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Sunday 5 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
Alamy Stock Photo The office of Meta in Grand Canal Square, Dublin.
# Job Losses
Facebook owner Meta to lay off 13% of its workforce, resulting in 11,000 job losses
Up to 400 people based here could lose their jobs as part of the global cuts.

LAST UPDATE | Nov 9th 2022, 11:57 AM

META HAS ANNOUNCED that it will reduce its workforce by 13%, resulting in the loss of 11,000 jobs globally.

Its CEO Mark Zuckerberg has released a memo this morning which read: “Today I’m sharing some of the most difficult changes we’ve made in Meta’s history.

“I’ve decided to reduce the size of our team by about 13% and let more than 11,000 of our talented employees go.

“We are also taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1.”

Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp, directly employs about 3,000 people in Ireland.

Globally, Meta has about 87,000 employees.

Ireland is Meta’s largest base outside of the US and is home to its European headquarters.

It’s understood the team in Ireland will also be cut by around 13 per cent – meaning up to 400 people based here could lose their jobs. 

A Meta Ireland spokesperson said today’s decision “does not have any impact on Ireland’s status, or on our long-term investment plans in Ireland”.

The spokesperson added: “We appreciate Ireland’s and in particular the Irish Government’s ongoing support for our operations here.”

The Meta Ireland spokesperson described the job losses as a “hard, but necessary, decision to restructure parts of the company.”

The job losses will impact full-time Meta employees in Ireland, but will not affect contract workers employed by third-parties.

It’s thought there are 6,000 of these contract workers in Ireland.

The spokesperson added that “the timeline and process will be defined by Irish government guidelines, which will see potentially impacted employees entering collective consultation”.

In today’s memo, Zuckerberg said: “I want to take accountability for these decisions and for how we got here. I know this is tough for everyone, and I’m especially sorry to those impacted.”

‘Difficult phase’

When asked about the news in the Dáil today, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that the technology sector is going through a difficult phase globally.

The Meta announcement “will have implications” here, he said, adding that workers must be provided with the proper consultation, which the Government understands will be afforded to them.

He also said that the IDA, Dept of Social Protection, Solas and other organisations stand ready to assist workers that might get bad news in the coming days.

Speaking earlier today, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said those who suffer job losses will be given a redundancy and exit package.

Varadkar said: “We do have the absolute assurance from the company that all the legal processes will be respected. So there’ll be at least 30 days of information and consultation before anyone is laid off.

“And there will be a redundancy package and exit package for staff to make sure that they’re given some financial security.”

Varadkar said his “thoughts are with the employees” and that it is a “very difficult time of year to get bad news, particularly in the run to Christmas”.

The Tánaiste also said the government “will make sure that they get the help they need to find other employment”.

He added: “There are lots of jobs in the tech sector, it’s still a sector that is growing in the round.”

He also pointed to examples of “people who have worked in tech firms in the past that have gone on to set up their own business and do very well for themselves”.

The Tanaiste briefed Cabinet on the situation in the tech sector following these comments.

He told ministers that companies have given assurances that legal procedures will be followed including at least 30 days notice and consultation, as well as enhanced exit or redundancy packages in most cases.

The Tanaiste said staff affected will be offered full assistance from the Government to find other employment, set up their own business or return to education or training.

Speaking to the wider issues in the tech sector, he said the sector is still growing and that the recent job loss announcements “should not be seen as a major crisis in the tech sector”.

“It is a downsizing after years of phenomenal growth,” he said, adding that the sector will grow again in the medium term.

“So far, all of the major companies have indicated they will maintain a significant presence in Ireland,” he said, adding that the Irish economy is now very well diversified and is not reliant on any one sector.

Meta becomes the latest tech giant to lay off staff, following recent job losses at Lyft and Stripe.

Twitter also last week pledged to cut half its 7,500-strong workforce. 

- With reporting from Christina Finn 

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