Meta Blames Apple’s App Tracking Transparency for Hindering Its 2022 Recruitment Plans

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 5 May 2022

Apple and Facebook

Meta, formerly known as Facebook, has officially announced a plan to reduce hiring efforts for the remainder of the year. It says Apple’s app tracking transparency (ATT) policies are partly to blame. Employees were reportedly told that the move would affect “almost every team across the company.”

Business Insider reports that the internal memo sent out to all Facebook staffers lists four critical reasons for the decision to scale down hiring efforts. The note penned by the company’s chief financial officer David Wehner blames “loss of signal from iOS changes, the ongoing war in Ukraine, the “general macroeconomic environment,” and easing lockdown curbs forcing people to focus on their offline lives.

Facebook has been vocal in its objection to Apple’s ATT framework since the early days. It claimed that ATT damages how its advertisement business works because Apple makes it harder to target users with specific interests. The social media platform even ran full-page newspaper advertisements saying Apple’s policy would damage small businesses.

Despite blaming the ATT framework and several other variables that are beyond the company’s control, Wehner’s memo sounds optimistic about the company’s future. The memo read:

“We’re facing headwinds including slower revenue growth than anticipated at the start of the year. This is due to a number of factors including the loss of signal from iOS changes, business challenges resulting from the war in Ukraine, and the general macroeconomic environment.“

“As the pandemic restrictions have lifted, more people are spending time offline and returning to pre-pandemic spending patterns.”

“This will be an opportunity to reprioritize work to make sure we’re all focused on the most important things.”

The chief financial officer’s memo was followed by one from the global head of recruitment, Miranda Kalinowski. She said hiring for engineering roles across the company would be paused immediately, except for some senior machine learning roles.

“We’re still working out what this means for each org, but this will affect hiring goals for almost every team across the company. Based on this refreshed guidance, we know we need to adjust our hiring targets across the board starting with Eng[ineering].”

Meta adds that integrating AI into its advertising business will help counteract the losses caused by Apple’s ATT framework. Meanwhile, Apple maintains that it doesn’t stand to benefit or intend to target Facebook’s business with ATT. It merely requires the company to give its users a choice.

[Via Business Insider]