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Microsoft Barring Certain Staff From Buying Macs, iPads?

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the no-apple-for-you dept.

Microsoft 416

mr100percent writes "Microsoft has reportedly moved to prohibit employees in its Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, and Operations Group (SMSG) from using company funds to purchase any products produced by Apple. The company had already barred staffers from using expense allocations for competing smartphone platforms, however the new guidelines explicitly note that Macs and iPads have been added to the list. 'Within SMSG we are putting in place a new policy that says that Apple products (Mac & iPad) should not be purchased with company funds,' an alleged letter distributed to staff reads."

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Barring? (5, Insightful)

bananaquackmoo (1204116) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430813)

Barring and "should not be purchased with company funds" are two entirely different things.

Re:Barring? (5, Insightful)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430905)

This only says not to buy those things with company money. IOW, Microsoft doesn't want its own company money to be supporting Apple and other competitors. It is not applicable for staff buying them for personal use.

Any company is perfectly within their rights to specify how the company money is spent.

Re:Barring? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430951)

More to the point, Microsoft has always tried (AFAIK) to eat its own dogfood, so this seems to be simply an extension of that as opposed to any particular malice.

Re:Barring? (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431743)

always, for definitions of always that only encompass sufficiently short time periods.

M$ used Sun servers + sendmail for internal email, until a customer who tried to scale exchange beyond a few users asked them how they were managing to scale exchange for Microsoft's internal mail, and M$ had to answer, they didn't use exchange at M$.

It was only after the above incident, that M$ made any effort to "eat their own dogfood," and it was as painful for them as it was for all their customers.

M$ bought hotmail, and tried to switch to M$ servers from Sun. They had a couple week long outage where they discovered that even more windows hosts on faster hardware could not scale to the load. They switched back to Sun hardware and Solaris for hotmail, and it was a long time before they tried to migrate to Windows again.

Re:Barring? (1, Interesting)

rainmouse (1784278) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431777)

And also worth considering is that a typical mac product costs an awful lot more. It makes simple business sense. Ever seen data entry staff sitting in rows on iPads? No of course not.

Re:Barring? (4, Funny)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431853)

I've had a dog and I've owned Microsoft products. I'm not sure if "eating its own dog food" is the correct analogy.

Re:Barring? (4, Insightful)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431173)

This is more than just money..... it's selling to the customer. Wouldn't it look bad if a Microsoft employee came to your company to demo a new product, and they whipped-out their Apple Macbook to give the presentation? Or even less obvious... the MS presenter spends the lunchbreak listening to an iPod. It sends the wrong message that "Yeah I work for Microsoft but I really prefer Apple."

Telling sales staff to not buy Apple (and instead use Microsoft products as frequently as possible), is the same as a store giving employees 40% off if they buy and wear the store's goods. It shows that the employee not only sells but also uses the product day-to-day.

Re:Barring? (2)

project5117 (2550152) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431265)

A mod point, a mod point, a kingdom for a mod point!

Thank you for pointing out the important distinction that this request was for *sales* staff purchases with company funds. There's no indication in the summary that other divisions were affected by this request. Here's to you get to +5 Insightful quick!

Ah, stupid manager alert! (1, Troll)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431657)

Cpu6502 will no doubt rush through the ranks as a manager because he has the usual manager capability to confuse the disease with the symptom.

Car companies often have the parking lot filled with the companies cars and NOT because of any guidelines (cars are after all privately bought by the people in production) but because the employees feel connected to the company and are proud of what they produce.

MS clearly is totally unable to inspire loyalty in its employees to feel proud of what they produce and want to show it. You can then put out a guideline forcing people to show fake pride but then you are just fighting the symptom, not the disease. If MS can't even build products good enough that people who want to work for you want to have the products... they got no chance in hell of selling to the rest of us. Eat your own dog food and if you got to beat the god to get it to eat, you failed.

The next stupid thing Cpu6502 says, is that this is all the same as giving staff a discount for the companies products... duh... does anyone really think that an MS employee buying a MS product with MS funds pays full price?

This is NOT just MS employees choosing to buy a rival companies product with their own money (already bad enough) but them buying another companies product for company use with company funds.

