January 20, 2023 | Eul Basa

Microsoft, Amazon To Lay Off Thousands Due To Possible Recession

The first month of 2023 has been rocky for the tech industry to say the least, and unfortunately, it seems that the situation is not getting any better. Many corporations are in the midst of conducting mass layoffs, with tech giants such as Microsoft and Amazon facing tough decisions ahead.

Microsoft has announced that it plans to lay off as much as 5% of its workforce, with chief executive Satya Nadella sharing with Reuters that the company is exercising caution during these tough economic times. "Some parts of the world are in a recession and other parts are anticipating one," he said. Microsoft had 221,000 full-time employees by the end of June 2022, which was a 22% increase in staff from the year before. Now, such growth will be counteracted by a substantial drop in staffing that is to be expected this year.

Amazon continues to hold the top spot for the most lay-offs yet at 18,000. Doug Herrington, the chief of retail, wrote in a memo this week explaining that expansions during the Covid era were one of the main reasons for the current setbacks.


“During Covid, our first priority was scaling to meet the needs of our customers while ensuring the safety of our employees. I’m incredibly proud of this team’s work during this period,” he said. “Although other companies might have balked at the short-term economics, we prioritized investing for customers and employees during these unprecedented times.”

So far this year, both companies have let go of a combined 28,000 employees, and that number is still expected to grow. Given the current trend, it's possible that such a number could surpass that seen in November 2022, when the tech industry saw upwards of 50,000 layoffs due to the ongoing economic downturn. 

According to various reports, Microsoft, Amazon, and their contemporaries have resorted to layoffs due to unstable macroeconomic conditions and the possibility of a future recession.


Sources: 1, 2, 3

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