Big tech firms Google and Amazon recently announced reductions to their workforces, initiating substantial layoffs across various divisions.
Google’s decision is part of an effort to streamline operations and cut costs so it can focus particularly on advancements in artificial intelligence.
Google targeted multiple segments, including its core engineering division, Google Assistant (voice-operated virtual assistant), and the hardware division responsible for Pixel phones, Fitbit watches, and Nest thermostats.
Several hundred employees from the core engineering organization received notices of role elimination, leading to a loss of corporate access.
Sundar Pichai, Google’s CEO, has been driving a focused approach since July 2022, aiming to reduce expenses amid challenging global economic conditions.
The company previously underwent a significant workforce reduction of 6% (12,000 employees) in January 2023.
The Alphabet Workers Union, representing over 1,400 workers at Alphabet, criticized the layoffs as “needless,” highlighting the contradiction between ongoing workforce reductions and the company’s substantial profits.
Amazon announced the company is laying off hundreds of employees from its studio division and subsidiary, Twitch.
Twitch, the popular video streaming platform, is set to reduce its workforce by over 500 roles, constituting 35% of its employees, according to an official blog post.
Simultaneously, Prime Video and Amazon MGM Studios will also witness significant job eliminations, as communicated through an internal email.
Since late 2022, Amazon has undertaken substantial layoffs, totaling 27,000 workers, aimed at recovering from overexpansion during the pandemic.
These moves by both Google and Amazon reflect a broader industry trend, with tech companies implementing extensive layoffs in response to economic challenges and shifts in consumer habits post-pandemic.