It would as if DAF trucks bought Ford trucks to deliver its trucks.

And you can then write a snooty little note that they shouldn't do that OR you can hold a very urgent and deep enquiry into why this is happening. Why are MS products so fucking bad that people risk their job promotion changes or at least incoming chairs for work related productivity tools?

If you have a restaurant and all your employees go outside to lunch, would you ban them, or test the food? Choice 1: Congrats, you are a manager. Here is your MBA and a million dollar bonus... Choice 2??? Loser.

I hate this planet.

Re:Barring? (1)

Jon_Hanson (779123) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431693)

Microsoft makes Office for the Mac. They could even be running Windows on a Mac as well.

Re:Barring? (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431827)

Yeah, but they ended up giving Apple free money for OS X

Re:Barring? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431727)

Absolutely. Though privately, there's a case to be made for having them be very familiar with Apple products in general. When your rival makes superior products, you'd best be intimately familiar with why they're superior.

Passing familiarity get's you knock-off features. Really understanding what's better gives you a prayer at competing. This goes for both your engineers and the customer facing staff that have to field, "why would I want to carry your product when Apple's is better".

But yes, they probably shouldn't be buying them on company money to show them off in front of customers.

Re:Barring? (3, Insightful)

Pokermike (896718) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431817)

is the same as a store giving employees 40% off if they buy and wear the store's goods

In fact, it could be worse -- MS is paying for the equipment. Most clothing retailers require employees to wear the company's clothes while at work and to purchase said clothing with their own money (discounted, of course).

Re:Barring? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431831)

Wouldn't it look bad if a Microsoft employee came to your company to demo a new product, and they whipped-out their Apple Macbook to give the presentation?

It wouldn't if the Macbook ran Windows 7. :)

Re:Barring? (1)

spd_rcr (537511) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431575)

I wonder if Apple has a similar policy, although you can bet they have Microsoft Office installed everywhere they need people to be productive.

Re:Barring? (1)

need4mospd (1146215) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431691)

IOW, Microsoft doesn't want its own company money to be supporting Apple and other competitors.

But the memo doesn't mention anything about other competitors, just Apple.

So apparently it's fine to show up to work with a Sansa MP3 player, Blackberry Playbook, and an Android smartphone.

Re:Barring? (1)

firex726 (1188453) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431153)

Plus most employees with an expense account, probably have enough of a salary to buy one on their own anyways.

First level rep in TS who answers your phone call, does not have an expense account.
VP of Operations who fly's to a different city on a regular basis, does have one.

Re:Barring? (1)

hsmith (818216) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431189)

Why would MS want any sales or support staff, which is customer facing, to be using Apple or Google products in front of customers?

It makes perfect sense, I don't see why it is news.

Re:Barring? (-1, Troll)

drodal (1285636) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431409)

<quote>Why would MS want any sales or support staff, which is customer facing, to be using Apple or Google products in front of customers?
</quote>

Because they wanted the customer to have the best possible user experience.

Re:Barring? (1)

way2trivial (601132) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431579)

'cause they sell stuff designed to run on an apple OS? including powerpoint?

including tons of apps on the itunes store?

Re:Barring? (2)

f3rret (1776822) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431297)

Barring and "should not be purchased with company funds" are two entirely different things.

Yeah oddly enough I've no problem with this. It's Microsoft's money, they get to make the rules.

Re:Barring? (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431603)

The New York Times begs to differ [nytimes.com] , if the object to be purchased is birth control.

Right (5, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430827)

And this is news... how exactly?
Don't most companies ban using company funds to buy competitors' products for operational staff?

Re:Right (5, Funny)

ashmon (592459) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430923)

They're just letting us know that MS wants its own employees to use the best possible tech available.

Re:Right (1)

cpu6502 (1960974) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431341)

PearPads?

Penguin Wees?

;-)

Re:Right (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431017)

And this is news... how exactly?
Don't most companies ban using company funds to buy competitors' products for operational staff?

Exactly. It's called "dog fooding", with the hopes that in using and depending on what you produce, you will have first hand experience as a user and you can know your customers better.

I'll bet their R&D can still requisition whatever they want, though.

