“It’s a time of great anxiety and uncertainty,” said executive Nick Clegg at a company-wide meeting.
While Mark Zuckerberg had previously announced that there would be another round of layoffs in May, the exact timing of the layoffs was not confirmed to employees until that meeting. The layoffs will impact Meta’s business departments and could affect thousands of employees.
A spokesperson for Meta declined to comment.
“The third wave is going to happen next week. That affects everybody in the biz teams, including in my orgs,” said Meta president of global affairs Nick Clegg during the company-wide meeting, which Vox obtained a recording of. “It’s just a time of great anxiety and uncertainty. … I wish I could have some easy way of providing solace or comfort. It is uncertain. And actually it’s really increased my admiration for the way that everyone — notwithstanding that uncertainty — you’re just displaying such resilience and professionalism.”
Clegg added that the layoffs will follow a similar process to April’s cuts, in which 4,000 roles were eliminated from Meta’s tech departments. The afternoon before the layoffs happen, Meta’s head of people will post a note to employees with details about when the layoff process will begin and which teams will be affected. Employees impacted by the layoffs will then be notified, followed by non-impacted employees. The company will ask all employees “whose job allows” to work from home, Clegg said.
While company executives did not confirm the exact scope of this round, Zuckerberg said in March that the company planned to eliminate 10,000 positions by the end of May, after previously cutting 11,000 in November. Last month, Meta cut around 4,000 of those planned 10,000 positions, leaving about 6,000 positions potentially on the chopping block this round. At the end of 2022, Meta, which is the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, had around 86,000 employees.
Meta’s continued layoffs are part of Zuckerberg’s plans for a “year of efficiency” in 2023. The downsizing is one of the starkest examples of how many major tech companies like Meta, due to overhiring during the pandemic paired with major shifts in the tech industry at large, are tightening their belts after nearly two decades of uninterrupted growth. Silicon Valley as a whole has been going through an economic downturn that has drastically changed what was once considered the tech industry’s free-spending work culture. While Wall Street has responded positively to Meta’s cuts, the layoffs have taken a serious toll on company morale. One top question asked during the employee Q&A was if there will be any more layoffs in the future.
“We don’t have anything planned,” Meta CTO Andrew “Boz” Bosworth said. “The plan is to continue as we have done for a long time as a company and go forth and build and grow.” But the executive also added, “I can’t tell you if the revenue tanks and the economy tanks or costs go up for some reason or some kind of thing happens. You know, I can’t know the future.”