Microsoft to lay off 18.000 employees
Microsoft has announced on Thursday, July 17th that the company was going to begin massive layoffs of up to 14% of their staff, to be accomplished in the following year. Most affected by these layoffs will be the newly acquired Nokia devices and services division, with a cut of about 12.500 jobs, the company planning to shift non-Windows OS based phones to maintenance mode, including Asha, S40 and the Android based Nokia X, saying that all future phones will run the Windows phone OS. Microsoft said 1,100 job cuts would come from Finland, and 1,800 from a Nokia factory in Hungary. The result is that Microsoft is letting go of nearly half of the 25,000 people who joined the company from Nokia.
The acquisition of Nokia was fairly scrutinized by the tech community, most arguing that Microsoft has jumped head first into a domain they lack expertise in, namely mobile hardware development, even though the idea behind the purchase suggests a more comprehensive mobile software and hardware development which would harmonize products and software in the benefit of Microsoft and its users. The acquisition might unravel as that of Motorola Mobility by Google, who sold it to Lenovo after only a few years, if not handled correctly by the new Chief Executive, Satya Nadella.
Mr. Nadella added that the company will be shutting down the Xbox Entertainment Studios, which was producing original television programs, mentioning that the HALO series would not be affected in the process. Rumors say that cuts will be made in all sectors of Microsoft, reflecting Mr. Nadella’s newly expressed ideal to restructure and innovate the company, and tweak the inner organization of the company in order to regain popularity and market strength after being left behind by companies like Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook in their technology, software and innovation, Microsoft is ultimately aiming to become, once again, the dominant force in modern technology.
Microsoft has been criticized for its attempts at investing in search engines and video game businesses, which lacked popularity and have not been progressing as well as other areas, affecting the overall standing of the company in the eyes of the consumer. Mr. Nadella has admitted that Microsoft may have bitten off more than it can chew and advocates for a clearer focus in the company on the markets that are more productive and lucrative through the realignment of the workforce and through setting new goals and ambitions for the company, focusing on the mobile phone industry at the same time.