Meta Platforms sent out many more notices this week. These are part of the layoffs of 10,000 people announced in March and now also affect employees with technical tasks. A month ago, Mark Zuckerberg announced restructuring and layoffs in technical groups for the end of April. These are now a week earlier. Another round of layoffs will follow at the end of May, which will primarily affect business-related departments.
The Facebook parent did not explain how many technicians and engineers are now leaving the company. The Washington Post reports that around 4,000 employees have been laid off this week, citing unnamed sources believed to be familiar with Meta’s plans. So that’s about 40 percent of the layoffs announced in March.
Various positions, apps and locations affected
Various Meta employees are posting about their layoffs on the LinkedIn business network and other forums. These include senior engineering managers, user experience researchers, data analysts, technical program managers, game programmers and content designers, as The Verge reports. In Ireland, however, it also hit Jakub Kocinski, the leader of the team tasked with looking after meta-user welfare. Kocinski was responsible for “overseeing the strategy in areas such as problematic use, bullying and harassment, among other key issues,” reports The Register.
So it’s not just employees in Meta’s home country, the US, that are being laid off. In addition to Facebook, it also affects other apps from the group such as WhatsApp and Instagram. Bloomberg reports that Meta will fire Instagram employees in the London office or transfer them back to the US. The boss there, Adam Mosseri, only moved to London last year and now wants to return to the United States. The Instagram office in London previously had around 100 employees and is likely to be closed.
Over-hiring and downsizing
In past growth phases, Facebook hired many experts from areas outside of technology, Zuckerberg explained when announcing the wave of layoffs in March. That was helpful for product development, but priority should be given to the workforce in the technical areas, Zuckerberg explained. The Year of Efficiency is also about finding an optimal relationship between developers and the other roles. It’s about making Meta a leaner company with flatter hierarchies and a clearer tech focus.
Facebook isn’t the only tech giant cutting jobs on a massive scale. Thousands of people have already lost their jobs, and the tech companies are said to have cut a total of around 160,000 jobs. Some observers also see the wave of layoffs as a result of “over-hiring” by tech companies. The companies were less concerned with urgently needed jobs and more with fishing good people off the market so that they would not hire elsewhere. Now some people in the overhang would be released again.