According to CNBC, Meta’s company-wide employment layoffs affected its newly formed customer care division, leaving influencers and group admins to deal with fraudsters and technical issues.
CNBC claims former Meta employees and US Department of Labor filings show that the company’s large layoffs damaged Facebook and Instagram’s customer care, customer experience, and communities departments. Meta fired 11,000 workers in November and 10,000 in March.
Last year, Brent Harris, Meta’s vice president of governance, said the business was “spending a tonne of effort” on building a customer service team. The customer care personnel seemed to help people who were mistakenly locked out or had their content erased, but there was no clear approach.
In 2021, the corporation tested lived chat help for account recovery. In December, it reached “more than a million people in nine nations” and aimed to bring the test to over 30 countries. The corporation also pledged to “double down” on “improving help for users when locked out of their accounts” in 2023.
Meta’s customer service staff’s status is uncertain. CNBC spoke to many individuals and businesses with trouble reaching Meta support for various platform concerns. For example, group admins told CNBC they got a notice in January saying Facebook would no longer support groups.
Meta told The Verge about its latest customer support initiatives, including a way to restore hijacked Instagram accounts, account security improvements, and live chat growth.
Meta may wish to reduce free user support due to its $11.99 monthly verification membership. Meta Verified allows users to discuss “common account difficulties” with support agents. Meta has been frustrated that most unpaid users won’t get that type of help for years. Yet, Meta’s significant staff layoffs raise questions about the size of this certified user assistance team.
The Oversight Board, an independent body that helps Meta moderate material, received over 1 million appeals from October 2020 to December 2021, indicating a high need for direct intervention from Meta. Meta also disciplined dozens of staff last year for misusing the company’s automatic account recovery feature to aid desperate consumers.