- Former tech staffers have taken to TikTok to debate and debate “pretend work.”
- Some mentioned they witnessed or skilled not having sufficient work to do; others confirmed busy schedules.
Some former staff of corporations like Meta and Google are taking to TikTok to weigh in on the talk over “pretend work” at tech giants.
The idea of “pretend work” at tech corporations echoes well-documented circumstances previously the place high-paid tech staff would typically “relaxation and vest” as they waited for his or her inventory choices to vest earlier than leaving the corporate.
Now, with many tech corporations trimming their headcount after hiring 1000’s throughout the pandemic, some throughout the tech trade have mentioned corporations over-hired to the purpose the place there wasn’t sufficient work for workers.
Earlier this month, Kendall Smith, recognized by her TikTok identify @roilysm, shared a narrative from Insider about PayPal Mafia member Keith Rabois saying staff at Meta and Google had been doing “pretend work.” Since Rabois’ feedback, the notion has gained some traction with a number of Silicon Valley traders and founders.
“I 100% agree and might affirm that is the case,” Smith mentioned within the video. “After I was at Fb, the final 12 months or so simply felt like an inside struggle over work,” she added.
Smith says on her LinkedIn profile that she labored on the firm as a advertising and marketing supervisor from 2018 to 2022. Her video has garnered over 430,000 views on TikTok and a number of individuals who declare to be Meta and Google staff have additionally weighed in on the video.
“Over-hiring shouldn’t be an issue distinctive to Meta or Google, there are a lot of massive companies that grossly over-hire and depart it to the staff to create their very own defensible scope of labor,” Smith instructed Insider.
@roilysm Faux information, pretend jobs, deep fakes. #bigtech #faang #techlayoffs #overhiring ♬ authentic sound – Kendall
A former Google worker mentioned in a duet with Smith’s video that he discovered that working at Google was about “working smarter not more durable.”
“I began out my profession working for startups doing a ton of actual work after which I joined Google,” Tony Aubé, who goes by the TikTok identify @tony.aube, mentioned. “I used to be pondering this can be a main league. That is the place I am going to do probably the most work in my life and I used to be so shocked to see that it was truly the other.”
Aubé mentioned on his LinkedIn that he labored at Google AI from 2019 to 2020 as a senior product designer. In his video, he mentioned he was given work that he was supposed to complete in two weeks that solely took him a few days.
“I used to be instructed by my product supervisor that I used to be the quickest designer he had ever labored with at Google and different individuals instructed me I wanted to tempo myself as a result of I’ll run out of labor, which I did,” Aubé mentioned. “Towards the top, I used to be working about 32 hours per week and I’d spend a couple of full day each week engaged on private initiatives as a result of I completed all the pieces else.”
@tony.aube #sew with @Kendall Google is the epitome of labor smarter not more durable and thats nice #google #meta #siliconvalley ♬ authentic sound – Tony Aubé
Aube instructed Insider in a remark that he by no means noticed anybody on the firm “not doing any work or doing pretend work.”
“I had a really nice time at Google, it is an excellent firm, and like I mentioned in my video, they provide superb work-life steadiness and are completely killing it of their enterprise and merchandise, so they need to preserve the nice work-life steadiness,” he mentioned.
One other former staffer, Maddie Macho, mentioned that when she was at Meta she was paid $190,000 to do “nothing” on the firm as a result of the corporate wasn’t hiring anyone. Macho was a recruiter at Meta for about six months, based on her LinkedIn.
@maddie_macho Replying to @laurendaniellehtx these had been the times man. *sigh* #meta #layoffs #google #workingintech #metalayoffs ♬ authentic sound – Maddie | The Profession Finesser
A spokesperson for Macho mentioned there isn’t any correlation between her expertise in 2021 and the corporate’s current layoffs.
Insider beforehand spoke with one other former Meta recruiter, Britney Levy, who mentioned in a TikTok video that she felt the corporate was “hoarding” staff.
“I imply, they had been telling individuals to not work on issues, however on the identical time, there was quite a lot of work that wanted to be executed,” she mentioned.
‘The precise reverse of my expertise’
Not everybody at Meta, which employed 75,000 individuals as of earlier this 12 months, agrees with the notion that staff had been employed to do little to know work. One TikTok creator, Arianna Tong, says she could not disagree extra with the thought of pretend work at Meta.
“I’ve seen so many movies chiming in and saying they did pretend work at Meta,” @ariannatong mentioned in a TikTok video. “I need to present you what my schedule seemed like as a result of this was the precise reverse of my expertise.”
Within the video, Tong shared a photograph that she mentioned was her schedule, which confirmed back-t0-back occasions. She labored as partnership supervisor on the firm after which a board member on Meta’s New Product Experimentation Creator Product Advisory Council for practically two years earlier than leaving the corporate in March, based on her LinkedIn.
@ariannatong #sew with @roilysm #greenscreen please keep in mind that one individuals expertise isnt a mirrored image of everybody elses #fyp #tech #meta #faang #instagram #overhiring #google #layoffs #SeeHerGreatness ♬ authentic sound – Arianna Tong
“I didn’t should struggle for work,” Tong mentioned. “I used to be struggling. I used to be so burned out by the point that December got here my boss principally mentioned ‘You want a break.'”
Earlier this month, Mark Zuckerberg introduced the corporate was shedding one other 10,000 staff after chopping 13% of its workforce late final 12 months.
Spokespeople for Meta and Google didn’t reply to a request for remark from Insider forward of publication.