More than one million people now work for the big 4 tech firms

Headcount is growing steadily at Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook giving employees a louder voice to protest.
By: | December 2, 2019

The number of employees who work for the four major US technology companies of Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook has now grown to more than one million worldwide.

In the past five years, staff working for big tech firms has increased 3.5 fold, according to data from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The rapid increase is a result of tech companies expanding the scope of their business and moving into new sectors. Amazon is the biggest employer of out the bunch with 750,000 staff. Next is Apple (137,000), Google’s holding company Alphabet (114,000) and then Facebook (43,000).

Facebook has been growing the fast over the last five years, expanding its workforce by more than 5 times. A large portion of the extra staff is needed to monitor social media fraud.

While labour costs have rocketed, so too have worker protests and unrest. In September, Amazon employees launched their first labour strike in its 25-year history, speaking out against climate change.

Following the strike, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced a “Climate Pledge” promising to make Amazon net zero carbon across its businesses by 2040.

Google has also seen its fair share of employee unrest in recent years over a wide number of issues. One successful protest was against the company’s AI technology being used for military purposes.

In response, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced that its AI wouldn’t be used for weapons or technologies designed to injure.