E-commerce giant Amazon and business software maker Salesforce are the latest US technology companies to announce major job cuts as they prune payrolls that rapidly expanded during the pandemic lockdown.
Amazon said Wednesday that it will be cutting about 18,000 positions. It’s the largest set of layoffs in the Seattle-based company’s history, although just a fraction of its 1.5 million global workforce.
“Amazon has weathered uncertain and difficult economies in the past, and we will continue to do so,” CEO Andy Jassy said in a note to employees that the company made public. “These changes will help us pursue our long-term opportunities with a stronger cost structure.”
The layoffs will mostly impact the company’s brick-and-mortar stores, which include Amazon Fresh and Amazon Go, and its PXT organizations, which handle human resources and other functions.
Why the layoffs are being made
The layoffs are being made on the heels of a shake-up in Salesforce’s top ranks. Benioff’s hand-picked co-CEO Bret Taylor, who also was Twitter’s chairman at the time of its tortuous $44 billion sale to billionaire Elon Musk, left Salesforce. Then, Slack co-founder Stewart Butterfield left. Salesforce bought Slack two years ago for nearly USD 28 billion.
Citing “the uncertain economy” and the fact that the online retail giant had “hired rapidly” during the pandemic, Amazon announced that it will cut more than 18,000 jobs from its workforce. The cuts amount to around 6% of the firm’s roughly 300,000-strong corporate workforce.
He said the layoffs will mostly impact the company’s brick-and-mortar stores, which include Amazon Fresh and Amazon Go, and its PXT organizations, which handle human resources and other functions.
In November, Jassy told staff that layoffs were coming due to the economic landscape and the company’s rapid hiring in the last several years. Wednesday’s announcement included earlier job cuts that had not been numbered. The company had also offered voluntary buyouts and has been cutting costs in other areas of its sprawling business.