Re:Right (-1)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431073)

It's news because the largest software company in the world is ignoring the fastest growing platform for software in the world, rather than writing software for it.

Methinks that MS has gotten it in their head that they are a hardware company... they are not.

It probably makes sense for them to "eat their own dogfood" to a point, but it is disturbing that the dogfood does not include an iOS app!

Re:Right (4, Insightful)

sideslash (1865434) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431185)

It's news because the largest software company in the world is ignoring the fastest growing platform for software in the world, rather than writing software for it.

Don't post about subjects you're unfamiliar with. Microsoft has always written a lot of software for the Mac, and even today has a bunch of stuff both released and in development for the iPad. It makes sense with their dogfooding policies to favor Windows stuff for their staff, but they are by no means "ignoring" iOS.

Re:Right (2)

bkaul01 (619795) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431295)

Note that the restriction applies to certain divisions/classes of staff, and developers aren't among them. Salespeople don't need to purchase iPads. Developers might... Microsoft has released several smaller iOS apps (e.g. PhotoSynth); the question isn't whether they can develop for a competing platform, but whether it makes sense to shoot themselves in the foot by doing so at the expense of their own platforms. With WOA in Win8, there's an obvious tablet focus, and Office 15 is included with WOA versions of Win8, which implies that it could be a significant distinguishing feature: the message could end up being that Windows has Office and works well for content generation, while iOS is just for consumption, i.e. browsing, movies/games, etc. Not sure which strategy is best, but there is some logic to that one.

Re:Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431077)

No. Most companies allow employees and managers to use their best judgment in selecting the best tools to get the job done.

Re:Right (1)

courteaudotbiz (1191083) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431109)

Well I guess some employees have tried to buy Apple stuff on their expense allocation. But this is completely nuts! Who are those Microsoft Employees who tried to do that? If I was their manager, I'd have fired them right away!

Buying those Apple things for personal use with personal money is already a little tricky as a MS employee, let alone trying to have it free using the employer's money! How would these be useful to fulfill work tasks anyway?

Re:Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431125)

When a company has to pass rules barring purchase competitive products, the better approach would be look at their own products and improve its quality. If your employees are buying a competitors products, there is certainly something wrong with your product.

If a GM employee buying a Toyota doesnt send the right signal to the GM CEO that their product is inferior, no amount of company policies can get you out of the hole. Same goes for MS. This is an opportunity for them to look at why their employees are buying Apple products and try to get into that market. They are missing the golden opportunity here and brushing the dirt under the rug.

Re:Right (1)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431249)

Probably... although- I suspect Microsoft's competitors can't do the same thing.

Apple or Google would have a difficult time telling their company that money can't be spent on wintel machines. Apple probably could- but it would hurt their bottom line significantly.

Re:Right (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431313)

It's basically saying "If you don't work on software for Apple hardware, don't expect us to buy you a toy."

Re:Right (2)

mevets (322601) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431421)

| Don't most companies ban using company funds to buy competitors' products for operational staff?

It is interesting that they had to make a rule. That implies that a notable quantity of staff were choosing Apple products first.

I worked at a now swallowed vendor of servers and workstations. Despite producing competing products, MicroSoft computers were commonplace until OS X came along. In a way, that was even stranger, since they were saying Apple's version of UNIX is better than ours.

Re:Right (1)

meerling (1487879) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431531)

All it takes is one.

Re:Right (1)

fran6gagne (1467469) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431841)

Don't most companies ban using company funds to buy competitors' products for operational staff?

Especially, when said company produce products that can be used instead of competitor product. That is common sense in my opinion.

Just like a lot of companies (5, Insightful)

g051051 (71145) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430831)

Lots of companies, including the one I work for, won't let you arbitrarily buy Apple products with company money.

Re:Just like a lot of companies (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431015)

Same for mine, except we are not allowed to buy Dell (everything). For Apple, it only applies to phone products.

I am no longer surprised. (5, Insightful)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430847)

Just when I thought that the quality level of Slashdot stories couldn't get any lower, samzenpus swoops in to prove me wrong.

Re:I am no longer surprised. (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431041)

You must be new here.

