Major Yahoo Layoffs Reportedly On The Way

Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) CEO Carol Bartz said last fall that the company — which has had three major rounds of layoffs since 2008 — was “done” with layoffs, but that may not be entirely accurate. The company is reportedly planning another big round of job cuts next month. TechCrunch says the company will cut 20 percent of its workforce, or as many as 2,500 employees; Yahoo is calling that report “misleading and inaccurate” but it does say “it’s always evaluating expenses to align with the company’s financial goals” and Kara Swisher at AllThingsD says the company will likely cut about 10 percent of its workforce next month.

That will mark the second major round of layoffs under Bartz; soon after taking over in early 2009, Yahoo cut five percent of its workforce, or about 675 jobs, which it said would allow “flexibility for accelerated strategic investments and targeted hiring in its core operations.” Earlier this summer, the company also cut an unspecified number of jobs in its search group.

Even with those cuts, however, Yahoo’s workforce has still grown under Bartz. Yahoo had 13,500 employees at the beginning of 2009, a figure that had grown to 13,900 at the start of this year; TechCrunch says it currently stands at 14,100. While Bartz has gotten credit for cutting costs, the company has set lofty goals for improving its margins.

During Yahoo’s earnings call last month, an analyst noted that Yahoo’s average revenue per employee was below that of its competitors and asked whether “the organization is bloated and you need headcount reduction.” CFO Tim Morse responded that the company wasn’t bloated but “there is more to go, and there is a whole lot more of shifting cost out of places we’re investing today and into places that will generate better returns for us tomorrow.”