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September 14, 2012

Ballmer "goes Oprah" with Microsoft Employee Meeting Goodies

Posted by David Hunter at 1:20 AM ET.

All Microsoft Employees To Get New Surface Tablets, Windows 8 Phones and PCs

At Microsoft‘s annual employee meeting, held today in Seattle, Steve Ballmer announced Microsoft will be giving all 90,000+ employees what some are calling the “Oprah treatment” – a new Surface RT tablet to use at home and work , a new work PC with Windows (employees can choose between desktops, laptops, ultrabooks and tablets) and a Windows Phone 8 device to use at home and work.

Filed under Employee Retention, Executives, General Business, Microsoft, Steve Ballmer

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September 10, 2012

Microsoft Plans Rapid China Expansion

Posted by David Hunter at 11:43 AM ET.

Microsoft on Hiring Spree in China

Software giant Microsoft Corp. plans to hire more than 1,000 employees to boost its existing staff strength in China over the coming year. This expansion is an attempt by Microsoft to ramp up its research and development (R&D) efforts in the country, to better compete with Apple Inc. and Google Inc. in China’s fast-growing mobile Internet market.

Microsoft said that the new employees would be spread across its R&D and marketing segments and customer service. Currently, the company spends around $500 million annually on research and development work in China. It plans to boost its R&D spend by 15% over the same time period. Additionally, Microsoft is building a large cloud computing center in Shanghai that will employ around 600 more employees.

Microsoft plans large expansion in China to push cloud services

Microsoft’s so-called "go big" strategy for China, includes hiring 1,000 additional employees over the fiscal year, that will work in research, enterprise services, and support for the company. Currently the company has about 4,500 employees in the country.

The company also plans to increase its research and development investment in China next year, bringing it up by 15 percent from the current annual amount of US$500 million.

As part of the overall strategy, the company will expand its presence in 15 provinces and 20 cities in China by bolstering its staff and management and working with local government offices.

The investment is expected to help promote Microsoft’s cloud offerings — including Windows Azure, Office 365, and Windows Server 2012 — in China. It will also help as the company prepares for the upcoming release of Windows 8 and Microsoft Office 2013.

Filed under Employee Retention, General Business, Microsoft, Offshoring

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January 10, 2011

Microsoft Server and Tools boss Bob Muglia pushed out?

Posted by David Hunter at 2:44 PM ET.

Bob Muglia, the president of Microsoft’s Server and Tools business is out and it looks like he has been pushed:

Bob Muglia, head of servers and tools, is leaving Microsoft this summer.

In a memo to employees, Steve Ballmer says he’s conducting a search internally and externally for a replacement.

He also says, "I have decided that now is the time to put new leadership in place for STB," which makes it seem like he’s tossing Muglia.

Server and tools is Microsoft’s third biggest businesses. It generated $4 billion in revenue last quarter.

Click through for the full text of Ballmer’s memo but here’s the pertinent clip:

The best time to think about change is when you are in a position of strength, and that’s where we are today with STB – leading the server business, successful with our developer tools, and poised to lead the rapidly emerging cloud future. Bob Muglia and I have been talking about the overall business and what is needed to accelerate our growth. In this context, I have decided that now is the time to put new leadership in place for STB. This is simply recognition that all businesses go through cycles and need new and different talent to manage through those cycles. Bob has been a phenomenal partner throughout this process, and he and his leadership team have the right strategy in place.

In conjunction with this leadership change, Bob has decided to leave Microsoft this summer.

Sounds like he was definitely pushed. I have often said that Server and Tools gets no respect at Microsoft while it has built success after success in a much more competitive environment than that facing the other Microsoft cash cows of Windows (client) and Office and this is apparently just more of the same. One surely has to wonder what Ballmer is thinking since there are numerous other areas in Microsoft that could really use a shakeup. Anyhow, Muglia gets to run the operation until a new leader is found and then bring him/her onboard before departing.

Filed under Bob Muglia, Employee Retention, Executives, General Business, Microsoft, OS - Server, Steve Ballmer, Tools

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October 20, 2010

Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie Leaving Microsoft

Posted by David Hunter at 2:54 PM ET.

Steve Ballmer has announced that Microsoft Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie is leaving and that his post will not be filled.

With our progress in services and the cloud now full speed ahead in all aspects of our business, Ray and I are announcing today Ray’s intention to step down from his role as chief software architect. He will remain with the company as he transitions the teams and ongoing strategic projects within his organization – bringing the great innovations and great innovators he’s assembled into the groups driving our business.

Woody Leonhard at Infoworld says "Ray Ozzie’s leaving Microsoft: What took him so long?" and Joe Wilcox opines that the problem was that Ozzie really wasn’t one of Steve Ballmer’s boys. Take the money and run, Ray – there are lots of places where you can do interesting technical work.

Filed under Employee Retention, Executives, General Business, Microsoft, Ray Ozzie, Steve Ballmer

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