Facebook’s parent company Meta is bringing workers back to the office, but it won’t be providing all the benefits it used to.
According to a new report by the New York Times, seven anonymous employees said most workers are expected to return to the office by late March but won’t have the same perks they enjoyed previously because of falling stock prices.
The new free dinner meal will be provided after the last shuttle for commuting workers leave the office, and services like laundry and dry cleaning will be eliminated. The Times says that Silicon Valley companies typically provide perks in exchange for long hours, but that may be coming to an end.
“As we return to the office, we’ve adjusted on-site services and amenities to better reflect the needs of our hybrid work force,” a Meta spokesman told the Times. “We believe people and teams will be increasingly distributed in the future, and we’re committed to building an experience that helps everyone be successful.”
Although reps told the paper cuts weren’t related to stock drops in the last few months it’s hard to believe. Tik Tok has taken a chomp out of Facebook’s user base and relevancy, and its market capitalization was cut in half to $515 billion.
In fairness, the Times also reported that Meta expanded employees’ wellness stipends from roughly $700 to $3,000 to make up for the perk losses. But employees complained in the comments of a company post trying to explain the move.
There are certainly workers out there with fewer benefits and less pay, but comparison doesn’t lessen the stressful situation Meta employees find themselves in. In 2019, the Verge reported on the mental health crisis many Facebook moderators experienced while handling violent, depressing content for hours on end. Others work until exhaustion and relied on perks to improve their lives, according to the Times.
If companies want to ask a lot of their employees, fine. But when they rake in billions of dollars in profit, they ought to give back as much as they take.