The end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023 is being black for workers in the technology sector. IBM and the German giant SAP have joined the list of multinationals cutting their workforces. They have agreed both at the time of the announcement and in the number of employees they have laid off: 3,900 by IBM and 3,000 in the case of SAP.
Contrary to the rest of the companies in the sector that have justified their layoffs due to the fall in digital business after the pandemic, IBM has alleged that the latest sales or spin-offs of parts of its business have made entire teams of its workers redundant. The multinational separated its digital infrastructure business in November 2021 to create Kyndryl, a giant that was born with 90,000 employees and $19 billion in annual turnover. Already in 2022 he sold his artificial intelligence and medical data business, Watson Health, in which he had made a huge investment from 2015 to 2020.
IBM announced the layoffs during the presentation of its financial results for the fourth quarter of 2022. Its revenues exceeded 16.7 billion dollars, 6% more than in the previous period. The 3,900 dismissals are equivalent to 1.5% of its global workforce and the compensation will cost 300 million dollars.
SAP has also reserved a similar figure for the expenses of its dismissals, in which it expects to use between 250 and 300 million, as reported. With the measure, it expects to save between 300 and 350 million a year from 2024, “which will help boost investments in strategic growth sectors,” said its CEO.
The 3,000 jobs it will cut are equivalent to 2.5% of its workforce, which has some 120,000 employees worldwide. SAP, specialized in business organization software and the second largest technology company in Europe by market value after ASML (semiconductors), has framed the measure as a crash plan given the large drop in benefits it has suffered in 2022. According to its accounts , presented this Thursday, the company earned 2,290 million euros, 56% less.
Until now, the biggest workforce cut among technology companies has been faced by Amazon, which has laid off 18,000 workers. Next, the rest of the multinationals in the sector have been placed: Google with 12,000, Microsoft with 11,800 and Meta (parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp) with 11,000. Of the five big technology companies, the only one that has not announced layoffs so far is Apple. In total, the sector has destroyed almost 200,000 jobs in recent months after closing 2022 with 150,000 layoffs.