Facebook is the latest large tech company to begin mass layoffs, choosing 60 contractors reportedly at random using an algorithm.

The unlucky contractors were employed by Meta via its Austin office of Accenture — despite the company having a nearly half billion dollar deal with Meta to provide workers in content moderation and business integrity.

According to Business Insider, workers were informed via a video conference call that they would have no work as of Sept. 2, with pay ending on Oct. 3. No specific reasons were given besides being chosen “at random”.

Mark Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg has warned employees that a recent market slump “might be one of the worst downturns that we’ve seen in recent history.”
AP

They weren’t immediately offered alternative jobs by Accenture, but were told they could reapply for any newly available job over the next two weeks.

The layoffs are perhaps not surprising, considering that during a company-wide Q&A meeting on June 30, Mark Zuckerberg warned employees that a recent market slump “might be one of the worst downturns that we’ve seen in recent history” — prompting the need for “aggressive performance reviews” to help weed out underperforming employees.

“Realistically, there are probably a bunch of people at the company who shouldn’t be here,” Zuckerberg said.

“Part of my hope by raising expectations and having more aggressive goals, and just kind of turning up the heat a little bit, is that I think some of you might decide that this place isn’t for you, and that self-selection is OK with me,” Zuckerberg added.

The Q&A came amid a Meta hiring freeze and other cost-cutting measures, as the company’s stock is down more than 50 per cent this year.

The Meta layoffs come just days after Apple laid off 100 of its recruiters who were responsible for hiring new employees. Apple did previously warn that it would be reining in spending and slow hiring.

A gaming industry payment processing company, Xsolla, also used an algorithm to pick 150 employees to lay-off in August last year — so letting robots fire workers might be a trend of the future.



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