LinkedIn is the latest notable tech company to announce a round of mass layoffs. It's letting 716 people go and shutting down its job search app in China. LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky said in a memo to employees that the cuts were part of a shift in strategy that was driven by changes in customer behavior and slower revenue growth. That's despite the platform seeing record levels of engagement and "making meaningful progress creating economic opportunities for our members and customers."
In 2021, LinkedIn shut down the seven-year-old Chinese version of its service, citing the difficulties of operating in the country. It rolled out a job board app for Chinese users called InCareer that did not have any social networking features. Now, Roslansky says the company will phase out that app by August 9th. While InCareer found some success, Roslansky wrote, "it also encountered fierce competition and a challenging macroeconomic climate."
LinkedIn is shifting its strategy in China toward helping companies based there recruit and train workers from other countries. It will cut its product and engineering teams in China and reduce the headcount of its local corporate, sales and marketing divisions. As The New York Times notes, LinkedIn did not say how many of the layoffs will be in China.
Around 20,000 people work at LinkedIn, so the layoffs account for around 3.5 percent of the overall headcount. However, Roslansky said LinkedIn will open more than 250 positions in other areas starting next week, namely in the operations, new business and account management divisions.
This is just the latest instance of widespread layoffs in the tech industry over the last several months. LinkedIn parent Microsoft said in January it would cut 10,000 workers. Meta, Alphabet and Amazon have all laid off tens of thousands of workers too.