Big Tech Recession Tactics: How Amazon and More Are Shifting Gears
The pandemic pushed online sales like never before, but as we enter a post-pandemic world and a potential recession, some big tech organizations are scaling back their workforces. HR pros in the field during the 2008 recession may recognize some of the tactics Amazon, Meta, and Apple are using. But are these strategies applicable to your organization?
The recession doesn’t mean you have to lay off your workforce. Read on for how to shift gears from recruitment to retention to cut costs while maintaining your valued employees.
Amazon, Meta, and Apple: Recruitment, Retention, and Layoffs
Recent years have shown an employee-driven labor market where the talent pool was smaller than what was needed. But needs are changing, and we may soon see a change as mass layoffs deepen the talent pool and positions grow scarce. As the economic squeeze tightens belts in every sector, organizations are adapting by carefully considering the size of their workforce.
Many big tech names are prepping for the impending recession:
- Amazon announces layoffs of 10,000 workers
- Meta announces layoffs of 11,000 workers
- Apple begins a hiring slowdown
- Twitter announces a slashed workforce and potential reorganization
HR pros may recognize recession-era tactics from 2008: layoffs, hiring freezes, organizational restructuring, eliminated bonuses, and more.
As big tech shrinks, other sectors are considering doing the same. A recent Forbes survey shows that a staggering 51% of companies are planning to use recession-era tactics to cut costs. While pre-pandemic markets necessitated a larger workforce, the slowing economy is pushing more and more companies to redirect their efforts from recruitment to retention.
Retention v. Recruitment: Should You Copy Amazon?
Making extra efforts to retain employees, rather than laying them off in uncertain economic times, may prove a useful strategy for HR pros to navigate a potential recession. Mirroring big tech companies, smaller organizations may consider the labor-hoarding strategy. Labor hoarding means finding ways to keep talent with your organization as a long-term investment rather than laying off employees as budgets tighten.
Shifting focus from recruitment to retention may help you make budget cuts, as you can save on training costs, onboarding materials, and more. You can then apply bonuses or raises to employees worth keeping, diverting funds to assure employees of their value to your organization.
Cost-Effective Retention Strategies
There are other ways to boost retention without dipping into your budget. Effective performance management strategies can provide high-value talent with job security. Strategies focusing on clear communication, consistent expectations, and recognition can help you hold on to your best employees by creating a culture of trust.
Employees who remain long-term can add value to your organization as a whole by proving your organization is high trust. High-trust cultures enable employees to interact confidently with their managers and colleagues without fear of reprisal or rejection. Workers in a healthy culture tend to remain where they are happy and valued—with your organization.
The future seems scary as the threat of recession looms and big tech lays off massive parts of their workforce, but HR pros at smaller organizations may be able to cut costs by emphasizing retention over recruitment. Focusing on effective employee management and meaningful workplace culture can show your employees that you are committed to keeping them long-term.
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