The VAR Guy Poll: Microsoft Layoffs a Good MoveThe VAR Guy Poll: Microsoft Layoffs a Good Move
In a recent wave of layoffs, IT giant Microsoft (MSFT) let go 18,000 workers as the company looks to integrate the recently acquired Nokia brand and further develop its cloud-first, mobile-first strategy. With thousands of workers (more than half of which were former Nokia employees) now out of a job, was this a smart decision on Microsoft’s part? Or did the company make a big mistake by letting go of so many experienced workers?
August 8, 2014
In a recent wave of layoffs, IT giant Microsoft (MSFT) let go 18,000 workers as the company looks to integrate the recently acquired Nokia brand and further develop its cloud-first, mobile-first strategy. With thousands of workers (more than half of which were former Nokia employees) now out of a job, was this a smart decision on Microsoft’s part? Or did the company make a big mistake by letting go of so many experienced workers? We asked you, the readers, to sound off in the latest VAR Guy poll.
While this was a particularly divisive poll, voters seemed to agree that the layoffs were necessary, at least in some capacity. However, nearly half of respondents were concerned with how the layoffs might affect their businesses and whether Microsoft effectively shot itself in the foot.
Responses among the four categories were spread fairly evenly, but 32 percent of respondents agreed that the layoffs were the right thing to do so Microsoft can focus on its new mobile strategy. While the ramifications of such a massive layoff have yet to be seen, it certainly will be interesting to see if the company has indeed made the right decision by cutting back on what it deemed to be unnecessary extra costs.
Additionally, 29 percent of respondents felt that while the layoffs may have been necessary, the number of employees let go was excessive. With the latest layoff comprising about 14 percent of Microsoft’s full-time workforce, that number is certainly significant in admitting to the world that major changes need to be had internally.
While more than half of respondents felt layoffs were a necessary evil, 22 percent of respondents weren’t sure what to think about Microsoft’s decision. These voters were most concerned with how the layoffs will affect their own businesses, and whether Microsoft will begin scaling down its interaction with its channel partners as a result of the cutbacks.
And finally, 17 percent of readers said the layoffs were a poor decision that will ultimately come back to bite Microsoft in the near future. Whether the damage done is measured in terms of financial loss, reduced human capital for innovation or simply seen as a PR weakness, these readers were adamant Microsoft would be hurt by its decision.
Regardless of whether you personally agree with Microsoft’s decision, we as an industry can only hope the layoffs were made for the right reasons. Similar layoffs have happened within successful companies in the past, including IBM’s recent elimination of 14,000 employees globally in February, according to MarketRealist. However, Forbes feels this particular layoff is more dire than originally thought, as Microsoft also informed many of its contract workers that they will be affected by the job cuts as well.
Even though this is already one of the largest job cuts in the company’s history, we may not even have the final number of those affected until we hear from contractors.
About the Author(s)
You May Also Like