAI.