Microsoft cuts 960 additional jobs, all at LinkedIn

Microsoft's job cut total for July is now approaching 2,000, thanks to a new round of cuts happening in its LinkedIn business unit.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft has been doing its usual end-of-fiscal-year layoffs since the start of July. As of last week, the company had internally announced cuts for about 1,000 jobs across various product divisions and regions. On July 20, Microsoft announced it cut an additional 960 jobs -- all in its LinkedIn business unit.

LinkedIn's new CEO Ryan Roslansky announced the cuts via a note to LinkedIn employees, which Microsoft made publicly available on LinkedIn's press site. 

"After weeks of discussion and deliberation, the executive team and I have made the extremely difficult decision to reduce approximately 960 roles, or about 6% of our employee base, across our Global Sales and Talent Acquisition organizations," Roslansky said.

He attributed the cuts to the effects of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, which is having an impact on the demand for hiring in its LinkedIn Talent Solutions business and LinkedIn overall. Roslansky said Microsoft will notify affected employees through September, based on their geographic locations.

Microsoft bought LinkedIn in 2016 for $26.2 billion, and since that time, it has taken a largely hands-off approach in running that business. Microsoft has done some integrations between its existing product lineup and LinkedIn assets, but not as many as some were expecting. 

In 2017, LinkedIn officials said they had no plans to move off their own datacenters. But, last year, that plan changed, and LinkedIn is now planning to move all its workloads to Azure over multiple years.

Last month, I asked for an update on that work and received this statement from a spokesperson: "Since announcing our multi-year migration last year, we've been migrating our offline data and building the foundational tools and systems that will enable our teams and organization to migrate to and operate in Azure."

LinkedIn did announce last month that it had moved its edge infrastructure to Azure Front Door to improve median page load times by up to 25 percent. Azure Front Door is Microsoft's entry point to Azure's wide-area network and provides global load balancing.

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