Atlanta area cybersecurity giant Secureworks announces layoffs

Credit: Damian Dovarganes / Associated Press

Credit: Damian Dovarganes / Associated Press

Company plans to reduce its global workforce by around 9%

Metro Atlanta cybersecurity giant Secureworks said Tuesday it would cut nearly one-tenth of its global workforce, citing the need to reduce spending and shift the focus of its business.

“... Our business is evolving with our partners and customers in support of their security needs,” Secureworks CEO Wendy Thomas said in a note to staff announcing the layoffs Tuesday morning. “This demands an agile footing, and a smaller, more focused team.”

In her memo, Thomas said the company would begin notifying employees affected by the layoffs “within the next hour” and said the last day for many would be this Friday.

Secureworks has been a fixture of metro Atlanta’s cybersecurity sector since the 1990s. As of January 2022, Secureworks had about 2,350 full-time employees, with more than half based in the U.S at that time. The company’s plan to cut 9% of its workforce would equal more than 200 positions if Secureworks has the same number of employees today.

Secureworks’ global headquarters is in Sandy Springs, but the company has offices in Paris, Sydney, Tokyo and several other overseas locations. It was not immediately clear which locations or divisions were hit hardest by the layoffs.

Secureworks, which builds technologies for detecting and fending off cyber attacks, has seen its revenue tumble and losses widen in recent quarters. The company reported a $28.1 million loss in the quarter that ended Oct. 28, 2022, and a loss of $74.4 million for the first three quarters of the last fiscal year.

The announcement is the latest sign of turbulence in the tech sector.

Major firms nationwide — including giants like Amazon, Meta, Microsoft, Salesforce and Twitter — have announced job cuts as they brace for a possible recession. Just last week, Microsoft announced it was pausing development of a 90-acre campus on the westside of Atlanta.

Georgia and the metro Atlanta area, meanwhile, have proven resilient to economic wobbliness. Georgia’s unemployment rate held steady at a historically low 3%, according to the latest available data from December. The state also added 5,900 jobs during the month, driven mainly by hiring in manufacturing, hospitality, white-collar office positions and health care.

Still, many forecasters have warned a recession is likely as the Federal Reserve continues to fight stubborn inflation.

The number of people in the Georgia labor force — that is, either working or looking for work — has fallen, dropping by about 32,000 during the past six months, including a 5,000 dip in December, according to data from the state Department of Labor.