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Post by Eorl @ 09:29am 18/07/14 | 12 Comments
Microsoft has announced that it will be cutting 18,000 jobs from across a number of its various divisions, with CEO Satya Nadella confirming in an email to employees just where these cuts will be seen.

According to the email (via Polygon), a majority of the 18,000 cuts will be seen in the Nokia Devices and Services division, a company that Microsoft only recently acquired late last year in September. "The first step to building the right organization for our ambitions is to realign our workforce," Nadella wrote.
"With this in mind, we will begin to reduce the size of our overall workforce by up to 18,000 jobs in the next year. Of that total, our work toward synergies and strategic alignment on Nokia Devices and Services is expected to account for about 12,500 jobs, comprising both professional and factory workers. We are moving now to start reducing the first 13,000 positions, and the vast majority of employees whose jobs will be eliminated will be notified over the next six months."
While it's obvious that a number of employees are going to be losing their jobs over the next year, Nadella notes that the restructure will create other jobs. Microsoft will offer severance packages to those affected, and will also help with job transitions where needed.

Nadella, who was named CEO of Microsoft only in February of this year, noted that the changes are designed to "simplify the way we work to drive greater accountability" and allow Microsoft to be more agile. The changes will include some organisational flattening, will eliminate the layers that Microsoft has grown over the years, and foster greater teamwork, according to the CEO.

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Posted 09:34am 18/7/14
"The first step to building the right organization for our ambitions is to realign our workforce," Nadella wrote.
I wonder how much of their workforce is being realigned to China where they can have school kids do "work experience" for 16 hours a day in their factories.
Posted 04:57am 20/7/14

Balmer destroyed Microsoft, they've literally lost a decade and more. This is a good start to getting it back into an organisation that can deliver well.

Posted 06:15am 20/7/14
"destroyed" is a strong word - especially if you're typing that on a Windows PC!

They have something like $40b in cash lying around. Actually I went to look for a citation for that figure because I only remember it roughly from visiting MS in Seattle a couple years ago and going to their financial centre (which is like a fully equipped trading business where they manage their financial assets) - the current value is closer to $80b.

They can sit on their ass and twiddle their thumbs for years - possibly decades - before they're even close to destroyed.

They still have world leading R&D. They just need to figure out how to apply it. If you're unfamiliar with MS Research you should keep an eye on what they do because a lot of it is awesome - they just don't product-ise it very well.

The biggest mistake I think they make on a regular basis is trying to be a me-too company. They have me-too products in phone, tablet , cloud, search, browser. They are constantly trying to catch up to where everyone else is, instead of actually innovating in products.

This move was always going to happen; I think Nokia were doomed anyway before MS got involved simply because they were not institutionally ready or able to respond to the iPhone. This at least cuts loose this complete waste of time in the mobile space and hopefully will force their hand about where they want to sit in the mobile ecosystem. I personally would like to see them simply get out of it altogether but I suspect ego might not let that happen.

This is sad news for a lot of people in Finland and the several thousand in the US that are let go. The market has responded reasonably positively to this move but on this scale I really don't think that means anything. I look forward to seeing MSs next steps under the new CEO.
Posted 06:46am 20/7/14
Microsoft still actually make money and are profitable. A lot of big companies these days can't say that they are still making money most of them are losing it.
Posted 07:18am 24/7/14

Yeah I guess destroy is a bit figurative in that sense. To be fair though, Microsoft has that cash and generates that revenue practically by itself thanks to Windows and Office. I'd say Balmer turned them into the me-too company, whilst also destroying them internally, e.g. having good talent, fostering innovation, delivering good products - anything more then what they have been. Check out that article I linked for some insight. Balmer is topping worst CEO ever lists. Imagine if they hadn't had to suffer that 10 years of getting steadily s******, not to mention the travesties of Windows 8 and Xbox One. They could of had the Office Online stuff out ages ago and properly competed with, if not beaten, Google Docs.

I'm excited for the new direction too, hopefully they do good.

Microsoft has big plans for Windows -

Posted 08:28am 24/7/14
Posted 06:49am 25/7/14
MS's latest earnings report is out. The Forbes summary is:
Microsoft reported $23.38 billion of revenue for the fourth quarter, up 17.5% from the same period last year. Net income, however, came in at $4.6 billion, down from last year and behind Wall Street analysts' consensus estimate, both about $5 billion
So they're doing OK!
Posted 07:24am 25/7/14
Because xbox release.
Posted 10:22pm 25/7/14
Cry me a river barnacules!
Posted 12:30am 26/7/14
His story is very familiar. I've just gone through the same situation (minus the kid with special needs). Losing your job that you've had for a significant period of your life, and the benefits it entailed, when you're at the top of your game just plain sucks, and you will grieve. That's what he's doing. That's what a lot of those 18,000 are doing.

And yeah, the fear of no insurance = terrifying. :(
Posted 07:35pm 07/8/14
Seems pretty sad for the guy, so he got the boot from a cushy job in MS corporate somewhere? I'm sure they'll find a use for him with something else soon enough? (I didnt click play im on dialup)

I reckon Balmer has shown some great moments of being an overly psychopathic executive at times. The developers, developers, developers G up being the most publicised one. Surface was his 10 year good call, I watched along with an interview he had with a Nokia exec on Channel4 when they were talking about it while it was still in design.

The Xbone is more of a shiny media player than the well understood game development platform that the Xbox360 is. The Foxtel/HDMI/Sat tv pass through is sweet as.

Where as Bill is the nice guy brainy philanthropist who just watches and probably has a laugh at some of SB's moments

I dunno, someone has to make the tough desicions, SB does seem to really enjoy being brutal when he pulls his exec rank anyway. Must be a megalomaniac thing. There are plenty of better corporate leaders out there than crusty old SB anyway, he's pretty much MS's #1 goto attack dog :)
Posted 07:54pm 07/8/14
Balmer's a total f*** up imho.., definitely right on the psychopathic thing.. have you seen the book about the proliferation of psychopaths in executive roles.

There's a new school of thought that kindness/nice-person leadership is better than the traditional psycho/bull-dog approach, no wonder.

It is sad, but hedging all your bets and your entire life, and family's life, on a career at one corporation is a pretty big mistake and barnacules's own fault, I think.

Certainly in the more free agent orientated workplace we have these days. Plus if he is skilled and experienced, he should be able to find new employment pretty easily. Being employable and getting employment is your own personal responsibility and no-one else's. A business isn't a social welfare organisation or charity, so it's wrong to expect it to provide for you forever, or to maintain your original services exchange agreement (employment) forever.
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