January 31, 2023

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, has announced a massive job cut. The technology giant is laying off more than 11,000 employees. That’s about 13% of the company’s total global workforce. The firm also announced a hiring freeze through Q1 next year with a small number of exceptions.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg shared the news of this mass layoff and extended hiring freeze in a blog post earlier today. He said that the company reached this unfortunate situation of having to let go of thousands of employees due to his mistake. Mark was referring to mass hiring during the pandemic times when everything moved online. Meta significantly increased its workforce over the past two years expecting a permanent surge in online commerce. But that didn’t happen.

“Not only has online commerce returned to prior trends, but the macroeconomic downturn, increased competition, and ads signal loss have caused our revenue to be much lower than I’d expected,” Mark said in the blog post. “I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that”. Going forward, the company plans to become more capital-efficient, prioritizing growth for certain products over others. Meta is also reducing its expenses and this mass layoff is one way to go about it. It’s shrinking its real estate footprint as well.

Employees that are losing their jobs at Meta will immediately lose access to the company’s systems. But, the firm will keep their email addresses active throughout the day of termination to allow them to say farewell to their colleagues and friends at work. This layoff will affect some teams more than others. And, when recruiting resumes next year, it will be disproportionately affected too as the company restructures its business teams.

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Meta employees losing their job will get more than 16 weeks of base pay

Today’s announcement from the Meta CEO also details the severance US-based outgoing employees will get. The company will pay them 16 weeks of base pay and two additional weeks of base pay for every year of service, with no cap on that. It will also pay for all remaining PTO time and offer the November 15, 2022 vesting to everyone impacted.

Additionally, Meta will cover the cost of healthcare for all laid-off employees and their families for six months. It will also offer assistance to them in finding new jobs. Those staying in the US on a visa will get some visa grace periods to make the necessary adjustments. The company will announce its support for laid-off employees in other countries. The process may be different, but the severance will be similar, Mark assures. Meta will take into account local employment laws in respective countries.