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Alphabet's DeepMind has put a hiring freeze on new interns, canceling one applicant's interview with just an hour's notice

Business Insider logo Business Insider 11/27/2022 jmann@insider.com (Jyoti Mann)
DeepMind is headquartered in London. Marianne Ayala/Insider © Provided by Business Insider DeepMind is headquartered in London. Marianne Ayala/Insider
  • DeepMind said it is pausing the hiring of new interns while it reviews its "strategic priorities."
  • One applicant tweeted that his interview was canceled an hour before it was supposed to start.
  • Another said she is "gutted" that it froze hiring and said the "tech hiring freeze is hitting hard."

DeepMind has imposed a freeze on hiring for new interns at the Alphabet-owned company.

The AI firm told Insider on Friday it was not taking on new interns for the time being as it is reconsidering how its "long-term focus" and "strategic priorities" fit with the internship program.

One applicant tweeted on Wednesday that his interview with DeepMind for an intern role was canceled an hour before it was supposed to go ahead and shared a screenshot of the email he received. 

The candidate wrote: "Disappointed & shocked to hear that DeepMind 'paused' intern hiring and canceled all scheduled interviews, just one hour before my interview ... Anyone knows more details?"

Another aspiring DeepMind intern tweeted that she was "gutted" to hear about the freeze as she had made it to the final round of the hiring process. "The tech hiring freeze is hitting hard," she added.

A DeepMind spokesperson told Insider: "We've paused hiring for new interns at this time as we review how our Intern Program aligns with our long-term focus and strategic priorities as an organization. We are in communication with all applicants, and are grateful for the time they've invested in the process so far." 

A third applicant of its intern program tweeted that it would have been a "dream come true" to work for the DeepMind program, but he didn't make it through the entire process because of the hiring freeze. 

Several big tech companies have paused hiring new staff or slashed their workforces this year amid a looming recession.

Earlier this month, an Amazon recruiting director announced it was putting a "pause on new incremental hires." The director Beth Galetti said the e-commerce giant still plans to hire "a meaningful number" of new employees next year.

Tech giants such as Meta and Twitter have made mass cuts to their workforce to save on costs. Meta axed around 11,000 employees – 13% of its headcount – while Elon Musk laid off close to half of Twitter's workforce earlier this month after taking over the platform. 

Insider contacted the three applicants for comment and did not receive responses. 

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