Skype has started to fire several of its executives in an effort to reduce payouts from its Microsoft purchase, Bloomberg reported on Monday. Among the execs being let go are vice presidents Christopher Dean, David Gurle, don Albert, and Russ Shaw, as well as chief marketing officer Doug Bewsher, and the head of human resources, Anne Gillespi. Two other execs from Skype’s Qik acquisition earlier this year — Ramu Sunkara and Allyson Campa — were also fired according to the report. This could possibly mean that the executives will lose any stock options that were not yet vested. Microsoft announced on May 10th that it was acquiring Skype for $8.5 billion, and the deal is still pending FCC approval. More →
Word broke out over the weekend that Microsoft had sent letters to ex-employees asking for repayment of severance package overages. Apparently damage control was able to beat the Grinch out of HR because the company apparently decided to do the right thing. Microsoft human resources chief Lisa Brummel says the company is reversing its course of action and contacting those who received the notice to advise them that repayment is not necessary. About 25 ex-employees were overpaid and 20 were underpaid due to the error. We’re also glad to hear the workers who were underpaid will be compensated for the amounts they were due. Lesson learned for Microsoft: There are some cases where accounting errors can’t, or shouldn’t be fixed and this is one of them. The former employees who spoke up can also give a nod to the media for spreading the news like wildfire and bringing it to Microsoft’s (and everyone else’s) attention.
Microsoft has allegedly sent out a notice to former employees (those who were recently laid off) to come back so they can pour a little bit of salt in their wounds. Apparently, human resources in Redmond made a little oopsie and overpaid severance for some ex-workers. According to the notice, the folks in question have two weeks to send a check or money order back to Microsoft to cover the overage. The error may have also caused underpayment of severance for other former employees. This isn’t shaping up so well for Microsoft and for those who are being forced to send in payments to correct an HR error. Imagine receiving news of your impending layoff and then being sent packing with your check, only to receive a notice later that effectively reads, “Our bad. Send some of that money back, please.” No official word from Microsoft as to when the error occurred and why.