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Microsoft 'stealing' Apple retail staff?

updated 05:20 pm EDT, Mon September 21, 2009

MS poaching Apple retail managers

Microsoft is actively trying to lure away Apple's retail workers for its first chain stores, according to a new leak. Sources for The Loop claim the Windows developer is not only soliciting Apple's store managers but in many cases is promising large raises and even offering to cover relocation costs for some of them. Some high-performing sales staff are also purportedly being encouraged to switch over.

The move would further reinforce notions of Microsoft attempting to directly mirror Apple at retail. Although the company said it would try to differentiate its stores in the long term, its layouts are known to mimic Apple's with "Guru Bars," open spaces and bright lighting. It has also placed its retail stores near Apple's when possible, in one case putting it in the exact same shopping center.

The retail effort, due to launch this fall, is commonly thought to be a reaction to Apple's increasing market share and particularly the MacBook line's near-total lead of the high-end notebook market at US retail. All of Microsoft's stores are meant to display Windows notebooks in a more favorable light than at mainstream retail chains, which often focus mostly on budget models and don't give their demo units the same attention as Apple's outlets.

Microsoft has been contacted regarding the claim but hasn't had an opportunity to respond as of press time.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Xinnix

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Go Figure!

    Go Figure!
    Microsoft thinks Apples retail success is due to the look and atmosphere! They just don't get it.

    Apple retail is successful because they have way better products!

  1. slapppy

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Don't they realized

    Ummm doesn't MS realize that the Guru Boys/Girls hired by Apple are usually Mac fans and users. Also, they are heavily trained by Cupertino to know just about everything on the Mac? You can't just hire them with loads of money and expect them to be as proficient on the Windows POS as on the excellent Mac products. It will require massive reprogramming on how to be an idiot and to learn how to BS your customers and smile at the same time.

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969



    We'll see them at the unemployment line in one year.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. stevies7

    Joined: Dec 1969


    not true

    apple stores have a very high turn over, their pay, benefits and advancement is c***, most of the staff have no health benefits, because they keep most employees part time.
    I'm sure microsoft head hunters will have no problem pulling apple employees over.
    most employees leave with a sour apple taste.

  1. rtbarry

    Joined: Dec 1969


    who cares? it's a free market...

    ... and we're mostly all adults here. but good luck getting your job back at AAPL after the MS stores FAILBOAT.

    and jesus christ, imagine the culture at a dedicated microsoft store. you can't f****** buy cool, you retards. cool = cool, no effort. hiring away some easily replaced hipsters from apple stores isn't gonna do anything, except make you wreak of desperation

  1. Peter Bonte

    Joined: Dec 1969


    re: not true

    That is maybe so but MS is not hiring away the part-timers but the managers and highly trained employees. On a positive note, part-timers now have a better chance to become full time.

    I don't get it, MS is a billion dollar company with almost 100.000 employees and commercial connections wit all major retail chains. You would think they have the expertise in-house or have a way to find it without stealing away managers, employees and the real estate executive. :/

    I think we will soon see a MS branded smartphone, tablet, laptop, netbook and settop box to fill these stores.

  1. Faceplant

    Joined: Dec 1969



    That would explain those huge nets with the MS logo on them that kept freezing and needed to be rebooted at the Apple store.

  1. Gozerthegozarian

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Feel your anger Luke, come to the dark side... LOL

    Feel your anger Luke, come to the dark side... LOL

  1. slider

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Good for Employees

    While I'm sure I probably wouldn't jump ship to go work for M$ - people need to make a living. If M$ see value in Apple Retail employees and offer them a comprehensive package above what Apple is offering them - then maybe Apple will up it's game too - it's good to be in demand. Unfortunately, I'm sure this is a ploy by M$ - they want people that say, "yeah, I worked for Apple and this is better because....". And as other have posted, I'm sure they're going to kill any chance of returning to Apple if they do go over. Of course Apple could play it the other way - the triple agent ;) if you will.

    I don't actually think M$ retail strategy is going to work as it has for Apple, mostly b/c of brand confusion and competition from other stores within these shopping complexes. And I'm really looking forward to hearing the Guru disasters where some guy brings in an HP or Dell, or some other badged computer. I mean what do you do when the issue really is with the hardware? "We don't make the hardware, sorry", Yeah, that's gonna put a point one of the strengths behind Apple computers.

  1. hdfonts

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Maybe they could hire Jerry Seinfeld to run one of their stores? Especially considering how wildly successful and to-the-point those Microsoft commercials were.

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