Save 20% off! Join our newsletter and get 20% off right away!

Cisco Systems Announces Significant Layoffs in San Francisco Bay Area

Got some news coming straight from Cisco Systems Inc., you know, that big tech giant that’s got its hands in everything. Well, they’ve sadly said they’re going to have to let a bunch of folks from their Bay Area offices go. Reports say we’re talking hundreds of people here. And it’s all set to happen pretty soon too, expected by mid-October, if official state filings are anything to go by.

Layoffs Breakdown:

  • 123 employees from the Milpitas facility, located at 560 McCarthy Blvd.
  • 227 employees from the San Jose facility at 170 West Tasman Drive.
  • Notably, software engineering roles are the most affected positions in both locations.

Timeline of Events

Employees were officially informed of the layoffs on July 17, 2023. They were given an option to select either Aug. 31 or Oct. 16 as their last working day. Despite the early notice to the employees, the layoff notices were officially received by the California Employment Development Department on September 12. As of the last update, Cisco Systems did not provide a comment on the layoffs, leaving many questions unanswered.

History of Cisco’s Layoffs

As we look back on the months leading up to this big announcement:

  • Around 700 employees, including 80 stationed in San Francisco offices, found themselves out of a job by May this year.
  • There was a serious wave of layoffs that occurred from January 2022 to January 2023. We’re talking about a whopping 4,000 staffers given their walking papers which landed Cisco a not-so-pretty no. 6 spot among U.S. tech firms with the largest headcount cuts.

Come late 2022, Cisco decided it was time for some ‘rebalancing’, as Scott Herren, the Chief Financial Officer, referred to it during an earnings call. The result? The company dropped more than 4,000 individuals from its payroll, representing about 5% of its total workforce.

Financial Performance and Strategic Moves

In its recent financial report, Cisco announced earnings of $12.6 billion for the fiscal year that ended on July 29, marking a 7% increase from the previous year. The company also revealed:

  • A $2.8 billion expenditure on share buybacks in the fourth quarter.
  • The acquisition of three privately held companies:
    • Lightspin Technologies Ltd. – a cloud security software firm.
    • Smartlook, s.r.o. – specializing in digital analytics and product experience.
    • Armorblox, Inc. – a large language model cybersecurity firm. You can learn more about Armorblox’s solutions here.

The Bay Area’s Tech Layoff Trend

While Cisco’s announcement is significant, it’s not an isolated incident. The Bay Area, known for its concentration of tech companies, has witnessed a series of layoffs:

  • In January, tech companies in San Francisco laid off over 12,000 employees, with Salesforce alone cutting 8,000 positions.
  • Online retailer Wish revealed a 34% workforce reduction in August, impacting 160 U.S.-based workers.
  • Other tech giants like Google, Intel, and LinkedIn have also reported layoffs.

However, there’s a silver lining. Data from Layoffs. fyi, which tracks tech company layoffs since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, showed a decline in the overall number of tech layoffs after a challenging year. In July, the layoffs decreased to 1,178 compared to January’s high numbers.

The Remote Work Influence

One significant factor contributing to these shifts has been the large-scale adoption of remote work. While remote work came as an emergency response to the pandemic, many tech giants, including Cisco, found value in its permanence. This resulted in hybrid work models, with the potential for reduced physical office spaces and a reconsideration of personnel distribution globally. Such rethinking could explain the layoffs in specific regions and roles, as companies adapt to a more decentralized mode of operation.


While Cisco Systems continues to show financial growth and makes strategic acquisitions, the layoffs indicate a reshaping of its workforce. The trend across tech giants suggests a period of reevaluation and restructuring, possibly driven by changing market dynamics and the lasting impacts of the pandemic.

Ever since the pandemic hit us like a ton of bricks, not just the tech world, but a whole heap of industries have been grappling with challenges we’ve never seen before. It pushed companies, whether they’re the big guns or small players, into a corner where they had to really look at how they were doing business, craft new strategies, and more often than not, totally switch up their business models to see another day. The changes that rolled out weren’t just about balancing the books or dealing with money matters – they were also shaped by how work was being redefined, leaps in technology, and how consumers were switching up their behaviors.

Ryan Lenett
Ryan is passionate about cars and good at forming teams. He writes engaging stories that have gained him many readers. He's known for his detailed writing and has a talent for telling stories. Every piece he writes is impactful.