Chip giant Intel has laid off hundreds of information technology workers at sites across the US and Costa Rica.

The company confirmed the news after initial reports by The Oregonian/OregonLive, which cited an internal memo that said the company aimed to consolidate IT operations under a single contractor, India's Infosys. Using just one contractor will require fewer managers to oversee, the company believes.

Intel Inside
– Sebastian Moss

Outsourcing

The company said in a statement: “Changes in our workforce are driven by the needs and priorities of our business, which we continually evaluate. We are committed to treating all impacted employees with professionalism and respect."

The layoffs, of which the exact number is unknown, is thought to be the biggest round of staff cuts since the company eliminated some 15,000 jobs across the company in 2016. That time, the company used a combination of layoffs, buyouts and early retirement offers. As of the end of last year, the company employs roughly 107,400 people.

Despite these cuts, the company is expanding elsewhere - with plans to build new factories in Oregon, Ireland and Israel, and the third phase of its Hillsboro research factory, D1X. That facility alone is expected to lead to 1,750 new jobs in the area.

The layoffs also come just two months after interim CEO Robert Swan shifted to a permanent CEO role, after a months-long search for a candidate. Swan took over as CEO after the previous head, Brian Krzanich, resigned suddenly due to a "consensual relationship" with an employee.