Roblox, the kid-popular community-centric gaming platform, has undergone a significant reduction in its talent acquisition team, indicating a shift in the company's priorities from growth to profitability.
In a statement, Roblox confirmed that it had recently laid off approximately 30 employees within its talent acquisition division, reported TechCrunch. The company emphasised that no other teams within the organisation were affected by these staff reductions.
“The aggressive growth targets Roblox was operating against in the past few years required a heavier investment in our TA organisation,” said a Roblox spokesperson.
“With our commitment to getting our cash compensation growth in line with our bookings growth by the end of Q1 2024, we now need a smaller Talent Acquisition organization to meet our adjusted hiring needs. This action is the result of the reduction in our hiring targets to better align with our growth goals,” added the spokesperson.
There were indications that the deceleration in hiring was a planned move as part of Roblox's ongoing cost-cutting efforts. This was made clear by the company's Chief Financial Officer, Michael Guthrie, during the recent Q2 earnings call, where he stated:
"We anticipate achieving cost efficiencies across various areas in the coming 12 months. We expect to realise some cost reduction in cost of goods sold due to our reduced hiring pace, as well as cost efficiencies in our compensation expenses, particularly in infrastructure and trust and safety. We have already made significant progress in bridging the gap in both of these areas."
Over the past few years, the company has experienced a remarkable period of robust growth, nearly tripling its daily active user base from Q1 2020 to 66 million at the beginning of this year. However, as its business expands, it is allocating more resources to compensate developers.
Specifically, developer exchange fees, which encompass the payments made by Roblox to creators who convert their in-game earnings into real-world currencies, totalled $348 million in the first six months of 2023, in contrast to $290 million during the same period the previous year.
Despite experiencing growth in user numbers and increased time spent on the platform, there hasn't been a corresponding increase in user spending. The average bookings per daily active user (DAU) for the second quarter stood at $11.92, marking a 3% decline compared to the previous year.
It's worth noting that Roblox continues to operate at a loss, with a net loss of $282.8 million in Q2 2023, which represents an increase from the $176.4 million loss reported in the previous year.