Software development jobs are a key target of tech industry layoffs, according to a new analysis of data by Revelio Labs.
Revelio Labs extracted data from layoffs.fyi, which crowdsources tech layoffs, as well as Parachute List. That yielded an estimated 170,000 layoffs across the tech industry over the past 12 months, which it then analyzed by profession. Here are the overall results (hat tip to Business Insider for displaying Revelio’s data first):
“Earlier layoffs were focused on future hiring. Recruiters and HR were overrepresented in those earlier layoffs,” Reyhan Ayas, a senior economist at Revelio Labs, told Business Insider.
Although crowdsourcing isn’t always the most scientific way of gathering data, it’s clear there’s a significant trend in software developer layoffs. But what’s behind it? To put it simply, many companies—especially tech giants such as Meta and Salesforce—are fundamentally adjusting their core strategies. For example, Meta is rapidly shifting its focus from the “metaverse” to artificial intelligence (A.I.), necessitating cuts to certain teams (and hiring for others). Those kinds of movements can result in sweeping layoffs that impact all kinds of tech pros.
What can tech professionals do to better their chances of surviving future layoff rounds? That’s a tough question. In many cases, there’s little an employee can do if their company decides to pivot away from a particular strategy or cut a vital division simply to save money. However, if you have certain in-demand skills (such as data analysis or machine-learning modeling), you can boost your chances of surviving even a particularly nasty layoff round.
Even if you choose not to specialize in something cutting-edge, keeping your skills up-to-date is always vital. Mastery of technical skills and programming languages will make you eligible for jobs across a range of organizations and industries; even as some of the biggest tech giants lay off thousands of employees, companies in segments such as retail and manufacturing continue to hire aggressively. “Soft skills” such as teamwork and communication can also help solidify your worth to an organization—and boost your chances of survival.