Published in AI

AI takes its toll on Big Tech

by on12 February 2024

Tech giants axe 34,000 jobs

Major tech firms such as Microsoft, Alphabet, PayPal, and eBay have sacked 34,000 workers since the start of 2024 to focus on artificial intelligence (AI), the Financial Times revealed.

Analysts reckon that these job cuts are part of a wider trend in the industry, where companies are ditching staff and shifting funds to invest in new technologies. This move is also seen as a sign of the companies' penny-pinching.

According to, a website that tracks redundancies in the industry, a total of 138 tech firms have laid off staff this year. This number is much lower than the 263,000 job losses that happened in 2023, after a period of overspending during the pandemic.

Microsoft video game subsidiary ZeniMax quality tester Autumn Mitchell said: "Anyone working in tech or games right now is worried about lay-offs to some degree, either for themselves or someone they know. You see one company announce lay-offs and think 'Here we go, who's it going to be next week?'"

Companies are also reviewing their investment priorities and chopping positions in non-core divisions. For example, has cut hundreds of jobs in its Twitch video streaming platform.

The tech industry has been experiencing a major shift in employment trends. After massive hiring during the pandemic, the industry saw a wave of layoffs in 2023, with companies like Microsoft and Meta announcing thousands of job cuts.

Despite a falling trend in tech lay-offs during the second half of 2023, the trend reversed in January, with the number of workers laid off in the tech sector rising by 304 per cent. This trend has been blamed for various reasons, including restructuring, cost-cutting, and pushing for a slimmer organisation.

Amid these layoffs, tech firms are also making big changes in restructuring and investments in AI. Google, for instance, estimates that it will spend €610 million in the first quarter of 2024 on employee severance amid a flurry of lay-offs in the tech industry.


Last modified on 12 February 2024
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