The fate of Yahoo’s employees is being determined by where they are on the new kill list that CEO Marissa Mayer has written up, though I’m sure many of them wouldn’t mind getting fired at this point. The list is the basis for the company’s current restructuring efforts, and it’s really pretty simple: Yahoo wants to invest more money in its mobile search business, simply maintain its core media business, and it wants to kill off all the assets and websites that are performing poorly. Investors will undoubtedly be pleased with this plan, because they’ve wanted Mayer to start cutting costs for a long time, and what better way to do that than fire people. The layoffs themselves have actually been expected for a few weeks, but now we know how Mayer intends to go about them.
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has a list. And on it are exactly three options, according to numerous sources close to the situation: Invest/Maintain/Kill. You get the idea pretty quickly — and that is now the guiding force behind the restructuring of the Silicon Valley Internet giant, which has begun slowly at the company with Mayer’s old trick of stealth layoffs using performance metrics. This time, though, that is expected to be followed by more substantive firing numbers that managers will begin to receive in the next two weeks. Thus begin the cost controls that investors have long wanted from Mayer, but which she will do her own way. Hence the surgical nature of the first cuts, which sources said is impacting all levels of employees across Yahoo. These have happened regularly during Mayer’s multi-year tenure — basically a sneakier way to let go of people and not catch flack for it. After that, sources said, the company will begin to shed more jobs, although it is not clear if the effort will be as wide-ranging as some outsiders have demanded. Those cuts will focus on that list of what Mayer thinks should be invested in (mobile search), maintained (core media sites like Yahoo finance) and killed (international assets and lower-performing media sites). The majority of the cuts are expected to come after Yahoo announces its earnings next week, when Mayer and increasingly restless CFO Ken Goldman should shed some light on the actions.