Saturday, August 20, 2011

Microsoft Annual Review 2011

It has become a tradition for folks to share their review numbers to help get a sense of what's happening and how your numbers stack up. This year we have a new challenge of working through an entirely new review system and (for engineering) a pay-raise for the levels most at risk of departing for greener pastures. I know folks on the edge of leaving who have been willing to hang on to see what happens.

What's a good format? How about something like the following, obfuscated as you wish:

  • L# (promo'd?)
  • Bucket (1+, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
  • Merit % (/Promo %) / Engineering?
  • Bonus $K
  • Stock $K
  • Optional comments about Division / Group, discipline, impression of review

If you like the review system, I'd really like to understand why (something better than, "whee, I got a 1+," please) and I'd encourage commenters to not slam the positive perspectives. I'm not too pleased with the new system at all because I feel very good engineers in my org are getting lower results because of a very strict curve. I'm probably breaking the rules in that if an excellent person got a 3 I'm having my folks be truthful in writing review feedback that, yes, they did an excellent job, just when it comes to the 3 realize that more people did even more excellent work and what it is they need to do to step it up (or, you know, start connecting recruiters with all of those competing 1s and 2s). Same thing for 4s who are doing a good job and not really having any performance problem. HR would prefer me to write the text of the review according to the verbiage of the ranking system, but screw that. I did that years ago when people got a trended 3.0 and I'm still scrubbing those dark spots of demoralizing compliance off my soul.

How do you feel, whether you're a manager writing reviews this year and comparing results to last year, or an IC trying to make sense of your compensation and recognition?


-- Comments

1,310 comments:

1 – 200 of 1310   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

One of the stated goals of this new system was to weigh compensation towards more cash (instead of stock). I understand that many people found the total compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was less than last year for about the same performance. I'm curious if the cash outlay was generally better for people (simple pay + bonus). I've heard a couple of people say it was noticeably better while a couple of others said it was a wash.

Anonymous said...

What is 1+?

Anonymous said...

L62
Promo to 63
Bucket: Received a 1 :) :)
Merit: 4.8%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: $29,556 K
Stock: $19,800 K
Microsoft Services in Field (away from HQ)

Love the new review system; it was clean and directly to the point. No more playing with the numbers by mid level managers.

I'm sticking around after this kind of recognition. Good Luck

Anonymous said...

1+ is the top 25% of the 1s. Or the top 5% of the company. Obviously they get a higher bonus percentage and more stocks...

Anonymous said...



L62
Promo to 63
Bucket: Received a 1 :) :)
Merit: 4.8%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: $29,556 K
Stock: $19,800 K
Microsoft Services in Field (away from HQ)

Looking at the stocks, you got 180% or 1 (and not 1+). Bonus should have been 18% and that makes your base as 164k!! Really!!

Anonymous said...

what happens when you get a 5. Do they terminate you on the spot, give few weeks, few months, or depends on case to case basis?

Anonymous said...

L62
Promo to 63
Bucket: Received a 1 :) :)
Merit: 4.8%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: $29,556 K
Stock: $19,800 K
Microsoft Services in Field (away from HQ)


Good year, congrats!
Your bonus seems very high, how does the bonus system work for the field?

Anonymous said...

Waiting for my numbers next week. Meanwhile, wanted to ask the folks here what they think is the best group for accelerated growth these days. Currently a L63 Dev.

Anonymous said...

L60 SDET @ Office
Bucket: 1
Merit: 6% (+5% from the R&D increase)
Bonus: $18,000
Stock: $8,000

Somewhat amused by the fact that I received a Gold Star but still didn't end up in the 1+ bucket. I wonder if 1+ really does exist at this level?

Anonymous said...

Isn't the average merit increase 10% and if you are R&D, you get another 5%, total 15%?

Anonymous said...

Forget about my #'s, I'm pissed about the R&D comp bump that all engineering was supposed to get. It's not widely known, but no engineers in SMSG qualifies for this R&D bump, even if we work on a traditional product that is end-user facing.

They drew a line around SMSG because we supposedly get a diff't comp structure but this is only true for people in sales, not the engineers. The sales people get insane bonuses if they hit their targets which makes sense.

Total bullsh*t.

While my #'s are good, it should have been much better in terms of compensation.

Anonymous said...

Heard #'s directly from a friend that is a manager of an L59 to L60 promo in Office. Here is the remarkable piece:

L59, Promotion to 60
Merit: 3.9%
Promo: 9%
R&D bump: 12% (!!!)

What. The. Hell. 25% pay increase and must be making over $100k after 1 year at Microsoft.

I know that lower levels were getting higher R&D bumps, but this is much more than I expected it to be.

Anyone else is seeing #'s like this? (either your direct reports, friends or direct reports of friends of yours)

Anonymous said...

Waiting for my numbers next week. Meanwhile, wanted to ask the folks here what they think is the best group for accelerated growth these days. Currently a L63 Dev.

Depends. Do you mean growth? Or faster promotions? Perhaps unfortunately, these are often not the same.

And even after you've answered that, I would think the answer will depend a lot on you (your skills, experience, learning style, personality, etc).

Anonymous said...

>>Isn't the average merit increase 10% and if you are R&D, you get another 5%, total 15%?

The first person to give #'s in the comments got 4.8% merit increase. Personally I got 4%. 10% seems high to be the average merit increase.

The R&D bump is contingent on level. The lower your level, the higher the merit increase. I've heard as much as 10-12%.

Anonymous said...

What. The. Hell. 25% pay increase and must be making over $100k after 1 year at Microsoft.

I know that lower levels were getting higher R&D bumps, but this is much more than I expected it to be.

Anyone else is seeing #'s like this? (either your direct reports, friends or direct reports of friends of yours)


Did he join at the lower spectrum of his level's salary band? I'm also making over $100k after 1 year, and on the same level, despite a more modest raise.

Anonymous said...

Heard directly that two 5s were RIF'd immediately - different Orgs. One had no severance, but given months for notice and ineligible for rehire.

So if the RIF total must be less than 500, otherwise it would be a WARN violation.

Anonymous said...

What's the new comp ratio 1.0 for levels 60, 61 and 62?

Anonymous said...

> Isn't the average merit increase 10% and if you are R&D, you get another 5%, total 15%?

The "average" merit increase depends on your bucket. A 1 should get 4.8-5% (I got a 1 and 5%).

> R&D bump: 12% (!!!)

That's bad math. The R&D bump was 5% and the stock conversion to cash was 7%. Everybody gets the 7% (and lower stock compensation). Only certain portions of R&D get the R&D bump, and the number decreases at higher levels (65+ get less). So yeah, it's "12%", but it's not really 12%. It's 5% new money + 7% of money you would've gotten in stock in previous years.

Anonymous said...

>>So yeah, it's "12%", but it's not really 12%. It's 5% new money + 7% of money you would've gotten in stock in previous years.

Are you sure about that? On my IRR, it shows one line item for "R&D Increase" of 12%, and a separate distinct line item for "stock to base pay adjustment" of around 1.8%. The R&D increase amount definitely does not include that stock to base pay amount - my new base pay is a sum of my previous base, merit increase, R&D increase, and the separate stock to base pay adjustment.

Anonymous said...

For 1+ at level 62, stocks are 225% (180% for 1) and bonus 22% (18% for 1).

Anonymous said...

>> That's bad math. The R&D bump was 5% and the stock conversion to cash was 7%. Everybody gets the 7% (and lower stock compensation). Only certain portions of R&D get the R&D bump, and the number decreases at higher levels (65+ get less). So yeah, it's "12%", but it's not really 12%. It's 5% new money + 7% of money you would've gotten in stock in previous years.

This doesn't jive with what I'm seeing on the IRRs in my org. The "R&D Increase" was 12% for some of my directs and there was a completely separate "Stock to Base Pay Adjustment".

Anonymous said...

Question: is the "Stock to base pay adjustment" the same for everyone at 1.15%?

Anonymous said...

> Are you sure about that? On my IRR, it shows one line item for "R&D Increase" of 12%, and a separate distinct line item for "stock to base pay adjustment" of around 1.8%.

> This doesn't jive with what I'm seeing on the IRRs in my org. The "R&D Increase" was 12% for some of my directs and there was a completely separate "Stock to Base Pay Adjustment".

> Question: is the "Stock to base pay adjustment" the same for everyone at 1.15%?

That's not at all what I saw on my own review. R&D increase was 5%, stock to cash was 7%, on separate line items. Perhaps different orgs do different things? My review was from Windows as SDE 2

Anonymous said...

L62
Bucket: 1 (probably 1+, but I was not told)
Merit: 5.5%
R&D: 5%
Stock2Cash: 7%
Bonus: 26K
Stock: 26K

Anonymous said...

Want to chime in on the R&D increase.

This is what I heard for the Windows Org, but I can't imagine its any different for the other divisions.

59,60 - 12%
61 - 8%
62, 63, 64, 65 - 5%
66+ - 0%


The R&D increase is higher for the lower levels, rewarding them with more cash. The thinking is the higher in level you go, Microsoft wants your compensation to come more from Stock rather then salary.

Note: the stock award adjustment is ontop of this.

Anonymous said...

what is the criterion for the H2 (Hipo)?

Anonymous said...

L61
Bucket: 1+
Merit: 5.5%
R&D: 8%
Stock2Cash: 3.5%
Bonus: 23k
Stock: 14k

Anonymous said...

L62 promo to L63
Rating 1+
Merit + RD increase = 18%
Promo = 5%
Bonus = 22.5 K
Stock approx 25 K (225% of target)

Anonymous said...

L64
Bucket 1
Merit 5.5%
R&D 5%
Bonus 18%
New base: 140
Stock 180% of target (~41)

Very happy with the results, although I'm taking it with a grain of salt- as a manager I've seen how easily things can go another direction. The rigidity of the curve was especially rough on a few team members this year.

