Video-conferencing platform Zoom has announced that it will be cutting approximately 150 jobs, which amounts to less than 2% of its workforce. The company stated that these layoffs are not companywide and that it will continue to hire in critical areas such as artificial intelligence, sales, product, and operations. This move comes as investors are pushing for efficiency in tech companies.
Zoom is not the only tech company to downsize its workforce this year. More than 100 tech companies have already laid off around 30,000 employees since the start of the year, making January the busiest month for job cuts in the industry since March. Microsoft, Google, and Amazon are among the companies that have recently announced layoffs in various divisions.
Zoom experienced a surge in popularity at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic as remote work became the norm. However, as the pandemic subsided and more workers returned to in-person roles, Zoom's stock has taken a hit. Shares are down about 10% this year and have dropped almost 90% from their record high in October 2020.
This is not the first time Zoom has made job cuts. Last February, the company laid off approximately 1,300 workers, or about 15% of its workforce, as CEO Eric Yuan expressed concerns about the uncertainty of the global economy.
It is important to note that these recent tech layoffs are not an indication of AI replacing engineers, according to tech expert Alex Kantrowitz. The downsizing is likely a response to market conditions and the need for improved efficiency rather than a direct result of technological advancements.
Overall, the tech industry is experiencing a wave of job cuts, with Zoom being the latest company to join the trend. While these layoffs may be unsettling for those affected, it is important to understand that they are part of a larger trend within the industry and not necessarily a reflection of the capabilities of AI.