Google China begins layoffs with severance packages

Google has begun laying off its workers in China, beginning with those in senior-level positions and other high-paid employees.

According to Pandaily, the aim of the company is to “reset the salary standard and reduce operating costs while improving overall work efficiency”.

Laid-off employees will be offered severance packages including N+9+1 salary, stock and annual leave discount, 30,000 RMB (4,339 USD) in cash and medical insurance. In addition, Google has provided a three-month buffer period in which employees will not work but still be paid their normal salaries. Such benefits, however, can only be guaranteed if employees sign the agreement to leave the company before March 10. 

Earlier this year on January 20, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced in an email to staff that the company would cut approximately 12,000 jobs as inflation rises and global markets brace for a downturn.

Looking forward, the CEO noted that AI would be a key area in the company’s future. “I am confident about the huge opportunity in front of us thanks to the strength of our mission, the value of our products and services, and our early investments in AI,” said Pichai. “To fully capture it, we’ll need to make tough choices.”

Meanwhile, other companies have demonstrated a similar pattern of laying off their employees. In February, Zoom announced plans to lay off 1,300 workers which will also affect the China region with a compensation plan of N+4. Rumours also began to circulate on the Internet that the Suzhou branch of Microsoft China would soon, too, face large-scale layoffs with a potential N+12 plan.

According to the Chinese media outlet Yicai, Chen Zhijian, director of public relations at Blind, an anonymous workplace social software, stated, “In the past two years, professionals often held multiple employment opportunities and were able to choose between different companies with good salaries and benefits. Now, they expect the era of high salaries to come to an end.”


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