This Phase Of Layoffs Is Small But Mighty
Despite it being the second week in a row where layoffs amounted to less than a thousand, some of these companies have made significant cuts to their workforce.
I’ve mentioned in the past that some companies have managed to stave off layoffs since the beginning of this economic downturn. ZipRecruiter is a good example of that. The hiring platform laid off 20% of their workforce this week, which amounts to a “mass layoff” by company standards despite it affecting 270 employees.
Plenty of companies have been holding out on layoffs, but it looks like the less than favorable economic situation is beating them out. ZipRecruiter is one of those straggler companies we’re going to see more of as the tech industry continues to ride out the rising interest rates and slow public markets.
Also on that list is Vendr, which reportedly laid off 25% of its staff in June. Laying off 100 people doesn’t compare to some of the huge, thousand-person layoffs we’ve seen from big tech companies, but those are the startups that will dominate our layoffs data in the coming months.
— Keerthi Vedantam
Latest tech layoffs
New additions this week:
Tech Layoffs: US Companies That Cut Jobs In 2022 and 2023
By the numbers
Week ended June 2, 2023: 780 U.S. tech sector employees were laid off, per a Crunchbase News tally.
In 2023: More than 147,004 workers in U.S.-based tech companies (or tech companies with a large U.S. workforce) have been laid off in mass job cuts, according to a Crunchbase News tally.
In 2022: More than 93,000 jobs were slashed from public and private tech companies in the U.S.
Companies with the biggest workforce reductions so far in 2023
Amazon [16,000 roles]
Alphabet [12,000 roles]
Microsoft [10,158 roles]
Meta [10,000 roles]
Ericsson [8,500 roles]
This tracker includes layoffs conducted by U.S.-based companies or those with a strong U.S. presence and is updated at least weekly. We’ve included both startups and publicly traded, tech-heavy companies. We’ve also included companies based elsewhere that have a sizable team in the United States, such as Klarna, even when it’s unclear how much of the U.S. workforce has been affected by layoffs.
Layoff and workforce figures are best estimates based on reporting. We source the layoffs from media reports, our own reporting, social media posts and layoffs.fyi, a crowdsourced database of tech layoffs.
We recently updated our layoffs tracker to reflect the most recent round of layoffs each company has conducted. This allows us to quickly and more accurately track layoff trends, which is why you might notice some changes in our most recent numbers.
If an employee headcount cannot be confirmed to our standards, we note it as “unclear.”
Correction: We have updated the article to reflect the correct number of jobs cut in 2022.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a layoff?
A layoff can be either a permanent termination of someone’s employment — usually for cost-saving reasons — or a temporary one because there’s not enough work to justify a full workforce. Tech company layoffs generally fall into the permanent category.
A mass layoff is when a significant number of a company’s employees are cut in a short period of time, often as a result of economic conditions.
Why are tech companies doing layoffs?
Tech layoffs increased throughout 2022 and 2023. Companies have given various reasons for conducting layoffs.
Some companies — especially those in the e-commerce sector — nearly doubled their employee headcount to meet consumer demand during the COVID-19 pandemic’s stay-at-home mandates, and now find that they are overstaffed for the current economic climate.
Large tech employers such as Salesforce and Google parent Alphabet have noted that the recent layoffs follow several years of rapid hiring fueled by fast growth — between 2019 and 2022, some companies nearly doubled their employee headcount. Some large tech companies that have done layoffs have also cited a decline in their stock price, slowing sales and fears of a recession as reasons for downsizing.
What are the biggest tech layoffs of 2023?
Amazon layoffs lead the 2023 numbers with 16,000 roles cut as of mid-May.
Layoffs at Alphabet, the parent company of Google, total about 12,000. Microsoft’s layoffs total about 10,000 workers, as do Facebook parent Meta’s layoffs. Together with Salesforce, these tech companies conducted the largest layoffs of the past two years, totaling tens of thousands of roles.
