Meta Wednesday announced it will let go of more than 11,000 employees or 13 per cent of its total workforce, in one of the biggest layoffs in the US this year. In a blog post posted on the company’s official newsroom, Meta CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said, “I want to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here. I know this is tough for everyone, and I’m especially sorry to those impacted.”
He also said that the company will pay 16 weeks of base pay plus two additional weeks for every year of service with no cap to all employees who are impacted. The company will also provide “dedicated immigration specialists” to those who are working for Meta on a visa and will likely be impacted by the loss in employment.
The Meta CEO blamed the rapid acceleration that tech companies had seen post-Covid that did not hold up as predicted and instead led to a decline in revenue. “Many people predicted this would be a permanent acceleration that would continue even after the pandemic ended. I did too, so I made the decision to significantly increase our investments. Unfortunately, this did not play out the way I expected,” he wrote.
“I believe we are deeply underestimated as a company today. Billions of people use our services to connect, and our communities keep growing. Our core business is among the most profitable ever built with huge potential ahead,” Zuckerberg wrote. “I’m confident that if we work efficiently, we’ll come out of this downturn stronger and more resilient than ever,” he added. Here’s a look at the key points from his statement.
What will sacked employees get?
The blog post mentions base pay, health insurance benefits as well as an offer of immigration support for those who are in the US on a work visa. Here’s what the post says:
16 weeks of Severance Pay: Meta will pay 16 weeks of base pay plus two additional weeks for every year of service, with no cap. It will also pay for all Paid Time Off (PTO) which is remaining for employees. All employees impacted will receive their dues by November 15, 2022 vesting.
Health insurance: Meta will cover the cost of healthcare for people and their families for six months.
The company also plans to provide three months of career support with an external vendor, including early access to unpublished job leads.
For those in the US on a job visa, Zuckerberg wrote, “I know this is especially difficult if you’re here on a visa. There’s a notice period before termination and some visa grace periods, which means everyone will have time to make plans and work through their immigration status. We have dedicated immigration specialists to help guide you based on what you and your family need.”
For employees outside the US, Meta will offer similar support and it will have a separate process taking into account local employment laws.
Which teams are impacted and how will employees get to know?
“Everyone will get an email soon letting you know what this layoff means for you. After that, every affected employee will have the opportunity to speak with someone to get their questions answered and join information sessions,” Zuckerberg wrote.
Meta will be removing access to most systems for people who are laid off “given the amount of access to sensitive information.” But it will keep “email addresses active throughout the day so everyone can say farewell,” according to the post.
According to the post, the reductions will impact every department in organisation across Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, Messenger and its Reality Labs. However, “some teams will be affected more than others,” notes the post. Meta plans to hire fewer people next year and will restructure its “business teams more substantially.”
It also plans other cost-cutting measures such as “reducing real estate footprint,” and “transitioning to desk sharing for people who already spend most of their time outside the office.” More such changes will roll out in the coming months.