LinkedIn lays off recruitment staff globally as hiring slows

LinkedIn declined to disclose how many employees were axed at its Singapore Marina Bay office, LinkedIn’s Asia-Pacific headquarters. PHOTO: UNSPLASH

SINGAPORE – Networking platform LinkedIn laid off part of its global recruitment staff on Tuesday as hiring slows amid flagging growth in the wider technology sector.

The firm declined to disclose how many – if any – employees were axed at its Singapore office at Marina Bay Financial Centre, which is LinkedIn’s Asia-Pacific headquarters.

It said that it would provide support in line with local employment practices to those affected.

A spokesman told The Straits Times on Thursday: “With this reduced need for hiring, we’ve made the difficult decision to reduce the size of our global talent acquisition team.”

The cuts form part of a broader exercise at parent firm Microsoft, which signalled in January its intention to lay off around 10,000 employees, or about 5 per cent of its global workforce.

The layoffs at Microsoft and its subsidiaries follow a 12 per cent decline in net earnings year on year for the fiscal second quarter due to a global slowdown after the heady growth driven by Covid-19-induced digitalisation.

Food delivery platform Deliveroo has also not been spared, with 300 to 350 roles – 9 per cent of its global workforce – set to be cut, chief executive and founder Will Shu announced last week.

The layoffs were concentrated at the firm’s London headquarters, but a spokesman declined to say if any Singapore staff was affected.

Mr Shu said the company expanded its headcount very quickly to keep up with Covid-19-related demand but is now facing serious and unforeseen headwinds.

He added that the firm’s recent exit from the Dutch and Australian markets also means a smaller workforce can support its operations.

“Quite bluntly, our fixed cost base is too big for our business,” Mr Shu said.

“I should have had a more balanced approach to headcount growth. This is on me, and I will not be making the same mistakes going forward.”

Yahoo is another tech firm that had to cut staff. It said on Feb 9 that it would eliminate about 1,000 jobs – around 12 per cent of its headcount.

It is the first round of cuts within a larger plan to restructure its advertising tech division, which will ultimately see headcount slashed by half by the end of 2023, accounting for more than 20 per cent of Yahoo’s total workforce.

The Yahoo spokesman did not respond to ST’s queries on whether the Singapore office was hit.

“Despite many years of effort and investment, this strategy was not profitable,” the spokesman added.

“These decisions are never easy, but we believe these changes will simplify and strengthen our advertising business for the long run.”

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