Big Tech reins in the perks

Abundant office perks are no longer a given.

Big Tech office perks

Olivia Heller

Over the course of a few weeks in January, then-Google employee Nicole Tsai posted cute clips highlighting many of the perks available at the company’s LA office.

One post showcases a slide, hand-rolled sushi for lunch, and a happy hour Tiki bar. A top comment reads, “Daycare for adults.”

The next day, Tsai posted another TikTok titled “A day in my life getting laid off at Google.” Unfortunately, and unexpectedly for her, Tsai was one of the 12k employees Google cut in January.

“The pingpong tables have turned…”

… The Wall Street Journal’s Anne Marie Chaker said on the broader subject. The tech industry has long been known for lavish office perks introduced to attract and retain top talent.

  • A 2022 survey from MetLife found 31% of tech workers consider pet insurance a must-have benefit, compared to 18% of all employees.

But abundance and job security in tech is no longer a given. In 2022, 1k+ tech companies laid off 161k+ employees, according to Already in 2023, 471 companies have laid off 127k+.

While cutting office perks risks disappointing some staff, it can also be an easy cost-saver in tumultuous economic times.

Facebook — which cut 11k+ workers in November and could slash thousands more — recently cut free laundry services. Twilio has cut sabbatical, wellness, and book budgets. And, in January, Google let go of 31 in-house massage therapists.

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