Salesforce’s 2023 job cuts would be first yearly reduction since going public

Salesforce Inc.’s plan to cut jobs this year would mark the first yearly workforce reduction since the customer-relationship-management software company went public in 2004.

The company
disclosed in its annual 10-K report for fiscal 2023 ending Jan. 31, 2023, which it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission late Wednesday, that it had 79,390 employees as of Jan. 31.

That’s up 8% from 73,541 employees at the end of fiscal 2022.

And since fiscal 2020, which ended just before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Salesforce’s workforce had soared 62%.

On Jan. 4, 2023, when the company said it would lay off 10% of its staff, Chief Executive Marc Benioff said the company “hired too many people” heading into the current economic slowdown, as revenue accelerated through the pandemic.

Don’t miss: Marc Benioff reminds Wall Street that ‘this isn’t my first recession,’ saying Salesforce’s activists ‘made a lot of money today.’

Also read: More than 127,000 tech-sector employees have lost their jobs since the start of 2023.

Cutting 10% of Salesforce’s staff would still leave its workforce at roughly 71,451, or well above its employee total for fiscal 2021 of 56,606. The company had 49,000 employees as of Jan. 31, 2020.

The company, which went public in June 2004, had 767 employees as of Jan. 31, 2005, according to its first 10-K filing. The workforce has increased every year since then by an average of about 30% (the median increase has been 28%). The biggest yearly percentage increase was 70%, in fiscal 2006, while the smallest increase was in fiscal 2023, at 8%.

Salesforce’s stock, which fell 2.3% to close at $178.72 on Thursday, has soared 36.3% over the past three months, while the SPDR S&P Software & Services exchange-traded fund
has gained 7.1% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average
has slipped 3.7%.

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