Facebook is adding employees at a faster clip even as revenue growth slows

More people, more problems.
More people, more problems.
Image: AP Photo/Noah Berger
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Facebook has picked up the pace of its hiring over the last two quarters even as it has warned its revenue growth would slow “meaningfully” in 2017.

In its first quarter earnings release, the social-media giant reported a headcount of 18,770, up 38% from a year earlier. Revenue, meanwhile, grew 49% from a year earlier, reaching more than $8 billion during the quarter. Though that’s still a ferocious pace, it was the third straight quarter of slowing revenue growth.


The employee number likely does not include contract workers either, which Facebook uses for some jobs like content moderation. A spokesperson declined to provide information beyond today’s report.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote earlier today that Facebook would be adding 3,000 more content moderators for Facebook Live, due to a recent spate violent crimes streamed live on the service. The new workers will bolster 4,500 moderators already monitoring content on Facebook.

Facebook’s reported headcount growth has still been strong even excluding those numbers. In 2014, the company employed 6,818 people, about a third of the number working there today.

Throughout Facebook’s years of enormous growth, lackluster diversity reports and accounts of internal bias against women have mounted. Like many companies in Silicon Valley, the bulk of people who work at Facebook are white and male. In a legally-required Equal Employment Opportunity report for the year preceding July 2015, Facebook said it hired 145 black employees, while adding 4,591 white employees over the same timeframe.