Meta’s “Year of Efficiency” begins with some employees not doing work: FT

  • Meta signaled in February that it expects to cut more jobs this year after cutting 11,000 jobs last year.
  • The company has delayed budgeting for some teams as it prepares for the new round of layoffs, according to the FT.
  • This has resulted in some employees doing “zero work” because managers couldn’t plan their schedules.

Meta’s “Year of Efficiency” may begin with an inefficient note.

The tech giant – which laid off 11,000 employees in November and vowed that 2023 would be a “year of efficiency” – is bracing for a new round of layoffs that could wreak havoc on some teams’ productivity, the Financial Times reported on Saturday at Citing two employees familiar with the situation.

In recent weeks there has been some confusion over some budgets – which would normally be finalized by the end of the year – and future headcount. As a result, projects and decisions that typically take days to sign off take up to a month, the Meta staff told the FT.

This has resulted in some employees doing “zero work” because managers couldn’t plan their schedules.

“Honestly, it’s still a mess,” said an FT staffer, adding, “The year of efficiency starts with a bunch of people getting paid to do nothing.”

Meta didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment, which was sent outside of regular business hours.

The job cuts at Meta have led to significant disruptions in the lives of employees

Meta’s austerity measures follow CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s admission that he overestimated the e-commerce boom and had to cut jobs as a “last resort.”

He’s not alone. The tech sector has been mired in sweeping layoffs that have affected over 101,000 employees at 340 tech companies so far in 2023, according to the tracker.

And even news of more job cuts at the tech giant doesn’t come as a surprise.

Meta signaled more layoffs are likely in its Q4 earnings release on Feb. 1. And the nervous Meta staff was bracing themselves for another round of job cuts ahead of the conference call, Insider’s Kali Hays reported.

Meta’s drive for efficiency has even prompted the company to ask some managers and directors to move into individual roles — or leave the company, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday.

“We’re working on flattening our organizational structure and removing some layers of middle management to make decisions faster, as well as using AI tools to help our engineers be more productive,” Zuckerberg said in Meta’s earnings call of the fourth quarter with analysts said February 1st.

This sweeping downsizing and resulting uncertainty has caused significant disruption in the lives of affected employees, some of whom took to social media to chronicle the life-changing event.

Many of the laid-off employees were grateful for the opportunity to work at the company and optimistic about the future, but they were also anxious and insecure, Jyoti Mann and Grace Kay reported in November.

Despite the human toll, Meta’s cost-cutting efforts appear to be working — with fourth-quarter revenue of $32.2 billion beating analyst estimates. That boosted investor confidence and sent Meta’s stock prices up nearly 45% so far this year — adding about $19.1 billion to Zuckerberg’s net worth, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Zuckerberg derives most of his wealth from a 13 percent stake in Meta, according to Bloomberg.

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