Microsoft said to be cutting up to 4,000 jobs
Microsoft is overhauling its big sales and marketing organization in a move that will cut 3,000 to 4,000 jobs, mostly outside the United States.
A Microsoft spokesman confirmed that “roles will be eliminated” and that most of them will be abroad, but declined to put a precise number on the cuts.
The exact number of jobs that will be trimmed is uncertain partly because in some countries, especially in Europe, labor laws require negotiations. But the global total is likely to be in the range of 3,000 to 4,000, said a person familiar with the company’s plans who was not authorized to speak on the record about them.
Microsoft workers were notified Thursday if their current job was affected. Some of the workers will get other jobs within Microsoft. “This is being done mainly to evolve the skill sets we need,” said Frank Shaw, a spokesman for the company.
The job cuts come after Microsoft last week described a realignment of its sales and marketing arm, which employs about 50,000 people worldwide.
In an internal email last week, Judson Althoff, a Microsoft executive vice president, described the reorganization and its rationale. He wrote that there was “an enormous $4.5 trillion market opportunity” for Microsoft in the coming years.
The sales and marketing changes, Althoff wrote, were intended to “enable us to align the right resources for the right customer at the right time.” Key areas of opportunity, he said, included expanding its cloud offerings in data analysis and artificial intelligence, and helping companies in every industry to become digital businesses, using Microsoft tools.
The Microsoft email last week said the reorganization was intended to sharpen its focus on “six priority industries”: manufacturing, financial services, retail, health, education and government.
Sales and marketing jobs in the future will often require more technical and industry-specific knowledge than before, Shaw said. The reorganization and job cuts, he added, were an effort to match the company’s skills with the changing marketplace.