November 29, 2022
Business/Tech

Despite Big Layoffs, Tech Workers Are Still in Demand

despite-big-layoffs,-tech-workers-are-still-in-demand

Elon Musk’s decision to lay off half of Twitter’s workforce shook the tech industry last week. And the troubled platform isn’t the only well-known company downsizing. This week brought cuts at Salesforce and Meta, which eliminated 11,000 jobs, or 13 percent of its workforce. Snap, Lyft, and the payments company Stripe have also recently shrunk their payrolls, collectively shedding around 3,000 workers.

In total, more than 118,000 people have lost their jobs in tech this year, according to Layoffs.fyi, a site that tracks publicly reported job cuts in the industry. At the same time, companies including Amazon and Apple have slowed or frozen their hiring, reducing the number of open roles in Big Tech that can soak up people suddenly out of work. Yet while many individual workers must now find new jobs, the broader outlook for tech workers remains strong. Their skills are still in demand, and their peers have responded to recent cuts with a wave of grassroots support to help laid-off workers find new jobs.

Despite their command of the headlines, Big Tech companies are just one niche in the broader tech industry. Many smaller firms and companies in adjacent industries are still hiring tech workers, albeit at slower rates than tech giants recently did, and potentially for lower salaries. Some companies are now jumping at the chance to attract people previously monopolized by recruiters from the largest companies.

“These workers are at a huge advantage,” says Julia Pollak, chief economist with ZipRecruiter. “There is still strong demand for tech talent in a wide range of industries, from government to retail to agriculture. Those industries for the past years have been left in the dust.”

The Big Tech forced exodus is also opening new opportunities for startups and investors aiming to create the next big thing. “To everyone affected by the Meta layoffs: Monomi Park is hiring,” Nick Popovich, CEO of an independent gaming studio, tweeted this week. Day One Ventures, a venture capital firm, responded to Big Tech’s cuts by launching an initiative aimed at laid-off workers offering to invest $100,000 in 20 different ideas for new companies. PitchBook, which tracks startup data, recently estimated that VCs have about $290 billion on hand to invest, suggesting there’s plenty of funding available for new entrepreneurs.

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