Microsoft layoffs: Over 1,000 axed as sales and customer service division undergo transformation

Priya Walia

In a recent development over the past week, tech giant Microsoft reportedly laid off over a thousand employees, overshooting its previously announced figure of 10,000 layoffs for this year. Sources privy to the circumstances, who chose to remain anonymous due to the delicate nature of the situation, revealed this to news outlet Insider on Wednesday.

Focus on Sales and Customer Service Departments

The bulk of the job cuts affected the customer service and sales positions, causing ripples and raising concerns throughout the industry. The move led to the dissolution of the “Digital Sales and Success” group, a sales and customer service team that once boasted of thousands of personnel.
However, the cleansing didn’t stop there. Microsoft also wielded the axe among engineering project managers and marketing departments.

The focus is more to accelerate consumption than it is to help customers. What was promoted as one of the largest customer service groups in the industry is now struggling to keep up with demand, said one source, as per Insider.

Customer Solutions Manager Role Dissolved

The noteworthy announcement was the dissolution of the customer solutions manager role, with Insider reporting that the employees affected were transferred to customer success account management. However, the number of employees who moved to this role was noticeably small compared to those whose positions were terminated.

Microsoft Leadership’s Silence

Two individuals who spoke to Insider claimed that many managers were kept in the dark concerning the layoff plans, pointing out a noticeable silence from Microsoft’s leadership team. The company’s chief commercial officer, Judson Althoff, faced criticism for his lack of transparency, specifically for not providing more details on the layoffs and a planned sales kickoff event this year. The information came to light through internal messages shared with Insider.

Specifically, an internal post directly connected to the event sparked a wave of speculation as an inquiry was lodged over whether the roles of the ousted sales team would be filled by AI tools.

Furthermore, in a recent Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) report, Microsoft disclosed its decision to let go 276 employees from its workplaces in Redmond and Bellevue, both located in Washington state.

Via Business Insider