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Meta preparing to lay off thousands more staff tomorrow, months after letting go of 11,000


Meta preparing to lay off thousands more staff tomorrow, months after letting go of 11,000

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram, will launch a new round of redundancies this Wednesday.

The social network behemoth is reportedly preparing to make thousands of cuts to its policy, marketing and communications teams in particular, only months after laying off 11,000 staff in November.

Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has dubbed 2023 a ‘year of efficiency’ as the company looks to ‘cut projects that aren’t performing or may no longer be as crucial’. 

This also comes amid a period of change at the top, with sales vice president for the Americas, Nada Stirratt, apparently leaving the post on Monday. Chief Business Officer Marne Levine also stepped down last month.

One senior staffer told the Financial Times: ‘We have a real dilemma on our hands in terms of talent when there’s so much chaos.’

Mark Zuckerberg is the founder of Facebook and Meta, which also owns Instagram and WhatsApp

Meta's main headquarters in Menlo Park, California

Meta’s main headquarters in Menlo Park, California 

The company has struggled with growth over the last 12 months, in part due to rising competition from TikTok and the withdrawal of budget from stretched advertisers.

Competition saw Facebook’s app lose users for the first quarter in its lifetime a year ago, further deterring advertisers.

Founder, chairman and CEO of Meta, Mark Zuckerberg, has dubbed 2023 a ‘year of efficiency’ as the company looks to cut back on costs.

He wrote in a post on Facebook last month: ‘2022 was a challenging year, but I think we ended it having made good progress on our main priorities and setting ourselves up to deliver better results this year as long as we keep pushing on efficiency…

‘We closed last year with some difficult layoffs and restructuring some teams. When we did this, I said clearly that this was the beginning of our focus on efficiency and not the end… 

‘Next, we’re working on flattening our org structure and removing some layers of middle management to make decisions faster, as well as deploying AI tools to help our engineers be more productive. 

‘As part of this, we’re going to be more proactive about cutting projects that aren’t performing or may no longer be as crucial, but my main focus is on increasing the efficiency of how we execute our top priorities.’

A company spokesperson told TechCrunch that the company will instead move towards products like Meta Pay and features that allow creators to earn money directly on Meta platforms.

While Meta’s fourth-quarter results boosted shares by 18%, some innovations have proven less successful for the company.

Reality Labs, responsible for virtual and augmented reality features, lost $13.7bn last year and are expected to face lay offs.

The resignation of Chief Business Officer Marne Levine last month will also send ripples through the company.

Levine held multiple leadership roles over a 13-year career at the company before announcing she would leave.

She will stay on until the summer as part of her handover. 

The FT reported that VP of sales for the Americas, Nada Stirratt, also resigned yesterday.

The cuts to staff announced 9 November, totaling 13% of the workforce, come as part of a wider trend of layoffs across the sector.

Also in November 2022, Twitter laid off 3,700 staff – nearly half its workforce – as Elon Musk looked to model the website around a new ‘extremely hardcore’ culture following his $44bn takeover.

He said that he had no choice but to lay off about half the workforce when ‘the company is losing over $4mn a day’.

Marketing and communications functions were hit hard worldwide, with India’s entire marketing division laid off in the first round of cuts.

In January, cloud-based software company Salesforce also announced it would layoff 10 percent of its employees or about 8,000 workers. 

Amrit Sandhar, founder of The Engagement Coach, told MailOnline: ‘When Meta announced the first layoffs in November 2022, advertising income had already slowed down, following worries of a pending recession. 

‘Although earnings were better than expected, it doesn’t hide the fact that Ad revenue fell by $1.4 billion versus the same quarter a year prior. 

‘Meta is facing problems overcoming ad targeting as other tech firms such as Apple develop privacy features. 

‘Whilst it might seem inevitable that marketing and communications professionals may be the first to be laid off, the focus will also likely go to middle management, as Mark Zuckerberg will look to make Meta a leaner organization. 

‘Advertising will be key to Meta’s success but reducing the size of the teams in the face of a challenging economic climate seems inevitable.’

Marne Levine, former CBO at Meta, resigned in February

Nada Stirratt, sales VP for the Americas, was reported to have stepped down Monday

Marne Levine (L) and Nada Stirratt (R) are two senior members of staff reported to have stepped down from their roles in recent months

Meta made 11,000 cuts to its workforce last November as part of a wider trend of tech layoffs

Tech companies have been especially hard hit by tech layoffs after over-hiring during the move online through the pandemic.

Websites with models built on advertising were also more at risk when companies worldwide slashed advertising budgets to weather rising prices and interest rates.

Valuations of early stage tech companies were also inflated through the pandemic, plummeting in 2022 when interest rates rose and funding was pulled, leading to layoffs.

MailOnline approached Meta for comment. 

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