New Delhi: According to a report, Apple Inc. laid off many of its contract-based recruiters in the last week as part of a push to reduce the tech giant’s hiring and spending.
According to the people who asked not to be identified because the situation is private, about 100 contract workers were let go in a rare move for the world’s most valuable company. The recruiters were in charge of hiring new employees for Apple, and the layoffs indicate that the company is experiencing a slowdown.
Workers who were laid off were informed that the layoffs were necessary due to changes in Apple’s current business needs. Bloomberg first reported last month that the company was slowing hiring after years of ramping up, joining many other tech companies in doing so. During Apple’s earnings conference call, CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the company will be more “deliberate” in its spending, even as it continues to invest in some areas.
“We believe in investing through the downturn,” Cook told analysts. “And so we’ll continue to hire people and invest in areas, but we are being more deliberate in doing so in recognition of the realities of the environment.”
Apple is still employing full-time recruiters, and not all of its contractors were laid off as a result of the transition. A representative for Apple declined to comment on the decision.
The decision to lay off employees is unusual for the Cupertino, California-based technology behemoth, which employs over 150,000 people. However, it is not alone in taking such a step. In response to a slowing in tech spending, Meta Platforms Inc., Tesla Inc., Microsoft Corp., Amazon.com Inc., and Oracle Corp. have all cut jobs in recent months.
Contractors who were terminated were told they would receive pay and medical benefits for two weeks. Employee badges were disabled when they were laid off, and workers were told they needed to email a list of their belongings if they wanted those items returned. Recruiters were laid off in a variety of locations, including Apple offices in Texas and Singapore.
In 2019, Apple fired a large number of contract workers in Cork, Ireland. At the time, the company relied on hundreds of contractors to listen to recordings of Siri conversations in order to improve the product. Apple let the employees go as part of a program-scaling effort in response to privacy concerns. In 2015, the company also fired some contractors who were working on the Apple Park campus.
Apple, like many other companies, hires contract workers for tasks such as technical support and customer service. It also hires contractors to help it localise products and improve its Maps service. Contract workers typically receive fewer benefits and have fewer protections than full-time workers.