U.S. tech multinational Alphabet may be crumbling under the weight of its own workforce and is considering laying off 12,000 workers. As Reuters reports, citing a company memo it reviewed, the layoffs will affect all of its global operations, but the impact will be felt immediately in the United States.
The retrenchment will represent some 6 percent of the company’s workforce, and CEO Sundar Pichai said he takes full responsibility for the decisions that led the company to its current state. According to the CEO, Alphabet Inc had embarked on a hiring spree to prepare “for a different economic reality than the one we face today.“
The global economy has been remarkably challenged throughout 2022, with the lingering effect of the coronavirus pandemic compounded by the outbreak of a war between the Russia-Ukraine duo. The war lasted over 10 months and its impact on the global supply chain was quite massive.
The general sentiment in the technology sector has affected Alphabet’s stock price and overall business outlook as advertising spending has been significantly reduced by companies across the board. It was the culmination of these economic realities that prompted Alphabet’s decision to lay off some of its staff.
The layoffs will affect all aspects of its business operations, and corporate services, recruiting and engineering teams are affected. Alphabet said the impact of the layoff may be slower in other countries due to local labor laws.
Despite the prospect of layoffs, Sundar Pichai praised the company’s investments in artificial intelligence (AI).
“I am confident of the enormous opportunity ahead of us due to the strength of our mission, the value of our products and services, and our early investments in AI” he said in the note.
Alphabet layoffs a trend among tech giants
The fact that Google’s parent company is laying off employees is not a surprise as other tech giants, including Meta, Amazon and Microsoft, have also followed suit.
Meta began its bold move last year, in November, when it announced it would lay off 11,000 people, or 13 percent of its global workforce at the time. Meta’s move was completed when Amazon said it would lay off 18,000 of its workers in what became clear that the technology sector has been hit beyond the pale.
Microsoft is also planning to cut 10,000 employees, only Apple has yet to announce plans to let some of its workers go.
Laying off tech workers justifies the strain that crypto companies like Coinbase and Gemini faced when they announced their own job cuts earlier in 2022.