Re:I am no longer surprised. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431065)

I mostly come here to see the zealots and fanboys. I could write a simple little script to recite the content of 90% of the debates around here. Granted, mine would be more space-efficient and lack the verbosity and emotional weight in the real posts, but I think I have the psychological templates correct.

Despite that, there are some occasional articles that are actual news, like the fun and creepy robotics, and the progress with DNI prosthetics.

Re:I am no longer surprised. (5, Interesting)

c0d3g33k (102699) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431241)

I'm giving up my moderation rights for this discussion to say that the next improvement Slashdot should implement is to allow moderation of the stories themselves. I'd love to be able to browse stories on the main page (or in a personal newsfeed) using a filter setting of my choosing based on the moderated quality of a story rather than topic, submitter etc.

Re:I am no longer surprised. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431385)

What did you expect? The story had "Microsoft" in the title and ended with a question mark. This pretty much always means it's bollocks. See these examples of headline that would not technically be wrong, due to the question mark, but that are clearly inflamatory and designed for nothing more than page hits:

"Apple CEO Steve Jobs spent $10 billion dollars on FUD campaigns?"

"Google stole your credit card details?"

On that note, I think just to prove the point I'll publish my own little mini story within this thread to prove the point:

Samzenpus is a child rapist?
=====================
It turns out that a guy was arrested for child abuse earlier this year who held the same first name as Samzenpus, could it therefore in fact be Samzenpus himself who raped these children?

A company dictating how company funds can be used? (1)

Kenja (541830) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430851)

Say its not so! Save us Captain Capitalism!

This is not news (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430855)

barred staffers from using expense allocations for competing smartphone platforms

In other news, Ford announced that staffers are barred from using the company expense account to buy Toyotas.

Re:This is not news (1)

jtownatpunk.net (245670) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431763)

Well, not really the same thing. Ford makes a bunch of different vehicles that will fit the needs of any driver. Microsoft has shit for smartphones and almost no vendor support. You can get just about any piece of productivity software and platform tie-in you'll ever need on iOS, Blackberry, and Android platforms but WinMo has been a desert for years. I know. I've seen me use it. And iOS is the first to get support in most cases. Then Blackberry. Then Android. Then, if the intern is still around, WinMo.

Why is this news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430857)

Makes perfect sense to me, if we are talking about company funds. It is Microsoft's money and they can define who the money can or can't be spent. Now, if they were blocking employees from buying Apple devices with their own money, then this would be news. Since it is not the case, move along....move along...nothing to see here.

True for Any Large Corporation? (2)

gregarican (694358) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430859)

Company expenses cannot be used by employees for purchasing competing products? I'm aghast with surprise! Oh yeah, this is Microsoft we are talking about. So it's news *rolls eyes*

So what? (2)

Enry (630) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430865)

Company tries to prevent sending money to its rivals. Film at 11.

"With company funds" (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430869)

"With company funds" being the keywords here.

In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430877)

the employee cafeteria at Coca-Cola headquarters does not offer Pepsi.

Re:In other news (1)

Oswald McWeany (2428506) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431275)

Ugh! Wouldn't want to work for Coca Cola then! :)

Sounds Reasonable (5, Informative)

donleyp (745680) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430903)

Do you think that there are any people at Apple with Windows laptops? Probably a few, but talk about a career limiting move :) Fun fact: new employees at Google are told that "they better have a good reason" if they request a Windows laptop for their primary machine.

Re:Sounds Reasonable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431145)

Apple makes Safari, iTunes and QuickTime for Windows. My bet is though they're running Windows on Apple hardware.

Watch their productivity drop... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430925)

I bet the department starts bleeding money into spending more time on things that would have been done faster had they used iPads, etc.

Breaking news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39430937)

When my brother stocked shelves for Coke, he wasn't allowed to drink Pepsi on the job (paid for with his own money). I'm sure any company would love a photo of a competitor's employee using their product. This seems completely reasonable to me. Nothing in there says they can't buy an iPad and use it at home.

The Car Analogy (4, Informative)

jdastrup (1075795) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430947)

And Ford employees are only giving a discount when buying Ford cars, and only specific Ford cars. It doesn't stop them from buying a different car with their own money for their own personal use.

