How to Get
a Job at Microsoft
Hiring Process and Tips
Microsoft is a household name in the tech industry. As a tech giant that prioritizes the happiness of its employees and their families, Microsoft receives millions of job applications each year. If you’re curious about whether it’s hard to get a job at Microsoft and how to approach the hiring and interview process, you’ve come to the right place.
This article aims to help you by covering how to get a job at Microsoft Corporation. To lay the groundwork for that, let’s begin by learning more about the company, its culture, its work environment, and the people at the heart of Microsoft.
Why Work for Microsoft?
Microsoft’s reputation alone makes it a dream company to work for. Since its founding in 1975, Microsoft has established itself as a top destination for tech industry talent. If you’re lucky enough to get a job at Microsoft, it will be an automatic boost to your resume.
Another reason to work for Microsoft is its family-oriented culture and the excellent benefits it offers to its employees. Alongside its various perks, Microsoft pays its employees competitive salaries and generous raises. According to PayScale, the average Microsoft employee earns a salary of about $121,815, with an annual bonus of about $14,000.
Top Perks of Working for Microsoft
While most Microsoft employees earn high salaries, certain job titles earn more than others. If you manage to land a tech job at Microsoft, you are especially likely to make good money. Below are some Microsoft jobs and their approximate average pay according to PayScale. Later in the article, we will discuss each of these positions in more detail.
As a tech giant, Microsoft hires a lot of smart people. Working at Microsoft gives you a chance to learn from these people and sharpen your mind and skills. If you value intellectual exchange, an opportunity to share and receive value, and connect with people you normally wouldn’t have access to, Microsoft might be the place for you.
Microsoft offers world-class benefits to protect the welfare of its employees. These include medical, dental, and vision care, $1,200 a year for wellness-related expenses, a 401(k) plan, stock options, and many more benefits and perks.
Opportunities for Professional Growth
Microsoft empowers its employees with various programs, services, and events. If your job involves coding, for example, you will be taught different programming methods and given access to resources that will help you improve your programming skills. The knowledge and experience you will gain at Microsoft will boost your resume for future opportunities.
Microsoft gives employees the freedom to focus on the people who matter to them most. Its family-friendly programs and policies include flexible work schedules, paid vacations and holidays, parental leave, family caregiver leave, adoption help, and discounted childcare.
Microsoft: Company Profile
Founded in 1975 by Bill Gates and Paul Allen, Microsoft Corporation is a multinational technology company based in the United States. Its name is a combination of the words “microcomputer” and “software.” The company currently operates in 190 countries and employs 181,000 people around the world.
Microsoft’s innovations have been impactful since the beginning, when it put itself on the map by developing a successful interpreter for the BASIC programming language. Its later inventions of MS-DOS and Windows revolutionized the operating system market. Microsoft has continued to live up to its mission of creating technology that improves people’s lives.
Microsoft’s Company Culture
Microsoft’s culture centers around its growth mindset. The company firmly believes that anyone can grow and change and that everyone’s potential can be nurtured to fulfillment. It is this mindset that drives Microsoft to learn more about its customers, achieve its goals, and make a difference in the world.
The other defining features of Microsoft’s culture are diversity, inclusion, and an obsessive commitment to its customers. The company has the same approach to everyone it works with, from employees to customers to partners. It aims to treat each of these groups with respect, integrity, and accountability.
Microsoft’s Top Achievements
Since its founding in 1975, Microsoft’s biggest breakthroughs have come in the personal computer market, first with MS-DOS, then with Microsoft Windows, and finally with the Microsoft Office suite of products. Its most groundbreaking iteration was Windows 95, which redefined what an operating system could be.
Microsoft hasn’t rested on its laurels. In 2007, the company released its first installment in the successful Xbox series of video game consoles. As Microsoft has grown, partnerships with entities like IBM and LinkedIn have boosted its growth and bolstered its reputation.
What Is Life as a Microsoft Employee Like?
According to reviews on Comparably, most Microsoft employees are happy with the company’s compensation, which includes a competitive salary, stock options, and benefits. They also tend to approve of their passionate and friendly co-workers and appreciate the positive and fast-paced work environment.
The work environment at Microsoft is family-oriented, conducive to work-life balance, and inclusive. Most employees feel accepted, challenged, and cared for. Although the average workday is about nine hours, employees are now allowed to request flexible work hours under a set of guidelines introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Is It Hard to Get a Job at Microsoft?
Yes, it is hard because Microsoft receives over two million applications each year. Microsoft makes a conscious effort to select the best candidates across race, gender, and other identity markers. While the hiring process is competitive, you can put yourself in the running if you have the right credentials, enough information, and a bit of luck.
What Do I Need to Study to Work at Microsoft?
The education required to get a job at Microsoft depends on the job you’re applying for. To work as a paid intern, for example, you must be in your first or second year of a bachelor’s degree program, have completed an introduction to computer science, and have taken at least one semester of calculus.
Most full-time tech jobs at Microsoft require a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Math, Statistics, or a related technical field. If you’re applying for an entry-level tech job, a college degree and specific abilities are less important than soft skills like teamwork, willingness to learn, curiosity, determination, and an entrepreneurial spirit.
Some senior roles at Microsoft require advanced degrees. A business analytics specialist, for instance, should have an MBA or a Master’s Degree in Psychology. A cyber crime investigator should have a law degree or a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security, and most data scientists at Microsoft have at least a master’s degree.
Can a Coding Bootcamp Help Me Get a Job at Microsoft?
Yes, a coding bootcamp can help you land a tech job at Microsoft. Coding bootcamps are short intensive programs that teach students tech skills. They are cheaper and faster than traditional college degrees, so a bootcamp may be worth it if you want to apply for a specific job at Microsoft and you need to fill the gaps in your skillset quickly.
