Google CEO Sundar Pichai told employees that the company will “slow down the pace of hiring for the rest of the year.” Like other large companies in Silicon Valley, Google was constantly hungry for personnel against the backdrop of business growth. However, the deterioration of the global economy due to the consequences of the pandemic, as well as the full-scale aggression of Russia against Ukraine, forces the company to be more cautious about expansion.
In his letter, which The Verge managed to get, Pichai says the company will have to “be more entrepreneurial” and work with “greater urgency, sharper focus, and more hunger than we’ve shown on sunnier days.”
According to the letter, the company is not completely freezing hiring and will continue to seek employees for “engineering, technical and other critical roles.” But Pichai says the pullback would mean “pausing development and re-deploying resources to higher priority areas.”
Google isn’t the only company that’s had to slow down hiring recently: Uber said it would have to get “hardcore about costs,” Meta sent a memo warning of “serious times” and “fierce headwinds” after a hiring freeze for some teams. and Spotify and Snap also announced plans to slow hiring. Other companies, such as Twitter and Netflix, have recently made cuts.
Hard to believe we’re already through the first half of 2022. It’s the right opportunity to thank everyone for the great work so far this year, and to share how my Leads and I are thinking about H2.
The uncertain global economic outlook has been top of mind. Like all companies, we’re not immune to economic headwinds. Something I cherish about our culture is that we’ve never viewed these types of challenges as obstacles. Instead, we’ve seen them as opportunities to deepen our focus and invest for the long term.
In these moments, I turn to our mission: to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. It’s what inspired me to join the company 18 years ago, and what makes me so optimistic about the impact we are able to have on the world. Knowledge and computing are how we drive our mission forward. That’s the lens we use to decide where to invest — whether it’s in areas like Search, Cloud, YouTube, Platforms and Hardware, the teams that support them, or in the AI that enables more helpful products and services.
We help people and society when we focus on what we do best, and do it really well. The investments we’ve made in the first half of the year reflect this vision. In Q2 alone, we added approximately 10,000 Googlers, and have a strong number of commitments for Q3 start dates which reflects, in part, the seasonal college recruiting calendar. These are extraordinary numbers, and they show our excitement about long-term opportunities, even in uncertain times.
Because of the hiring progress achieved so far this year, we’ll be slowing the pace of hiring for the rest of the year, while still supporting our most important opportunities. For the balance of 2022 and 2023, we’ll focus our hiring on engineering, technical and other critical roles, and make sure the great talent we do hire is aligned with our long-term priorities.
Moving forward, we need to be more entrepreneurial, working with greater urgency, sharper focus, and more hunger than we’ve shown on sunnier days. In some cases, that means consolidating where investments overlap and streamlining processes. In other cases, that means pausing development and re-deploying resources to higher priority areas. Making the company more efficient is up to all of us — we’ll be creating more ways for you all to engage and share ideas to help, so stay tuned.
Scarcity breeds clarity — this is something we have been saying since the earliest days of Google. It’s what drives focus and creativity that ultimately leads to better products that help people all over the world. That’s the opportunity in front of us today, and I’m excited for us to rise to the moment again.