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Microsoft Reportedly Poaching Apple Retail Staff

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the well-wouldn't-you dept.

Microsoft 375

Eugen notes an article up at Ars reporting that Microsoft, besides copying Apple's retail formula, is now going after Apple's retail employees. "Microsoft is reportedly trying to hire away Apple's retail employees by bribing them with... wait for it, better wages. 'People that have spoken to The Loop on condition of anonymity confirm that Microsoft has contacted a number of Apple's retail store managers to work in their stores. In addition to "significant raises," the managers have also been offered moving expenses in some cases.' It doesn't end there: once the ex-Apple managers have jumped ship, they are asked to contact their top sales employees at their old workplaces and offer them similar positions at Microsoft's retail stores, also with higher pay. ... If you work in an Apple store near a soon-to-be-opened Microsoft store, apparently the software giant is giving you a free pass; no looking through job postings necessary!"

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Moving expenses are already standard (5, Informative)

ShadowRangerRIT (1301549) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500099)

Every position above janitor in Redmond comes with either:
A) A paid for move, arranged for you, including having all your stuff packed and unpacked, and a hotel to stay in for a month while house hunting
or
B) A lump sum cash payout to do it yourself (mostly attractive to fresh out of college types with little to move)
I suspect they already had a similar program for retail. It's not a new benefit.

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (4, Informative)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500149)

I think it's worth noting that Microsoft isn't unique in this respect; many companies make similar offers (including my present employer). It's a small price to pay to get the right candidate hired on. Professionals should always ask about these sort of arrangements before accepting any offer of employment where a move would be required.

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (1)

ShadowRangerRIT (1301549) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500161)

Off topic, while the above comment seems to have posted, it lagged for several minutes while posting (in FF3.5) before I eventually reloaded the page fresh. Despite appearing here, it doesn't appear in my personal comments history (then again, I expected the forced reload to eat the comment, so I suppose something is better than nothing). Still very odd. Something going funky with the comments JS?

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (0, Offtopic)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500213)

Something going funky with the comments JS?

Welcome to Slashdot 2.0.

IT'S MADONNA'S BIRTHDAY TODAY! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500167)

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Until I found you

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I'd been had, I was sad and blue
But you made me feel
Yeah, you made me feel
Shiny and new

Chorus:

Like a virgin
Touched for the very first time
Like a virgin
When your heart beats (after first time, with your heartbeat)
Next to mine

Gonna give you all my love, boy
My fear is fading fast
Been saving it all for you
cause only love can last

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MADONNA IS THE BEST!

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500221)

I've never seen a retail job offer moving expenses.

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (3, Interesting)

egregious (16118) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500373)

I think this is more like McDonald's hiring Burger King managers than the usual tech employment, hence ne. This is retail, not what most /. readers would think as managerial positions.

Re:Moving expenses are already standard (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500869)

Well atleast - Apple and MSFT didnt have an unfair (illegal ? ) 'we wont poach each other employees' agreement that the 'Do no evil' company had with Apple.

And, best of all... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500105)

They'll be given forged paperwork and identification so they can still tell friends, family and potential employers that they work for Apple.

That's the market. (4, Insightful)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500107)

I wouldn't go for it (and I don't work for Apple), but money is money I suppose. For many, job satisfaction outweighs wages, to a certain point. There's also the time already invested in the current position to consider; even if you're not completely satisfied with your current gig, the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.

Re:That's the market. (3, Insightful)

Quothz (683368) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500393)

I wouldn't go for it (and I don't work for Apple), but money is money I suppose. For many, job satisfaction outweighs wages, to a certain point. There's also the time already invested in the current position to consider; even if you're not completely satisfied with your current gig, the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.

That's all true, but there's something to be said for getting in on the ground floor. Microsoft is trying its best to recruit the top salesfolk, and these're guys and gals who might well have their eyes on management slots. Joining a new, well-funded operation can be a good lure for the upwardly mobile.

Re:That's the market. (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500417)

I wouldn't go for it (and I don't work for Apple), but money is money I suppose. For many, job satisfaction outweighs wages, to a certain point. There's also the time already invested in the current position to consider; even if you're not completely satisfied with your current gig, the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.

