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Microsoft to double salary budget to retain workers

The salary raise will affect early to mid-career employees around the world who work for the tech giant

Microsoft is set to nearly double its budget for employee salary increases and raise the range of stock compensations it rewards workers with by around 25%.

The company is making this move to try and retain staff and help workers manage the pressures from inflation. The move is set to affect early to mid-career employees, Microsoft told its employees on Monday. 

“Time and time again, we see that our talent is in high demand because of the amazing work that you do,” Satya Nadella, chief executive officer, said in a memo seen by Bloomberg

He added that the stock increase will affect employees at Level 67 on the company’s internal scale, or below. This level is the last tier before an employee is made a company partner where they receive a higher pay scale. The new budget increases are set to vary by country, with Nadella underlining that the most meaningful increases will be focused where the market demands.

The tech giant has announced the changes as it gets closer to the end of the fiscal year, ending on 30 June. For the current fiscal year, Microsoft had already introduced higher budgets for promotions and special stock awards meant to recognise the impact and support retention of its most competitive talent pools.

Employees at the company have a salary package made up of base salary, bonus, and stock. The new changes are set to affect a major part of its workforce, which came to 181,000 in June 2021.

“As we approach our annual total rewards process, we are making a significant additional investment this year to compensate our employees globally,” Microsoft said in a statement to Bloomberg. “While we have factored in the impact of inflation and rising cost of living, these changes also recognise our appreciation to our world-class talent who support our mission, culture and customers, and partners.”

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“People come to and stay at Microsoft because of our mission and culture, the meaning they find in the work they do, the people they work with, and how they are rewarded," a spokesperson told IT Pro. "This increased investment in our worldwide compensation reflects the ongoing commitment we have to providing a highly competitive experience for our employees.”

Tech companies have felt the effects of a profound talent shortage across the world, exacerbated by the pandemic. The UK’s skill shortage, for example, was found to be at an all-time high last November. A report revealed that 40% of UK digital leaders admitted they can’t keep employees as long as they would like as they were being lured away by the offer of more money. Only a third of organisations said they had redesigned their employee offer to make it attractive to staff in the new hybrid working world.

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