Google Cuts 12,000 as Tech Layoffs Dominate 2023

Google joins the growing list of tech companies to announce layoffs in 2023.

It’s been a brutal start to the new year for tech jobs. Google today announced it will eliminate 12,000 jobs and joined the growing list of companies to announce layoffs less than three weeks into 2023.

“Over the past two years we’ve seen periods of dramatic growth,” Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet wrote in an email to staff earlier today. “To match and fuel that growth, we hired for a different economic reality than the one we face today.” He took full responsibility for the “decisions that led us here,” when talking about today’s 12,000 layoffs.

2023’s Torrid Tech Layoffs Pace

It’s become a common theme — after a hiring spree to meet changing needs and attract top talent during the pandemic, tech companies now find they are faced with uncertain economic conditions. 

It seems CEOs did not foresee the COVID comedown, and employees are losing jobs because of that lack of foresight. According to, 1,032 tech companies reduced their workforces in 2022 by 155,126. A report from Challenger, Gray & Christmas said tech layoffs are up 649% in 2022 vs. the prior year, compared to a 13% increase in layoffs from the economy in general.

But 2023 has seen a ferocious pace for tech layoffs. Since the start of 2023, tech companies have already reached nearly one-third of the total from last year: 154 companies have cut 55,324 tech jobs, according to

Here are some notables:

Related Article: Microsoft’s Azure-OpenAI Integration Tempered by 10,000 Layoffs

Did ChatGPT Play a Part in Google’s Layoffs?

But while an impending recession and cautious consumer spending have certainly impacted tech companies, is there another factor at play? Is Google feeling the heat from emerging generative AI startups, especially OpenAI and its globally-gripping ChatGPT bot that has caught the attention and investment of Microsoft?

Speculation on that is apparent on Twitter. And, further, one news source reports Google’s layoffs affects its AI division:

Meanwhile, Microsoft has a potential $10 billion investment in OpenAI’s ChatGPT and debuted its Azure-ChatGPT integrations this week, a move that some speculate could position Microsoft to challenge Google as the search engine of choice. 

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