An interesting thing is, Apple pays really well for retail - I believe the starting wage is $12/hr if you're just floor sales, and I believe the Geniuses get paid starting at $15+/hr. (Retail jobs normally pay a tiny bit above minimum wage). It's not high pay, but it's quite well off for retail stores.

Microsoft must be paying a pretty penny more to lure people away. Makes me wonder how many people Microsoft and Apple turn away because they're attracted to the pay. I don't know how much Costco pays (they're considered the best retail chain to work for - pay and benefit wise...).

Re:That's the market. (3, Interesting)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500721)

Starting wage is over $17/hr at a nearby Costco. (I'm in BC, Canada)

Apparently it goes up quite quickly beyond that. Certainly makes Walmart's starting wages look horrible!

Join us! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500553)

I wouldn't go for it (and I don't work for Apple), but money is money I suppose.

You have no idea of the remuneration of the Dark Side, Luke!

Re:That's the market. (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500603)

Under a certain wage level, making more money can add substantially more happiness and freedom than simply being happy with what you're doing. YMMV of course, and being extremely unhappy with what you're doing can be exceptions too.

Re:That's the market. (3, Insightful)

eggnoglatte (1047660) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500609)

I know MS isn't particularly liked around these parts, but how exactly do you conclude that these people will be less happy at MS than at Apple?

This is retail we are talking about. Sales people tend to be extremely flexible as to the product they try to sell. Its not like they actually have to use the products they sell.

Re:That's the market. (1)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500727)

I concluded no such thing, and merely made the observation that if someone is already happy with his job, it's frequently a smarter choice to stick with the current deal. It's a personal choice, of course. That said, giving up a stable gig for an unknown in a shaky job market might not be a great move. I'd say the same thing if the situation were reversed (Apple hiring Microsoft employees).

I don't work for Apple or Microsoft, and I'm pretty practical when it comes the merits of both companies' platforms (I'm pretty far from a fanatic either way). There is one point that you seem unaware of, however. In Apple's case, I have yet to meet an Apple Store employee who doesn't actively use the products.

Re:That's the market. (2, Interesting)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500639)

>the devil you know is better than the devil you don't.

In capitalism there is no devil, just your worth vs. what you can get in the market. I see a lot of sharp kids in the Apple store and theyre making what? 10-12 dollars an hour? If MS or whomever offers 15/hr then they should go for it. Both are faceless profit driven corporations who create and market products. Dont let emotions get in the way of a smart decision.

Re:That's the market. (3, Interesting)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500695)

"The devil you know is better than the devil you don't" is a common expression. It means that given a choice between two entities that are described as you just proposed, it's frequently a smarter choice to stick with the deal you've already got. It has nothing to do with emotions.

Brilliant (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500111)

Apple store staff are the high priests of the Mac faithful. I wouldn't be surprised to see some of them take jobs with M$ just to secretly turn customers off to Windows.

Re:Brilliant (1)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500173)

I hadn't considered that angle... while I'm sure Microsoft would cover this sort of scenario in their employment contracts, it would be rather funny to see someone "jump ship" to one of their stores but secretly remain on Apple's payroll. Oh, the fun that could be had...

Re:Brilliant (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500235)

It is a breach under most employment contracts I have ever seen including MS's. Whats more the story is mostly fud, the moving expenses etc are all standard industry practise and like it or not so is poaching staff from your competitors, They all do it including Apple and slashdots beloved google. not sure why this is listed as a story.

Re:Brilliant (2, Insightful)

Belial6 (794905) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500367)

I think it is a story because we all see the Mac Store employees as being interchangeable with any other employee working in a mall. Thus, it seems that they are offering more money with no good reason.

Ethical Business Tactics (4, Insightful)

DirtyCanuck (1529753) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500113)

Poach Justin Long, FTW.

Everybody has a price.

Re:Ethical Business Tactics (1, Interesting)

russlar (1122455) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500319)

Poach the other guy, it would be much more effective:
"I'm a PC, and this is what I can really do."

Re:Ethical Business Tactics (4, Informative)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 4 years ago | (#29501037)

Poach the other guy, it would be much more effective: "I'm a PC, and this is what I can really do."

It'd be a bit weird. See, the "PC guy", John Hodgman, has actually been a Mac user since 1984 - except for a brief period, which he summarized as:

My PC experience was relatively benign. I had two machines over those two years, and both ended with the PC, despite all of my diligent maintenance, freaking out at the end, unusable, overwhelmed with spyware and bugs, slowly singing "bicycle built for two" and plotting my demise. [source] [engadget.com]

Re:Ethical Business Tactics (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500651)

Yeah, cause it's the milktoast hipster dofus that makes those commercials funny.

