In what had already been a difficult week for those working in the computer business, Friday brought even more misery. CEO Sundar Pichai made the announcement this morning that the business will be cutting off 12,000 people, or around 6% of its overall workforce. On Wednesday, both Microsoft and Amazon announced layoffs totaling in the tens of thousands of people.
We’ve had times of extraordinary growth over the last two years,” Pichai stated. We staffed up to support and sustain that expansion with expectations of a very different economic climate than the one we actually experienced. He then bragged about Google’s superiority in artificial intelligence (AI), the trendiest topic in technology in the year 2023.
Pay for 60 days, “a severance payout beginning at 16 weeks salary plus two weeks for every subsequent year at Google,” six months of healthcare and career/immigration help, and reimbursement for bonuses and vacation time accrued in 2022 are all part of the benefits package for affected U.S. workers. All non-American workers will be handled “in accordance with local norms.”
Microsoft’s actions from earlier in the week, both the number of layoffs and the memo’s tone (which pays tribute to artificial intelligence), are very similar. The PC sector is in the middle of its worst slump ever, and computer stocks have been being pummelling as a result of the recession. This week, major layoffs occurred at Facebook (Meta), Twitter (Twitter), Cisco, and other companies; Amazon, Google, and Microsoft alone were responsible for letting go of 40,000 employees.
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