The Scoop #27: Meta’s Historic Growth Challenge
Unprecedented times at Meta call for unprecedented measures. What are the never-tried-before measures Meta is using to get growth trending up again?
The Scoop is a bonus series covering insights, patterns, and trends I observe and hear about within Big Tech and at high growth startups. Have a scoop to share? Send me a message! I treat all such messages as anonymous.
The Scoop sometimes delivers firsthand, original reportage. I’m adding an ‘Exclusive’ label to news that features original reporting direct from my sources, as distinct from analysis, opinion, and reaction to events. Of course, I also analyze what’s happening in the tech industry, citing other media sources and quoting them as I dive into trends I observe. These sections do not carry the ‘Exclusive’ mark.
A few hours after I sent out last week’s The Scoop in which I wrote about hiring slowing down at Meta, with production engineering hiring frozen and some teams unable to get backfill, it would be Mark Zuckerberg who indirectly confirmed the reporting was accurate.
At a Q&A held on Thursday 30 September, Zuck announced a hiring freeze and a plan to restructure teams, trim expenses and realign priorities, Bloomberg reported. Zuck said Meta would likely be smaller in 2023 than in 2022.
I’ve spent all of this week talking with current Meta employees and those in the hiring pipeline to get a sense of what’s going on at the tech giant. Meta seems to be facing more pressures on its growth – and future profitability – than in the past, and we’ll go through recent events to outline what these are.
Today's topics are all about Meta:
Meta rescinds intern offers for 2023 in London. In a first for the company, Meta has rescinded offers for what seems like a large group of interns. These interns had been due to start in January 2023 at the London office. What could be behind the rescinding of these offers? Exclusive.
Will FTE offers be rescinded by the company? Rescinding intern offers were worrying enough that a software engineer with an outstanding offer got on the phone with a recruiter at Meta to find out if their full-time position is safe, or it could also be rescinded. The recruiter shared the official stance of the company with this person. Exclusive.
Developers on the Rotational Engineering program are not receiving full time offers. Meta has a Rotational Engineering program where, after a year of rotating between teams, engineers become E4 software engineers and graduate to join a team. Now, these engineers are not given the opportunity to join any teams and must leave the company after completing their 12-month contracts. Exclusive.
Worries about ‘quiet layoffs.’ A few days ago, Business Insider reported that Meta is doing “quiet layoffs,” which could mean as much as 15% of employees being let go. I talked with engineering managers at Meta to find out how much truth they see in this claim. They told me the numbers are incorrect, and shared more details. Exclusive.
The mood inside Meta. I talked with half a dozen software engineers and managers to get a sense of how employees feel. Exclusive.
Meta closing an office building in New York City. The company is closing its 225 Park Ave office. Is this a bad sign for the team? I talked with a software engineer based in NYC, and found out it’s not. Exclusive.
Meta’s historic growth challenge. The company’s growth is under more pressure than it has ever been, and in a worse strategic position than Apple, Google, Amazon or Microsoft. Why is this and what can the company do to get out of this situation? Analysis.
Will Meta do layoffs? This is the question on everyone’s mind who I talked with at Meta. I outline possible options and give my opinion on the likelihood of layoffs in the coming months. Analysis.
As a reminder, I do not hold individual stocks in any publicly traded company I write about or mention, which also goes for Meta. More in my ethics statement.