Cuts could come as early as this week
Microsoft is beginning its restructuring in the near future, as forecast by CEO Satya Nadella last week in an interview. The reductions will most likely be in engineering, marketing, and areas of overlap with Nokia. The restructuring, which may begin as soon as this week, may end up being the largest in Microsoft history, topping the 5,800 jobs cut in 2009.
Nadella, who took over from Steve Ballmer in February of this year stated that Microsoft would need to become more focused and efficient. Nadella called for more emphasis on mobile devices, cloud-computing, and productivity software as consumers move away from personal computing and into mobile computing. Nadella stated that nothing was off the table in thinking about how Microsoft would shift its culture.
While Microsoft has had small, intermittent job cuts from its various departments, the company has only restructured once before at the start of the recession in 2009. Over the course of that year, the company cut 5,800 jobs, or around five percent of its workforce at the time. Some of the cuts are rumored to be in marketing departments for its global Xbox team.
Much of the restructuring seems to be based around the integration and implementation of Nokia and Microsoft's new mobile strategy. Also, with new cloud methods of building software, it often makes sense to have the developers test and fix bugs instead of a separate team of testers. Rumor has it that among the job cuts will be some software testers.
Microsoft isn't the first technology company to trim jobs this year. In May Hewlett-Packard Co. after an 11th straight quarter of declining sales CEO Meg Whitman stated that she will eliminate as many as 16,000 jobs on top of 34,000 already cut.
Hopefully, despite the hardship caused by so many job cuts, Microsoft can finally under this leadership team regain their momentum and focus and remain a viable brand for years to come.