This is like buying Craig from South Park

Re:Ethical Business Tactics (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500863)

My kingdom for a mod point...

It's not the first time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500119)

It's not the first time

Is there an echo? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500313)

Is there an echo?

Gateway Stores (5, Funny)

binaryspiral (784263) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500123)

I remember Gateway stores were poaching from local retailers like Circuit City... the grass died on both sides of that fence.

Re:Gateway Stores (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500411)

Maybe, but this sort of thing once killed Borland as a company (Microsoft poaching Borland employees), so this has worked in the past for MS.

Re:Gateway Stores (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500839)

I wasn't aware that Borland had retail shops. I must've missed their kiosk next to Computerland.

Re:Gateway Stores (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500569)

So what you're saying is, with any luck Microsoft and Apple will die out in a decade?

How appropriate. Captcha: henchman

Re:Gateway Stores (1)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500801)

I worked at a CompUSA with a Gateway store in the same block and a Good Guys across the parking lot and a Best Buy across the street... It was fun. Gateway were truly idiots and I liked how they thanked me for calling Gateway Country and then go on a sales pitch upon answering the phone each time I was trying to help a customer (maybe soon to be theirs if they told me the right prices and didn't act like fools, I wasn't commission and honestly wanted whatever suited the customer the best).

Somedays... (3, Funny)

His Shadow (689816) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500143)

I wish anything Microsoft does would still surprise me...

Re:Somedays... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500451)

You know, I heard Ballmer once stopped to allow a flock of ducklings to cross the road. He "ooooh'd" and "awwwww'd" as their downy tail feathers waggled to-and-fro. Once they passed, he made his way to the nearest Co-Op for a vegan latte and compared electric cars with his eco-friendly comrades. Like Ebony and Ivory, Chocolate and Milk, so goes Ballmer and Pilates. After a rousing morning of stretching and contorting, with his chakras aligned once again, he proceeded into the office, where he grabbed a chair to throw at those fucking baby ducklings.

Nothing they do surprises me anymore.

Re:Somedays... (4, Insightful)

quantaman (517394) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500539)

I wish anything Microsoft does would still surprise me...

Yeah! How unethical of them to try to hire workers away with better pay!!

This isn't particularly newsworthy, I don't think it's unusual for retails stores moving into an area to go after the employees of their local competition. It makes sense for MS to go after employees experienced in the market they're entering, I'd expect they're looking for employees from any technology retailer, not just apple.

Heck, this is giant corporations competing to hire the little guy, this is the part of capitalism we're supposed to like!!

Re:Somedays... (1)

indiechild (541156) | more than 4 years ago | (#29501019)

I think people just find it amusing. You're not going to see Apple poaching Microsoft employees en masse, for example.

I don't think people are suggesting there's something wrong ethically with the situation. If MS can pay the employees better, that's great.

I can just picture the line of black-clad employees clapping and cheering and giving high-fives everytime a customer walks into an MS retail store...

Re:Somedays... (3, Funny)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500545)

Did you hear they are bringing out a tablet. And the Zune phone is all but guaranteed, to go along with there new Zune MP3 player, which has a big screen that takes up the front of the player.

That is new right? Nobody else is doing anything like that.

Poaching (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500155)

In other news, I am poaching eggs. I plan to take a small bite out of each one and leave them around randomly inside Microsoft stores.

And, cue commercial... (1)

greg_barton (5551) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500177)

"I used to be an Apple genius, but I SWITCHED!"

Re:And, cue commercial... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500279)

"I used to be an Apple genius, but I SWITCHED!"

"I am still an Apple "genius" because Microsoft offered me more money but I won't take it!!"

Re:And, cue commercial... (1)

Starayo (989319) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500967)

They should take the MS job, they'll have more money to spend on their beloved overpriced Apple products.

Re:And, cue commercial... (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500551)

Does it come with a free lobotomy, or do you have to smack your head into the wall 10 times?

A company paying higher wages? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500191)

Shocking! A company that treats employees like they value them are getting experienced candidates from their rivals. My god what has capitalism come to!

