Another Microsoft Search reorg: Shum now leads engineering

Another Microsoft Search reorg: Shum now leads engineering

Summary: In the latest of what seems like a series of never-ending reorgsof its Search unit, Microsoft has appointed Harry Shum to take over management of the Core Search engineering team. Microsoft announced internally its latest moves to the troops on November 9.


In the latest reorg of its Search unit, which Microsoft announced internally to its troops on November 9, Microsoft has appointed Harry Shum to take over management of the Core Search engineering team.

Another Microsoft Search reorg: Shum now leads engineeringShum will replace General Manager of Microsoft Search Ken Moss. Moss has held the lead core-search manager's job for more than five years. Moss is taking a sabbatical, from which, according to Microsoft, Moss will return. (A substantial number of other Microsoft managers who've taken sabbaticals have not returned to the company.)

Shum most recently was the Corporate Vice President in charge of Microsoft Research Asia. In that role, he was charged with driving Microsoft's long- and short-term technology investments in search and advertising. Shum joined Microsoft Research in 1996 and worked in Redmond as a computer vision and graphics researcher. In 1999, he moved to Beijing to help start Microsoft Research China (later renamed Microsoft Research Asia).

As a result of the latest move, Corporate Vice President of Search and Advertising Satya Nadella's core direct reports now include Shum, General Manager of Test Todd Paul and Vice President of Program Management Brian MacDonald.

A Microsoft spokesman confirmed on November 9 the details of the company's latest Search management moves.

Microsoft has tweaked its Search organization repeatedly in the past year, in moves that some have characterized as house cleaning, and others, as growing pains. The company has remained a distant third, behind Google and Yahoo, in overall search-query share.

In March, Microsoft created a new Search and Advertising Group and appointed Dynamics ERP veteran Satya Nadella to run the new unit. As part of that move, Microsoft severed Live Search from the rest of its Windows Live services, which remain under the domain of Senior Vice President Steven Sinofsky. That same month, Windows Live Platform VP Blake Irving resigned, as did Chris Payne. the Corporate Vice President in charge of Windows Live Search.

Microsoft bought online-advertising leader aQuantive in May and appointed former aQuantive CEO Brian McAndrews to head up a new Advertiser and Publisher Solutions (APS) Group.

In between all the shuffling, Microsoft has rolled out its fall Live Search refresh and is prepping for a spring 2008 one.

Topics: Windows, Browser, CXO, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Software


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • google is indomitable...resistance is futile

    Beat Google by playing the same game. Don't invent internet content, link together and monetize existing content. I kinda like Live Search, but is even better than Google.
  • Much movement; many ruffles & flourishes; little progress

    Does anyone believe that a chronically bloated organization with layers of dead wood (starting at the very top) can produce anything of substance?

    MS has been broadcasting the innivation message for a few decades but has yet to show anything concrete.

    Its Vista OS is hardly innovative nor WOWing. Its games are a cash sewer with scant possibility of ever earning cost of capital. Its oversized and bloated kludge coffee table has been pushed back. Its Windows Mobile is looking to have a foreshortened life because of Apple and google.

    Yes, it has loads of cash but, like General Motors, has run out of interesting or even useful products that are competitive. A bloated organizational mess, it seems incapable of producing anything that is even 10 blocks from the profitable innovation neighborhood.

    Did I mention Zune? Never mind. It is, has been and, based on current evidence, will be yet another failure, cloaked with future promises of WOW!

    Who is fooled by this rubbish of innovation any longer?

    MSFT is simply an exquisitely out of touch Bloatfarm, incapable of anything profitably useful and reliable. Can you say GM?
    Jeremy W
  • Information on CIO Sacking?

    Surely the mere replacement of another head of MSFT search is not as important as the sacking of the CIO.

    This blog pretends to be about all thing Microsoft but a tough story goes uncommented.

    Looks more and more like an inside job, does it not?
    Jeremy W