Interesting, though, that it's only certain departments, not the entire company. Going back to Ford, many of the senior levels I knew were allowed to buy (or at least drive company-owned cars) that were the competition. They claimed it helped them learn about the competition. I have no problem with that.

Re:The Car Analogy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431053)

If nothing else, the department that works on the Microsoft website probably has Apple devices in order to test.

Re:The Car Analogy (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431069)

It's kind of hard to develop Office for the iPad or Mac if you're not allowed to buy any. So yeah, it does make sense that it's limited to certain departments.

That also means that the ban doesn't make much sense even for Sales, since they'll have to demo the things that run on Apple.

Re:The Car Analogy (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431267)

I would say that only the Office for Mac people (sales, developers) would be allowed to have Macs. Everyone else has to justify why.

Re:The Car Analogy (1)

SleazyRidr (1563649) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431353)

I have heard that only Fords were allowed to park in the parking lots at the Ford plants back in the olden days. You could go and buy a Dodge if you wanted one, but you'd have to walk to work.

Re:The Car Analogy (1)

jdastrup (1075795) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431441)

If you had a Dodge you had to walk to work cause your car was in the shop.

Re:The Car Analogy (1)

Americano (920576) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431585)

Interesting, though, that it's only certain departments, not the entire company.

Somebody at Microsoft kind of needs to have a Mac if they're doing to keep writing the OS X version of Office; They also have iOS clients for Skydrive, their XBox Live gaming platform, and reports of an Office for iOS [thedaily.com] product have been floating around for a while now.

Microsoft *is* actively developing for these platforms, so if they put a blanket ban across the company, that would kind of hinder the efforts of those groups to produce a product.

So? (1)

Peristaltic (650487) | more than 2 years ago | (#39430963)

...from using company funds to purchase any products produced by Apple.

While it makes me want to ask "why?" when I first read this, I would say that it's entirely reasonable for Microsoft to decide what equipment Microsoft funds are used to purchase.

Re:So? (1)

lightknight (213164) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431045)

I see that point.

On the other hand, assuming programmers are grouped in with IT, it could be a bad thing. You'd want them to know what they're competing with, and to understand why a rival's product is so popular.

Re:So? (1)

Peristaltic (650487) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431191)

... assuming programmers are grouped in with IT, it could be a bad thing. You'd want them to know what they're competing with, and to understand why a rival's product is so popular.

Good point; I wouldn't be surprised if individual exceptions were made by management on an "as needed" basis.

Re:So? (1)

prisoner-of-enigma (535770) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431643)

On the other hand, assuming programmers are grouped in with IT, it could be a bad thing. You'd want them to know what they're competing with, and to understand why a rival's product is so popular.

Given that Apple products still occupy less than 10% of the market share (excluding educational markets where Apple is grossly over-represented), the whole "product is so popular" argument falls kinda flat.

Now if you're talking smartphones you've got a point. Unless you work for Google, that is, since Android garnered 52% of the worldwide smartphone market last November [pcmag.com] .

The only place Apple is unchallenged is with tablets.

This is getting boring (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431029)

Everyone has basically the same reaction. So how about...

Microsoft is finally showing leadership on the issues of working conditions of Foxconn employees, and on the trade imbalance between China and the US.

Re:This is getting boring (1)

Peristaltic (650487) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431239)

I'm sure that's foremost in their decision-making process. Someone please mod this "Funny".

Re:This is getting boring (1)

drodal (1285636) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431589)

at this point i might think the folks at microsoft are saying: "how can we leverage this foxconn thing to get us more profit, apple has some good ideas sometimes!"

Microsoft Barring Staff From Buying Apple Stuff? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431039)

So it has come to this.

Remaining aware of the competition's progress? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431043)

What about remaining aware of the competition's progress? How can you truly grasp (to compete with) a product like Siri if you don't own an iPhone?

They didn't list the ... (0, Troll)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431089)

... Reverse Engineering department in that ban. I wonder what's up with that omission. Oh wait.

