Google has about 800 full-time workers in South Korea but wants to reduce its workforce.
Some workers are resisting the company's suggestions to leave, the Korea JoongAng Daily reported.
Local labor laws don't allow employers with five or more workers to dismiss them without just cause.
Google wants to reduce its head count, but some workers in South Korea are refusing to leave.
The tech giant has about 800 full-time employees in South Korea. Despite trying to shrink its workforce since last year, some employees are declining the company's recommendation to resign, as the Korea JoongAng Daily newspaper reported.
About 10 Google employees from its office in Seoul had accepted the company's suggestion to resign, the outlet reported. But according to the Korean labor-law firm KangNam, the law doesn't allow employers with five or more workers to dismiss them without just cause.
KangNam's managing director, Bongsoo Jung, said in a LinkedIn post: "Recommended resignation occurs when an employee resigns at an employer's suggestion. In most cases, the employees will refuse to resign, as they do not wish to face the uncertainty and difficulty of finding new employment."
About 100 Google workers in Korea formed a union last year because of mounting concerns over the industrywide layoffs in the US.
"With the ongoing job cuts within the US tech industry, employees have been concerned about their job security and decided to establish a union," Kim Jong-sub, the head of the Google Korea union, told the Korea Herald last April.
He told The Korea JoongAng Daily that the union planned to secure an agreement with Google to ensure job security and "pursue voluntary resignation" instead of workers accepting the recommendation to resign.
Voluntary resignation means a worker can sometimes get an early retirement bonus.
Google laid off 12,000 employees in early 2023 — about 6% of its head count — and it's continuing to make job cuts this year. The company has already axed more than 1,000 workers this month. CEO Sundar Pichai told staff in a memo obtained by The Verge that more layoffs were coming this year.
The company is laying off several hundred employees in its advertising-sales team, as Business Insider's Hugh Langley previously reported. It has also cut hundreds of staff working on Google Assistant and members of its devices-and-services team.
Mass job cuts have been sweeping the tech industry since last year. Layoffs.fyi, which tracks job cuts, showed a total of 262,595 employees were laid off from 1,186 tech companies in 2023. At the time of reporting, its data also showed 63 companies had cut 10,963 workers so far this year.
Google didn't immediately respond to requests for comment from BI made outside normal working hours.
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