Friday, July 28, 2006 - An Imprint All His Own

Playing offense... 

WSJ: You had said earlier that Microsoft is a hot company to work at. Arguably, it's less than it was.

Mr. Ballmer: But can we get the facts instead of all the rhetoric? It's just flat-out wrong. Let me give you at least three things to think about, which I'm happy to defend.

No. 1, we're hiring more senior people and more great talent off college campuses today than any other time in our company's history. We've hired six or seven CTOs [chief technical officers] or heads of engineering from start-ups this year. We've hired a bunch of senior people from a variety of companies in our industry, online companies, enterprise companies. Fantastic recruitment, like never-before recruitment, frankly. I'm just talking about the technology side; by the way, the business side is going pretty darn well, too -- best recruitment we've ever done.

The second thing: retention. Our retention rates are almost too high -- in the sense that I always hope we're working hard on helping people who don't belong here not to belong here. But we're around 3% or so of what we call unwanted attrition. The only time we've ever been lower was right after the dot-com bubble burst.

And No. 3, we're one of the highest payers in our industry. So on all three dimensions -- attraction, retention, compensation -- I just think there's a whole bunch of random malarkey out there. That doesn't mean we don't lose people; we do, and I watch it carefully.

Source: - An Imprint All His Own

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