CEO Mark Zuckerberg cautioned staff on Thursday to prepare for a severe economic slump as he announced that Facebook-owned Meta Platforms Inc had reduced plans to hire engineers by at least 30% this year.
According to Zuckerberg, Meta has lowered its goal for hiring employees in 2022 from an earlier ambition to hire roughly 10,000 new engineers to somewhere between 6,000 and 7,000.
Although precise numbers have not yet been disclosed, Meta confirmed recruiting pauses in general last month.
He said that in addition to employing less, the business was also “turning up the heat” on performance management to weed out employees who couldn’t reach more challenging objectives and keeping some positions open in response to attrition.
As it deals with macroeconomic challenges and data privacy hits to its advertisements business, the social media and technology corporation is preparing for a leaner second half of the year, according to an internal letter obtained by Reuters on Thursday.
Chief Product Officer Chris Cox stated in the memo posted on the firm’s internal discussion forum Workplace before the Q&A that the company must “prioritize more ruthlessly” and “run leaner, meaner, better-executing teams.”
The guidance is the most recent hazy forecast from Meta management, who have already taken steps to reduce costs across a large portion of the company this year in response to sluggish ad sales and user growth.
Despite the fact that Meta’s stock price has fallen more dramatically than that of its rivals Apple and Google, all tech companies have reduced their goals in preparation for a potential U.S. recession.
After Meta revealed that daily active users on its flagship Facebook app had decreased for the first time in a quarter, the largest social media company in the world saw its market value drop by roughly half this year.
Its drive toward austerity coincides with two significant strategic pivots, one intended to reshape its social media offerings around “discovery” to counter competition from the short-form video app TikTok and the other a pricey long-term wager on augmented and virtual reality technology.
By the end of the year, according to Cox’s memo, Meta will need to have five times as many graphic processing units (GPUs) as before to support the “discovery” push, which calls for more processing power so that artificial intelligence can surface popular posts from Facebook and Instagram in users’ feeds.
Reels, a short video app similar to TikTok from Meta, is gaining popularity swiftly, according to Cox, who said that both domestically and internationally, users are spending twice as much time on Reels each year. According to him, Facebook was responsible for about 80% of the rise since March.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated to investors in April that Reels was “a fundamental part of the discovery engine strategy” but at the time referred to the change to short videos as a “near-term headwind” that would eventually improve income as advertisers grew accustomed to the format.
The latter, he argued, may “mitigate signal loss” brought on by Apple-led privacy reforms. In addition, Cox claimed that Meta also saw opportunities for revenue growth in commercial messaging and in-app shopping features.
The successful release of the business’s mixed-reality headgear, code-named “Cambria,” in the second half of the year, he claimed, was the hardware division’s “laser-focused” goal.