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How quickly it changes from “Learn to Code” to “Learn to Weld”

Google now joins a plethora of other tech giants announcing layoffs as part of the economic downturn. Google was the ‘safest’ of all the tech giants and that safety is gone now.

Google announced on Friday, January 20th, 2023, it will lay off 12,000 employees from its global workforce, adding to the slew of major U.S. tech companies already cutting jobs amid fears of an oncoming recession.

This is truly unfortunate and my heart goes out to those affected. I’ve been on the receiving end of a layoff before and it’s brutal. 

Google’s parent company, Alphabet said the decision to cut 6% its global workforce was made in order to reduce costs and streamline its operations. 

It is speculated that the majority of the job losses will come from its hardware division, which includes Google’s Pixel smartphone business. 

Google stated that it would provide severance packages and other support to the affected employees.

Tech companies are facing a variety of challenges at the moment. Experts say this is due to rising interest rates and inflation over the past year that has forced advertisers to cut back on online advertising spending and investors to shift interest to dividend-paying stocks.

Google is Laying off 12,000 Employees Globally .

Here are 15 things you need to know:

  1. The tech industry didn’t experience the layoffs that the rest of the economy experienced in 2020 during the pandemic and now it’s coming to this industry with significant ferocity. 
  2. Giant tech companies expanded rapidly during the pandemic and so, some of these layoffs are the aftermath of the Pandemic Hiring Spree. There was a massive demand for tech services during the pandemic and now the supply has exceeded the demand and something had to be done.
  3. According to statistics, In March 2020, Google had 123,000 employees and by the last quarter, it was up to 186,000. 
  4. Google laying off 12,000 employees is its largest layoff ever.
  5. Google says the firm will begin making layoffs in the USA immediately but in other countries, the process “will take longer due to local laws and practices.”
  6. Google CEO Sundar Pichai, says they’ll offer U.S.-based employees 16 weeks of severance pay plus two weeks for each additional year they’ve worked at Google.
  7. Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai will have to keep his employee base motivated while retaining his high performers and innovators. It won’t be easy. 
  8. Any more layoffs could send Google’s most crucial employees out the door, and that could be a serious problem for the company.
  9. There’s also the elephant in the room: ChatGPT. Because of the buzz around ChatGPT, Google is under pressure to develop and adapt quickly or risk falling behind.
  10. These layoffs come as Google, a leader in key areas of artificial intelligence, is facing competition from Open AI, as well as from Microsoft, which is reportedly looking to boost its stake in ChatGPT — a promising chatbot that answers queries with human-like responses.
  11. And so, Google has a major challenge on its hands. It must effectively respond to the threat from ChatGPT and Microsoft’s OpenAI partnership. 
  12. Google has not released their AI model yet. Open AI beat them to it and maybe it’s time for the company to launch LaMDA — Google’s version of ChatGPT.
  13. The LaMDA AI platform is presently not accessible to the general public and is only accessible to a select number of AI developers via the AI Test Kitchen.
  14. Market rumours claim that LaMDA was never released because the conversational model of the AI chatbot does not work with Google’s current advertising strategy, which generates about 80% of its income. Advertising remained the main revenue-generating segment for Google. So, it makes no business sense to mess with what puts bread on the table, right?
  15. That said, Google still has to revamp its Google Search Engine with AI technology to remain profitable from advertising while keeping up with the fierce competition and changing customer requirements.

Conclusion

As these economic changes occur and large companies make crucial decisions, it is important to recognize that everyone is vulnerable and at risk.

As the economy shifts and major corporations make strategic decisions, it’s important for individuals to consider the potential consequences and devise a plan of action. 

While each person’s plan may differ and the number of plans one has is irrelevant, what is crucial is that more individuals begin to anticipate change and not be caught off guard.

Everyone who works for someone else must think about ‘what if’ and have a plan. Everyone’s plan will be different, and what it is or how many plans they have doesn’t matter. What does matter is that more and more people start to prepare for change, and not be blindsided

As said before, Google was the ‘safest’ of all the tech giants and that safety is now gone. All eyes are now on Apple, will Apple be slashing down their workforce too? The world awaits…

 Buckle up! There’s more disruption underway as artificial intelligence goes mainstream and takes centre stage in the tech industry. 

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