Employment Law

Electronic Arts laying off 6% of staff, restructuring teams

A photo of a person using a keyboard and computer mouse. (Photo: ELLA DON / Unsplash)

Video game giant Electronic Arts (EA) is trimming its headcount as part of a company-wide restructuring.

In a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on March 27, EA said it’s cutting approximately 800 jobs, or six per cent of its workforce, as it focuses on “prioritizing investments to [the company’s] growth opportunities and optimizing its real estate portfolio.”

“As we drive greater focus across our portfolio, we are moving away from projects that do not contribute to our strategy, reviewing our real estate footprint, and restructuring some of our teams,” CEO Andrew Wilson said in a note to staff on March 29.

The company expects the actions associated with its restructuring plan to be “substantially complete” by the end of September.

According to a quarterly filing in March 2022, EA employed a total workforce of nearly 13,000 people.

Impact on Canadian staff

Electronic Arts didn’t disclose how many Canadian employees are affected by the latest round of cuts.

The video game giant has offices in several major cities across the country, including Toronto, Kitchener, Montreal, Edmonton, Victoria, and Vancouver.

According to LinkedIn, the company employs more than 3,200 people in Canada.

Major tech layoffs continue

EA joins the growing list of major North American tech companies that have announced sweeping layoffs in 2023.

Several big names, including Amazon, Meta, Alphabet, Dell, Clearco, Hootsuite, and Microsoft, are significantly scaling back their staffing levels as they continue to navigate challenging economic conditions.

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• Employment lawyer on recent tech layoffs and severance
• Layoffs in Canada

Termination agreements for Electronic Arts employees

As part of the layoff announcement, Wilson said Electronic Arts will provide affected staff with “severance pay and additional benefits such as health care and career transition services.”

The video game giant noted in its SEC filing that it expects to spend “approximately $55-million to $65-million related to employee severance and [other] employee-related costs.”

In Canada, non-unionized employees at EA are owed full severance pay when they lose their jobs due to downsizing or corporate restructuring.

This includes individuals working full-time, part-time, or hourly in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C.

Severance can be as much as 24 months’ pay, depending on a number of factors.

Severance for technology industry employees
Severance for provincially regulated employees
Severance packages in mass layoffs

WATCH: Employment lawyer Lior Samfiru explains what rights employees have if they are being fired or let go on an episode of the Employment Law Show.

Before you accept any severance offer, have an experienced employment lawyer at Samfiru Tumarkin LLP review it and your employment contract.

We can tell you if what you have been provided is fair and how to get proper severance if it falls short of what you are actually owed.

If you don’t receive the full amount, which happens often, you have been wrongfully dismissed and are entitled to compensation.

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