Meta’s expected new round of layoffs have been announced by CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying that the cuts mean reducing the team with another 10 000 and closing around 5 000 additional open roles. A couple of months ago, Meta cut the staff with 11 000 at the same time as Microsoft, Google and other tech companies announced big layoffs to adjust to the economic downturn and too extensive hiring during the pandemic
Zuckerberg said that the new layoffs mean a flatter organisation with fewer management levels and that the time schedule for the layoffs stretches all over the rest of 2023.
“Over the next couple of months, org leaders will announce restructuring plans focused on flattening our orgs, canceling lower priority projects, and reducing our hiring rates.”
The company will further reduce the size of the recruiting team. Restructurings and layoffs in tech groups will be announced in late April followed by layoffs in business groups in late May.
“In a small number of cases, it may take through the end of the year to complete these changes. Our timelines for international teams will also look different, and local leaders will follow up with more details.”
Zuckerberg says other relevant efficiency timelines include to this summer complete analysis from hybrid work year of learning to” further refine our distributed work model. We also aim to have a steady stream of developer productivity enhancements and process improvements throughout the year.”
“For most of our history, we saw rapid revenue growth year after year and had the resources to invest in many new products. But last year was a humbling wake-up call. The world economy changed, competitive pressures grew, and our growth slowed considerably. We scaled back budgets, shrunk our real estate footprint, and made the difficult decision to lay off 13% of our workforce.”
“At this point, I think we should prepare ourselves for the possibility that this new economic reality will continue for many years.”
“I believe that we are working on some of the most transformative technology our industry has ever seen. Our single largest investment is in advancing AI and building it into every one of our products. We have the infrastructure to do this at unprecedented scale and I think the experiences it enables will be amazing.”
“Our leading work building the metaverse and shaping the next generation of computing platforms also remains central to defining the future of social connection. And our apps are growing and continuing to connect almost half of the world’s population in new ways. This work is incredibly important and the stakes are high. The financial plan we’ve set out puts us in position to deliver it.”
“As I’ve talked about efficiency this year, I’ve said that part of our work will involve removing jobs — and that will be in service of both building a leaner, more technical company and improving our business performance to enable our long term vision.
Zuckerberg describes what he means with a better technology company saying that every day Meta builds new ways for people to feel closer.
“This is a fundamental human need that may be more important in today’s complex world than ever. One day we hope to enable every person to feel as strong a sense of connection as you feel when you’re physically with someone you love.”
He also gives “cultural principles” for making Meta an even stronger technology company. A short version:
- Flatter is faster. In our Year of Efficiency, we will make our organization flatter by removing multiple layers of management. As part of this, we will ask many managers to become individual contributors. We still believe managing each person is very important, so in general we don’t want managers to have more than 10 direct reports.
- Leaner is better. Since we reduced our workforce last year, one surprising result is that many things have gone faster. In retrospect, I underestimated the indirect costs of lower priority projects. A leaner org will execute its highest priorities faster. People will be more productive, and their work will be more fun and fulfilling.
- Keep technology the main thing. As part of the Year of Efficiency, we’re focusing on returning to a more optimal ratio of engineers to other roles. Our early analysis of performance data suggests that engineers who either joined Meta in-person and then transferred to remote or remained in-person performed better on average than people who joined remotely. This analysis also shows that engineers earlier in their career perform better on average when they work in-person with teammates at least three days a week. This requires further study, but our hypothesis is that it is still easier to build trust in person and that those relationships help us work more effectively.