Microsoft Announces Round Two of Layoffs

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer tells the company that round two of the layoffs the software giant announced in January is in effect. In a May 5 e-mail to employees, Ballmer said Microsoft is moving to reach its goal of 5,000 job cuts as announced in January. As of April, the company had cut more than 1,200 positions, leaving more than 3,000 more jobs to be eliminated.

On the same day it delivered the release candidate of its popular upcoming operating system to the public, Microsoft on May 5 announced the second round of layoffs-impacting 3,000 workers this time-which the company started in January.

Microsoft announced in January that it would cut up to 5,000 positions and began layoffs that cut away more than 1,000 positions from the software giant's work force.

An e-mail from Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to Microsoft employees laid out the story of the layoffs. Ballmer said the layoffs will affect Microsoft workers in the United States, but also abroad.

Said Ballmer in the e-mail:

""With this announcement, we are mostly but not all done with the planned 5,000 job eliminations by June 2010. We are moving quickly to reach this target in response to consistent feedback from our people and business groups that it's important to make decisions and reduce uncertainty for employees as quickly as possible, and so that organizations can concentrate their efforts and resources on strategic objectives.""

Moreover, Ballmer made plain that more layoffs could be in the making:

""As we move forward, we will continue to closely monitor the impact of the economic downturn on the company and if necessary, take further actions on our cost structure including additional job eliminations.""

Microsoft, like many other technology companies in this recession, has been under increased pressure to continue to cut costs. However, despite Ballmer's mention that additional job cuts may be necessary, it is not clear whether or how many more cuts Microsoft will make above the 5,000 positions the company forecast in January.