Wasn't someone fired from MSFT for posting pix... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431129)

... of them purchasing several Macs? This had to be a few years ago at least. They had taken pictures of at least a few dozen G4 or G5 Mac desktops sitting on a receiving dock at Microsoft HQ in Washington. The (ex-)employee apparently was fired for revealing proprietary information about the company rather than necessarily "revealing" that the company happened to be buying Macs, which seemed like a "so what" kind of revelation anyway, given Microsoft DOES very successfully develop a lot of software for the Mac.

Re:Wasn't someone fired from MSFT for posting pix. (1)

Interfacer (560564) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431801)

IIRC, the problem was not that the existence of macs was acknowledge, but rather that employees are specifically forbidden from taking pictures and publishing them to the world without proper authorization. This is standard practice.

I sometimes take pics at work with my cellphone, for internal purposes. If I were to post them on my blog (because e.g. I thought they were interesting) without approval form a director, I would be kicked out as well.

Why is this a story? (4, Insightful)

Karmashock (2415832) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431143)

I'm pretty sure apple has similar rules about buying MS products with company funds.

Would apple be okay with their employees buying lots of MS mobile phones using company resources? I doubt it. Sure, there's not much chance of them choosing to do that but the reality is that no company is going to be happy about it's employees using company resources to buy a competitor's products.

Re:Why is this a story? (3, Funny)

KrazyDave (2559307) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431459)

I'm pretty sure Apple doesn't need similar rules about buying MS products.

Re:Why is this a story? (1)

fermion (181285) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431607)

I would think that MS Office may be on many employee machines at Apple. I would also think that many machines would have MS Windows to demo how Bootcamp works, though maybe they are using VMBox. As far as hardware, MS does not make computers, so that is a non issue. I suspect that if Apple has lounges and game rooms, an xBox 360 would be present.

As far as Phones, I suspect that Apple has the same policy that 90% of the US has. That the phones are garbage.

Re:Why is this a story? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431713)

Well, I'm sure Apple has a prohibition on the books somewhere against "wasting company money." That ought to cover it, there's no need for them to specifically single out Microsoft.

If they do that, they'd have to start enacting specific rules against sending company money to Nigerian princes, Amway, and Bernie Madoff, too. No, keep it simple I say - one catch-all rule against waste that covers all of them.

Microsoft is just worried about loss . . . (1)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431147)

. . . new exciting Apple products seem to get lost in bars, grabbed by Hollywood stars and tossed through Windows(tm) or face similar more dreadful fates . . .

. . . Microsoft is just concerned about their potential loss of property/capital . . .

This applies to everyone but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431167)

The only team that receives the exemption is people who work on the Microsoft Office for Mac product.

Makes Perfect Sense (1)

BlastfireRS (2205212) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431183)

If Apple were a competitor to my products, I'd absolutely prevent employees from using company funds to purchase Macs. If we're a BYOD shop, with devices purchased with private money, then no problem...but I'm not helping out a rival, especially given the cost of Apple's hardware.

I do find it kind of interesting that they've waited this long to blatantly say it, though. Perhaps they're now starting to see Apple as a more viable competitor to their interests?

Re:Makes Perfect Sense (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431427)

Perhaps they are starting to get more requests for Macs in a halo effect. Certainly with millions of iPad /iPhone sales, some of them were bought by MS employees. J. Allard used a Mac in his time at MS which may have irked Gates and Ballmer.

Hopefully you will never be in that position (2)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431785)

Really, the first thing that comes to your mind when you are the owner of a product and your own people prefer to face your wrath by buying from the competitor to do their work rather then use their own product, is to ban them?

You wouldn't consider maybe asking them WHY the competitor product is the preferred choice?

And this is hardly news, MS pulled something similar when the Zune was flopping hard and MS employees brought their iPod's to work.

And MS yet again totally fails to ask WHY people prefer to buy ANYTHING else over their products. MS Phone 7 is just the latest in a long line. Is there even a MS tablet out there that MS employees can buy?

It doesn't even solve anything, if MS employees are forced to buy stuff they don't want, they will just hate it and their hatred will be seen by others. You want your employees to be advocates of your product. Not the condemned acting as a warning of the misery that comes with your company.

Or do you think it is good advertising for a restaurant if guests can see your employees vomiting out the employees lunch?

You think it's odd? (2, Insightful)

p0p0 (1841106) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431243)

What until we find out employee paychecks are considered company funds and they aren't allowed to purchase them with their own money.

