(NEW YORK) — Companies across the tech industry have announced layoffs, affecting thousands of workers in the first few weeks of 2023. Company officials have often cited economic uncertainty and fears of a recession in their job-cutting, cost-cutting decisions.
It follows a volatile 2022, which was also marred with layoffs by the thousands across major tech brands.
Alphabet Inc., the parent company of Google, said it will cut roughly 12,000 jobs from its global workforce on Friday, Jan. 20.
The decision will impact approximately 6% of the company’s employees.
“This will mean saying goodbye to some incredibly talented people we worked hard to hire and have loved working with,” said Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai in an email to Google employees on Friday morning.
“I’m deeply sorry for that. The fact that these changes will impact the lives of Googlers weighs heavily on me, and I take full responsibility for the decisions that led us here.”
Pichai told employees the company is “bound to go through difficult economic cycles” and will “reengineer our cost base, and direct our talent and capital to our highest priorities.”
Microsoft said on Jan. 18 it will lay off 10,000 employees this year, affecting nearly 5% of Microsoft’s global workforce.
The layoffs at Microsoft arrive in response to “macroeconomic conditions and changing customer priorities,” the company said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“As we saw customers accelerate their digital spend during the pandemic, we’re now seeing them optimize their digital spend to do more with less,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a memo to employees on Wednesday.
He continued, “We’re also seeing organizations in every industry and geography exercise caution as some parts of the world are in a recession and other parts are anticipating one.”
In early January, Amazon announced plans to eliminate just over 18,000 roles total, including impending layoffs announced in November. The majority of roles being cut are in Amazon Stores and People Experience and Technology Solutions teams, according to an email sent to employees from Amazon CEO Andy Jassy.
Jassy had warned in November that job cuts at the e-commerce giant would continue in early 2023. Amazon employs roughly 1.5 million employees around the globe.
“This year’s review has been more difficult given the uncertain economy and that we’ve hired rapidly over the last several years,” the message read.
It continued, “We typically wait to communicate about these outcomes until we can speak with the people who are directly impacted. However, because one of our teammates leaked this information externally, we decided it was better to share this news earlier so you can hear the details directly from me.”
Coinbase, a cryptocurrency trading platform, announced it will lay off 950 people, in a Jan. 10 statement from CEO Brian Armstrong.
“As we examined our 2023 scenarios, it became clear that we would need to reduce expenses to increase our chances of doing well in every scenario,” Armstrong said in the statement.
“While it is always painful to part ways with our fellow colleagues, there was no way to reduce our expenses significantly enough, without considering changes to headcount.”
Vox Media is also laying off employees, according to the Vox Media Union.
In a statement on Twitter, the union said, “We were informed today that the company is laying off around 7 percent of its workforce, and some of our members have been impacted. We’re furious at the way the company has approached these layoffs, and are currently discussing how to best serve those who just lost their jobs.”
ABC News’ Max Zahn and Jon Haworth contributed to this report.
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