It seems things are lining up well for me to make it to L65 sometime in the near future. However, I'm a little nervous because I'm not sure exactly how the curve gets applied at the Principal band. I've seen some comments that there might be some leniency with the forced curve, but I've heard stories that imply otherwise. Certainly the competition is stiff and the rules of the game change. I feel I can hold my own in that mix, but it could be in my self interest to camp out near the top of the senior band for a few more years. Getting promoted isn't always a good thing- I've seen people get screwed by jumping bands too quickly.

Anonymous said...

>what is the criterion for the H2 (Hipo)?

There are official criteria on hrweb, but basically it's whatever it takes to differentiate the "top 5%" out of the division. Sometimes 3+ years in a row of 1/e-20 will do it, sometimes it's a really visible project, sometimes it's something else. Basically, it involves a lot of things going right for you at the same time, most of which are things not entirely in your control.

Anonymous said...

I think there's some confusion around the merit increase numbers. Once person commented that the average is 10%. This is correct, however it includes the % coming from stock awards to bump your base pay.

So, if you make $100K in base, and get a 2, you're likely to get about a 10% bump to $110K. Of that 10%, roughly equal amounts will come from the merit increase + stock adjustment. Some folks get the R&D adjustment on top of that.

Anonymous said...

How often are reviews and bonuses? I'm starting in a few months as a level 59 SDE with a base of 81k, I heard that the base is going to increase by quite a bit for new grads starting early next year (to 90k+), so I'm going to feel a little under compensated when the new year rolls around. Do I have to wait another year before my base is increased?

Anonymous said...

What is 1+?

It depends on what the value of "?" is.

Anonymous said...

What is 1+?

It depends on what the value of "?" is.

Seriously? Are you from planet "SmartAss"?

To original poster - Havent gotten a 1+ myself yet, but I am reasonably certain that it means the Hipo bracket (top 5%), ie top quarter within the 1 bracket.

Anonymous said...

I feel I can hold my own in that mix, but it could be in my self interest to camp out near the top of the senior band for a few more years. Getting promoted isn't always a good thing- I've seen people get screwed by jumping bands too quickly.

The flip side is that if you stay too long at L64, you lose promo velocity, and it gets harder to get promoted to principal regardless. The rules are ultimately made by past hipos, who only understand their way of "success".

Be Paid said...

Promo: demoted from Senior L63 SDE to SDE
Rating - probably 5
Merit increase = 25%
Bonus = 0
Stock approx 75 K

Of course it doesn't make sense without saying that I've moved on to another company which seems to value decent SDEs more than MS does.

Can't believe so many of you people are agonizing over a difference between 4.8% an 5% merit increase, while there's a mobile+online revolution happening right now with boatloads of money waiting to be made by any engineer who can write a nontrivial piece of clean, bug free, performant code, plus has some experience in Web services, Javascript, HTML, preferably all of these.

And just look at the stock charts of other software companies - these guys don't need to pay bonuses to their people, the stock market pays them. And you know the software engineers job market has swinged to the seller's side recently, don't you?

BTW, if you're thinking about moving on, here's a must read book, before you answer that first phone screen call:

http://www.amazon.com/Programming-Interviews-Exposed-Secrets-Programmer/dp/047012167X

Anonymous said...

L65
Bucket 3
Merit+stock/base pay adj 4%
Bonus: 22k
Stock: 35k
Online, field

Anonymous said...

L62
Bucket - 3
Merit - 3%
R&D - 5%
Stock adj. - 7%
Bonus - 10,820
Stock - 11,000
IEB - SDET

Anonymous said...

So, anyone going to comment on the big news this week from HP?

I'm impressed with them cutting their losses on WebOS without spending another two years flogging it to try to save face.

Much more significant though, is the fact that the VOLUME LEADER in the wintel PC business wants to get out of the PC business. This isn't like when IBM sold the thinkpads to Lenovo, this is the top player bowing out.

What this tells me is that being a Microsoft OEM sucks even worse than I had imagined. Apparently, HP was operating on about a 5% margin in their desktop and laptop business.

How long can this arrangement continue where MS is making the lion's share of the profit on every machine that ships? I'm guessing not a whole lot longer.

Anonymous said...

Hey, Level 59 SDE dude. Are you sure about the graduate pay increase of next year? I am starting soon as well with the same base as yours. Same feeling ...

Anonymous said...

L62 promo to L63
Bucket: 1
Merit: 4.8%
Promo: 5%
R&D: 5%
Stock2Cash: $7K
Bonus: 18%
Stock: 180% of target ($19800)
New base pay: Over $140K

Anonymous said...

For comparison

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_United_States

shows how fortunate all of us are.

Anonymous said...

I'm not following the stock to cash numbers I'm seeing here. I'm an L64 and my numbers say it was 1.15%. That seems awfully low given others are saying 5%+.

Am I comparing the wrong #s?

Anonymous said...

This thread so far is a great example of self selection.

Folks who are proud of their numbers (well deserved, congrats!) will make it look like everyone and their mom is in the 1/1+ bucket.

Just like the negative mini posts will tend to attract whining and bitching. I have no doubt that more negativity will come though, given that managers tend do the easy ones first.

Also, I had a good laugh at the "1 out of nowhere post", thanks for the entertainment.

Anonymous said...

I agree with mini here.. This is just too old and too tired to bother, with which.

Anonymous said...

Jesus did no one read how the new compensation system works?! Supposed "managers" here really should know due the mandatory trainings, documents, etc that we all had to take. I would suggest folks hit up hrweb which explains almost all your questions.

For stock to pay conversion, it's the difference between your FY10 stock target for your current level and your FY11. If you got promo'd, they use your old level. Eg those getting a promo from 62->63, it's used based on the level 62 numbers. (as is your stock award, a change from how it was in th past).

Each level has a different amount of stock->cash. Here is an example for 62,63. If you want to find our more go to hrweb and look up the stock award info.
63: FY10 - $21,000 FY11 - $17,000 Adjustment - $3k
62: FY10 - $18,000 FY11 - $11,000 Adjustment - $7k

Anonymous said...

What is 1+?

It depends on what the value of "?" is.

Seriously? Are you from planet "SmartAss"?

I see that the Microsoft reality distortion field also filters out humor. That's sad.

Anonymous said...

Much more significant though, is the fact that the VOLUME LEADER in the wintel PC business wants to get out of the PC business. [...] this is the top player bowing out.

Iceberg dead ahead!

Anonymous said...

L65
Bucket: 5
Merit: 0
Promo: 0%
Bonus: $0K
Stock: $0K
Midyear was meet or exceeds expectations.
Looking for a job
No warning, no validation, No truth, No recourse.

Anonymous said...

L65
Bucket: 5
Merit: 0
Promo: 0%
Bonus: $0K
Stock: $0K
Midyear was meet or exceeds expectations.
Looking for a job
No warning, no validation, No truth, No recourse.


Sorry to read the above, wondering which group? Are you a Principle?Update your resume, have to be written differently than what's on HRWEB, have to look outside, "5" can't apply internally.

On HP's decision, so far no one has picked up another underlying disappointment on W8, HP essentially also saying that W8 can't allow HP to compete effectively against AAPL, whether using WebOS or W8. That's contributed to HP throwing in the thowel on PC, even though HP is the market share leader.

I really worry about what the share will do once people see how little W8 delivers, even with ARMH/nVidia and SoC. The preview of the OEM models using W8 "technology" is/will be underwhelming. The stock is popped up by the 2% deividend yield, guess I have to look at it as CD. I said it here about W8, let's see in one year if I'm right---I hope I'm wrong.

Anonymous said...

Can "4" apply for different job internally? If not, essentially 20% of the company have to look for way out or prove themselves to those who mark them as "4" or "5" that they are wrong in the next review.

Do "4's" get Merit, bonus or stock?

Anonymous said...

For stock to pay conversion, it's the difference between your FY10 stock target for your current level and your FY11.

Interesting. So, if you were routinely getting well over 100% of target before, then you really only get partially cashed out? Seems like that hurts most employees that were on the med-high end of performance results.

Anonymous said...

yes, like it or not, the review changes and 1-time hike benefits people who is less than 63.

if you are in Senior-band and do above average (the old E/70), you are getting less.

i've also seen scenario when someone fresh promo to L63 (from a 62 "1") is getting more than a medium-high engineer at L64 for more than 2 years.

is this good? depends who you were asking.

Anonymous said...

L64
Bucket: 5
Merit: 0%
Promo: 0%
Bonus: $0
Stock: $0
Midyear: exceeds expectations.
No warning. No reactions from mgmt or HR.
Message: cost savings, nothing personal, suck it up and focus on FY12.

Anonymous said...

L61
Promo to L62
Bucket: 3
Merit: 2.55%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: 10% ($9,600)
Stock: $7,000K

Calibration was described as a blood bath, unproductive, subjective & inaccurate.

Anonymous said...

Jesus did no one read how the new compensation system works?!

+1

Some of the questions here having me just shaking my head. What could possibly be more important to you at your job than understanding how your pay system works? When the new system was announced I spent hours on HRweb reading through all of the new info, I'd recommend everyone do the same because that is the authoritative source, not this blog.

Everyone posting numbers showing that they recieved a percentage of Stock2Cash, that's not correct, you recieved a fixed dollar amount based on your level.

The level that recieved one of the highest fixed amounts is L62, with $7000. Only L66 and L67 recieved more, but that's because they already had super high stock targets.

Mr. L64 wondering why he got less, that's right, you only recieved $1500 in stock2cash, not 1.15%. For whatever reason, L64 recieved one of the lowest amounts, on par with L59 and L60.

Look on HRWeb, search for "stock award targets". The difference between 2010 Stock Target and 2011 Stock Target is what was added to your salary for your level.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE@Office
No Promo
Bucket: 1
Merit: 5%
R&D: 5%
Bonus: 18%
Stock: 180%
New Base: 119k

Happy with it

Anonymous said...

Correct, the stock-to-base adjustment is a fixed shift purely based on level and is not a percentage of your base.

