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Microsoft Changes CIOs in March to Cloud

Mitch Wagner

Microsoft is changing CIOs as part of its digital transformation, following the layoff last week of reportedly 3,000 salespeople in the company's transition to focusing on the cloud.

Jim DuBois left Microsoft after four years as CIO and 24 years with the company. He's being replaced by Kurt DelBene, head of corporate strategy, another Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) vet, of 21 years. DelBene added Core Services Engineering and Operations, including IT, to his assignment as of this past Thursday.

"This is a flattening of these functions, and brings Kurt more closely to engineering and technical teams, in addition to the other pieces," a company spokesperson said Friday.

DelBene is also taking on the role of chief digital officer. "The simplest way to think about this is DelBene will oversee all digital transformation efforts within Microsoft (e.g., internal focused)," the spokesperson said.

Musical chairs. Photo by Artaxerxes (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons
Musical chairs. Photo by Artaxerxes (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

At an enterprise tech company, CIO is as much a marketing as operations position; tech companies are the first customers of their own products and showcase their own IT infrastructure to customers.

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Microsoft is cutting 3,000 jobs, largely in sales, as part of a reorganization shifting focus to the cloud, according to reports last week. Job cuts comprise less than 10% of Microsoft's total sales force. (See Microsoft Cutting Jobs in Shift to Cloud.)

The cloud is a growing part of Microsoft's business. Azure revenue increased 93% year-over-year in its first quarter ending March 31. Overall revenue for the quarter was $22.1 billion, up from $20.5 billion in the year-ago quarter. (See Microsoft Wants Azure to Blur the Enterprise Edge.)

Amazon Web Services dominates the public cloud market, with 57% of market share, but Microsoft is a fast-growing second pace, at 34%, up from 20% last year. (See Cloud Growth Spawns Worries, Mary Meeker Reports.)

— Mitch Wagner Follow me on Twitter Visit my LinkedIn profile Visit my blog Friend me on Facebook Editor, Enterprise Cloud News

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A CSP's digital transformation involves so much more than technology. Crucial – and often most challenging – is the cultural transformation that goes along with it. As Sigma's Chief Technology Officer, Catherine Michel has extensive experience with technology as she leads the company's entire product portfolio and strategy. But she's also no stranger to merging technology and culture, having taken a company — Tribold — from inception to acquisition (by Sigma in 2013), and she continues to advise service providers on how to drive their own transformations. This impressive female leader and vocal advocate for other women in the industry will join Women in Comms for a live radio show to discuss all things digital transformation, including the cultural transformation that goes along with it.

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