Google may be its sexier cousin these days, but Microsoft is still a powerhouse in the industry. After all, Google has just one major revenue driver (advertising), while Microsoft’s massive portfolio of enterprise solutions competes handily in dozens of major technology categories (e.g. gaming, cloud-based storage, customer relationship management and enterprise solutions, to name just a few). This diversity allows employees to work on a wide range of projects, pushing innovation less by inventing anew, than by improving and iterating. Or as one employee puts it: “Sometimes, exciting is being confident/humble enough to make a thousand small changes instead of just one big one”. Plus, the company has its own areas of innovation, such as its lauded research into privacy, facial recognition, and machine learning.
While Microsoft may not have the same instant cachet as Google, it has made huge strides in defining and communicating its values in the tech industry. Rather than try to compete with Google’s mythos, Microsoft has embraced its own culture as markedly different and attractive to a different type of employee. An employee on Quora who was asked to compare working at Microsoft versus Google explained: “In terms of overall direction, Microsoft has a more realistic vision of the future, are [sic] iteratively and tenaciously driving towards it, and have a culture that’s beginning to blossom, whereas Google feels as if it’s hit a point in its life cycle where it will be primarily coasting and uninteresting for a while… These two companies are incredibly different… the models they’re based on, and where they see growth and how they approach it are fundamentally different.”
Microsoft’s employer branding program underlines this difference. Rather than the geek-chic culture attached to Google, Microsoft works hard to attract a new generation of talent – talent not otherwise headed to careers in technology. Microsoft YouthSpark for example, offers dozens of educational programs, employment connections and entrepreneurial support to young people, hoping to inspire them to seek careers in technology. And Microsoft is also a longtime supporter of recruiting young women in greater numbers to the STEM field.
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The above article was taken from our eBook about the World’s Most Attractive Employers. It contains a wealth of useful information for C-Level, HR managers and more.