Joining a company with more than 100,000 employees is a lot more complex than it sounds, and the existence of a strong on-boarding process is key to let the new hires perform as fast as possible. My experience as MACH hire has been really positive, and I would like to share with you my first month at Microsoft.
The on-boarding starts with the New Employee Orientation (NEO) at the first day at Microsoft, in which you meet with the cool HR guys and all the employees also starting with you. I was surprised to be in a room full with new employees and see how the company is growing! During NEO we received details about things to be done from the HR and IT perspective, and we got a new Windows phone and laptop to start with our activities. By the end of the day I would have met part of the team I will be working with, and start finding my way around the office.
The next day (and during the first 2 weeks) I realized that I was totally lost, with all the meeting rooms and floors looking almost the same thanks to the glass walls of the Swiss office. Fortunately, there is a website for everything at Microsoft! You can even have access to browse maps of the different Microsoft locations and find your way easier. The first week was all about getting understanding of how to find information on the organization, exploring the different resources to obtain it and starting to define your goals and activities. Most of this is guided through the ”Welcome Experience”, a set of courses organized to drive you through your first weeks at Microsoft, explaining you about how things work on the whole organization.
As part of Microsoft Consulting Services (MCS), the development of professional and technical skills is crucial for performing the best possible in front of the customers, and trainings play an important role the first days. The second week I was already booking my flight to attend TechReady, a technical readiness conference in Seattle where the teams working outside Redmond (The ‘field’ teams) meet with the product teams. Additionally, I started registering for several online trainings and other sessions that would help me to be prepared for the conference.
Another ingredient needed to be successful inside MCS is to have a great network. This is why during my second and third week at Microsoft I started introducing myself to the other consultants, architects and engagement managers on the team, as well as visiting the “French speaking” office in Geneva.
The fourth week was all about TechReady in Seattle. Every day was filled with super interesting sessions to learn about the new features coming for the next Microsoft product releases, coming directly from the product teams who are managing the whole development. This was a great experience as I was able to do lots of things on a week. I not only met the Microsoft experts and learn about the products, but also was able to pass my first certification, had the opportunity of meeting colleagues from many other subsidiaries and I was able to meet some MACHs from places like Spain, France, Austria, Brazil, US, Netherlands and Belgium! (Another post will follow describing the adventures of the Swiss MACHs at TechReady).
And this is how fast time flies at Microsoft. Right now I’m on my sixth week and I would say that I’m still on-boarding. Learning each day more about the organization, developing my network and professional skills as well as getting more responsibilities every day.
An in case you are not interested in my on-borading experience :) You can check out some pics of the Swiss Office!