Microsoft places the freeze on worker salaries, CEO pay nonetheless as sizzling as ever

Name it the countless drive to sate Wall Avenue sorts or wise enterprise planning within the face of a cooling financial system – both approach Microsoft says it can freeze the salaries of full-time staff this yr.

In an electronic mail to employees, proven to The Reg by Microsoft insiders, CEO Satya Nadella delivered the dangerous information, saying the corporate is locked in a “aggressive atmosphere whereas additionally going through world macroeconomic uncertainties.”

“To stay a consequential firm, we should preserve a management place in our at-scale companies of right this moment, producing sufficient yield to take a position and lead within the subsequent wave, whereas staying on the frontiers of each efficiency and effectivity. That’s the context by which we’re making selections and investing in our individuals, our enterprise, and our future.”

Nadella pointed to “important funding in compensation” final yr that employees obtained, which included rising the “annual inventory alternative.” This was afforded by banking wholesome earnings within the pandemic as extra companies embraced the cloud.

“This yr the financial situations are very totally different throughout many dimensions, together with buyer demand, the labor market, and the investments required for the following cycle of innovation. Given this, we fund our compensation commensurate with the general market,” Nadella writes.

“Whereas we can have wage will increase for sure hourly or equal roles, we won’t have wage improve for full-time salaried staff this yr.”

The blow for employees comes simply weeks after Microsoft launched monetary outcomes for Q3 of its fiscal 2023 ended March 31, displaying the group made a internet revenue of $18.29 billion, up from the $16.72 billion recorded earlier within the yr. Income development slowed significantly however was maintained, swelling from $49.36 billion to $52.85 billion.

For the nine-month interval, Microsoft reported revenues of $155.7 billion versus $146.4 billion within the corresponding interval of 2022. And it recorded internet revenue of $52.28 billion, albeit down 6.6 p.c year-on-year.

Shareholders aren’t going to starve right here. Neither are Microsoft’s workforce, the place the typical annual pay was slightly greater than $190,000 final yr, however no person needs to work tougher annually for little or no extra reward, particularly towards the backdrop of inflationary will increase for their very own households.

Maybe Microsoft thinks the trade is headed for an extended and deeper downturn than first perceived, or maybe it’s being overly cautious so Wall Avenue would not get any nasty surprises.

Nadella himself was awarded nearly $55 million for his service in fiscal 2022, up 10 p.c on the compensation he obtained in 2021. Little question he’ll take a success this yr too, proper? Proper?

Microsoft introduced the redundancy of 10,000 employees in January, having recruited closely in the course of the pandemic. It’s not alone – Salesforce, Google, Amazon, Meta and lots of others are additionally lightening their payroll.

In accordance with knowledge tracker, 192,000 individuals have been chopped from expertise companies to this point this yr. ®