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Microsoft temps get shorter hours

Cost cuts hit contractors

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Details are emerging of how Microsoft plans to trim its costs while axing as few full-time staff as possible during the ongoing worldwide recession.

On current projects, Microsoft is cutting payments to staffing agencies by ten per cent, and it won't raise the rate for temps who return following a mandatory, 100-day break, the AP has reported.

The company will also reduce the amount of overtime plus the total number of hours worked by temps and contractors.

The reduction is smaller than expected. In January, chief financial officer Chris Liddel told Wall Street the company would cut "contractor cost" by 15 per cent.

Last month, Microsoft said it would cut 5,000 staff during the next 18 months, with 1,400 gone immediately. Comments to the MiniMicrosoft blog made it clear that many Microsoft groups had been promised by managers that full-time staff would not feel the cuts.

That put the focus on contractors and on areas not considered "core" to Microsoft and not home to large numbers of employees - such as the ACES game studio with just 150 staff. ®

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