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The Almighty Buck Businesses Microsoft Technology

Internal Microsoft Poll Shows Employees Are Less Satisfied With Pay (cnbc.com) 54

According to an annual companywide survey, obtained by CNBC, Microsoft employees said they're less fairly paid in 2018 than they were in any of the past three years. When asked if "total compensation (base pay, bonus, equity) is competitive compared to similar jobs at other companies," only 61 percent said it was, down from 65 percent in 2017 and 67 percent each of the two prior years. From the report: Additionally, just 62 percent of the employees agreed that "people are rewarded according to their job performance," down from 63 percent last year and 64 percent in 2016. Those two questions received some of the lowest scores on the survey. The company said that 86 percent of Microsoft's employees participated. The results, shared by Chief People Officer Kathleen Hogan in April, are a further indication of the challenge that Microsoft and other tech companies face in hiring and retaining top talent. Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, Washington, is just a few miles from Amazon's home and isn't far from the Seattle offices of Google, Facebook and a growing number of start-ups. Chief People Officer Kathleen Hogan said the company takes the issue "seriously," and that it will work to ensure a more balanced pay structure.

Internal Microsoft Poll Shows Employees Are Less Satisfied With Pay

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  • by LaughingRadish ( 2694765 ) on Thursday June 07, 2018 @07:47PM (#56746410) Journal

    This is what Github employees, now Microsoft employees have to look forward to.

  • by ErichTheRed ( 39327 ) on Thursday June 07, 2018 @07:56PM (#56746464)

    Back in the late 90s, anyone who had a passing familiarity with computers was commanding a huge salary regardless of talent. I'm sure Microsoft is in an arms race with Amazon and Google these days. All three companies are going at a breakneck pace trying to develop new cloud services or make the ones they already run cheaper to run. The race is on to lock as many customers into their cloud provider as they can because no one is buying software licenses anymore.

    What's interesting is that with everything moving to the cloud, these 3 companies and a few others will probably be the chief consumers of developer and infrastructure engineering talent. And at least in previous years, Microsoft selected for highly talented people and paid enough to ensure they didn't run off to a competitor. I've worked with people who've been at Microsoft for 20+ years...if you're really talented they do a lot to keep you. I think this is why that survey result is surprising.

    We'll see what happens in a couple years. I'm betting a huge chunk of cloud consumption is startups selling bags of dog food and AI-powered, IoT driven, blockchain-enabled subscription boxes online. When that goes away, people are still going to use AWS/Azure/GCP, but I just don't think they'll get the stupid levels of revenue they're getting today from the VC money.

    • I'm betting a huge chunk of cloud consumption is startups selling bags of dog food and AI-powered, IoT driven, blockchain-enabled subscription boxes online.

      I think most companies have started moving to the 'cloud' in one way or another. Most of those startups aren't using Azure, that's for people who use C# or want to be integrated with Microsoft technologies, and this is what startups think of C# [expensify.com].

  • by richrz ( 1624799 ) on Thursday June 07, 2018 @08:08PM (#56746522)
    About the time I left (~5 years ago) pay was starting to stagnate and become much less competitive. Older more experienced folks were pushed out and the youngins' are happy with the free rides around campus/perks/quality of life stuff with terrible pay. It really is a race to the bottom at that company as no one I know that is REALLY good at their job still works there.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Perspective from inside: it sometimes feels like advancement is based more on time put in than than value delivered, up until a certain level at least. Some of the smartest, most productive people in the world are here but then there are entire teams that you can’t figure out what they do. This is very frustrating at lower levels because it can feel like no matter how well you perform you are going to advance at only a slightly faster pace than people who are just coasting. Thankfully I love what I wo

    • by ErichTheRed ( 39327 ) on Thursday June 07, 2018 @08:43PM (#56746718)

      This happens at every big company, and Microsoft also has super-deep pockets so they can afford to have some dead wood. If you're measuring 'time put in" as years with the company, that's true...there are some people in big companies who know the right people and can coast for decades. But you can also measure time put in as how many 100-hour weeks you put in on product deathmarches, how tethered you are to VSTS 24 hours a day, etc. Those people who are workaholics will also be recognized over very productive, smart people because they're more visible. They're the ones leaving work at 1 AM and coming back for more.

      As a counter example to MS dead wood, look at HP/HPE. The bottom has dropped out of non-white box servers and storage...if you believe the pundits no one is buying new equipment. Companies also have less of a need for third-rate crappy offshore IT support. As a result, HP/HPE/DXC have been throwing thousands of people overboard. We actually do buy equipment still, and it's a normal occurence to have the person you've been talking with for years suddenly get fired. HP could afford to be bloatted when they were making a healthy margin on servers and selling a ton of them.Azure.

      Microsoft doesn't have this problem. They have huge cash reserves and are about to lock every single Windows enterprise into Office 365 and Azure. I wouldn't expect the dead wood to go away anytime soon.

      • This happens at every big company, and Microsoft also has super-deep pockets so they can afford to have some dead wood.

        It's also large so it can't afford to not have some dead wood.

        Organisation at scale is a difficult problem, and I don't think there are any organisations the size of MS which don't have significant amounts of dead wood. There are always people coasting, or doing fuck-all in a departmant which keeps getting reorganised or twiddling their thumbs on a product which is on a death march or abou

        • by pnutjam ( 523990 )
          Dead wood is also hard to identify. I remember hearing a talk while back where the manager type talked about firing the bottom 10% of performers.
          Turns out a decent percentage of those weren't getting their work done, but only because they were doing everyone else's. When they got fired, productivity for the department plummeted.
          Dead wood isn't always useless and some metrics can't be measured more then a step or two away.
  • low pay = more H1B's that locked to the job and will do 80+ hours a week so they don't kicked out the USA.

  • That " anonymous " survey they took is anything but. ( Like the ones my own company demands we take annually asking how amazing we think the company is )

    They way they'll " fix " the pay problem is to fire all those who are complaining about the pay. Next survey will show a dramatic increase in the number of " happy " employees who think their pay is too generous.

    Because of this amazing turn around, some high level executive will get an amazing bonus for doing such a great job for corporate morale !

  • by Anonymous Coward

    There is a lot of dead wood in IT who basically get paid what i call 'appearance money' to show up. Most teams are held together by one or two switched on people who do all the work and are well paid. The 'dead wood; then complain they don't get paid enough as others in the team and complain they want equal pay and titles etc.

  • What? People are unsatisfied because they're being asked obviate the need for their skillset by being made to train some pennies-on-the-dollar cubicle farmer to do everything they're paid a fair wage to do, then getting laid off?

    Hell, if I knew my employer were trying to do that, *I* would be unsatisfied with my pay too.
    Since my pay is balanced against where I live and how I live. And the fact that I'm going to have to make savings stretch when they, inevitably, let me go.

  • I have a friend who works at Microsoft. In the mid 2000s, after Microsoft stock had been stagnant for years, he said that Microsoft was trying to increase their salaries to make up for the fact that the stock was a poor performer. I guess now that their stock has been skyrocketing the last few years, they want more stock instead of a good salary.
  • When the executives are dropping the billions for smaller companies with massive payouts to their staff, yeah that has a bounce back ripple through the existing work force. DUH! Isn't that HR-101?
  • does not make up for that spying on people feeling.
  • We have employee engagement surveys every years to show things like this. And invariably the make serious noises about problem areas, but no follow-up ever happens on them if they involve compensation (including costs of health care and other perks in addition salary), or lack of faith in senior management.

    Where the numbers are good they wave them like a flag and give pats on the back (but nothing more tangible).

    Now where it gets interesting is when you don't look at it monolithically. We would use an out

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