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The layoff economy: How Apple has managed to avoid shedding staff

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5 mins
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  • Layoffs have hit the tech industry hard, with companies like Microsoft, Google, Meta Platforms, and Amazon announcing job cuts, but Apple has not yet followed suit.
  • Apple has avoided layoffs so far due to being more conservative in its hiring practices and its focus on hardware products and sales that have been less affected by the economic downturn.
  • The company's retail presence, with 65,000 retail employees working in over 500 stores, also helps cushion the impact of the pandemic on its workforce.
  • Despite these factors, Apple is not immune to the challenges facing the tech industry and may report its first quarterly sales decline in over three years next month.
  • Apple may quietly reduce headcount through employee attrition and make adjustments to employee perks in the future.



Layoffs have been a common theme in the tech industry, with companies like Microsoft, Google, Meta Platforms, and Amazon announcing job cuts in recent months. However, one major tech giant has yet to follow suit: Apple. Despite facing challenges similar to its peers, including a potential decline in sales and slowing hiring in some areas, the company has avoided layoffs so far.

One reason for this is that Apple has been more conservative in its hiring practices than other tech giants. The company's workforce grew by 20% from September 2019 to September 2022, while Amazon's employee count doubled, Microsoft's grew by 53%, and Google's increased by 57%. Additionally, Apple tends to have a leaner workforce and focuses on hardware products and sales that have been less affected by the economic downturn. Another potential factor is the company's retail presence. Apple has 65,000 retail employees working in over 500 stores, making up 40% of the company's total workforce. This retail component may have helped to cushion the impact of the pandemic on the company's overall workforce.

Despite these factors, it's worth noting that Apple is not immune to the challenges facing the tech industry. The company may report its first quarterly sales decline in over three years next month and has slowed hiring in some areas. Additionally, analysts expect the company to face manufacturing challenges in China due to strict zero-Covid policies, which could impact its December quarter.

Investment bank D.A. Davidson & Co.'s senior research analyst Tom Forte suggests that Apple may quietly reduce headcount through employee attrition, instead of layoffs. The company may also make adjustments to employee perks, which are common in Silicon Valley.

In conclusion, while the tech industry as a whole has seen a significant number of layoffs since the start of 2022, Apple has managed to avoid such cuts so far. This can be attributed to the company's more conservative hiring practices and its retail presence, which has helped to cushion the impact of the pandemic on its workforce. However, the company is not immune to the challenges facing the tech industry and may make adjustments to its headcount and employee perks in the future.

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