Tech titans including Google parent Alphabet, Microsoft, Meta
have announced thousands of job cuts in recent months, as the sector attempts to meet a changing macro environment.
Data compiled by the website Layoffs.fyi. show that more than 82,000 global technology-sector employees have been laid off in the first few weeks of 2023.
See Now: More than 82,000 tech-sector employees have lost their jobs since the start of the year
While layoffs continue, however, companies such as Alphabet Inc.
and Microsoft Corp.
are also increasing their efforts around AI, reflecting a broader trend in tech. “We have a substantial opportunity in front of us with AI across our products and are prepared to approach it boldly and responsibly,” said Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, in a recent blog post announcing the company’s layoffs.
Microsoft, for its part, is making a multiyear, multibillion-dollar investment in OpenAI, maker of the ChatGPT tool. “We formed our partnership with OpenAI around a shared ambition to responsibly advance cutting-edge AI research and democratize AI as a new technology platform,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, in a recent statement.
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Even amid tech layoffs, the rise of AI is fueling demand for specific skill sets, experts say. New research from AI-powered talent acquisition platform CEIPAL shows that cloud engineers are among the most in-demand and are the highest paid, as they are critical to building AI models.
The research, which is based on more than 85,000 job listings posted via CEIPAL’s Applicant Tracking System, found that cloud engineer is the highest paying job title, commanding an average salary of $161,202 a year. Software engineer topped the list of in-demand jobs, but only ranked as the 12th top-paying job, with an average salary of $140,122 a year.
Related: Big Tech layoffs are not as big as they appear at first glance
Penakalapati described 2021 and 2022 as something as a boom time for the tech companies, as they expanded their businesses amid strong pandemic spending and “basically scooped (up) all the best talent.”
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Now, with the layoffs, tech skills can be redistributed beyond the tech sector into other industries, the CEO added.
“All of these people impacted by these layoffs, I don’t believe they will be laid off for more than a few months,” he said. “I think the underlying need for tech skills is not going to change.”