Technology

January tech layoffs top December’s total in less than a week

The big picture: We are less than a week into the new year and the tech sector is already feeling the squeeze. According to Layoffs Tracker, a whopping 29,686 tech employees across 27 companies have been let go globally so far this month. For comparison, 17,074 tech workers lost their jobs in December 2022. Put another way, there have been nearly 74 percent more job cuts in the first several days of 2023 compared to all of last month.

Amazon, which is responsible for more than half of the cuts, confirmed earlier this week that it is parting ways with 18,000 employees after rapidly hiring over the last several years to meet needs during the pandemic. CEO Andy Jassy said multiple teams will be impacted, although the majority of role eliminations will be in Amazon Stores and PXT organizations.

San Francisco-based cloud software company Salesforce, meanwhile, is shedding 8,000 employees, or about 10 percent of its workforce.

Multiple crypto companies have also announced plans to let employees go. Genesis is saying goodbye to 30 percent of its workforce while Silvergate is parting ways with 40 percent of its staff. Crypto payments company Wyre went out of business completely. Ecommerce sites Everlane and Stitch Fix have trimmed 17 percent and 20 percent of their workforces, respectively, in recent days.

Layoffs Tracker data reveals that job cuts ramped up starting in May 2022 and have not really slowed down much since. November was a particularly rough month with more than 71,000 tech layoffs globally. Meta, Amazon, HP, Twitter and Cisco led the way with sizable scalebacks.

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Amazon’s analysis of the situation likely holds true for many other major tech companies that went overboard with hiring during the pandemic to meet unprecedented demand for their services and / or products. Now that we have returned to a mostly normal way of life and the surge in online activity is subsiding, some businesses no longer need the extra help and are forced to cut staff.

Image credit: Tim Gouw

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