- Mark Zuckerberg has said that more employee attrition will ultimately make Facebook a better company.
- The company recently cut spending plans by several billion dollars.
- Hiring breaks are rare for the social media giant.
Facebook has implemented a hiring freeze on certain engineers as the social media giant cuts spending plans and reorganizes around new priorities, according to people familiar with the situation.
Starting last month, Facebook, now called Meta, stopped hiring engineers at levels called E3 and E4, the people said. They asked not to be identified discussing sensitive issues. An E3 engineer is considered entry level in the company. An E4 is more mid-level.
A message about the freeze from a Meta technical program manager, a copy of which was viewed by Insider, said it was a result of the company “reaching ‘quotas'” for the year for E3 and E4 level engineers. . The message did not say whether those fees were the same as in previous years, but noted that the company was still hiring senior engineers and engineering managers.
An Amazon worker also told Insider that they were interviewing at Meta in recent weeks and in the middle of the process a recruiter suddenly said that a hiring freeze had been put in place. Another person familiar with the company’s hiring practices said interviews for several engineers were recently canceled, citing a hiring freeze as the reason.
Facebook did not respond to multiple requests for comment Tuesday.
Such breaks are rare for the company. The latest occurred near the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a worker there said at the time. It was implemented due to the inability to train people outside the offices and was short-lived.
Last week, Facebook said it planned to cut spending this year to no more than $92 billion, down from the previous outlook of $95 billion. Its shares are down nearly 40% this year so far, and other tech stocks have taken a beating as well. Some other companies in the sector have also reduced hiring plans this year. DoorDash’s CEO told staff last month that the company planned to slow headcount growth. Google Cloud has also cut jobs recently.
Managers in other areas of Facebook are still actively hiring, a current employee said. However, founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg made a point of the most recent earnings call to talk about a rising attrition rate, or about workers choosing to leave Facebook, turning it into a positive. The company now has more than 78,000 employees, 28% more than last year.
Zuckerberg also noted that while Facebook is still recruiting heavily, there is also a significant focus on moving people within the company, where it is “shifting priorities” to the metaverse Reality Labs division and AI and machine learning teams. Zuckerberg also said that he intended to “slow down the pace” of investments in the metaverse.
This freeze is surprising, experts said, because Facebook has been so vocal about hiring new people, making the risky and expensive move to build “the metaverse.”
One worker who recently left the company said such breaks, or “silent freezes,” are generally not aimed at mid-level engineers, as these tend to be the jobs with the most work to do and highest turnover.
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