Google lays off hundreds of workers

Google CEO Sundar Pichai warned last year that 12K roles globally would be cut

Google is cutting hundreds of roles as part of ongoing efforts to cut costs.

A few hundred employees working on the company's voice assistant unit and another few hundred people working on the augmented reality hardware team will be affected by the latest cuts. A few hundred roles within its central engineering team are also impacted. 

Some roles that are being axed will impact global teams.

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"We’re responsibly investing in our company's biggest priorities and the significant opportunities ahead," a Google spokesperson told FOX Business. "To best position us for these opportunities, throughout the second half of 2023, a number of our teams made changes to become more efficient and work better, and to align their resources to their biggest product priorities." 

The company has been setting its sights on trying to win the race for AI with its chatbot Bard against rivals Microsoft, Amazon and Meta, all of which are making significant investments to pioneer the space. 

Google headquarters in California

Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California. (Marlena Sloss/Bloomberg via Getty Images / Getty Images)

The spokesperson said that some of those teams that have already made adjustments in 2023 are still making organizational changes, which include eliminating roles worldwide. However, the company is still supporting any impacted employees looking for new roles, even at Google. 

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The layoffs come just a year after Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced that the company was in the process of reducing its workforce by 12,000 roles amid the tough economic environment. 

"Over the past two years we’ve seen periods of dramatic growth," Pichai said in a blog post. "To match and fuel that growth, we hired for a different economic reality than the one we face today."

Those cuts also affected teams globally, including recruiting and some corporate functions, as well as some engineering and products teams.  

Google logo

A person passes a Google logo in Berlin on June 9, 2022. (REUTERS/Annegret Hilse / Reuters Photos)

However, Google was just one of a handful of tech giants forced to tighten its belt as concerns of a weakening economy swept several industries. 

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Layoffs across multiple industries have mounted over the past two years. However, several companies, including Amazon and BlackRock, have made it clear that they are not done trimming staffing numbers. 

Mike Hopkins, senior vice president of Prime Video and Amazon MGM Studios, informed staff in an internal memo Wednesday that the organization would be "eliminating several hundred roles" by the end of this week.

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Meanwhile, BlackRock plans to cut 3% of its global workforce.

In December, automaker Stellantis warned that layoffs would hit two of its U.S. Jeep assembly plants, with potentially thousands of workers losing their jobs, and blamed the move in part on California's emissions rules.

FOX Business' Breck Dumas contributed to this report.