Okta Cuts 400 Jobs In 2nd Major Round Of Layoffs

The company’s ‘restructuring plan’ comes a year after Okta had cut 300 positions, and follows a high-profile breach that impacted all of its support customers.

Okta told employees Thursday that it has eliminated 400 full-time jobs as part of a “restructuring plan,” representing 7 percent of its staff.

The new round of layoffs comes a year after Okta disclosed it was cutting 300 employees, which had represented 5 percent of the identity security vendor’s global workforce at the time.

[Related: Jamf Says Layoffs Will Impact 6 Percent Of Staff]

The announcement also comes a day after another major cybersecurity vendor, Proofpoint, disclosed a reduction of 280 jobs, reportedly affecting 6 percent of its staff.

Okta revealed the new round of layoffs in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Thursday.

“The Company [on Thursday] announced to its employees a restructuring plan intended to improve operating efficiencies and strengthen the Company’s commitment to profitable growth,” Okta said in the filing.

An Okta spokesperson provided the text of an email sent by Okta Co-founder and CEO Todd McKinnon to staff, which described the restructuring as a “difficult decision.”

“In order to grow profitably, we need to run the business with greater efficiency. While we’ve taken steps in the right direction, the reality is that costs are still too high,” McKinnon wrote in the email to employees.

“We need to be mindful of our overall spend so we can continue to invest in the areas, products, and routes to market with the most opportunity,” he told staff. “To capture our massive potential and build an iconic company, we must be thoughtful about where we place our bets. This action is a proactive measure to help set the company up for long-term success.”

“To the impacted employees, I am deeply sorry and we thank you for your many contributions,” McKinnon added in the email.

Okta has also recently faced challenges as a result of a high-profile support system breach, which included the theft of all support customer names and emails. The incident, which was the second major breach for Okta in two years, has had the potential for damaging the company’s business, Wall Street analysts have suggested.

Okta responded with a number of commitments including a pledge to delay product and feature launches for 90 days in order to focus on its security.

In the round of layoffs announced a year ago, McKinnon had told staff that the difficult economic environment as well as “execution challenges” at the company were behind the decision at the time.

In addition to Proofpoint’s cutbacks, other major layoff rounds among cybersecurity firms have recently included Splunk’s elimination of about 537 employees in November and layoffs at Rapid7 that impacted 470 employees in August.