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Google's layoff chaos makes Goldman Sachs look polite

Think that Goldman's 3,200 job cuts were harsh? What's going on at Google might change your mind.

In an unprecedented move on a scale never-before-seen by the tech giant, Google is cutting 12,000 jobs amounting to 6% of its workforce. Combined with the Microsoft and Amazon layoffs earlier in the month, January has put 40,000 FAANG staff on the streets in search for work.

Cuts are nothing new for finance. As markets and revenues rise and fall, banks are well known to hire and fire accordingly. However painful Goldman's cuts were, they weren't nearly as traumatic or poorly executed (it seems) as today's cuts are at Google. 

“I just asked my manager this morning and they said they hadn't heard anything,” writes one Googler on forum website Blind. Another says layoffs are an impossibility: “What layoff? God you people are desperate, and sick.

Goldman's layoffs were slickly executed, with victims reportedly informed under the guise of business meetings, even if they were given little advice or insight into the next steps. 

Much like Goldman, Google has spent the past few years engaged in some big hiring. Before the pandemic, in Q4 2019 its headcount stood at 38,300. In Q3 2022 it was 49,100. Today's cuts will therefore simply return headcount closer to its pre-pandemic level.

Banks, fintechs and hedge funds will want to pounce. Google has long been known to hire from banking, particularly for its Cloud team, and this is a chance for people to move the other way. However, as Google continues work on its massive new office at King's Cross headquarters (due to open in 2024), it's still looking for banking talent too: its current London vacancies include an opening for an industry architect to help financial services firms migrate to the cloud.

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Photo Credit: eFinancialCareers/Dall-E

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Editor

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