Why is Meta not hiring?

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Background

Meta is one of the largest technology corporations in the world today. The company has seen explosive growth over the last several years. However, the senior management at Meta announced that the company would reduce budgets across all the teams in the organization. The budget cuts would also be felt among teams that are growing. Individual teams will have the liberty to figure out how to handle headcount changes. This would mean that many vacant positions will no longer be filled. Many employees from the teams will also leave to other departments based on the priority. Teams will have to adapt and take up new responsibilities as and when needed to accommodate such reorganization. Meta hiring team is also focused on devising a new performance management review process. This would help the company to find out people who are not performing well enough as per the benchmark they are setting. The senior management at Meta highlighted that they had hoped the economy would be better, but the economy continues to weaken and hence they are being forced to take drastic measures accordingly. Practice the Meta interview questions below to be ready for your interview.

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Meta Financial Trouble

Meta also highlighted that they will be acting conservatively in the years ahead. One of the main reasons that has led to a decline in revenue for Meta is their advertising model. Due to an increased competition for ads from other apps, and the privacy focus changes introduced by Apple, the advertising revenue of Meta has been hit severely. Meta has highlighted that it was planning to slow down its hiring for some management roles, but it has now spread to all other areas in the organization. Meta has also postponed giving out full time job offers to its summer interns. Meta wants to analyze each and every vacancy and check whether those will be actually required in the following year. Meta wants to make sure that they are not adding people to teams where the requirement would be not there for that role in the coming year. This would help Meta optimize its spending and hire only those individuals with whom they want to have long term relationships. Meta has been highlighting and also working on optimizing their headcount.

Meta Layoffs and Hiring Freeze
Meta Layoffs and Hiring Freeze

Meta and Metaverse

The management said that Meta is making team shrinking a priority so that they can shift their energy to other areas in the organization. One of the most important areas in Meta today is Instagram Reels. This is one of the competitors of TikTok. The future plan of Meta includes the Metaverse as one of the key components. Over the last several months, Meta was even forced to abandon many of its critical Metaverse projects after there was major financial losses. Metaverse was planned to be one of the most priority projects in Meta that would take a few years to complete before it becomes profitable. The fact that many Metaverse projects were abandoned signifies a major turning point in the operations of Meta. It is not exactly clear which projects of Metaverse were discontinued. However, the employees within the organization were informed that many of the work related to Metaverse did not have sufficient funding. Many projects in Metaverse were not fully abandoned, but only postponed until the situation becomes more favorable. Layoffs were not considered a part of the Metaverse project postponements. Hence, employees who worked in the Metaverse projects can be assured that they will be retained to contribute in this futuristic virtual reality vision for some time.

Meta Layoffs

Most of the layoffs came from Meta's Reality Labs division, which focuses mainly on virtual reality and augmented reality development. CEO Mark Zuckerberg highlighted that the future of social media will be in the Metaverse. The senior management at Meta is focused on investing heavily in virtual reality and Metaverse related projects and hiring skilled employees in this field. Meta has been increasing its staff dramatically over the last few years. Due to this there has been an increase of spending on employees. The overall global weak economy has suddenly changed this fact and has forced Meta to optimize its spending and hiring. Layoffs are often not done directly, but instead employees are placed on a notice period within which they have to find other projects within the company. Meta employees during this period work closely with the technical recruiters to find favorable jobs or openings within the organization. The process is often not confirmed or guaranteed because all the teams within the organization is trying to reduce their team size. If an employee is not able to find a new role within this period, then they are laid off.

Meta Layoff Reason

There are various departmental reorganizations that Meta has been working on. Significant number of employees have been affected by this new performance review process and the departmental reorganizations. Reducing the headcount will impress Wall Street when Meta shows savings of finances and better utilization of its financial resources. The big technology companies have been hiring a lot of talented employees and have been saving them from other startups and competitors. This was being used as a competitive strategy so that they can retain the best talent. This has actually meant tolerating some bad hires, and under performers. CEO Mark Zuckerberg put it out bluntly when he said there were a bunch of people within the company who shouldn't be there. This was an acceptable trade-off when the economy was performing better. However, under the current situation, Meta is starting a cleanup of its employees who do not meet the performance standard. The war in Ukraine and inflation is constantly putting pressure on the large corporations and forcing them to take unpopular decisions. Many experts feel that Meta might be laying off more people than required and using the current economic situation to its advantage in taking unpopular decisions more easily.

Meta Advertisement Loss

The coming years in Meta are definitely going to see more strict performance management. Employees will be forced to work much harder as the company tries to get more work done with lesser people. Employees in Meta will start losing job security and will suffer the consequences of extreme stress without any work-life balance. The perks that used to be so normal to the big corporations earlier have now been reduced. And employees have also been asked to reduce their expenses on travel and office parties. The decline in advertising business of Meta has been one of the reasons of its decline. There is increasing competition to attract the next generation of users and Meta is struggling in this field. The app tracking transparency or ATT feature which Apple introduced has also affected Meta in tracking and targeting its users to show relevant ads. This was introduced by Apple in iOS 14.5. Meta senior management has even given out a billion dollar loss statistics that had been caused to the company due to this new feature introduced by Apple.

Meta User Privacy Challenges

Meta used to collect user data earlier and use that data to show relevant ads to the users. Advertisers would thus see more clicks on their ads and excellent return on investment when they put their advertisements in Meta compared to other apps. However, with lesser data being collected by Meta now due to the privacy changes of Apple, the ads that Meta shows are not that relevant. Hence, there are fewer clicks. Fewer clicks mean that advertisers are seeing not that good return on investment like before. Hence, they're stopping showing ads on Meta and taking their investment to other apps. One of the main pillars of Meta's revenue model was advertising. Since this model was hurt Meta's revenue has been severely impacted. The other revenue generating stream that Meta highlighted was a Metaverse, which can take more than a decade to finish. But Wall Street investors are mainly focused on the near term growth potential that is confirmed. Since Meta could not provide that assurance, the stock price of Meta has also been severely volatile. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg also highlighted that the company would be much smaller over the next few years.

Meta Hiring Freeze

Due to the hiring freeze, one of the main roles in Meta that is most at risk now is that of technical recruiters. There was a huge increase in hiring and hence the demand for recruiters increased significantly. But now recruiters are being laid off at an increasing rate. Throughout the technology industry, technical recruiters are being laid off due to the disproportionate number of them existing in the organizations. Many recruiters are trying to have more formative conversations with companies on how they can add more value. Many of them are taking pay cuts, or has been taking up consulting jobs. Many technical recruiters are also going on internships, or taking a part-time role. Recruiters are also being asked to make sales calls to fill their time. Employees were getting used to demanding more flexibility during the last few years. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has now taken the situation to his advantage. And he said that he was fine with employees doing self-selection, and the employees are welcome to move out if they do not find the new culture and speed of work as per their expectations. Many of the technological companies are still hiring and expecting to bounce back, similar to the explosive growth that they were used to earlier. Companies are also under a lot of pressure to turn profitable. Meta is now extremely cautious in providing new offers and taking a long time.

Author: Rahul Bhattacharya

Rahul is a journalist with expertise in researching a variety of topics and writing engaging contents. He is also a data analyst and an expert in visualizing business scenarios using data science. Rahul is skilled in a number of programming languages and data analysis tools. When he is not busy writing, Rahul can be found somewhere in the Appalachian trails or in an ethnic restaurant in Chicago.

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