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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

July 26, 2007 at 9:56 AM

FAM: Microsoft total employment 78,280

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is running through the five things the company has to do very well to continue its success.

First and foremost, he said, “We’ve got to get the right people, the best and the brightest, that is absolutely essential.”

Ballmer said Microsoft is hiring 90 percent of the people it tries to hire. That equated to 12,800 new hires globally in the fiscal year ended June 30. He also said the company experienced total attrition of 8 percent.

So, with some quick calculations, we get a look at Microsoft’s headcount at the end of fiscal 2007:

71,172 (headcount on June 30, 2006) – 5,693 (8 percent attrition) + 12,800 new hires = 78,279

That translates to the 10 percent growth that CFO Chris Liddell talked about last week.

Ballmer provided some new detail on good vs. bad attrition. Four percent is what he called bad attrition: people retiring, relocating or “sometimes we’ll lose to another company although that’s quite rare.”

Good attrition equals about 3 percent. He said that’s a must-have and it means holding people who are not performing accountable and moving them out of the company.

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