Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2003/01/24/ms_to_hire/

MS to hire 1,500 sales team to win more server revenue

Apparently we still don't have enough money...

By John Lettice

Posted in Software, 24th January 2003 16:03 GMT

Microsoft's business customers should brace themselves - the company is attempting to compensate for slowing retail sales of software by pushing sales of bigger ticket items such as network and database software. Historically the company has made most of its profits from the Windows PC 'tax' and from Office sales, and has found server software sales uphill work; but financial imperatives mean this has got to change.

One could of course muse that here we have a company that's making so much money that it was recently forced to introduce dividends in order to find something to do with it, and that maybe it would make sense if it didn't have such monstrous profit margins, and didn't therefore face the hassle of having to figure out what to do with it, then the subsequent hassle of figuring out how it can get even more money in order to have to figure...

But no, you're right, it doesn't work that way, and we're talking the shareholder expectations treadmill here. Chief financial hamster, John Connors, was on it at an analysts meeting in New York today, and revealed that the company will be hiring a 1,500 strong quota-based sales team to push server and database software.

Microsoft has corporate and government operations already, so presumably the new hires will address a rather broader base than the current efforts, and are being seen as helping Microsoft compete more effectively with the sales forces of the likes of Oracle and IBM.

Will it succeed? Actually, we'd like to hear more about the remuneration packages intended for these people; traditionally, Microsoft is notoriously cheap, overly reliant on options, and this is not an approach likely to attract the grasping piranha the Is and Os of this world use to leech huge quantities of dough from big business. But it's still feasible for a less skilled set of desperados to beat extra licence revenue out of existing Microsoft shops, so Connor might be onto a winner here anyway. ®