Ballmer May Reveal Microsoft Restructuring on Thursday
Steve Ballmer may make Microsoft's reorganization public on Thursday.
AllThingsD reports that on Thursday Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer may finally reveal to the public his plan to overhaul the company management. That date could change, as there are reportedly still a number of issues that are still up in the air due to the "close-to-the-vest" planning by Ballmer.
Unnamed sources have pointed to one of the biggest changes in the halls of Redmond since former Microsoft boss Bill Gates stepped out of the office. Over the last several weeks they have outlined a number of changes within the upper management which will or already have taken place including former Xbox division Don Mattrick who left the company to helm FarmVille developer Zynga.
As indicated last fall, Ballmer said he plans to reorganize Microsoft to center on services and devices in both the consumer and business sectors. He's looking to create a "functional coherence", sources claim, to dump more resources into fewer efforts and eliminating overlapping functions. He intends to place products where they belong in the product cycle, but that also includes shuffling around executives in the process.
Sources claim that Larson-Green may be placed in charge of hardware engineering for all devices, including the Xbox One console and Surface tablets. Windows Phone software chief Terry Myerson may also be given the added responsibility for the Windows operating system engineering, as the two groups will likely be merged together.
They also said that Satya Nadella, current head of the server business, will likely oversee a unit focused on cloud computing and products for the enterprise sector. Qi Lu, which is currently chief of the online group, may run an applications and services engineering unit consisting of Bing, Skype and Office. Windows marketing head Tami Reller may oversee an entire marketing unit.
Skype president Tony Bates will probably lead strategy and business development, and work on building relationships with software developers and Microsoft partners who make hardware running Microsoft software products. Microsoft COO Kevin Turner is expected to keep his position along with current CFO Amy Hood and HR head Lisa Brummel. Chief lawyer Brad Smith is also expected to retain his current role as well.
So far it's not clear how this new restructuring will make Microsoft move faster at innovation, especially against agile competitors like Google. The Redmond company's online division has reportedly lost $10.9 billion USD since the first quarter of 2005, trying to disrupt Google's search dominance. As Business Insider points out, Bing has only succeeded in keeping Google locked at 65 percent in the search market, otherwise Google's share might be at 90 percent.
"It will take a while to see how this shakes out," one person told AllThingsD. "And it is very dependent on collaboration that is very hard to pull off even in much smaller organizations."
Another insider added that it won't matter what Ballmer presents on Thursday if the reorganization is all about an "org chart" and not about building better products. "Consumers buy products, not a management structure," the source said.