Cisco Cuts 4,000+ Jobs Amid Revenue Slump

Webex’s resurgence provides a ray of light that pierces through Cisco’s layoff gloom

Cisco Cuts 4,000+ Jobs Amid Revenue Slump
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Published: February 15, 2024

Charlie Mitchell

Cisco has confirmed it will cut over 4,000 jobs, which represents five percent of its workforce.

The confirmation comes after the tech giant announced its revenues had dropped by six percent year-over-year (YoY) last quarter.

Cisco has also lowered its annual revenue expectations from $52.5BN to $51.5BN.

Scott Herren, CFO at Cisco, acknowledged these figures and layoffs during an earnings call with investors, stating:

We are realigning our investments and expenses to reflect the current environment to help maximize long-term value for our shareholders.

Chuck Robbins, CEO of Cisco, added that the current environment includes a “greater degree of caution and scrutiny of deals”, driven by “high levels of uncertainty” within businesses.

That tricky macro-environment is a familiar tale, with several other tech leaders noting this over the past couple of years – including the heads of Oracle, Salesforce, and HubSpot.

Indeed, several have cited it as a primary driver of layoffs, with 35,000 jobs lost in the tech sector since the turn of the year.

Yet, in Cisco’s case, the layoffs also follow its eye-watering $28BN move for Splunk, which is still going through regulatory approvals and closing conditions.

Of course, that has caused some to speculate that this restructuring is a bid to make space for the new team and tech.

Nonetheless, this is only speculation, and Cisco hasn’t yet revealed which departments will bear the brunt of this latest round of workforce trims.

During last July’s reported layoffs, an insider told CX Today that the cuts had impacted Webex, in addition to the following business units:

  • Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI)
  • Cisco Data Center Services & Solutions
  • Cisco Experience Centers (CxC) – Research Triangle Park, N.C. “dissolved”
  • Cisco Security Business Group (SBG)
  • Cisco Servers – Unified Computing System (UCS)

Maybe lightning could strike twice. Yet, since July, Webex has taken an upturn in fortunes – with execs again pointing to its steady CCaaS growth.

Its most significant growth engines, however, include AI and data management – like most of its competitors – alongside its burgeoning NVIDIA partnership.

The Webex Resurgence Continues

Webex saw growth for the second consecutive quarter, following 12 months of decline.

Indeed, in Q2, its collaboration portfolio rose three percent, eclipsing its Q1 growth rate.

Robbins noted this as a “good sign”. He continued:

We had a very strong quarter with our devices, our video device businesses. We see customers investing in their customer experience through technologies like contact center.

Webex Calling also experienced growth. But that was partially offset by a decline in its Meetings UCaaS platform.

Of course, UCaaS is a difficult market to break, as Microsoft Teams dominates that space with over 300MN monthly users on the platform.

However, the CCaaS market is much more open – albeit crowded – and Webex intends to crack it. The platform’s new contact center packages, announced at the back-end of 2023, underline this.

To go further, Webex may attempt to become more prescriptive with contact center AI, tell more customer success stories, and increase its enterprise focus.

Indeed, that’s the advice of industry analysts, as shared in the CX Today article: Webex Battles to Get the Enterprise CCaaS Attention It Deserves




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