Reports of another wave of layoffs rekindle bad press for Microsoft

A second wave of layoffs is reportedly coming Thursday, as Microsoft moves to eliminate a total of 18,000 jobs by June of 2015

Microsoft's massive staff reduction, which shocked many when it was announced in July, is back in the spotlight with a pair of reports that the ax will come down on another group of employees Thursday.

It would be the second wave of job cuts in the plan to ultimately eliminate 18,000 positions, or 14 percent of the company's staff, by the end of its fiscal year on June 30, 2015, according to reports this week from ZDnet and GigaOM, both based on anonymous sources.

When Microsoft first announced the job cuts -- the largest staff reduction in the company's history -- some questioned the wisdom of carrying them out in stages over the course of 12 months, saying that it would do a number on the already shaken employee morale and periodically reopening the wound from a public relations perspective.

The company back then didn't explain why it opted to drag out the process instead of getting them done in one take. CEO Satya Nadella was specifically singled out for criticism because he framed the explanation for the layoffs in what some felt was cold and distant marketing-speak in his public memo to employees, which he peppered with terms like "synergies" and "strategic alignment."

Now, two months later, Microsoft's layoffs plan is back to dominating the headlines about the company. With it come reminders that the staff reduction effort is focused heavily on employees acquired from Nokia's devices and services business. That $7.2 billion acquisition was brokered by Steve Ballmer, Nadella's predecessor. Some industry analysts have speculated that Nadella isn't enthusiastic about the original deal and that he will eventually divest Microsoft of that Nokia business altogether, getting Microsoft out of the cell phone hardware market.

It's not clear how many more waves of layoffs Microsoft expects to carry out before the reduction is completed. In the July press release, the company stated that the "actions associated with the plan" would be "substantially complete" before the end of 2014, and "fully complete" by June of next year.

Microsoft didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Juan Carlos Perez covers enterprise communication/collaboration suites, operating systems, browsers and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Juan on Twitter at @JuanCPerezIDG.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags business issuesMicrosoftlayoffs

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Juan Carlos Perez

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?