Meta hunts for key talent amid looming job cuts

Admire Moyo
By Admire Moyo, ITWeb's news editor.
Johannesburg, 11 Nov 2022

Facebook parent company Meta’s job postings jumped 9% in October, despite the impending massive job cuts announced by the social media doyen.

This is according to market analyst firm GlobalData’s Job Analytics Database, which tracks daily job postings for companies globally.

This week, Meta announced it is laying off 11 000 employees, about 13% of its workforce, as the company faces declining revenues.

In a letter to employees on Wednesday, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg says: “Today I’m sharing some of the most difficult changes we’ve made in Meta’s history.

“I’ve decided to reduce the size of our team by about 13% and let more than 11 000 of our talented employees go. We are also taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1.”

Job cuts at Meta come as fellow social media company Twitter let go of almost half of its employees after billionaire Elon Musk took over the firm in a $44 billion deal.

“In an effort to place Twitter on a heathy path, we will go through the difficult process of reducing our global workforce,” Twitter told its employees.

Meta’s shares recently declined by 18% in after-hours trading, after the company recorded a second quarter revenue contraction, as investors expressed concerns over its exorbitant metaverse costs.

In the social media group’s latest quarterly earnings, Meta announced a disappointing outlook, noting it expects lower revenues in the fourth quarter of 2022, and it plans to pump significant investments into its metaverse strategy next year.

The announcement saw Meta stock sink by $67 billion in extended trade, with the company having already lost more than half a trillion dollars in value this year.

Despite its comments around layoffs, data shows Meta has increased its hiring in October.

GlobalData’s Job Analytics Database reveals Meta’s job postings increased from 775 posted jobs in September, to 841 in October.

According to the market analyst firm, these positions included machine learning, data science and iOS/Android-related roles.

“While Meta’s job postings were up by 9% globally, its US positions increased by 29%, from 637 in September, to 821 in October,” says Sherla Sriprada, business fundamentals analyst at GlobalData.

Rachel Foster Jones, thematic intelligence analyst at GlobalData, adds: “Excited by its future potential, Meta has plunged all of its resources into the metaverse. These layoffs finally signal Zuckerberg’s recognition that this impulsiveness wasn’t the best course of action.

“Meta appears to be pooling its resources into key growth areas to address its real problems – ad signal loss and competition. Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning roles, for example, are crucial to developing its AI-discovery engine – a tool that will deliver more personalised ads while capturing less data. This tool will tackle Apple’s recent privacy changes.”