Microsoft this month promoted Ron Markezich to CIO of its IT organization. Markezich was previously general manager of finance and administration in that department.
Markezich will report to Rick Devenuti, who has been handling the roles of corporate vice president for worldwide services and IT CIO after the previous head of services, Mike Sinneck, left the company last year.
Microsoft for some time has used the IT department as one of its primary testers of upcoming products, with software such as Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 running Microsofts desktops, servers, Web sites and day-to-day operations up to a year before those products became release candidates.
Markezich said his No. 1 priority is to make sure Microsoft runs its products well internally before theyre released to customers. "We will continue to be Microsofts first and best customer," he said.
The IT organization, which comprises about 3,800 members, including Microsoft employees, vendors and contingent staff, starts testing software under development in its labs as early as the alpha stage, which is before any public betas.