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Meta announced another 10,000 layoffs as part of its “year of efficiency”

Meta announced another 10,000 layoffs as part of its “year of efficiency”

Meta announced another round of layoffs affecting about 10,000 employees, or about 13% of its global workforce, on Tuesday (March 14). CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the downsizing in an update to the company’s “year of efficiency” plan, a blueprint for making Meta more profitable amid a squeeze in the tech industry.

The layoffs will primarily affect the company’s recruiting team, with further restructuring in its tech and business operations coming in the next couple of months. The company also plans to close applications for 5,000 open roles it hadn’t hired yet.

Zuckerberg described the layoffs as part “of both building a leaner, more technical company and improving our business performance to enable our long-term vision.”

In November, Meta announced mass layoffs affecting 11,000 employees, the first layoffs in the company’s history. The company is trying to become profitable after losing roughly two-thirds of its market value in 2022. Prior to the layoffs, Meta had almost 90,000 full-time employees.

Meta’s “year of efficiency,” a timeline

November 2022: Meta announces it would cut 11,000 employees to save costs and increase efficiency. It also scales back budgets, reduced employee perks, and reduced its office space.

January 2022: In another shift of hiring priorities, Meta rescinds full-time offers it made to prospective employees.

February 2022: Meta announces it is flattening its organizational structure, asking those with managerial roles to transition into new jobs focused on coding, designing, and research, or leave.

March 2022: Meta announces plans to scale down investments into its much-heralded metaverse, redirecting funds towards a new predictive text AI venture called LLaMA, or Large Language Model Meta AI.

Where does the Metaverse fit into this?

Seemingly brushing off the company’s Metaverse struggles–a venture which has cost nearly $14 billion–Zuckerberg has declared that his company’s sprawling bureaucracy is responsible for Meta’s financial woes.

“I don’t think you want a management structure that’s just managers managing managers, managing managers, managing managers, managing the people who are doing the work,” Zuckerberg told employees in January.

Meanwhile, the company has plans to launch a new Quest 3 headset later this year, as well as planning to launch three new augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) hardware devices in the next four years. Zuckerberg has promised a “neural interface” smartwatch and a pair of AR glasses by 2027.

Additionally, Zuckerberg has transferred thousands of employees into the Reality Labs division, the AR and VR-focused team at Meta.

But consumer demand is simply not there. Most visitors to Meta’s flagship metaverse product, dubbed Horizon Worlds, don’t return after the first month. With less than 200,000 active members, the company’s main VR offering is capturing a fraction of Facebook’s approximately 3 billion users.

Zuckerburg called the creation of an immersive metaverse his “holy grail” on Joe Rogan’s podcast last year. As his company flounders, he might want to rethink that particular crusade.

A non-exhaustive list of layoffs across the tech industry in 2023 so far:

January 4, 2023: Salesforce, the business software company, announces plans to axe 8,000 employees, or roughly 10% of its global workforce.

January 4, 2023: Amazon anticipates job cuts for 18,000 employees, the largest round of layoffs in the company’s history.

January 18, 2023: Microsoft announces it’ll cut 10,000 jobs by the end of March.

January 23, 2023: Spotify announces job cuts for 600 employees or 6% of its workforce.

January 31, 2023: Paypal announces layoffs affecting 200 employees or 7% of its workforce.

February 2, 2023: Pinterest lays off 150 peopleless than 5% of its total workforce.

February 6, 2023: Dell lays off 5% of its total workforce, impacting over 6,500 employees.

February 7, 2023: Zoom–the popular video-conferencing app–announces it will cut 15% of its staff, or roughly 1,300 employees.

February 9, 2023: Yahoo announces it will cut 20% of its staff, affecting 1,600 employees.

February 26, 2023: Twitter announces another round of layoffs, cutting about 200 employees.

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Greg Aftayev is a Journalist at Flaunt Weekly Covering Tech News.

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