Steve Ballmer has gone mad... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500229)

It's not the Apple store employees... it's what they sell..

But why? (4, Interesting)

grapeape (137008) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500231)

First of all this is coming from a Mac user. In fact im typing this on my macbook now.

Evidently the Mac Stores outside my area are quite different than the ones here. Here they are rather pretentious sterile cubes with one or two employees willing to show you why you really need that $3000 loaded macbook pro rather than the $999 macbook so junior can do his homework faster. 3-4 other people standing around and one guy at the Mac Genius table arguing with a guy that dropped his Iphone in water and expects a free replacement anyway. I have yet to find any employees outside the genius bar that actually know anything beyond their scripted demo, and the guy at the bar is usually too busy explaining something mundane to be of much help if you do not have a scheduled appointment.

Have the "I'm A Mac" commercials permeated the consciousness of Microsoft to the point that they themselves feel that no one but nerds and suits use windows? What good is a mac entrenched hipster selling windows?

Re:But why? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500299)

I'm a longtime Mac user and I say best of luck to those that jump for more money. Who can blame them? Times are tough and money is important for most people. Besides, there is a greater chance that those that are Apple loyalists who know the products well will stay. And it's not like there is a shortage of college kids for Apple to tap into to replenish the ranks. Maybe we'll even see better Apple stores with more direct competition from Microsoft. I don't see how either side loses.

Re:But why? (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500561)

Perhaps they are hoping these guys will help shape the setup for the stores. Basically, they steal the way Apple does things with there stores, rather than having to reinvent it all.

So let me get this straight (5, Funny)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500249)

I go into a Microsoft store, and what I can expect is... a store of people vastly familiar with the Mac but with little Windows experience.

Genius.

Re:So let me get this straight (4, Funny)

plazman30 (531348) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500329)

It's all part of Apple's master plan!

They're letting these people get hired away. Makes Apple's tech support easier when someone can walk into a Microsoft store have someone get their iPod working with Windows 7.

interesting new angle (4, Insightful)

v1 (525388) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500549)

It's interesting that they are initially hiring the managers, and not the salesmen, something which hasn't really been addressed in this thread. They're not after the salesmen, at least not initially, they're going after management. That makes one wonder if the motive is (A) to drain the management at apple or (B) to enhance it at microsoft? (or both equally?) Third possibility is that they don't care so much about the managers and are only interested in hand picking out the cherries in the retail or genius bar area as stated in the article.

All of this comes as no surprise to anyone. MS has already done what they do best, copy success. They did it with the ads, it only makes sense that they're doing it in the retail stores, best they can. It'll probably turn out as well as it has been for the most part lately... poorly.

Tossing my wild speculation into the pot, I'd say it looks like they want to see if there's something superior about apple's way of managing a retail store that they can assimilate into their stores, by way of transplanting a few managers over. The salesmen really don't matter in this, it's the managers selecting and hiring the salesmen that counts. There's too much churn in retail to accomplish much by stealing your competition's retail staff, and the gains are too short-lived. Should be interesting to see how this new application of "embrace, expand, exterminate" works for MS... (and I'm interested to see how Apple reacts to it? pay raises? no compete agreements? both?)

Re:So let me get this straight (4, Insightful)

wickerprints (1094741) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500385)

While this is mostly true, it's also beside the point. Microsoft doesn't care about whether their hired retail staff will know anything about Windows. They already have huge market share. People buy Windows because they are either (1) too ignorant and scared to use anything else (be it Mac or Linux), or (2) they are gamers and have no need for people to sell them a Windows box, they'd buy it anyway. The entire point of these MS stores is to say F**K YOU APPLE. It is ALL about leveraging Microsoft's vast financial resources to hurt Apple as much as possible. They don't care if they lose huge amounts of money doing it. That is why Zune exists, why their advertising is all about underpricing Macs, why they propose opening stores right next to Apple Retail Stores, and now why they are actively trying to poach Apple Retail Store management. It is warfare, pure and simple, because Microsoft senior management knows they have lost the innovation battle. They've lost it for the better part of this past decade.

Many companies--not just Microsoft--don't simply use their wealth to generate more wealth. They also use it to actively deny their competition from succeeding. Profit is not the only motive in a free market. Sometimes--perhaps quite often--success is measured in terms of how completely and efficiently you are able to punish others for even daring to go up against you. You don't have to win outright, just make your enemies suffer more than you. And that kind of attitude is perfectly exemplified by what we already know about Ballmer's chair-throwing, monkey dancing personality.

