Amazon.com Inc. has announced a plan to reduce its workforce by 9,000 employees, following other major technology companies in implementing a second wave of layoffs amid concerns of an impending economic downturn. The company joins other tech industry leaders such as Microsoft Corp, Salesforce Inc, Alphabet, and Meta Platforms in reducing their headcounts by thousands after rapid hiring during the pandemic left them with excess staff.
CEO Andy Jassy revealed in an internal announcement that Amazon Web Services, human resources, advertising, and the Twitch livestreaming service groups would undergo workforce reductions in the upcoming weeks. Jassy said, “Given the uncertain economy in which we reside, and the uncertainty that exists in the near future, we have chosen to be more streamlined in our costs and headcount.”
Andy Jassy, Amazon’s CEO, referenced Amazon’s staggered layoff approach in the internal announcement: “Some may ask why we didn’t announce these role reductions with the ones we announced a couple months ago. The short answer is that not all of the teams were done with their analyses in the late fall; and rather than rush through these assessments without the appropriate diligence, we chose to share these decisions as we’ve made them so people had the information as soon as possible,” Jassy wrote.
He also stated that the final decision of which roles are being axed hasn’t yet been made; it’s slated to be completed by mid-late April.
“The same is true for this note as the impacted teams are not yet finished making final decisions on precisely which roles will be impacted. Once those decisions have been made (our goal is to have this complete by mid to late April), we will communicate with the impacted employees (or where applicable in Europe, with employee representative bodies). We will, of course, support those we have to let go, and will provide packages that include a separation payment, transitional health insurance benefits, and external job placement support.”
According to a blog post by Twitch’s incoming CEO, the subsidiary will see a reduction of approximately 400 employees. The e-commerce giant has been mostly laying off corporate staff after a pandemic-related hiring surge left Amazon with too many people. The company recently concluded a round of layoffs that affected approximately 18,000 workers, with the brunt of the cuts targeting the recruiting and human resources teams, the expansive retail division, and the devices teams.
Several other major tech companies such as Alphabet Inc. (parent company of Google), Microsoft Corp., Dell Technologies Inc., and International Business Machines Corp. have also reduced their workforce. As of early February, over 67,000 jobs have been cut across the industry since the start of the year, according to data gathered by Bloomberg. This trend follows the trend from 2022, where the tech sector announced 97,171 job cuts, marking a 649% increase compared to the previous year, according to consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas Inc.