Google Ads team facing major restructure amid automation boom

Google Ads team facing major restructure amid automation boom

  24 Dec 2023

Google is reportedly planning a major reshuffle of its 30,000-person ad sales unit.

Sean Downey, who is in charge of ad sales to big customers in the Americas, announced plans to restructure the ad sales teams during a department-wide meeting last week, according to The Information.

Downey did not comment on whether the reorganization would include layoffs during the meeting.

Why we care. This news could be perceived as another sign that Google Ads is leaning towards full automation, which may provide disadvantages for some advertisers, particularly those with smaller budgets as they lack the financial resources to monitor and experiment with AI asset and budget variations.

Revenue. In October, Google revealed a 11% year-on-year increase in overall revenue, reaching $76.7 billion in Q3. Notably, ad revenue surged from $54.5 billion to $59.65 billion, marking the highest total in that category in nine quarters. Given the profitable year the company has enjoyed, potential layoffs may come as a surprise.

So why now? The news comes as Google continues to invest in AI and machine learning to facilitate increased ad purchasing, diminishing human involvement. In line with this, Search Engine Land reported earlier today that Google aims to improve support in Google Ads by leveraging AI further.

What Google is saying. A Google spokesperson did not immediately respond to our request for a comment.

First Google mass layoffs. Earlier this year, in January, Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai announced the company would be letting go of 12,000 employees and contractors – approximately 5% of their total workforce – in the company’s first-ever round of mass layoffs. In an email to staff, he said:

  • “I have some difficult news to share. We’ve decided to reduce our workforce by approximately 12,000 roles. We’ve already sent a separate email to employees in the US who are affected. In other countries, this process will take longer due to local laws and practices.”

It’s important to note that Google has not announced layoffs. Currently, the company has reportedly only confirmed a restructure of the ad sales unit.

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