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Big Tech Prioritize Cost Control and AI, Scaling Back Workforce Despite Business Growth

Anusuya Lahiri
November 30, 2023

The tech industry is adopting a new approach of doing more with less, having recovered from a recent downturn. 

Significant companies like Amazon.Com Inc (NASDAQ: AMZN), Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGLGoogleMicrosoft Corp (NASDAQ: MSFT), and Meta Platforms Inc (NASDAQ: META) are making more minor job cuts, focusing on cost control and efficiency, even as their businesses and stock prices rebound. 

This marks a shift from their rapid growth strategy to emphasizing shareholder value and healthy margins, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Amazon, for instance, has made targeted cuts in its Alexa division and other areas to focus on generative AI. At the same time, Meta recently laid off a small number of employees despite posting its most considerable quarterly revenue in over a decade. 

Alphabet's Google has also eliminated jobs in various departments, including Waymo, reallocating resources to prioritize projects like AI.

These tech giants are moving away from the culture of unrestricted spending, with department heads now receiving quarterly budgets. 

The industry is also seeing an increased demand for part-time or project-based roles, with AI being used to inform hiring decisions.

 Startups find it harder to attract investors with a growth-at-all-costs approach, leading to a more disciplined and efficient operational model in the tech sector.

In 2023, Google announced the elimination of 12,000 jobs, impacting around 6% of its full-time workforce.

 Since November 2022, Meta has said it would lay off 21,000 employees, or nearly a quarter of its workforce. 

In January, Microsoft confirmed reducing its headcount by roughly 10,000 employees, equating to 4% - 5% of the total headcount. Amazon initiated a record layoff in 2023, when it eliminated 27,000 roles. 

The sector has laid off 141,516 employees in the first half of the year compared with about 6,000 a year ago, according to employment firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

Disclaimer: This content was partially produced with the help of AI tools and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.

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