Re:So let me get this straight (1)

roadkill-maker (523041) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500773)

The entire point of these MS stores is to say F**K YOU APPLE. It is ALL about leveraging Microsoft's vast financial resources to hurt Apple as much as possible. They don't care if they lose huge amounts of money doing it. That is why Zune exists, why their advertising is all about underpricing Macs, why they propose opening stores right next to Apple Retail Stores, and now why they are actively trying to poach Apple Retail Store management.

I think its much simpler then. As you've stated, Microsoft still has a the majority of the OS market. While I'm sure they consider Apple a future threat, they really aren't big enough to be their main concern. Microsoft is probably more worried about falling behind in search engines then what will happen with Apple in the next 10 years.

This is most likely exactly what it looks like, Microsoft is trying to get experienced managers for their stores. Another commenter had it right, they are selling a lifestyle, similar to how Apple stores sell an image. The stores are similar in nature (I'm not saying they won't compete with each other) so hiring managers that ran Apple stores would be a good hire.

As a side note, I don't see whats wrong with what Microsoft is doing. They are offering managers more money for a very similar job. There are risks associated with making such a move, but I think that it's a win if the employees end up better off.

Re:So let me get this straight (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500915)

Microsoft doesn't care about whether their hired retail staff will know anything about Windows.

They will care once their own retailers start suggesting Mac OS X to potential customers.

Re:So let me get this straight (1)

indiechild (541156) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500999)

I'd definitely mod you up if I had points. This is classic Microsoft business strategy at work. They don't bother innovating to differentiate themselves, they just use pure muscle to try to smash their competition.

Re:So let me get this straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500413)

I go into a Microsoft store, and what I can expect is... a store of people vastly familiar with the Mac but with little Windows experience.

Genius.

No no, they're not geniuses anymore, they're metaminds [penny-arcade.com] !

Poaching to where? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500287)

Microsoft has retail stores? It was news to me that they were planning to try that, and I don't quite understand the approach. What systems are they going to sell? Or will it be all peripherals, software, games, and such?

Wouldn't antitrust issues prevent them from selling complete systems?

I don't understand their angle.

Good idea (3, Insightful)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500291)

I'd love for another company to see my work and offer me better compensation at a new job

Perhaps this is the only way I wish my life was a little more like Dilbert

wrong approach... (2, Insightful)

bedheading (175574) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500307)

Why this will fail: Apple's staff are only able to do their jobs (selling Macs, increasing brand loyalty) due to the tools they have- the product. If Macs and the software that runs them weren't so fundamentally appealing to consumers it wouldn't matter who was walking the floor- nothing would sell. Apple's sales approach is distinctly hands-off anyway. If this is how Microsoft hopes to copy Apple's success, they are approaching it completely backwards. Besides, Apple's managerial staff typically comes straight from places like the GAP, Target, and other large corporate retailers. Microsoft would have better luck looking at similar places.

oh.. (1)

nixish (1390127) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500315)

and i expected much more from you, M$

Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (3, Interesting)

BoRegardless (721219) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500317)

Lets see, Apple has top to bottom control, OS, Developer Tools, Software, multiple lines of hardware, services.

Microsoft has OS, Dev Tools, Software and ...........no iPod, iPhone, Accessories, Laptop or Desktop hardware worth speaking of at the moment.

Now just what is Microsoft going to be selling? $300 boxes of Win7 while Amazon sells for less?

Once the experiment is over where do the "Genius'" work?

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (2, Interesting)

plazman30 (531348) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500337)

If the laptop hunter ads are any indication, the stores will be full of HP Products.

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500425)

Lying to customers with a straight face is a pretty standard Retail Skill. Being able to resist the urge to slap the annoying folks who come in are another.

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500441)

Actually, they might be able to give impartial advice on lots of things that Apple employees can't since MS don't compete.

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (4, Insightful)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500627)

>Microsoft has OS, Dev Tools, Software and ...........no iPod, iPhone, Accessories, Laptop or Desktop hardware worth speaking of at the moment.

Zune HD, HP laptops, Thinkpads, Office, Windows upgrades, HTC WinMo phones, Xbox 360, etc. The same way I can get third-party software and hardware at the Apple store.