For 62 it's a big shift, as someone posted here already, $7,000 moves from stock target to salary.

The result is that from now on, the jump from 62 to 63 is more pronounced than it used to be. Whereas it used to mean a $3,000 increase in stock target, it's now $6,000. It also means the jump from 61 -> 62 is a bit smaller. That shift makes sense to me as 63 ("Senior") is in most orgs considered to be a big jump in achievement/responsibilty, so it's good for the reward structure to reflect that. It also makes sense in the light of increased base pay at the lower levels.

Combine that with the adjusted cash bonus target which starts next year for 63 and 64, and you've got a more well-defined jump when someone hits 63. And a more gradual path to Principal versus what existed before.

As a 62 with a 1+ (shouldn't that be 1- or 0?) I realize the old system's stock multiplier means the fixed stock-to-cash adjustment seems like a loss. But the rest of the changes, including salary bumps and more predictable bonuses, seem to even that out in my mind. Also helps that I seem to have picked the perfect time to be promo'd to 63 :)

Anonymous said...

L62
Bucket: 2
Merit: ~4%
Bonus: 13% of BES
StockToBase : 7K
Stock: 130% of L62 target - ~14K
Org: SMSG

Comments: Thought I performed better than this. Don't we all? :)

As for the compensation, I am wondering if it would have helped me a little if there were more buckets than 1+ to 5. Something like 1+ to 10 could have put me in higher band with in current 2s.

BTW, being an engineer in SMSG I do feel descriminated when I hear about things like R&D bonus. But, I take it as a cost of not wanting to work in Seattle or bay area.

Overall I still adore this company.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I was reading through, and have a question (I will definitely read hrweb in more detail tomorrow, but would like an answer now):

The stock to cash amount - is that being added to the yearly salary? Or just a 1-time bonus?

Because if it's the latter, that's not too big of a change really - 7K won't help by budget much.

My number are due on Wednesday, can't wait :)

Anonymous said...

Office SDE
L: 61 to 62
Bucket: 2
Merit: 3.9%
Promo: 5%
R&D: 8%
Bonus: 13% of BES
Stock: 130% of target

But not comp ratio info in the IRR?

Anonymous said...

L64
Bucket: 5
Merit: 0%
Promo: 0%
Bonus: $0
Stock: $0
Midyear: meets expectations.
No warning. No performance management.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone realize what the stock to cash conversion really means? It is setting you up absorb the reduction of health care benefits when copay starts kicking in compulsorily. A 5K stock to cash coversion will get wiped out in a year from 2013 for a family of 4. Also, what difference does a 5K increase in your base pay make in your life? After paying taxes you are left with around $3500 per month if at all. Maybe enough money to cover your cost of living.

Anonymous said...

Also, what difference does a 5K increase in your base pay make in your life?

About as much as a 5% merit increase?

Anonymous said...

>But not comp ratio info in the IRR?

Compa ratio is not included in IRR. You can ask your manager or HR at any time.

Anonymous said...

Seriously all these questions could be answered with a quick look at hrweb.

The stock-> cash is a one time adjustment to you base salary. So if your adjustment is $3k, then your base salary is now $3k higher.

Anonymous said...

For comparison

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Household_income_in_the_United_States

shows how fortunate all of us are.


Be careful with these numbers: Most of them are 5 or more years old. Otherwise... These're the rules of the game we all [have to] play. Everybody has their own opinion on how sane it is.

Anonymous said...

L63
No Promo
Bucket: 3
Merit: 2.55%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: 10% ($7,500)
Stock: $9,000K

Actually, I'm really surprised. I have no idea how any of this was arrived at. Performed well, met commitments, over and above, all that.

Or, obviously not. :)

Somehow, with no change in bnehavior or work style, I managed to go from a 20% "Rock Star" with tons of lucite on the shelf to "meh, you're almost average."

This new system is even more opaque than the last one. Not whining, would just love to know what to do to get ahead, other than leaving for a competitor and getting aquired some day :).

Would like to stay, but I suppose it's not in the cards. :( I'm in the Azure group - if you're doing well where you are, stay away from this team until the management bugs are worked out. Or perhaps you'll have a better experience than I have (apparently) had. YMMV

Anonymous said...

60 SDET from Windows here. I haven't received my review yet so I can't comment on that. However, I've heard some grumblings that the various compensation increases/reallocations may have changed after the HR estimate tool was taken down from HRWeb. Can anyone confirm or deny that rumor?

Anonymous said...

60 SDET from Windows here. I haven't received my review yet so I can't comment on that. However, I've heard some grumblings that the various compensation increases/reallocations may have changed after the HR estimate tool was taken down from HRWeb. Can anyone confirm or deny that rumor?

In my case, they were exact. The only change would have been if you moved into or out of a R&D bonus eligible position after you got your estimate.

Anonymous said...


L63
No Promo
Bucket: 3
Merit: 2.55%
Promo: 5%
Bonus: 10% ($7,500)
Stock: $9,000K

Actually, I'm really surprised. I have no idea how any of this was arrived at.


I have no idea either, those numbers make no sense for a L63 unless you are in some position or geographic location where the numbers are just totally different compared to Redmond.

A 10% bonus yeilding $7500 means that your bonus eligible salary is only $75K, that's way below the scale for a L63, even before the bump we all got. Also the $9K stock is nearly half the target for a L63, which is $17K. With a rating of 3, you should have recieved 100% of your target, meaning $17K. I think you need to relook at your numbers, or talk to your manager because something isn't right.

Anonymous said...

I'm the 63 in Azure.

You're right - I was looking at those numbers incorrectly. They are in half, so the money picture is better than I first thought. And of course there's no promo 5% because I didn't get one. I'm been promo'd about every 18-24 months since I've been here, so no argument there.

What I was concerned about was the 3. It seems so arbitrary, but after snooping around a little seems almost everyone in Azure got that, with little to no explanation. They hired some really good perfomers into this group, and many are shocked at doing so poorly on the review this time.

Once again, I recommend you stay away from this team until they are a little more settled. I don't think it's any better out west closer to Redmond, either.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE@OSD
No Promo (promo'd last year)
Bucket: 1
Merit: 5.25%
R&D: 5%
Stock->Base: 7%
Bonus: 18%
Stock: 180%
New Base: 118k

Lovin' it

Anonymous said...

Remember that the biggest bucket of folks will get a 3, that's curve. It goes like this:

20% will get a 1
20% will get a 2
40% will get a 3
13% will get a 4
7% will get a 5

The curve is in force at the GM org level.

Anonymous said...

L61 Promo to L62. New base: 116.9K

Guess I stayed in L61 for too long...

Anonymous said...

Still awaiting review results .. I have heard quite a few times that this review was based on not just 'what' was achieved but 'how' it was achieved and that may make a big deal of difference. Was anybody given that reason for a lower than expected result ?

Anonymous said...

How long can one stay at L59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64 or 65 before being managed out? Seems like the review score will get lower and lower once one stay at the same level "too long." How long is too long? In Windows, there are Principles who seemed to be around from W95 days!

Anonymous said...

How long can one stay at L59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64 or 65 before being managed out?

Being in a lover levels 59, 60, 61 for a period of time is considered bad and a person should be moving thru these within a couple of years and the jump from 62 to 63 while a little more harder is still expected in a decent time frame (I have heard anything from 2 years to 4 with 4 stretchng it). After L63 its not uncommon for a person to stay in the band for a long time without being managed out. As you are performing at that level and can be at achieved 70 in old terms (may be a 3 in the new one), you still are contributing and require less hands on management and can have an impact. the emphasis again is whether you are performing at your level as that is what tips the balance from this point forward.

Anonymous said...

L67 in STB
Bucket: 2
Merit: 3.5%
R&D: 0%
Stock2Cash: 4.5%
Bonus: 75k
Stock: 220k

New Base:195K

No Promotion but not sure i want one. I hear top of L67 is same pay as partner but much hard to get to 1/2 of partner band.

Anonymous said...

L61. Promo to 62
Bucket: 1
Merit: 5.2%
R&D: 8%
Promo: 8%
Stock2Cash: 3.3%
Bonus: 18%
Stock: 180%


I am happy with the review but damn looking at some numbers here, it seems I have a low starting base.

Anonymous said...

"Can "4" apply for different job internally? If not, essentially 20% of the company have to look for way out or prove themselves to those who mark them as "4" or "5" that they are wrong in the next review.

Do "4's" get Merit, bonus or stock?"


Didn't you read the link that Lisa sent out detailing in plain, clear language exactly what every numeric rating would receive in terms of merit, bonus and stock?

No? Shame on you.

And yes, you can interview with a 4. Of course, no team will hire you because you have a scarlet letter.

All teams will compete for 1s. 2s will usually have an easy time assuming they ace the interviews. 3s will have an uphill battle to be taken seriously, and 4/5 are considered untouchable and most GMs will block their managers from hiring from those buckets... just as they now block their managers from hiring anyone with a 10% rating (either U or A, doesn't matter).

Anonymous said...

Can any of those folks that got a '5' tell us what the experience was like?

I thought you were supposed to be RIFed on the spot?

Anonymous said...

what is the criterion for the H2 (Hipo)?

If you mean what's now called the Bench program, it's much looser now. Used to strictly require 20% contribution rating to even be eligible, but in the new system I hear that any 1, 2 or even 3 is eligible.

At this point it's all about being in the good graces of a manager 2-3 skips up the pecking order.

Anonymous said...

>>what is the criterion for the H2 (Hipo)?
I asked this because I am nominated for Hipo and I am not sure if it is a big deal (and useful) or another candy to delay my next promo.

Anonymous said...

">>what is the criterion for the H2 (Hipo)?
I asked this because I am nominated for Hipo and I am not sure if it is a big deal (and useful) or another candy to delay my next promo.


Firstly, nobody should be telling you if you're nominated for Hipo. HR would seriously shit bricks.

