Apple Inc., which has largely held off on corporate layoffs in the past months, is reportedly laying off a small number of people from within its corporate retail teams, according to a report from Bloomberg.
The job cuts would affect employees in Apple's Development and Preservation teams, which handle the construction and maintenance of the company's retail stores, with some management roles also being eliminated, according to the report.
Meanwhile, Apple has notified affected employees that they can reapply for other job openings within the company until the end of the week. In case they are unable to secure a new position, they will receive up to four months of severance pay, per the report.
The exact number of job cuts is unknown, although sources suggest that employees from the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific regions will be impacted. Apple has labelled this move as an organizational change that will help enhance the support offered to its stores, whereas the staff views it as a layoff.
This marks the tech giant's first known internal job cuts to its 164,000-strong workforce since the tech industry rout that has seen thousands of employees in big techs laid off, began last year. CEO Tim Cook at the time said that layoffs at the company were “a last resort.”
Apple had since employed other cost-cutting measures, including laying off contractors, leaving some newly-opened positions unfilled and slowing down hiring for some departments, delaying bonuses, reducing travel budgets, pushing back projects, and more.