Facebook owner Meta announced a fresh wave of job cuts on Tuesday, part of what CEO Mark Zuckerberg called the company’s “year of efficiency” as the US tech sector continues to downsize.
In an email to employees, Zuckerberg said Meta would shed 10,000 jobs over the next few months, targeting middle management, and that 5,000 other roles would remain unfilled. The cuts follow a cull of 11,000 jobs announced by the company in November.
“This will be tough and there’s no way around that. It will mean saying goodbye to talented and passionate colleagues who have been part of our success,” Zuckerberg said.
The first victims will be Meta’s recruitment department as the company officially puts an end to the hiring spree that came when big tech ramped up operations to meet high demand during the coronavirus pandemic.
In subsequent months, tech and business departments will also be affected and “in a small number of cases, it may take through the end of the year to complete these changes,” Zuckerberg said.
In January, Zuckerberg warned that further pain was coming when he told analysts the company’s “management theme for 2023 is the ‘Year of Efficiency’” and that he would focus on making the company “a stronger and more nimble organization.”
Meta had suffered a rough 2022 amid a souring economic climate, which forced advertisers to cut back on marketing, and Apple’s data privacy changes, which have reduced leeway for ad personalization.
The company is also under pressure for making a huge gamble on the metaverse, the world of virtual reality that Meta believes will be the next frontier online.
The problems last year sent the company’s share price down by an astonishing two thirds over 12 months, but the stock has recovered in 2023, with investors satisfied by Zuckerberg’s pledge to run a leaner company.
Meta’s share price shot up a further 5 percent after the announcement of the latest job cuts.
Meta’s CEO and founder said he “will make our organization flatter by removing multiple layers of management” which would mean many managers will be ordered to become “individual contributors.”
Zuckerberg explained he was pleasantly surprised by the benefits of running a more tightly organized operation where “many things have gone faster” with the elimination of lower priority projects.
“A leaner org (sic) will execute its highest priorities faster. People will be more productive, and their work will be more fun and fulfilling,” he said.