They of course wont be selling any of these. Like Apple these consumer goods are props. They will be selling you a lifestyle. I expect MS to heavily promote the "home digital hub" solution theyve been talking about for the past 3 or 4 years. A Windows home server + Xbox plugged into the tv, Exchange at work, WinMo in your pocket, Zune in your ear, Win7 on your laptop, 25gigs of free skydrive space, etc.

I also expect classes on MovieMaker, Outlook, WinMo, Win7, Bing, etc to be big.

Essentially, its retail as advertising. As capitalism ages everything essentially becomes the fashion industry. All style, perhaps a chance of substance.

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500901)

Hopefully, they only poach the good looking Apple retail employees, if it's to be a fashion play.

Maybe they could go "Abercrombie" and have a half naked male model "greeter", to draw the gay guys (oh, and the 3 chix who give a rat's ass about the details of a digital lifestyle).

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (1)

mgblst (80109) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500861)

Well, they have an ipod, the zune. They also have the xbox, lots of hardware. They are bringing out a phone and maybe even a tablet.

Re:Apple to MS Transferable Skills? (2, Interesting)

dingen (958134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500925)

According to Microsoft, selling stuff is not the main focus of the Microsoft stores. They just want to be out there or something.

kdawson sucks (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500379)

since when is offering someone a better job with more money a "bribe". get the spin under control please. bribe implies something illegal is happening.

Re:kdawson sucks (1)

some_guy_88 (1306769) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500657)

Way to ruin an otherwise perfectly good anti-microsoft story..

Re:kdawson sucks (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500813)

Bribe implies something illegal is happening.

Doesn't have [thefreedictionary.com] to.

Is this a bad thing? (5, Insightful)

malevolentjelly (1057140) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500419)

They're paying people more for their expertise. Why are we upset about this? This is really a stretch as far as Microsoft hatred goes on Slashdot.

They're looking for retail managers with comparable experience and offering them higher wages. Nobody has ever refuted that Microsoft was a better employer than Apple.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (5, Funny)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500635)

This is really a stretch as far as Microsoft hatred goes on Slashdot.

Nothing is too big a stretch when it comes to MS hate on SLashdot. It is the rubber band that never breaks.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (2, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500731)

Plus the Apple Stores have been an undisputed success story in a field littered with failure (Dell, Gateway, etc.). Microsoft is smart to hire folks that have some experience with what's been successful. I doubt it has much to do with what OS they use at home - heck, Microsoft stores may very well have a small space devoted to their Mac software.

I'm not a fan of the Redmond folks, but this looks like a smart business move on their part.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (3, Insightful)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500849)

"Nobody has ever refuted that Microsoft was a better employer than Apple."

I suppose it depends whether you'd rather produce a quality product you can stand behind, or make loads of money by ripping off the public at large. The quality of the work has something to do with being a better employer after all. I know I'd rather work for Apple.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (4, Insightful)

malevolentjelly (1057140) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500871)

Yeah, I hear it's really fun when Steve Jobs wanders into peoples' offices and starts threatening them.

I'm sorry, but I work for money and benefits. I completely disagree about Apple making quality products- they are simply a well polished technology recyclery.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500857)

They're paying people more for their expertise. Why are we upset about this? This is really a stretch as far as Microsoft hatred goes on Slashdot.

Maybe you read something in to the article? I didn't see any MS hatred at all. Only what you noted - Microsoft trying to hire away top experience from a competitor. If you want to read something nefarious (or hateful) in that - that's your baggage.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (1)

malevolentjelly (1057140) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500873)

I was talking about the comments, not the article.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (5, Insightful)

indiechild (541156) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500987)

I don't think people are saying it's a bad thing as such. I think most just think it's amusing and it perfectly illustrates how MS lacks innovation and just copies what other companies like Apple are doing, despite the best efforts of MS fanboys to defend them.

Instead of coming up with your own high quality products and ideas, just muscle in on other people's. That's the MS way.

Re:Is this a bad thing? (0, Flamebait)

malevolentjelly (1057140) | more than 4 years ago | (#29501001)

Do you have any idea how companies operate? ...name a big enterprise that doesn't purchase or borrow innovation. Your belief in the innovative enterprise seems rather naive.

