Google Inc. is slowing down as it grows up.
With revenue growth ebbing, profit margins shrinking and shares flat, Google is curbing hiring and seeking ways to run its sprawling empire more efficiently, according to recruiters, venture capitalists and others familiar with the matter…
The clearest sign of the new attitude: Google added 1,819 employees in the first quarter, bringing its total to 55,419. That was the smallest increase since the final quarter of 2013; last year, Google added an average of 2,435 employees per quarter.
For many years, Google teams assumed they could add staff each year. Now, Google executives are selecting which groups can hire, based on the company’s strategic priorities. Since late last year, many Google teams have had to submit plans describing how additional employees will produce specific business objectives, such as increased revenue or more users.