Google is slowing down hiring through 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic

Google says it will slow hiring for the remainder of 2020 and adjust its investments in areas like data centers and marketing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to an email from CEO Sundar Pichai sent to Google employees that was obtained by Bloomberg. Google confirmed the authenticity of the email to The Verge.

“We’ll be slowing down the pace of hiring, while maintaining momentum in a small number of strategic areas, and onboarding the many people who’ve been hired but haven’t started yet,” Google said in a statement to The Verge.

“We believe now is the time to significantly slow down the pace of hiring, while maintaining momentum in a small number of strategic areas where users and businesses rely on Google for ongoing support, and where our growth is critical to their success,” Pichai said in the memo. “By dialing back our plans in other areas, we can ensure Google emerges from this year at a more appropriate size and scale than we would otherwise. That means we need to carefully prioritize hiring employees who will address our greatest user and business needs.”

Google hired 20,000 employees in 2019 and “had been targeting a similar number for 2020,” Pichai said in the memo. Google is also “recalibrating the focus and pace of our investments in areas like data centers and machines, and non business essential marketing and travel,” Pichai added.

The company is making the decisions in light of the continued economic uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic. They aren’t the only big tech company to reduce hiring because of the pandemic — Microsoft is “temporarily pausing recruitment” for some roles, according to Business Insider.

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