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Microsoft redundancies: The human cost

6 August 2014
Written by
Helayna Lowe
The analysts knew it was going to happen.  After the 3,200 word memo from Satya Nadella about the future of the business, there were predictions that Microsoft was about to carve a chunk out of the workforce but what took many by surprise was the sheer number: 18,000 - the largest 'lay-off' in Microsoft's history. 

As with the redundancies that occurred during the acquisitions of Great Plains and Navision that created the Microsoft Dynamics business of today, the market doesn’t seem too troubled by the cut in personnel. 

Interestingly (or perhaps unsettlingly, depending on your viewpoint) the move was welcomed with Microsoft's share price jumping to its highest point since 2000*. 

Decisive action is often applauded despite the human cost.

The human cost

With redundancies taking place across Microsoft globally, one person that was counting the human cost was the Prime Minister of Finland, Alexander Stubb. 

With almost a quarter of the ex-Nokia workforce in Finland losing their jobs, and a whole plant shutting down, he was quoted in the Financial Times as saying it was “very, very difficult from a human point of view”.  No doubt it was heartening for those people affected to hear his comments.

What next?

Ironically, one of the benefits of being employed by a large corporation can be what they do when they decide to make your role redundant. 

Many of the staff impacted will be offered career counselling, skills transfer courses and, for a lucky few, another role within the organisation. 

Given that Dynamics NAV 2015 will feature ‘expressive tiles’ and become available in mobile formats I think it’s likely we’ll see some of the Nokia R&D folks moving into Dynamics roles. Redundancy settlements also help to cushion the blow but then what?

A little understanding

For me, the keys to forging a successful relationship with a client or a person looking for a job is listening and understanding.  I am passionate about taking a person-centred approach to recruitment and making sure that my team take into account the attributes, skills and personality of the person we're working with when seeking to place them within the Dynamics community.  

So we won't force them to attend interviews for roles that won't suit them and we won't bombard our clients with cv's for candidates that won't fit.  So whilst the corporations do what they need to do to look after their shareholders, we'll be focusing on making sure that looking after people is at the heart of our business.

Have you been impacted by the announcement?  Are you considering a move into the Dynamics space?  Get in touch - I'd love to help.

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*Source - the Guardian:

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