Secondly, yes it'a a big deal. Hipos tend to fly up the ladder 2x faster than everyone else, they get far bigger rewards, and that's where your first identified as potential Partner material.

Of course, the Hipo system is corrupt and fairly grotesque -- as a manager I don't feel comfortable with it at all, and I truly believe it's one of the things that rots our company from the inside-out. But if you're tagged to be one of the chosen, ride it out while you can.

Anonymous said...


At this point it's all about being in the good graces of a manager 2-3 skips up the pecking order.


Good lord...

In both of my last two employers (before I found a happy place at a little start-up), I got equivalent of "HiPo" at Microsoft.

In both of those places, at the level I was, 2-3 skips up the pecking order would have been the Senior VP of Engineering, or the CEO of the Corporation.

One of these places had 160,000 employees at the time

How the heck many layers of management does Microsoft HAVE?

Anonymous said...

Firstly, nobody should be telling you if you're nominated for Hipo. HR would seriously shit bricks.

Where did you hear this from? I was in the HiPo program and was told by both my manager at review time and when I went for my training sessions told I could share it with other people.

Anonymous said...

"Firstly, nobody should be telling you if you're nominated for Hipo. HR would seriously shit bricks.

Where did you hear this from? I was in the HiPo program and was told by both my manager at review time and when I went for my training sessions told I could share it with other people."


I'm a senior manager in DevDiv.

What division are you in? At Microsoft we absolutely do not encourage anyone to discuss their Hipo status or anything related to their level, compensation or review rating with peers. We certainly frown upon someone in the Hipo program talking about their status with their coworkers, and if you can actually put that status in jeopardy if you're not discreet.

And we don't tell people if they've just been nominated to be Hipo -- it sets-up inappropriate expectations that can be problematic to back down from if they're not accepted.

You should talk to your HR person.

Anonymous said...

L62 promoted to 63.
Bucket: 1+
Merit 5.25%, Promotion 5.25% R&D 5%
Bonus 22.5%
stock: 225%
new base: 12x k :)

Still in bench.

A little bit disappointed to the new system since my total compensation would be less than last year without a goldstar, although workload was way higher than before (>60hr/wk). Thank my manager I am break even now.

Anonymous said...

about hipo: as far as I understand, we are not supposed to discuss with other people other than our management chain. however from public info one can figure out who is hipo.

if you get it you will be informed, otherwise you don't know and are not supposed to ask.

Anonymous said...


And we don't tell people if they've just been nominated to be Hipo -- it sets-up inappropriate expectations that can be problematic to back down from if they're not accepted.

Watching this dialog... I suppose there was a misunderstanding regarding "nominated" vs. "accepted to the MS Bench/HiPo program". I _guess_ the original poster might've meant s/he was told s/he's going to be a HiPo for this FY (not 'nominated', i.e. one of candidates to become a HiPo).

Anonymous said...

From someone who is a Hipo and in Bench, we were told that we could share.

Anonymous said...

"
however from public info one can figure out who is hipo.
"

Pray tell how, so that mere mortals can watch out for those ICs.
It is very likely they have back channels with management chain and might even have a say in calibration meetings of thier own peers...
So if there is a way to find this out, please share for public good...

Anonymous said...

"From someone who is a Hipo and in Bench, we were told that we could share."

No, you really weren't.

Anonymous said...

Would someone care to explain what HiPo and bench are?

Anonymous said...

Speaking as an IC who actually wants to get work done and not just engross myself with management culture, the hipo thing is a bit weird. It has this "even if you win, you're still a loser" quality to it. In fact, the whole review system has that smell. Congratulations #1-ers, you've won in a contest of losers. Your loser management has looked at all the losers and determined you're the best in your career stage. I see some of you are even "high performance" losers, and we have some 1+ losers among us. Nice job.

What I see is a lot of mediocre talent and a lot of favoritism. I'd wager a lot of these people, managers and favorites alike, could not survive at our competitors, which makes the whole thing laughable. If you're not the favorite, it doesn't matter how well you do objectively, they will trot out some BS and cite it as the reason you're not as good as the favorites.

I can't say it's been all that bad for me personally, but it's enough to make me think that my time this year could have been better spent somewhere else. I don't even want to be the favorite of this gang of losers. I'll be working on my resume.

Anonymous said...

"Speaking as an IC who actually wants to get work done and not just engross myself with management culture, the hipo thing is a bit weird. It has this "even if you win, you're still a loser" quality to it. In fact, the whole review system has that smell. Congratulations #1-ers, you've won in a contest of losers. Your loser management has looked at all the losers and determined you're the best in your career stage. I see some of you are even "high performance" losers, and we have some 1+ losers among us. Nice job.

What I see is a lot of mediocre talent and a lot of favoritism. I'd wager a lot of these people, managers and favorites alike, could not survive at our competitors, which makes the whole thing laughable. If you're not the favorite, it doesn't matter how well you do objectively, they will trot out some BS and cite it as the reason you're not as good as the favorites.

I can't say it's been all that bad for me personally, but it's enough to make me think that my time this year could have been better spent somewhere else. I don't even want to be the favorite of this gang of losers. I'll be working on my resume."


This analysis is 100% correct.

Our culture is rotten and the rot has been spreading each year for the last 10 or so, and your rise once you get to Principal is 100% based on cronyism and secret back-door handshakes with executive sponsors. If you're not annointed early-on as one of the magic people, you will never have doors opened for you no matter how great of a job you do.

Hipo and Bench are secret societies, and the old-boy network is in full effect.

Work at Microsoft for the money and whatever it might do for your resume, and then like everyone else who doesn't get the key to the executive washroom leave for somewhere else when you hit the wall.

Anonymous said...

"Would someone care to explain what HiPo and bench are?"

HiPo means "High Potential", and it's the top of the top performers, who are showered with money and stock and told that they are more important to the future of the company than everyone else they work with.

Bench is the executive bench, which is where we groom our future executives.

Both programs are wrong-headed and stink to high-heaven.

Anonymous said...

How do you identify HIPOs? Maybe this will help:

http://blog.geoteaming.com/?tag=team-building-hipo-microsoft-john-chen-geoteaming-leadership-microsoft

Anonymous said...

Where is all this cash at? I don't want $6k of stock over 5 years! Show me the money!!

Anonymous said...

HiPo is indeed a combination of "someone likes you" with "it is in the best interest of HR that you get promoted" (minority, sex, etc.). Nothing more. The main goal is to get you stuck sitting in a team and not thinking about leaving that team or Microsoft, because you are a HiPo (and afraid of losing that status if moving).

In many cases, I've seen people outside the HiPo program being promoted faster by moving around, including moving out and back into Microsoft. Those are in the "RePo": Realized Potential program, instead of getting stuck in the HiPo bandwagon.

And everybody knows by now that there is not just one Microsoft, and some teams are easier than others. Some, far easier...

Anonymous said...

And everybody knows by now that there is not just one Microsoft, and some teams are easier than others. Some, far easier...

Which are some of the easier teams to get promotions?

Not counting those who plateau out at a level, what is the average promotion velocity from levels 63 onwards?

I am a L63 dev and it took 2.5 years each for the last 2 jumps even after exceeding 70% in the old system. I am leaning towards thinking that a similar performance in other teams would have gotten me atleast one extra jump.

Anonymous said...

Here is how to tell within 90% certainty that someone you suspect to be a HiPo is indeed one: ask them. If they are not, they will not lie that they are, since that could lead to severe career damage if word gets around that a person is pretending to be a HiPo. If they are, they might have been asked not to discuss it, but they have not been asked to lie if asked. So logically, anything less than a definite “no” gives you 90% chance that they are a HiPo.

Anonymous said...

Is admission to HiPo based on sustained excellence in reviews and backing of your management org? So on an average review while being in HiPo, you are out of it?

Anonymous said...

When ICs move between bands, their managers seem to be resigned to the fact that 1s in the previous band are now 3s in the new band. It looks like they have to favor people who have already spent years in the new band over people who just moved in. That culture is totally broken and the new rating system does nothing to fix it. Its still way too easy to give the standard excuse of "you have to gain the right experiences at this level" rather than telling the IC what to do to excel in the new level.

Anonymous said...

When ICs move between bands, their managers seem to be resigned to the fact that 1s in the previous band are now 3s in the new band.

Not my experience. If your manager doesn't think you can accel at your new level/band, then you aren't ready for promotion.

Of course, many people *will* get lower ratings after a promotion, which can happen for a number of reasons. But I don't think it works the way you think it does (which makes it sound inevitable versus based on performance).

Anonymous said...

"From someone who is a Hipo and in Bench, we were told that we could share."

No, you really weren't.


Ha, ha, ha. What a company! Freaks.

Anonymous said...

I quit several months ago, as L63 (was at that level 1.5 years). My base pay was 119K. Last bonus 12K. Last stock 23K. Now consulting, grossing >25K per month, under contract until end of December. I miss working with my teammates. I don't miss review BS.

Anonymous said...

"Is admission to HiPo based on sustained excellence in reviews and backing of your management org? So on an average review while being in HiPo, you are out of it?"

Silly you, you're trying to make this a rational thing.

HiPo nomination is based on popularity and perception, it's only loosely correlated to reviews -- there's no requirement.

Want to know if you're going to be HiPo? Your General Manager will usually take a personal interest in your future and frequently drop-by your office/cube or call you into their office to discuss... and managers other than your own will constantly tell you that you're a rockstar every time you blow your nose.

Anonymous said...

@Consulting, grossing >25K per month ...

Hiring?

Anonymous said...

""From someone who is a Hipo and in Bench, we were told that we could share."

No, you really weren't.

Ha, ha, ha. What a company! Freaks."


Well yes, but don't assume that people who post about working at Microsoft actually work at Microsoft.

The OP who claimed s/he was told they could discuss their HiPo and Bench status with others, for example, is a troll.

Anonymous said...

Well yes, but don't assume that people who post about working at Microsoft actually work at Microsoft.

