Today, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Meta will be firing more than 11,000 employees, which is about 13% of its total strength. He added that Meta is taking a number of additional steps to become a "leaner and more efficient" company. Meta will also be cutting discretionary spending and extending hiring freeze through Q1.
In a company wide statement, Mark Zuckerberg said:
This is a sad moment, and there’s no way around that. To those who are leaving, I want to thank you again for everything you’ve put into this place. We would not be where we are today without your hard work, and I’m grateful for your contributions.
The CEO says that he wants to take accountability for how Meta found itself in this position. He made the decision to increase Meta's investments significantly as there was a large revenue growth during the pandemic. Many people, including Zuckerberg, predicted that this would be a permanent acceleration.
"Unfortunately, this did not play out the way I expected", he wrote. E-commerce returned to pre-pandemic trends while various reasons such as the Russian invasion of Ukraine and continued inflation around the globe has resulted in an economic turmoil. "I got this wrong, and I take responsibility for that", Zuckerberg added.
Employees that are affected will soon get an email about the layoffs. In the United States, Meta will provide employees with a severance pay worth 16 weeks of their base plus two additional weeks for every year of service, with no cap.
The company will also pay for all the remaining PTO time. Employees will receive their November 15, 2022 RSU vesting, health insurance including families for six months, as well as three months of career support with an external vendor which will include early access to unpublished jobs. Meta will also provide specialized immigration support for employees that are on visa.
The company will provide similar support to employees outside the US after taking the local employment laws into account.
Meta says that it has already removed access to most Meta systems for people leaving today, given the amount of access to sensitive information. However, email addresses for affected employees will be active throughout the day so that everyone can bid farewell.
The company had previously hinted that it will layoff thousands of employees. Mark Zuckerberg also acknowledged Meta's plans for downsizing the company during its earnings call.
Meta will keep a close look at business performance, operational efficiency and other macroconomic factors to determine when and whether the company shall resume hiring. This will provide the company the ability to control its cost structure in the event of a continued economic downturn like this.