While those numbers are alarming, as of early April 2023 the combined layoffs at these companies represent only 8% of the number of new hires they made during the pandemic.
Many other venture-backed tech startups have also done layoffs, pointing to a slowdown in venture capital funding and falling startup valuations as factors in their decisions to conduct layoffs.
Are more tech layoffs coming?
What are signs that a company is planning layoffs?
Signs that may indicate a company is more likely to conduct layoffs include:
- A hiring, payroll or promotion freeze: Payroll is the most significant cost for most technology companies and often the first place company leaders will attempt to contain costs. Companies may do this by pausing hiring for all but the most mission-critical roles and by freezing promotions and pay raises for existing employees.
- Red flags in the company’s financial performance: A company that’s struggling with declining revenue or profit — or simply not growing at the rate anticipated — is more likely to conduct layoffs and other cost-cutting measures. Unfortunately, employees at many private startups are not privy to detailed financial information about their employers.
- Restructuring teams or departments: Companies may merge or consolidate teams in an attempt to streamline operations and cut costs. The redundancies that result from these restructuring moves often lead to job cuts. Companies may also increase their reliance on outsourced teams or contractors.
- Increased internal communication: Frequent communication to employees from management about the company’s financial challenges, workforce optimization, the need to reduce expenses, or the need for higher productivity might indicate that layoffs are under consideration. Venture-backed startups try to manage their cash runway — the amount of time they can continue operating at their current cash burn rate without fresh capital — and may also warn employees about the need to reduce cash burn.
- Unexpected changes in company policy: A company that suddenly mandates that employees who have worked remotely return to a physical office may be contemplating layoffs. Often, such policies are used as rationale to shed workers who don’t comply with the new mandates. Similarly, unexpected organizational assessments or audits of employee performance outside of regularly scheduled business reviews may be precursors to layoffs.
- Decreased workload or project cancellations: Other signs that a company is experiencing financial difficulties that could lead to layoffs include a noticeable reduction in workload for employees or major projects that are canceled or postponed.
- Other cost-cutting measures: Companies frequently pause or cancel perks and benefits including employee travel, catered meals or education or wellness stipends ahead of larger cost-cutting measures such as layoffs.
When will layoffs stop?
How many recent tech layoffs have there been?
More than 93,000 U.S. tech employees were laid off in 2022. As of mid-May 2023, around 150,000 U.S. tech employees have lost their jobs this year alone.
Is selling the company a good option to avoid layoffs?
What jobs are being cut in tech layoffs?
Tech layoffs have hit across departments at many companies.
Many layoffs from the large tech giants were software engineers. Startups tend to be more likely to retain engineers in favor of doing layoffs in their talent and recruiting, marketing and other departments.
Google cut roles in its sales, recruiting, product and engineering teams. Amazon layoffs included jobs in its AWS cloud unit, at its social video platform Twitch, and in its advertising department. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company’s recruiting department would be the first to see job cuts.
Where can I read recent tech layoff news?
Follow all of our tech layoffs news here and track which companies are cutting jobs with the layoffs tracker above.
Where can I see layoffs in the last 24 hours?
While not daily, this Crunchbase Tech Layoffs Tracker is updated weekly, if not more frequently, with the latest job cuts at U.S. tech employers.
Which companies are hiring for open tech jobs?
Many tech companies continue to hire for open roles, despite layoffs in the sector. Find out more about Crunchbase’s Actively Hiring filter and how you can find companies with multiple open roles.
Crunchbase News also highlights recently funded startups that are actively hiring in our weekly Who’s Hiring feature. You can find all of our job market-related news here.
Can I cite the Crunchbase Tech Layoffs Tracker?
How can I let Crunchbase News know about a missing tech layoff for this tracker?
Our hope is that this database will be as comprehensive as possible, so if we’ve missed any companies or if your company goes through layoffs, please let us know by filling out this form.
This layoff tracker is updated at least weekly, if not more frequently.