Even better, coding bootcamp graduates can apply for the Microsoft Leap apprenticeship program, which was specifically created for candidates from non-traditional academic backgrounds. Thanks to this apprenticeship program, students have a clearer pathway towards earning high salaries after graduating from a coding bootcamp.
Top Tips to Ace Your Job Application for Microsoft
Your Microsoft job application is a crucial step in the hiring process. A good one will show the recruiter that you have the relevant skills and experience for the job. To increase your chances of getting an interview, we’ve come up with a few application tips.
Tailor Your Application to Fit The Job
This is the most important, most time-consuming, and most ignored tip. To get noticed right away, you must suit your application to the specific job you are applying for. By taking the time to highlight the skills, experiences, and achievements that are most relevant to the job, you will be more likely to stand out and impress the hiring manager.
Make Your Application Readable
Because of the volume of applications, your application may only get one look before it is rejected or approved. You can make that one look count by ensuring that your application is readable from start to finish.
The easiest way to do this is to keep it simple. Use short meaningful sentences and do not write in large blocks of text. Ensure that your font is legible and position the most important information so that it catches the eye of the recruiter.
Develop an Online Presence
Social media has not only made it easier to connect with people around the world. It has also become a space where employers can check out potential employees. This means that developing an online presence is one more way to make a good first impression.
According to Jobvite’s 2020 survey of recruiters, companies are using social media platforms like LinkedIn, TikTok, Facebook, YouTube, Snapchat, Glassdoor, and Indeed to look for and vet candidates. Establishing an online presence on these platforms and using it to showcase your online portfolio is one way to get a tech company like Microsoft to take notice.
Include Hobbies and Interests
While your application should be formal and straight to the point, you can show that you fit into the work culture by adding some relevant interests and hobbies to your application. Since Microsoft values teamwork and a growth mindset, you can talk about which of your interests illustrate these qualities best. Whatever you do, remember to always be truthful.
Common Job Titles at Microsoft
There are various careers available at Microsoft. In this section, we’ll show you a few common job titles and explain what they entail.
Average salary: $127,878
Experience requirements: 1-4 years of experience in a similar position
Education requirements: Bachelor’s Degree in Data Science or any computer-related field
A data scientist’s role involves the gathering and analyzing of data. At Microsoft, these professionals use various tools, technologies, and analytical methods to help the company manage and interpret its data. Their insights are then used to solve complex problems.
Technical Program Manager
Average salary: $123,053
Experience requirements: 1-4 years of experience in a similar position
Education requirements: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Business Administration, or related fields
The role of a technical program manager is to handle specific technical issues and projects on behalf of Microsoft. They are responsible for launching the programs, setting and following through on project goals, and providing support as issues arise.
Average salary: $117,691
Experience requirements: 5-9 years in a similar position
Education requirements: Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, or another STEM field
A software engineer is a computer science professional who builds software. To become a software engineer at Microsoft, you’ll need to learn about Microsoft’s products and about software functions in general. Once in the role, you will be working with programmers and coders to design and develop software.
Average salary: $107,971
Experience requirements: 4-6 years in a similar position
Education requirements: Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Systems
Part programmer and part analyst, a programmer analyst designs, develops, and maintains computer programs and software applications to achieve optimal business outcomes. More than the software engineers, they are involved in the finer points of writing and reviewing code.
Technical Account Manager
Average salary: $97,915
Experience requirements: 5-9 years of experience in similar positions
Education requirements: Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising, Communications, Public Relations, or a related field
A technical account manager’s job is to assist clients with the technical aspects of a product. They train clients on how to use a product to improve customer satisfaction, taking care of any technical issues a client may present.
Microsoft Hiring Process
While the hiring process at Microsoft depends on the department you’re applying to, the company has a general process that most departments follow. Below are the most common steps involved in Microsoft’s hiring process.
Initial Phone Screen
If your application is selected, a recruiter will call you for an initial phone screen. You will talk about your resume, and the recruiter will ask behavioral questions to determine your curiosity level, leadership qualities, and fitness for the role. If you’re up for a development or engineering role, the phone screen may last as long as 45 minutes.
During the first round of technical interviews, Microsoft uses Codility, an online coding framework, to test your coding skills and programming experience. You will be given approximately 60 minutes to complete the test, which usually includes two to four questions.
Second Phone Interview
A second phone interview may take place after the phone screen and coding test. For this second phone call, the recruiter will share potential topics ahead of time. Your job is to come prepared to provide correct answers to the recruiter’s questions.
The most impressive candidates move from the phone screen directly to this stage. Before the pandemic, candidates were interviewed at the Microsoft location where they would be working. Now, this series of interviews is virtual and is conducted via Microsoft Teams.
The interviews last for an hour each and consist mainly of technical questions. If you ace the interviews and impress the hiring manager, you’ll receive an invitation for the last step.
In this last step, you’ll meet with a Microsoft executive, who will answer your questions and ask follow-ups based on your answers to behavioral and technical questions from the previous rounds. If you’ve done well up to this point, the interviewer will make you an offer.
Should I Get a Job at Microsoft?
Microsoft is a tech company with various perks and benefits. It is a highly sought-after company to work for, and its application process is competitive. That being said, you should consider applying for a job at Microsoft if you have the technical and soft skills that the position demands. With a little luck, things could turn out in your favor.
To gain access to the thousands of Microsoft job openings, it helps to remember that Microsoft has a growth mindset and looks for candidates who have a passion for technology. With this knowledge at your disposal, you can use your application as an opportunity to explain why you have what it takes to help Microsoft continue growing long into the future.