WOW (2, Informative)

Airdorn (1094879) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500461)

...and the problem with that is.... WHAT?

Re:WOW (1)

bennomatic (691188) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500737)

Who said anything's wrong with it? Certainly not the article summary...

Non Compete agreements? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500473)

dont most employment agreements have a non compete clause.. especially manger and above. especially applying to recruiting you ex subordinates?

Re:Non Compete agreements? (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500543)

not in retail. you don't have any technical or business knowledge in retail that poses a threat.

the spirit of the non compete isn't to stop you changing jobs anyway, they are there to protect the employer from being raped by the employee eg. taking clients and information with them.

Re:Non Compete agreements? (1)

harlows_monkeys (106428) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500859)

At least for stores in California, a non-compete clause would be irrelevant, as those aren't enforceable under California law except in cases like the sale of a business.

Be careful (1, Troll)

AdamInParadise (257888) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500519)

The employees that receive those offers should be careful. Apple is deeply committed to their stores, they are not going to disappear overnight. On the other hand, who knows how long those "Windows" stores are going to be open? And what are those stores going to sell again?

If you jump ship now, you may very well end up with a stain on your résumé when one anonymous exec at Microsoft decides (for some reason) to close all those stores.

Poor Poached Apple employees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500607)

  First they get taken illegally, then simmered slowly. That's gotta suck, compensation or no.

  TUMA

It's a COOKBOOK!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500885)

They said their purpose is to "serve" man, and now we know what they really meant!

Bribery? (2, Insightful)

Starcom8826 (888459) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500613)

Since when did paying people more for a job to get them to come to your company become bribery?

Consider the Source (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500619)

Does anyone really believe Arstechnica anymore?

The quality of the tech articles has gone to pot, the founders sold out, most of the worthwhile forum dwellers have moved on...it's really just another Conde Nast dead-tree echo chamber.

If you want decent tech reporting, anand is about all that's left.

Netcraft confirms it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29500623)

Steve Jobs is dying. And now the company can offload a bunch of people without having to pay out any severance or any other bennies. Very astute.

It's About Interfering with Apple (4, Insightful)

BBCWatcher (900486) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500641)

Yes, Microsoft needs staff for its stores. But Microsoft's whole "me too" retail strategy is about trying to disrupt and interfere with Apple's business model. That's the reason why Microsoft is trying to place their stores in close proximity to Apple's, for example. And if Microsoft can increase Apple's retail staffing costs, Microsoft would consider it money well spent. In short, Microsoft is all about trying to drag down Apple, not building up Microsoft.

One way to sell against Apple (4, Insightful)

HycoWhit (833923) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500665)

Not only is Microsoft helping to bring higher wages to the retail sector--but who better to sell against Apple, than the best of the Apple retail staff? If anyone can do a good job exposing the gaps in Apple's armor, I would think it would be the folks Microsoft is hiring.

Birmingham Apple Store (5, Funny)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500689)

Let's hope they poach the staff from the Birmingham Apple Store: the craptard service they provide there is much more in line with Microsoft's standards than Apple's. The service is so awful there I sometimes I wonder if it's actually a fake store set up by Microsoft to discredit Apple.

Yummy... (4, Funny)

atomic-penguin (100835) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500725)

Yummy, poached Apples!

Wait a minute, oh Apple employees. Well, I hope they're not boiling the employees in water or cider with cinnamon and sugar.

Good for Them (3, Insightful)

Comatose51 (687974) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500753)

As much as some of us may hate Microsoft, this is a good thing for Apple employees. For those that leave for Microsoft, they will presumably get better wages. For those who don't, this will pressure Apple to give them more compensation or other benefits and perhaps rethink the value of their employees. Fair competition is a good thing.

They're poaching the wrong workers (0, Redundant)

Spy Handler (822350) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500865)

They should be poaching Steve Jobs instead.

People don't buy Apple products because the salesman is so knowledgable and courteous. They buy them because they want an iPod.

Pay Them In Laptops (1)

Nom du Keyboard (633989) | more than 4 years ago | (#29500957)

Perhaps they are paid in the Laptop Unit of Currency (LUC's). Because Windows laptops cost less than Apple laptops (I saw this on TV so it must be true), Microsoft can offer a higher compensation level in LUC's than Apple at the same actual cost basis overall. Math wins out every time.
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