Is Meta on a hiring freeze?

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Background

In the current technology sector, there is a recession on the horizon. Even though the recession will globally affect the entire economy, the technology sector is cautious now. Many companies like Meta are being forced to implement various approaches of hiring freezes and layoffs. The different factors that have put Meta on a hiring freeze continue to affect all the organizations around the world. In the first half of the year, around 80,000 technical workers lost their jobs. There are more layoffs planned in the horizon. There has been a significant drop in the revenue of Meta since the company was founded almost 20 years ago. The senior management has officially told the Meta employees that the organization will operate more ruthlessly and will prioritize projects to operate and execute teams better in a leaner way. Meta is continuously setting various goals to cut its employee strength and trying to reach the layoff goal every few months. The Meta interview questions below will help you prepare for the actual Meta interview rounds.

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Meta Layoff Process

Meta is trying to improvise its approach regarding layoff by eliminating certain job types, but it is not directly laying off all those employees. Meta is giving all its laid off employees 30 days to find different roles and other jobs within Meta. The employees will be working with the recruiters to find other jobs and roles in different teams across the organization that fits their skill sets. Meta employees are constantly trying to understand which jobs are most secure and which jobs are most at risk of getting laid off. Many employees are regarding the recruiter role as one of the most risky role today. Meta has a long history of laying off low performing workers. But laying off high performing workers is something new that the employees are facing today. Meta is trying to reprioritize all its projects based on its long term vision. Only those projects that are aligned to the long term vision of Meta will constantly see an investment in skilled employee hiring. The other projects that do not align with the long term vision and profitability goals will see a steep decline in expenses as well as find their employees getting laid off. Even though the employees get time to find different projects, there is no guarantee that they will find another position that fit their skill sets within the provided time.

Meta Hiring Freeze and Layoffs
Meta Hiring Freeze and Layoffs

Meta Hiring Freeze

Several employees at Meta are going to see the overall employee strength reduced by significant amounts in the coming months. The senior management is now more aggressive about layoffs and which employees they want to retain. Meta has also severely increased the performance expectations from its employees. This is another indirect strategy that the senior management has taken. Many organizations including Meta are using the current economic situation to their benefit and taking unpopular decisions more easily. The strategies that they're implementing now would have created a lot of concerns and issues in the past. However, the current economic landscape is being used as a justification for many of the management decisions at Meta. Meta had initially planned to increase their headcount significantly during the next several months. However, the new decisions are showing that the company is walking in a different path due to the upcoming recession fear.

Meta Performance Review Process

There are many experts who highlight that a hiring slowdown is different from significant job cuts. However, the Meta layoffs are continuing to happen by using the new severe performance benchmarking process that has been introduced. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has specifically highlighted that Meta would work more aggressively than before. And any employees who have issues with this change are welcome to leave. Many employees prioritize their work-life balance, but the new culture seems like there would be little place for a balance. It has been made clear to all the employees that they are welcome to choose a different path of their career outside of Meta if they have issues with this type of working model. It has been clearly said that there are many employees who should not be there. It is interesting to know what criteria have been used to measure and identify such employees who have been designated that they should not be in the company.

Meta Employee Benefits

Meta is also taking away many of the employee perks like laundry and dry cleaning services. All these are part of a broader initiative of cost-cutting. Due to the strict privacy changes Apple has implemented, the earnings of Meta has taken a severe hit. Since Meta can no longer track its user as efficiently as it used to do earlier, the quality of personalized ads has been drastically falling. Now Meta cannot collect as much data about its users as it used to do earlier. With less data, their artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms cannot suggest the best quality advertisement. Less quality advertisements leads to lesser clicks by the user. Advertisers are now thus losing interest in advertising in Meta, because they are receiving less amount of clicks to their ads from users. As all the Apple devices are now extremely secure, Meta is struggling to collect data from Apple users. This has largely affected the revenue of Meta and which is in turn, forcing them to prioritize their business model resulting in several layoffs.

Meta Peer Competition

In addition to the privacy enforcement's by Apple, there is a rise of many competitors like TikTok, who are adding much more value to the social media ecosystem. TikTok is an extreme extremely competitive app that has managed to lead away many Meta users. Many users who used to spend time in Facebook and Instagram earlier are now always using TikTok and Snapchat. Meta is trying to change their algorithm to make it similar to TikTok. The concept and algorithm of Meta was based on likes by the users. Meta then used to show similar content, but this became very creepy and made users extremely concerned about their privacy. TikTok on the other hand, has an extremely content focused algorithm which aims at delivering the best and fresh content to its users. This way users do not feel that their privacy is being misused. Instead, users are presented with fresh content that they might choose to watch or scroll for the next best content from a variety of creators. In this economic recession scenario, with emerging new players like TikTok is proving fatal for Meta.

Prospect of Metaverse

One of the segments that Meta is betting heavily on is the Metaverse, by investing billions of dollars in the Metaverse ecosystem. The Metaverse is an ecosystem of augmented reality and virtual reality. This will take years to be ready. Until then, Meta and its ecosystem of all the other social apps will continue to struggle. We should not expect any improvement to the revenue and profitability of Meta in the near term. Meta layoffs and employee hiring slowdown is expected to continue for quite a while now. If the Metaverse succeeds, it will be one of the first billion dollar achievement of Meta. Meta will have dominance in the Metaverse segment if it succeeds, in the same way that Apple and Google dominates the mobile operating system and overall phone market. But the challenge is that the reality of Metaverse is several years away. It will take even longer time to turn into a profitable model. Until then, Meta will have to see how to prioritize its existing resources so that it does not fall into a trap of unlimited spending with no substantial revenue, and thus resulting in a loss.

Meta Recruiters at Risk of Layoff

Meta is investing heavily in skilled experts to build its Metaverse ecosystem. One of the most recent analysis that has been done shows that Meta recruiters are most at risk of layoffs in Meta. During the past several years, Meta has been increasing its hiring teams in order to keep up with the demand for new skill sets and employees in different teams. This has led to an increase in the number of Meta recruiters across all geographies. However, with the current Meta layoffs and extreme slowdown in hiring process, there are more than required number of recruiters in Meta today. The job openings for HR professionals also increased tremendously during the last several years. However, the job opening and demand for our human resource professionals is on a decline. It has also been found that the generation that has been hit the hardest by the job cuts in Meta are the millennials. The millennials make up a majority of the workforce in Meta, and they also represent a large percentage of the layoffs happening at Meta.

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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