Apple could eliminate a small number of roles, according to media reports. Bloomberg reports that the iPhone maker is bringing layoffs to its organization (on a small scale), and these layoffs will affect several corporate retail employees on the company’s retail development and preservation teams (they are in charge of overseeing construction and upkeep at the iPhone maker’s retail stores).
While the exact number of job cuts has not been ascertained yet, Bloomberg says that the number is “likely very small,” and Apple is implementing these job cuts to improve its operations. This is in contrast to the cost-cutting measures that numerous other companies have adopted over the past months (something that resulted in thousands of employees being laid off). Apple CEO Tim Cook had previously referred to layoffs as a “last resort.” The company earlier laid off up to 100 contractors that handled recruiting, and cut engineers and security guards that held contracting roles.
As compared to other tech behemoths such as Google and Microsoft, Apple’s current round of layoff is quite mild (and its first known round since the current economic downturn began). It does, however, mean that Apple loses its distinction as one of the few tech titans to refrain from implementing major job cuts across its organization.
Google has eliminated 12,000 jobs so far, while Facebook and Instagram-parent Meta laid off 21,000 employees over the months. E-commerce giant Amazon recently laid off 9,000 employees (taking the total count to 27,000), while Microsoft has laid off a total of 20,000 employees. Those layoffs often came on the backdrop of companies over-hiring during the pandemic, and then they laying off employees across multiple rounds in late 2022 and 2023. Apple paused hiring in November 2022 and later expanded its hiring freeze to encompass additional roles in March, amidst a drop in its revenue.
Coming back to Apple’s layoffs, they are being pitched as a streamlining effort – Apple reportedly informed its employees that these changes were being brought to improve the upkeep of its stores across the globe and that it will provide support (up to four months of severance pay) to the impacted employees. The affected employees have been reportedly told that they have until the end of the week to apply for other positions at the company.