The OP who claimed s/he was told they could discuss their HiPo and Bench status with others, for example, is a troll.


check out the dls in gal which say Technical Leadership Select *. If it was so secret the members would be hidden.

Anonymous said...

L60
Bucket -> 1 (No promo,got promoted in Mid year)
Merit hike -> ~30%
Bonus -> 22 %
Share -> 220%

Anonymous said...

"check out the dls in gal which say Technical Leadership Select *. If it was so secret the members would be hidden."

Would you please just stop?

There are a few random dls for the mysterious "technical leadership select" encompassing a grand total of 15 employees, most of whom are in DevDiv. There are roughly 1000 HiPo employees in the company.

Note that the aliases you reference are not called "HiPo members". I have no idea what "technical leadership select" is, but it's certainly not advertising the HiPo constituency.

If you have any questions about how employees should treat their HiPo stats, please e-mail your HR rep... They'll hook you up with the correct information.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE@Office
No Promo
Bucket: 1
Merit: 5%
R&D: 5%
Bonus: 18%
Stock: 180%
New Base: 119k

Happy with it


======

This doesn't seem right; low, doesn't it. Does anybody remember that tool HRWeb had where it calculated your new base pay projections. Mine was something like: If you're a level 62, earn 100k, and get a 1, you're new base pay will be ~125k. I'm guessing the guy above is about in the same boat...118 seems low. Makes me think HR yanked this too down for a reason.

Anonymous said...

Yea, HR did pull that tool down. Are people getting less than what that tool originally projected? It seems from reading the posts, they might be. I wonder if they did the ol' one-two shuffle on us: make us feel super good when the new change came out, then by the time review comes around and we actually get that money, we are ok with it being less.

Hmmmm....

Anonymous said...

L61 field emp
Rating: 1
Merit: 4.8%
Bonus award: ~19%
Stock award: 180% of target

Anonymous said...

L62
Bucket:3
Merit: 2.55%
R&D Increase: 5%
Bonus: 10,172
Stock: 18,000
New Base Pay: 117K

Anonymous said...

L61 SDET
My base is around 92 K

Is it too low ? I guess my compa ratio was .94 or something.
Whats average pay range for L61 SDET's
Still waiting for this year's numbers and getting scared about rating 4 .

Anonymous said...

Regarding Bench/HiPo membership secrecy - it's a rather delicate balance. It's not officially a 'secret', but you're discouraged from making a big deal about it. At least that was the guidance management gave me.

I think the secrecy has relaxed a bit with the merging of the various HiPo programs into the Bench program.

Anonymous said...

One thing I have seen is several minority employees have their review score scrubbed up higher... The unfortunate result is someone that was indeed a higher score was pushed down to make room. Unfortunately, I have learned at Microsoft it isn't about the work you do, but who you know. I have been consistently an e/20 and I'm looking to leave. The culture is toxic.

Anonymous said...

TLS (previously called college select) got canceled end of CY10. The trainings/talks sure were fun. Disclosure rules were "ok to confirm, but don't run around telling everybody." TLS was a new-hire hipo (<3 years at MS, level 60-62, IC in technical role, but there were exceptions) TLS was rolled into MS Bench and some TLS people were moved over.

Note that this is NOT Partner Bench which is L66+? afaik.

But there are/were many other role/org-specific hipo programs, there's the trainee/college hire program called MACH, there is (was?) leadership bench. Most of this is on hrweb or can be found through the MSW search engine. Ms Bench seems to be an attempt to roll most of the org- or role-specific stuff into one program.

Anonymous said...

Windows Live SDET
L: 61 to 62
Bucket: 2
Merit: 3.9%
Promo: 5%
R&D: 8%
Bonus: 13% of BES
Stock: 130% of target


I've always had nothing but 20%/Exceeded, so I was hoping for Bucket 1.

Anonymous said...

L61 SDET
My base is around 92 K

Is it too low ? I guess my compa ratio was .94 or something.
Whats average pay range for L61 SDET's
Still waiting for this year's numbers and getting scared about rating 4.


--------------

Just a bit lower than 100% of target, I believe...though an HR person would have to be the one to tell you for sure. Best way to get a pulse is by going to www.glassdoor.com. I found out that prior to my level bump I was getting paid at 80% of target and when comparing that salary to the average on glassdoor, that story seemed to jive with reality.

-------

Anonymous said...

L65
Bucket: 3
Merit: 2.5%
Stock to base: 3K
Bonus: $17K (12.58%)
Stock: $36K
New base:145K

Anonymous said...

"Windows Live SDET
L: 61 to 62
Bucket: 2
Merit: 3.9%
Promo: 5%
R&D: 8%
Bonus: 13% of BES
Stock: 130% of target


I've always had nothing but 20%/Exceeded, so I was hoping for Bucket 1."


Just because you were always at the top before doesn't mean you'll always be at the top forever.

What your score is telling you is that maybe your ego is a bit larger then your performance this time around.

Anonymous said...

"One thing I have seen is several minority employees have their review score scrubbed up higher... The unfortunate result is someone that was indeed a higher score was pushed down to make room. Unfortunately, I have learned at Microsoft it isn't about the work you do, but who you know. I have been consistently an e/20 and I'm looking to leave. The culture is toxic."

Hi, Mr. Blank Slate, this is reality calling. In the world we live in it's often not about the work you do, but who you know.

Pro tip: you're not going to find these rules changing outside of Microsoft.

Anonymous said...

+1 to staying clear of Azure. The management and hiring issues in that team are crazy.

L64
Bucket: 3
100% of stock / bonus targets.

Mid-year 63->64 promo.
Mid-year gold star.
Mid-year Exceeds, etc, etc.

I was expecting a 1 or 2. How I got a 3 is a total mystery.

Anonymous said...

Can any of those folks that got a '5' tell us what the experience was like?

I thought you were supposed to be RIFed on the spot?


I'm stuck in PSS (SMSG) which I generally get the feeling is one of the worst groups in MS to work. While I haven't had an official review delivery, I was unofficially told by my manager I'm getting a 5. That was quite a shock to me, as I ranked very high on both my billable time and survey results, so needless to say, I was not pleased...

I had been kicking around the idea of leaving MS before, but finding that info out sealed the deal. Have a new position lined up with a startup, and will be handing my manager my two weeks notice when she delivers my review. (The only reason I'm waiting is I have stock from prior reviews vesting on 8/31)

Anonymous said...

Still waiting for my number.

Anonymous said...

I was expecting a 1 or 2. How I got a 3 is a total mystery.

Mid year promos are dicey especially for the senior band. In caliberation it used to be hard to argue for a person if they get promoed to be an exceeded which never did make sense to me and was backwards from how I saw it. If you get promoed mid year you say bye bye to a 20% in the old system unless you did something noticed at the VP level - say make a a few hundred million bucks for the company. I have heard everything from we have not seen the person's potential in the current level long enough to the person is a solid level but a green level and everyone except the person's manager nods knowingly.

Anonymous said...

The new review model is totally a smart game played by HR. They actually save a lot of cost while making every one feel a pay raise.

I got a rate 1 and promoted to 62. And I noticed a hidden change in the stock award, which is now it is based on the old level. You know the stock target of 62 and almost double of 62. With that, my total compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was actually 13k less! It is totally a scam. The purpose is not making the offering more attractive to keep talents. Shame on them!

Anonymous said...

With that, my total compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was actually 13k less! It is totally a scam
The way I saw this was that stock vests over 5 years and bonus is immediate for the year. So you should factor that in as you get more cash upfront (you normally need to wait a year to vest stock) but you earn the bonus every year now instead of upfront stock for 5 years. so the math is not straight math and depends on each person what works best. If you left MS now you still have made more money as bonus vs with stock you would have nothing.

Anonymous said...

"I got a rate 1 and promoted to 62. And I noticed a hidden change in the stock award, which is now it is based on the old level. You know the stock target of 62 and almost double of 62. With that, my total compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was actually 13k less! It is totally a scam."

I believe this was actually addressed in the initial documentation that was sent out (not an employee, but my spouse is, and they shared the information with me). If I remember correctly, it specifically points out that the number for this year will be a bit wonky and also laid out what to expect next year, when the greater benefit will be seen.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone with a 5 been RIFd or let go?

The rumor mill is starting to heat up.

Anonymous said...

The "across the board" increase was a bu**s*it!!!
I was reading thru SteveB's email and I'm very frustrated about the outcome. You can start with 3 in the calibration going up and get into 5 as the result comes back. Bammm! You don't get anything for all your efforts throughout the year.
Now I feel the pain of corporate life in the capitalist world. Microsoft wanted to keep people going away but this will not help it. They might think if someone gets 5 he can go, but the new system is very dynamic and the 5 graded guy can get a 1 or 2 easier than the previous system.

Anonymous said...

After this year's review, all I can say is.. Abandon the ship!!

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE in IEB
Bucket: 2
Merit: 3.6%
R&D Bump: 5%
Stock to Base: 7k
Bonus: $15,559
Stock: $14,300
New base pay: $137k

I'm happy enough.

Anonymous said...

Current level: 61
No promotion
5
$0 Merit or R&D
$0 Bonus
$3300 Stock

They say they wanted to gave me 4 in the group calibration but it ended up 5 after the calibration roll-out. Well, this sucks!

Anonymous said...

137k lv62. that's high.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE with a 137k base? Where are you located? mtn view?

Anonymous said...

L60 SDET in Windows (No Promo)
Bucket: 1+ (Didn't even know this existed at the time)
Merit: 5.5%
R&D Bump: 12%
Stock -> Base Adjustment: 2%
Bonus: 22.5%
Stock: 225% of target
New base: $100k

Promo'd at midyear, Gold Star at midyear, but not completely happy with these results, given I was being told since January by both my manager and even once by skip manager that I was performing around the level of a solid 62 (Even back to when I was still 59) and would "very likely" get promoted again at Annual Review despite midyear promo.

