During the past year, tech layoffs have become commonplace – particularly in recent months as big and small businesses alike had to scale back after hitting a peak of profits throughout this pandemic. While it’s clear that countless newly unemployed tech employees are searching for their next gigs, what isn’t certain is where exactly they will end up.
Fortunately, there are still numerous open positions available for tech workers not only in the industry itself but also beyond. Furthermore, we’re seeing a rise in people deciding to start their own businesses. Even though layoffs may have an effect on many employees’ decisions to stay or leave the technology sector, it’s essential to consider some of the problems inside this field such as exhaustion and inadequate layoff measures that make transitioning away from tech much easier than before.
We’re seeing a dramatic shift in the culture of massive tech companies, which used to pull in top talent with unbeatable salaries and extravagant benefits. Nowadays these businesses are preaching frugality, expecting their ever-growing workforces to act like entrepreneurs once more. While such firms were initially thrilling places for many people to begin or continue their careers, they now appear no different than regular Corporate America – making some wonder exactly what drew them into the industry originally?
Despite the recent flurry of layoffs in the technology sector, it appears to be more a reallocation than an indication that we are heading for economic turmoil. That doesn’t mean this news isn’t disheartening for those affected; as Layoffs.fyi reports, 78,000 tech industry employees lost their jobs at the beginning of 2021 and 160,000 during 2020. However devastating these cuts may be on a personal level, they seem insufficient enough to make any lasting damage in such a wide-reaching employment landscape.
In December, the tech industry had a record-breaking number of personnel working in computer-related occupations such as data analyst and software developer. This is accompanied by a near all time low unemployment rate of 1.8%, significantly lower than the average 3.5%. Although January’s numbers may have changed with an influx of layoffs, this won’t cause much disruption in an industry that has millions employed.
According to CompTIA, a remarkable 59% of those employed in tech-related occupations are not actually working within the tech industry. This number has held steady for over ten years now. As many finance, health care and retail sectors realise their need for digital advancement, they hire more highly skilled IT professionals – thus keeping up with the growth of software development within the tech sector itself. Nevertheless, as we move forward into 2021 and beyond it is likely that this trend will shift towards non-tech industries even further than before!
It is imperative to take into account that tech businesses employ a range of personnel. Although we don’t have an exact indication as to what kind of roles the companies are cutting, its fair to assume that many of them do not require any computer-science skills such as human resources or sales positions. Google’s recent layoffs in California have become a reality for many engineers as well as nearly 30 massage therapists. Those who were laid off must now decide if they will find another job in tech, switch industries altogether or create their own business – this decision is deeply dependent on what type of occupation was held previously.
With the right technical abilities, engineers are in an optimal position to land more work no matter where they choose to look. Data from Dice’s December 2022 report revealed that there were around 300,000 job postings for tech specialists—though lower than usual, it is still comparable with stats from the past four years. With such high demand for skilled professionals in this field and beyond, workers equipped with specialized knowledge will be highly sought-after by employers everywhere.
Non-tech companies now have the opportunity to attract tech workers, despite being unable to offer salaries as high or with the same cultural draw of major companies. However, it’s important not to forget that compensation is still a primary driver for these tech employees when choosing their next job – this has been true since forever! In addition, according to Gartner research shared with Recode – work-life harmonization is becoming increasingly more relevant in hiring decisions; coming just under salary on importance levels.
It may take years to uncover the ultimate fate of those affected by tech layoffs. It’s possible that this is a short-term hiccup in an ever-expanding technology sector, or maybe we’ll see a surge of new startups spawned from ex-Big Tech employees which could be the catalysts for success in times of economic instability – though some say it’s nothing more than folklore. On the other hand, perhaps every business can consider themselves as “tech companies” now after these events and thus level up with Big Tech. Regardless, only time will tell where these jobless individuals transition next.
and Sprint Recruiting
I joined the HR industry in 2004 after working as a sales leader in the Financial Services Industry for eight years. After spending his first couple of years in HR trying to fit in, I found my voice. Now I leverage all of the things I once hated about HR to become a consultant and invaluable partner to the businesses I support. I contribute to the HRGazzette and to DataDrivenInvestor on Medium. WARNING: my writing style is raw and in your face, not what you would expect from an HR executive.
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