Microsoft Lays Off 214 in U.S. Sales

The rumors are true: Microsoft is laying off some employees. But it's not the huge company-wide reduction in force that some were predicting. (Microsoft Watch)

Microsoft is laying off 214 U.S. salespeople, a day after it announced some executive shuffling across various product groups, officials confirmed on June 29.

While this isnt the first time Microsoft has cut employees, the move is somewhat uncharacteristic for the 70,000-employee company that has been adding staff by the thousands each year.

In 2004, Microsoft laid off 76 people in the Xbox unit. In 2003, the company cut more than 150 Microsoft Consulting Services employees from the payroll.

Microsofts fiscal 2006 ends on June 30. On June 28, Microsoft made some internal tweaks to its channel and Microsoft Business Solutions units, moving its Small and Mid-market Solutions and Partners (SMS&P) group to report to Chief Operating Officer Kevin Turner.

As part of the move, former SMS&P head Orlando Ayala is moving to the emerging markets group.

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