Learned the hard way that this isn't ever going to fly in most orgs, especially when other people getting outperformed by new hires have been sitting around in their level for too long or are threatening to leave the company. Manager seemed really apologetic about it during reviews, as if he felt he hadn't put up enough of a fight for it, so I won't hold anything against him over it.

Anonymous said...

"L60 SDET in Windows (No Promo)
Bucket: 1+ (Didn't even know this existed at the time)
Merit: 5.5%
R&D Bump: 12%
Stock -> Base Adjustment: 2%
Bonus: 22.5%
Stock: 225% of target
New base: $100k

Promo'd at midyear, Gold Star at midyear, but not completely happy with these results, given I was being told since January by both my manager and even once by skip manager that I was performing around the level of a solid 62 (Even back to when I was still 59) and would "very likely" get promoted again at Annual Review despite midyear promo.

Learned the hard way that this isn't ever going to fly in most orgs, especially when other people getting outperformed by new hires have been sitting around in their level for too long or are threatening to leave the company. Manager seemed really apologetic about it during reviews, as if he felt he hadn't put up enough of a fight for it, so I won't hold anything against him over it."


Ah, laddie. Such a newbie.

First of all, the second a manager tells you that you're performing a level or two above where you are currently, be very afraid -- that manager is unskilled in the art of managing at Microsoft. We NEVER, ever tell that to our employees, because it's the surest way to piss them off when you can't ever deliver a promotion. Your manager has exactly zero ability to promote you -- promotions are decided at the organizational level and your manager is only one tiny voice.

Second: if your manager is apologizing to you at your review for not getting you a promotion, RUN TO ANOTHER TEAM. Again, this is the mark of an ineffective Microsoft manager: the good ones know how to play the game and get shit done, and don't put themselves in the position of needing to backpedal and apologize. Your manager obviously isn't savvy enough to make things happen for you.

Don't pay any attention to a manager who apologizes for not getting you promoted, and don't ever listen to one who tells you you're working x levels above where you are right now. The only thing you can trust at Microsoft is dry ink on paper -- that is, believe them when they come and tell you that you have the promotion right now, today. Tomorrow is smoke and mirrors here.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDE with a 137k base? Where are you located? mtn view?

Reverse engineering from the numbers in OP, 120K base isnt too far from what I have seen for some other L62 devs in microsoft puget sound prior to this one time adjustment .

Anonymous said...

The new review system is a game played by HR to cut cost! Although it tries to every feel like a pay increase.

I got promoted to 62 and a rank 1. Then I noticed a hidden change in stock award model. Now the 180% stock award is targeting on my old level. The difference of the targeted stock of 62 is almost double than that of 61. My overall compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was actually 13k less than the old model!

I'm glad I got a rank 1 but HR of this company totally disappointed me. They change the game rule and make it out loud to every one, but hide some changes to cover their true purpose. It is not a pay raise at all. it is a scam of cut cost! They have no intention to making the offering more competitive to retain talents. I'm sure some one in HR department will get a great review by designing this. This company is on its way to the grave. It cannot be reversed!

Anonymous said...

I have been with Microsoft several years and typically have landed somewhere on the upper end of the 70% and on occasion was able to work my way into the 20%. While I have not received my official review but my manager let me know that I am going to receive a 4. Trying to be as honest and as self-critical as possible I believe that my results earned/deserved a 2, so a 4 is a huge surprise. You might be thinking that this person has a larger ego/self-worth than deserved (and as I try to make sense of this I have asked myself the same question) But my manager (who I do trust) shared with me that after 3 rounds of calibration I was still rated a 2 in the tool and the “downgrades” occurred after the model left our organization. I am not willing to do some sort of fake “Mea culpa” and say “I will try harder next time” feeling/knowing that given the same time restraints and circumstances there wasn’t much more I could have or should have done all that differently over the past year. I fear that the 4 and my reluctance to apologize for a job well done basically will end my career at Microsoft. I am now feeling a little naive about all the times that I have defended Microsoft both internally and externally over the last several years. While I am personally saddened with how all of this has transpired (and unsure how I am going to explain the review score to my spouse), I am even more disappointed in what has become of Microsoft and the culture that has been allowed to develop.

Anonymous said...


137k lv62. that's high


I think we're getting some legit numbers being posted here, and then we got trolls/non-MS people posting bogus numbers that simply don't add up. It makes it a bit harder to figure what's going on, but for the most part, you can tell apart the trolls, such as a 62making almost 140k.

Anonymous said...

"you can tell apart the trolls, such as a 62making almost 140k"

My total comp last year @level 62 (base + bonus + stock) was almost there (and no I was no hipo)

Anonymous said...

"My total comp last year @level 62 (base + bonus + stock) was almost there (and no I was no hipo)"

Same here. I am not sure why a L62 non hipo making 137k is not beleivable. I, currently in L62, never once went into the 20% and still make almost that much.

Anonymous said...


L65
Bucket: 3
Merit: 2.5%
Stock to base: 3K
Bonus: $17K (12.58%)
Stock: $36K
New base:145K


Your bonus seems low. As a L65 in bucket 3, you should have recieved 100% of your bonus target, which is 20%. Are you in some sort of sales position that doesn't have the standard bonus?

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...
137k lv62. that's high.

Monday, August 22, 2011 5:40:00 PM

Anonymous said...
L62 SDE with a 137k base? Where are you located? mtn view?

Monday, August 22, 2011 5:43:00 PM

137k lv62. that's high


I think we're getting some legit numbers being posted here, and then we got trolls/non-MS people posting bogus numbers that simply don't add up. It makes it a bit harder to figure what's going on, but for the most part, you can tell apart the trolls, such as a 62making almost 140k.


Wrong, wrong, and wrong again.

I'm currently a L62 making $118K, my "preview" numbers in April showed that with a rating of 1 I would have a new base pay of $136K. As it turns out I got a rating of 1 and a promo to L63, so I'll be making $142K. These aren't fake numbers, they are the result of the upward shift of all pay bands. $137K is just about 1.0 comp ratio for a L62 now. What most people don't realize is that with this raise they are a lot lower on the comp ratio than they used to be. $118K used to be about 1.09 comp ratio for L62, now its more like 0.86.

Anonymous said...

Pay attention folks, the OP said his new "base" is 137k. Which means he's way over 150k when you factor in stock + bonus. That cannot be right.

I'm a 62 myself, and collected almost 128k last year in total comp, but my base was only around 1$106k.

Anonymous said...

Can anybody tell me what's the new base for comp ratio 1 at L62? (Or the new base for any comp ratio at L62)? Thanks

Anonymous said...

could someone post 1.0 (target) salary for each level

Anonymous said...


But my manager (who I do trust) shared with me that after 3 rounds of calibration I was still rated a 2 in the tool and the “downgrades” occurred after the model left our organization.


Sorry to hear this. It could be any one of us. But, I must say, being a 2 all way up the org, and then downgraded 2 levels seems strange.

Is that normal? I always thought (in all the sytems we've had) that the most you can move up or down is within a bucket.

Anonymous said...

I'm currently a L62 making $118K, my "preview" numbers in April showed that with a rating of 1 I would have a new base pay of $136K. As it turns out I got a rating of 1 and a promo to L63, so I'll be making $142K. These aren't fake numbers, they are the result of the upward shift of all pay bands.

Are you in the bay area or something, or is my salary low, or what?

I'm in Redmond, L61. Current pay is shy of 90k, and post-bump pay the tool told me to expect something in the 104-109 range (from memory), unless of course I got a 5. I'm expecting a good rating given manager feedback and my gold star a few months back.

If L62 118k is typical pre-shift, then even given that I'm a level lower it seems like I'd be low, since that's about 33% more than I was making before and probably more than I stand to make even if I'm promoted to L62 this year. Which would be a sucky time for it, I guess, given that I'd miss the huge Stock2Cash conversion but still have to deal with the lowered stock target.

Anonymous said...

Hey last year, I got Circle of Excellence and 2 gold Star with quota attainment over 100% and still got 70% achieved...

This year.... No comment.... Went up, came back 2 levels down.... My manager didn't even try to justify it... Because there is no justification....

Guess I need more lipstick....

Anonymous said...

Believe it or not as you will, but my Base used to be $119k before this review with a total annual compenstation of $149.5k for 2011.

So going up to $137k base does put the total compensation pretty high. Yes, at level 62. I guess not all 62's are build the same :)

Anonymous said...

Oh, and this is in Redmond, not Cali...

Anonymous said...

The compa ratio 1.0 for L 62 is 123800. I calculated this from my current compa ratio (got this year's compa ratio by asking my manager)

Anonymous said...

If you get promoed mid year you say bye bye to a 20% in the old system unless you did something noticed at the VP level - say make a a few hundred million bucks for the company.

Been there: the multiple gold stars, promo, multiple out of band bonuses, max possible stock for level, VP thank yous, and all, in a year. My results probably saved a few hundred million bucks for the company. Possibly an executive's ass or two as well. So I guess that works too.

I did all that less than TWO YEARS before being trashed as an alleged loser by an actual loser manager to whom I was assigned due to reorg.

The loser finally forced me out at Layoff 09. It appeared to be a very frustrating year for her. During it, she kept up the termination threats, kept trying to find something that'd work as a firing criteria on someone who exceeds expectations and is well-liked. And she refused to let me go to any of several sane teams that knew my work quality and wanted me if I was leaving my current team. I heard from the grapevine of past reports still at MSFT that everything she tried on me had been proven effective, as constructive termination or as creating a firing offense to point at, by her against others numerous times before. I kept privately smirking at her poor attempts to engineer a failure by me, intending to wait her out and resume a career with a team who knew the quality of my results and how great I was to work with. Or at least to collect as much of my huge stock awards as I could before one of her tricks worked.

There are reasons I put up with this, rather than leaving the company immediately. She was a repeat failure as a manager who depended on reorgs and new GM's not knowing her record in order to get back into management after being demoted to IC. I was an IC with $200K in unvested stock. This was not the kind of stock a competitor would match for a mid-level dev at the time.