This could be a problem (0)

jandrese (485) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431259)

The next Mac version of Office is going to suck even more isn't it? It's going to be hard to debug when they don't have a platform to run it on.

Also, expect even more interoperability issues in the future, because everybody loves when their stuff doesn't work, right?

Congratulations! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431463)

You've just made the stoooopid post of the day.

This is a singular honor; there are many stupid posts made on Slashdot, but yours ignore logic, reason, experience, and pretty much any kind of thoughtfulness.

Why? We frankly don't care here at prize headquarters. Its really stupid, you've won, and its something that can never be taken away from you.

Enjoy!

Re:This could be a problem (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431527)

I'm sure this policy doesn't apply to developers and sales people who work on Mac products. Unless MS has an OS X emulator I don't know about.

Wrong headline (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431289)

The summary makes it clear that the employees just can't use company funds to buy Apple products... and the programmers who make Microsoft's software for Apple platforms are not in the group this affects. It's basically saying "Don't use your expense account for toys we don't need." The employees involved are free to spend their paycheck at the Apple Store however they want... not really a ban as much as it's adding these two items to things Microsoft won't pay for.

Slashdot sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431355)

Can't make a case honestly? Just make crap sound like something it isn't to get page hits.
 
We really need to start boycotting the advertisers until Slashdot straightens up and flies right.

Re:Slashdot sucks (1)

drodal (1285636) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431683)

yawn......... really boycott

will anyone notice?

Poor Microsoft (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431407)

Poor Microsoft. Sorry, but doing this won't make your staff love the new Metrosexual version of Windows. All you're going to do is piss off the large group of your employees that would rather buy iPods, iPhones and iPads over the shit you produce (even when you try to give it to them free). It's okay to have Apple envy but this is a bit much.

slow news day... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431419)

I stopped reading at "from using company funds to purchase..."

Why the hell is this an issue? Not being able to buy competing products with company funds seems like a pretty normal policy to me.

Just like at Coke or PepsiCo (3, Interesting)

HockeyPuck (141947) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431477)

At Coca Cola, you can't even talk about P*psi [pepsico.com] based products, bring one in to work or eat at their sponsored establishments.

As a comparison... here's Coca Cola's list of brands. [thecoca-colacompany.com]

So "don't buy a iPhone with MSFT's company's funds" is a lot easier than "don't consume our competitors products while on business." Not so easy when you're flying and you want a drink and the only drinks that the airline carries are from your competitor...

Re:Just like at Coke or PepsiCo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431737)

And Walm*rt employees aren't allowed to refer to deadlines as "target dates".

Bad move (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431503)

This is a bad move. Microsoft employees will have less exposure to non-microsoft products, making it harder to compete with Apple. If the management is not happy with seeing apple products being used, they need to look in the mirror and ask why MS products are not competitive, rather than sticking there collective heads in the sand and isolating themselves from the real world. I often wonder if the US automotive industry would have persisted in making poor quality cars for so long if they allowed employees to drive competitors products.

Think about it this way... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#39431543)

Microsoft employees spending company funds on competitor's equipment/software is kinda like Coca-Cola stocking their cafeteria vending machines with Pepsi products (You won't see Fritos or Lays either since they're also Pepsico's products).

Using company funds (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431729)

Non story. Slow news day eh?

OK, I have honest questions: (1)

Kagetsuki (1620613) | more than 2 years ago | (#39431825)

Does Apple forbid their employees to purchase Windows PCs, Tablets, Phones, etc. with company money? ... would they even need to?

I mean MS has every right to forbid this, and anything short of research into the competition shouldn't warrant use of company funds to purchase these things anyway. The fact MS employees would have the gaull and disloyalty to bring those things into the office alone is disrespectful. Trying to get the company to pay for them is flat out insulting. If your employees don't believe in your own products enough to use them themselves you should probably question weather or not you want to keep them - if they actually try and use money to buy your competitors products you should probably fire them. I mean I hate MS (and Apple), but if I was an empoyee and they were paying my bills I'd at least try and believe in the company vision enough to not bring competitors products into the office or use them for work.

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