A number of major Crypto companies have been laying off employees in recent months in an effort to keep their business afloat. But as big players drop talent back into the pool, startups are getting a chance to grab them.
Recruiters and talent managers shared their thoughts with MastStatus on what this means and how talent should navigate today’s hiring environment.
“Recruiting in a bear market is unique because those looking to enter the space during recessions are more likely to be passionate about, understand and believe in the industry over the long term,” said Zack Skelly, head of talent at crypto-focused investment firm Dragonfly , told MastStatus. “They’re doing it for the right reasons, rather than simply having to find another job or benefit financially from a hype cycle.”
Reports emerged on Monday that Gemini, a crypto startup that merged with the now-bankrupt Genesis, is laying off 10% of its staff, according to internal reports reviewed by The Information. This wasn’t the first time Gemini laid off staff either. In July, the company enacted a second round of layoffs just seven weeks after cutting 10% of its workforce due to “turbulent market conditions,” MastStatus reported.
Gemini is one of many major crypto companies making cutbacks. Earlier this month, Coinbase and Crypto.com both cut 20% of their jobs as the companies attempted to weather the downturn in the crypto market.
While there are layoffs at major crypto companies, that’s just one segment in a broader scaling tech workforce: Salesforce, Amazon, Meta, Alphabet, and Microsoft have all laid off in recent weeks.
“More broadly, this means access to an even larger pool of proven, capable talent,” Gus Brewer, a recruiter at Alchemy, told MastStatus. “Many of the companies facing layoffs are known for having extremely high standards when it comes to recruiting, which should definitely be a consideration when evaluating newly available talent.”
Some crypto projects and startups are reviewing their hiring plans to take advantage of this influx of talent, Skelly said. “While a larger pool of candidates may make it easier to fill the workforce overall, I’ve heard some founders say it’s been harder to find those who are truly aligned with their mission. More qualified resumes are popping up – yes – but there’s also more to filter through when it comes to the intangibles.
But it is important to note that not every crypto sector is aggressively hiring. “There are very minimal trading opportunities right now,” Dan Eskow, founder of web3 talent agency Up Top, told MastStatus. “There seems to be no action at all. Whether it’s developers, traders, researchers, there’s not much you can do about it.”
Eskow focuses on helping talent find a job in start-up projects or companies. “You don’t see many layoffs [for startups] because many wait until it absolutely has to. [ … ] Within the DeFi space, there is a much higher job stability situation,” he noted.
This is a quiet period, Tyler Feinerman, head of talent and people operations at Wachsman, told MastStatus.
“January is typically a slower time of year for hiring, but macroeconomic factors have certainly exacerbated conditions,” Feinerman noted. “February to April is typically the warmest period for the job market, so while things may remain a bit slower than usual, I think we can expect some green shoots on the horizon.”