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Meta Said to Be Preparing for Mass Layoffs

The job cuts could be the Facebook parent's first large-scale reduction in company history.

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Sarah Tew/CNET

Meta is planning to begin mass layoffs this week, reducing its workforce by several thousand employees, the Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. An announcement could come as soon as Wednesday, the Journal reported, citing unidentified sources familiar with the company's plans.

The layoffs, the first large-scale workforce reduction in the company's 18-year history, could be the largest round in a recent series of job cuts in the tech industry, the Journal reported. The Facebook parent was reportedly looking in September to slash its costs by at least 10% within the next few months.

The efforts to cut costs show how companies, which make money through selling ads, are looking to rein in spending after the tech industry's rapid growth during the pandemic. The social networking giant currently employs about 87,000 people.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg signaled during the company's third-quarter earnings call that job cuts could be imminent.

"In 2023, we're going to focus our investments on a small number of high priority growth areas," Zuckerberg said. "So that means some teams will grow meaningfully, but most other teams will stay flat or shrink over the next year

"In aggregate, we expect to end 2023 as either roughly the same size, or even a slightly smaller organization than we are today," he said.

Meta's stock is down 73% since the beginning of the year.

Other tech companies have resorted to layoffs. Last week, Twitter initiated layoffs that may have affected as much as half the company's 3,700 workers. Snap, the parent company of disappearing-message app Snapchat, said in August that it's cutting about 20% of its staff.

A Facebook representative declined to comment.