I had hoped that I'd win the game of managerial chicken and she'd be out of my way before she found a way to get rid of me. I could then move to one of the other teams and keep my 6-figures of pending stock awards and at least some of my career prospects at Microsoft. Like no one expects the Spanish Inquisition, few expected the Great Layoffs of 09 at Microsoft. That was that. Timing is everything.

90% of the female managers at MSFT are probably great or at least acceptable to report to. That bottom 10% Microsoft won't get rid of, who are in positions above first-level lead, cause issues. The deck is sufficiently stacked against IC's at Microsoft. The extra challenge of going up against a demographic that, according to some ex Windows GM's, enjoys some "extra protections" from above isn't worth it. That's why I caution friends still at MS to avoid female managers above leads in the Windows orgs.

Don't laugh me off for being too politically stupid to change teams before the woman could attack. I tried, guys. She refused me not-asked-for permission to leave the team as an alleged performance problem without specifics as soon as she saw the first formal interview notice in her mailbox. Not even the manager who'd already decided he wanted me based on his work with me and my performance in one of those its-not-a-loop-its-a-series-of-chats non-interviews, could free me. When this happened, I had a good most-recent review, nothing poor on my record, and scorecard results above most teammates.

Anonymous said...

"I got a rate 1 and promoted to 62. And I noticed a hidden change in the stock award, which is now it is based on the old level. You know the stock target of 62 and almost double of 62. With that, my total compensation (pay + bonus + stock) was actually 13k less! It is totally a scam."

I believe this was actually addressed in the initial documentation that was sent out (not an employee, but my spouse is, and they shared the information with me). If I remember correctly, it specifically points out that the number for this year will be a bit wonky and also laid out what to expect next year, when the greater benefit will be seen.

The OP is stating that the stock award is at the old level target, instead of the new level target. Which is a change from the old system. If true, that's too bad. Sorry, friend - wrong time to get that promo, I guess.

I was 61->62 last review, and I "only" got an e/70 (down from e/20 the previous year), but I managed to get more stock than the previous year, since it was 130 percent of a much larger target. This policy made the biggest difference in the 61->62 promo, since that's where the stock jump was biggest.

I don't recall this changing from the initial communication (it wasn't in steveb's mail), but maybe it's sitting somewhere in hrweb. I never saw the old policy documented either, but never went looking for it.

Anonymous said...

As it turns out I got a rating of 1 and a promo to L63, so I'll be making $142K. ... What most people don't realize is that with this raise they are a lot lower on the comp ratio than they used to be. $118K used to be about 1.09 comp ratio for L62, now its more like 0.86.

It makes sense. However how come we have L65 with the new base at 145K? (see another post before) I'm trying to think about ranges for L63 (where 142K is yoru 'right after promo' base) and L65 making 142K after 2.5% merit increase. Ranges overlap is OK but THAT much overlap... or I'm a total fail at math... Can anybody comment?

Anonymous said...

All the HiPo's I know are members of a "Microsoft Bench Leader *" (for L65+) or "Microsoft Bench Emerging Leader *" (under L65) DL.

The HiPo on my team was told he was being nominated before the final decision so he could have the chance to opt-out if he didn't want the extra responsibilities. I can't imagine there are very many who opt-out

Anonymous said...

The bench stuff is not announced, but its not hidden either.

pb0608 is partner bench a few years ago, some of us are VPs now but not all.

ExecBenchFY11-12 is the current set of bench for execs.

All of this is public.

Anonymous said...

Are partners reviewed with a 1-5 rating? If so, will 7% of the partner band receive a 5 rating and presumably be pushed out or will the 5 ratings be pushed further down in the organization (even though HR says the curve is enforced in each band)?

Anonymous said...

"90% of the female managers at MSFT are probably great or at least acceptable to report to. That bottom 10% Microsoft won't get rid of, who are in positions above first-level lead, cause issues. The deck is sufficiently stacked against IC's at Microsoft. The extra challenge of going up against a demographic that, according to some ex Windows GM's, enjoys some "extra protections" from above isn't worth it. That's why I caution friends still at MS to avoid female managers above leads in the Windows orgs."

You had my sympathies until this misogynistic fucktarded bullshit. Glad she was able to ditch you, even if she's a nightmare.

Obviously you've never reported to a fucktarded male manager -- of which we have far, far more than female managers. In fact, we have so many spiteful, vindictive, stupid and fucktarded male managers that the company is basically dead in the water.

Fuck you and your women-hating bullshit. No place for that here.

Anonymous said...


It makes sense. However how come we have L65 with the new base at 145K? (see another post before) I'm trying to think about ranges for L63 (where 142K is yoru 'right after promo' base) and L65 making 142K after 2.5% merit increase. Ranges overlap is OK but THAT much overlap... or I'm a total fail at math... Can anybody comment?

Yes, there is a lot of overlap. Up through L66 the range is 0.84 to 1.16 of midpoint. For L67 and higher it is even wider, 0.76 to 1.24 of midpoint. This means that a L62 at 1.16 (which is very rare btw) is higher paid than a L63 at 1.0, and even higher paid than a L64 at 0.96, and a L65 at 0.88.

Remember that most people are hired or promoted into a level typically in the 0.85 to 0.90 range. Going into a new level in the 0.95 to 1.05 range is rare, but it does happen, often because they spent a long time at their previous level. When it does happen, you get these people who are higher paid at their level than a bunch of people at the next higher level.

For example, the pay range for L62, in the old FY10 scale, ranged from $91K min, to $127K max, with a midpoint at $109K. Also in the old scale a L63 ranged from $100K min to $140K max with a midpoint of $120K. So a L62 who had been in level for a few years and was at 1.05 comp ratio would have a base salary of $114K, compared to a newly hired or promoted L63 at 0.90 comp ratio with a base salary of $108K. Being one level higher doesn't automatically mean you earn more salary than the people one level or even two levels below you.

Most people are +/- 10% of the midpoint, but there were some outlyers in both directions. On the new FY11 scale, my best guess is that L62 midpoint is about $137K, with a min and max of $115K and $159K. So yeah, the guy that reported a new base of $137K at L62, he is siting right at midpoint.

Anonymous said...

While I have not received my official review but my manager let me know that I am going to receive a 4.

But my manager (who I do trust) shared with me that after 3 rounds of calibration I was still rated a 2 in the tool and the “downgrades” occurred after the model left our organization.


I'm sorry to hear about your downgrade. This happened to me last year (a/10) and when a manager says "don't worry about it it's only a number" it is only because they have not been downgraded ... yet. As a result of the a/10 I did take the hint and left the company (after 8 years). Although I am enjoying my new job and had a slight wage increase (and yes, they did match dollar for dollar the shares I left on the table at MS) I did have to relocate my family and take them away from a life they were happy with -- all because of one little number.

Anonymous said...


As it turns out I got a rating of 1 and a promo to L63, so I'll be making $142K. ... What most people don't realize is that with this raise they are a lot lower on the comp ratio than they used to be. $118K used to be about 1.09 comp ratio for L62, now its more like 0.86.

It makes sense. However how come we have L65 with the new base at 145K? (see another post before) I'm trying to think about ranges for L63 (where 142K is yoru 'right after promo' base) and L65 making 142K after 2.5% merit increase. Ranges overlap is OK but THAT much overlap... or I'm a total fail at math... Can anybody comment?




I'm L64 in SF and my base is $135k. I haven't had my review yet. These numbers of L62-63 seems way high but if they're accurate, maybe I need to be bumpped down to L62 so that I still have the ability to grow and make more...

Anonymous said...

I think people are forgetting that a 3 is a 100% CBI payout. In the old system you could get an achieved and still not get a 100% CBI payout. 80% of the company receives a 3. 3 may be a numeric midpoint on the 1-5 scale but 4 to me says you're average not 3.

Anonymous said...

I got a 2, a fantastic review document and a promotion.

Anytime in my life I have got anything less than the best rating, I've always asked back, what can I do to get to the top. In this case my review document heaped praises on me and pointed to nothing obvious that lead to me being in 2.

On asking I was told that there were others in that same level for years and in stack ranking only 3 could get to 1 and hence you landed on 2. There'n nothing wrong with me or nothing I could really have done.

So essentially I have got a ranking which is less than the best, I don't have a guidance to get to the best either. So what's the use of this exercise of bucketizing people? If this is for some internal HR process, why not keep this whole thing internal and just let me know my absolute score (irrelevant to others in the org).

Right now to me the whole system is giving me the following guidance "go find a org with dumber people or a new team with inexperienced folks and build your career". I am in one of the super orgs with amazing people. My idea of working here was to develop ground breaking technology. However, I am not as passionate to do it at the cost of $$ and my career. So I got the lesson.

Anonymous said...

For the couple Azure folks that have commented, are you in the product group or DPE?

I saw some openings in the Developer Platform Evangelist (DPE) for Azure. Anyone have any insight into these positions and how they are measured for the review cycle?

Anonymous said...

L65
Bucket: 1+
Bonus: $60k
Stock: $80k
Merit/S2B/R&D: ~10%, don't remember

Had another great year, worked my butt off, and was told I would be in the 1+ bucket throughout the year.

The interesting part is the stock number is actually quite a bit less than last year, same level.

It does make leaving Microsoft harder though...

Anonymous said...

For anyone who received a 4 or 5 and debating on staying or leaving...

I received a U/10 last year and although management will tell you that its not the scarlet letter and you can work yourself out of it, its really not worth the effort if you don't see yourself working at MSFT for 5+ more years.

You definitely feel the "A" on your chest when you're denied a small bonuses that your region receives. I was also told recently by the hiring manager for an internal position that they can't consider anyone that got an underperformed in the past 3 yrs (without approval from senior execs). My current manager told me that since I received a U/10 last year, they were not allowed to give me anything higher than a 3 unless they got approval.

