Google to slow hiring over possible economic recession: CEO Pichai

Silicon Valley internet giant, Google LLC, is reportedly planning to slow down hiring for the rest of this year as concerns grow over a possible economic recession, according to an email Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote to the company’s staff earlier this week.

In his email, Pichai stated that the firm will solely focus on hiring for critical roles such as technical and engineering for this year as well as the next.

He wrote that going forward, Google needs to become more entrepreneurial, work with greater urgency and a sharper focus, showing more ‘hunger’ than it has shown in its better days.

This would mean that there might be cases of consolidation where there is an overlap of investments and streamlining processes.

Up until now, Google had remained mostly unaffected by the economic downturn in the tech sector, with the last time it paused hiring being over a decade ago due to the financial crisis.

The search engine major has since continuously added new staff for its main advertising business, along with other areas that do not drive as much profit, such as its smartphone, wearable devices, and autonomous cars.

Google’s parent company Alphabet, which employed approximately 164,000 people as of March, has mostly focused on hiring for Google’s cloud division as well as other fields such as hardware.

The news makes the Silicon Valley heavyweight one of the latest tech firms to pause hiring this year.

In May, Snap Inc., parent company of Snapchat, and Lyft Inc. both announced that they will be slowing down their hiring efforts. Few weeks later, grocery delivery company Instacart Inc. stated that it was dialing back on job growth. These announcements were followed by that of Tesla Inc., where Elon Musk announced that the company is cutting 10% of its salaried workforce.

Earlier this week, Google’s rival Microsoft Corp. also announced that will be cutting down on a few jobs.

Facebook and Instagram’s parent company, Meta Platforms Inc., also halted its hiring plans amid concerns over the economic outlook.

In the ending statements of the email, Pichai added that the firm still has ‘strong commitments’ to recruit from colleges in the coming months.

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