Today, all employees of the FAST unit will be notified about their further status. Currently, there are 600 workers under the FAST division. It is not clear how many people will lose their jobs at Reality Labs.
Meta Platforms Inc (NASDAQ: META) is reportedly planning to lay off employees in Reality Labs – its business and research unit that produces virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) hardware and software. In particular, its unit called Facebook Agile Silicon Team (FAST) is subject to the cut.
According to those familiar with the matter, Meta informed employees about the upcoming downsizing via a post on its internal discussion forum Workplace. Today, all employees of FAST will be notified about their further status. Currently, there are 600 workers under the FAST division. It is not clear how many people will lose their jobs at Meta’s Reality Labs.
FAST unit is in charge of developing custom chips to power Meta’s augmented and virtual reality hardware. Currently, the company is preparing for the launch of Quest 3 – its next-generation virtual and mixed-reality headset, and the downsizing move comes amid the release scheduled for October 10.
Over the past year, Meta has conducted a few layoff rounds. Back in November 2022, Meta started its largest employee cut ever after eighteen years of existing as a company and laid off 11,000 workers, or 13% of its staff. Next, over April and May 2023, Meta cut another 10,000 jobs across two layoff rounds and closed off a further 5,000 open jobs. The move was a part of the company’s “year of efficiency” – a strategy aimed at making Meta a better technology company and improving its financial performance in a difficult environment so it can execute its long-term vision.
Back in March, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg stated:
“In our Year of Efficiency, we will make our organization flatter by removing multiple layers of management. As part of this, we will ask many managers to become individual contributors.”
He also noted that since the first workforce reduction conducted in November, many things in the company have gone faster. Zuckerberg also highlighted the plans to make Meta ‘flatter’ by removing multiple layers of management.
In late 2022 and early 2023, the company cut a total of 21,000 jobs.
Meta Overcoming Challenges
A year of efficiency was announced by Meta as a strategy to overcome the challenges the company had been facing. Since Facebook officially became Meta in October 2021, the company has lost more than two-thirds of its stock market value and suffered a significant loss of $21 billion in a relatively short span of 18 months. Concerns about the company’s size, dominance, handling of user data, and commercial interests fueled the growth of negative factors impacting Meta’s business.
Now, it seems that the worst for Meta is behind. Meta took decisive action to revamp its operations and trim expenses, which helped it recover. Besides, Meta’s strategic investments in AI have begun to bear fruit. The incorporation of AI-powered features has resulted in increased user engagement, which has resulted in enhanced ad monetization.