Just my personal opinion but if you have other options and you're on the fense, move on...

Anonymous said...


I'm L64 in SF and my base is $135k. I haven't had my review yet. These numbers of L62-63 seems way high but if they're accurate, maybe I need to be bumpped down to L62 so that I still have the ability to grow and make more...


Did you not see your preview numbers in April? You should know exactly what to expect based on what rating you get. At L64 you will be getting $1500 stock2cash. Lets assume you also get the 5% R&D bonus. With a rating of 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 you'd receive a merit increase of 0.0%, 1.05%, 2.4%, 3.6% or 4.8%. So, you are making $135K now, this is what your new base pay should look like:

R1 = $149,730
R2 = $148,110
R3 = $146,490
R4 = $144,667
R5 = $136,500

At R3 you will make more than the L65 who posted earlier about having a new base bay of $145K. And remember that L63 and L64 are now in a new bonus band with a target of 15% (effective next year). That's 50% more than L62. Still want to get bumped down to L62?

Anonymous said...


I'm L64 in SF and my base is $135k. I haven't had my review yet. These numbers of L62-63 seems way high but if they're accurate, maybe I need to be bumpped down to L62 so that I still have the ability to grow and make more...


Did you not see your preview numbers in April? You should know exactly what to expect based on what rating you get. At L64 you will be getting $1500 stock2cash. Lets assume you also get the 5% R&D bonus. With a rating of 5, 4, 3, 2, or 1 you'd receive a merit increase of 0.0%, 1.05%, 2.4%, 3.6% or 4.8%. So, you are making $135K now, this is what your new base pay should look like:

R1 = $149,730
R2 = $148,110
R3 = $146,490
R4 = $144,667
R5 = $136,500

At R3 you will make more than the L65 who posted earlier about having a new base bay of $145K. And remember that L63 and L64 are now in a new bonus band with a target of 15% (effective next year). That's 50% more than L62. Still want to get bumped down to L62?


Maybe... you have to consider that there's a 9% bump in pay for folks in the bay area because of "cost of labor". Plus I'm not in R&D so there's no 5% bump for me.

Anonymous said...

61 (promo'd last year)
Bucket 2 (see, promo doesn't equal automatic 3)
Merit 3.9%
Stock adjust 3,300 (I'm told this is the standard for all 61's)
No R&D, I'm MSIT
Bonus 11k
Stock 8k

My numbers are way down from last year, but I expected that. I was one who benefited from the ability to flex the bonus/stock percentages.

I was generally OK with not getting hte R&D bump, it's the price of being in Ops. But 12% for first years? That's insulting.

My read on the entire mess this year is that MS is finally having to pay the piper (or the employees) for the lack of raises over the last decade. I've been at the company long enough that I remember 8% twice a year in the late 90's. Now you're only valuable in certain jobs or roles. Before long MS will be a company entirely of Devs, since that's believed to be the only job that matters.

A good friend in another group was hit with one of the surprise 4's. Review is glowing, except for the number. Its sad that some truly good performers are going to be tarred by a rigid system. This is not an improvement on previous systems.

Anonymous said...

Most of my numbers align with others posters with same bucket and same level, but I got very high promo. How is that determined? Could it be low base on previous level?

Anonymous said...


Maybe... you have to consider that there's a 9% bump in pay for folks in the bay area because of "cost of labor". Plus I'm not in R&D so there's no 5% bump for me.

Wow, that's gotten worse. When I was hired down there it was 25%, and later dropped to 15% before I took a position in Redmond. Sorry about the R&D thing. Most of the people posting here seem to have gotten it, which is why the salaries seem so big. I got it, but personally I think it's bullshit that we purposefully drove a wedge between employees by creating a class of haves and have-nots. Everyone should have gotten that raise, it's just a big slap in the face to everyone who busts their ass for this company but doesn't fit into the R&D bucket, even though some perform the exact same jobs as those who do.

Anonymous said...

L61 - promo last year
Bucket 4
Merit 1.0%
R&D 8%
Was E/70 for few years. New to level, in bucket 4??
At mid year easy bucket 3, possibly 2. Got pushed back to 4 from 3 at manager level.
Glowing review. No major -ve feedback.

WTF?

Next for RIF? should i move internally or just leave?
Can i get hired internally with a bucket 4? Uphill battle?

- express kettle

Anonymous said...

Fuck you and your women-hating bullshit. No place for that here.

Oh look, we have a foul-mouthed captain save-a-ho in the house. So, how long have you been a p****-whipped mangina?

Anonymous said...

Assuming most of the numbers being posted are legit, Level 62 seems to be the sweet spot. So, if you are a 62 now, or get promoted to 62, you picked the perfect time, unless I'm missing something?

Anonymous said...

Please keep it civil folks. Do unto others what you would want others to do to you.

Thought it might be a one off, but that comment/response thread is turning very hostile.

Anonymous said...

L63 PM - Azure

Bucket 5

Merit %0
Bonus $0
Stock $0

Mid-year bucket feedback: 3
(no perf management feedback at mid-year - "Good job. Keep up what you're doing, sonny")

Told to go find a dumber team to work in.

Anonymous said...

Can anyone explain how delivering on commitments, being pleasant to colleages, and having a positive attitude ends up with a performance rating of 5:

5: "Results against commitments and/or how the work was accomplished was below expectations. Has not demonstrated ability to perform current role at an acceptable level."

Anonymous said...

Please keep it civil folks. Do unto others what you would want others to do to you.

Hey Flower Boy! Take your fucktarded "do unto others" hippie pontifications and stick them up your peace pipe!

Anonymous said...

"Fuck you and your women-hating bullshit. No place for that here.

Oh look, we have a foul-mouthed captain save-a-ho in the house. So, how long have you been a p****-whipped mangina?"


You illustrate the OP's point quite nicely.

One hundred bucks says you work in customer service and make 20 bucks an hour.

Anonymous said...

"

Please keep it civil folks. Do unto others what you would want others to do to you.

Hey Flower Boy! Take your fucktarded "do unto others" hippie pontifications and stick them up your peace pipe!"


+1. Pro tip: it's not your job to protect the internet from bad language or to enforce civil behavior.

If Mini doesn't like the conversation he'll just moderate comments. And frankly, that's not a loss.

Anonymous said...

L62 SDET
Bucket - 3
Merit - 2.6%
R&D - 5%
Stock adj. - 7,000
Bonus - 10% of BES
Stock - 11,000
Mid-year 61->62 promo.
Mid-year gold star.

Can't remember what hrweb said a few months ago, so can't tell if i m getting expected raise.
I was expecting a 2, but my boss said he couldn't give me a 2 right after my promotion.
Anycase, I am happy with numbers.

Anonymous said...

pb0608 is partner bench a few years ago, some of us are VPs now but not all.

ExecBenchFY11-12 is the current set of bench for execs.


pb0608 has Roz Ho who went to VP and is now back. She is not on ExecBenchFY11-12 but maybe next time.

Anonymous said...

L63
(expecting a promo but none came, even after very direct hints from mgt)

Bucket: mgr submitted a 2, skip mgr confirmed calibration went extremely well but then the 2 got dropped to a 3 (what the??)

Merit: 3%
Stock to Cash: approx 3%
Bonus: 10%
Stock: 8%

Hate the new system. Mgr and Skip Mgr made it painfully obvious I was getting a 2 but then got screwed by the system somewhere.

Anonymous said...

"+1. Pro tip: it's not your job to protect the internet from bad language or to enforce civil behavior."

Point taken. So here is some to indicate it.

You motherfucking piece of dipshit, shut your cocksucking mouth. It is not your bloody motherfucking job to tell me what i should do or not do :)

Anonymous said...

""+1. Pro tip: it's not your job to protect the internet from bad language or to enforce civil behavior."

Point taken. So here is some to indicate it.

You motherfucking piece of dipshit, shut your cocksucking mouth. It is not your bloody motherfucking job to tell me what i should do or not do :)"


That's the spirit.

Anonymous said...

To the poster who asked about the "what" vs. "how" language - I was told my 3 was not for all that I had achieved over the course of the year -- exceeded all metrics -- Gold Star and team awards, etc. -- but because of "how" I achieved them (apparently without sufficient ass-kissing). Now with a 3 I'm concerned about interviewing with a new team but clearly don't have the kiss-ass skillset to bump that 3 to a 2 by this time next year. Starting to think about options outside of MS as a result.

Anonymous said...

"Hate the new system. Mgr and Skip Mgr made it painfully obvious I was getting a 2 but then got screwed by the system somewhere.

As others have said, any time a manager makes it painfully obvious that you'll be getting something in the future -- even if it's a few weeks away -- you should start looking for another team, because that's the signal of a manager who doesn't understand the system.

You manager and manager's manager never know how the cards are going to fall until the model is locked and the checks are being printed. If they tell you otherwise, they're either lying or inexcusably naive.

Anonymous said...

My managers peer promotes his directs more often (mid year and annual so far) than mine does in 2 years. Observable difference is not much at IC levels within bands.
How can this be possible?

Anonymous said...

"My managers peer promotes his directs more often (mid year and annual so far) than mine does in 2 years. Observable difference is not much at IC levels within bands.
How can this be possible?


How long have you been reading this blog? How long have you worked at Microsoft?

Microsoft is a popularity game and a cult of personality. Your manager's peer is better at playing the game than your manager.

It's not that complicated. You're working for a dud.

Anonymous said...

F*** you and your women-hating bull****. No place for that here.

Wow, someone's really touchy.

Didn't your parents teach you that it's rude to swear in public?

Anonymous said...

"F*** you and your women-hating bull****. No place for that here.

Wow, someone's really touchy.

Didn't your parents teach you that it's rude to swear in public?"


The internet is not the same as public, Skippy. It's the internet, and the rules have always been different here.

Also, any post calling out women managers as somehow crazier than their male counterparts really needs to be met with a fair share of fucktardery.

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