Career Development

Portrait of employee Julie.

The choices are yours

At Microsoft, you’ll have an amazing range of opportunities. You might become an expert in a particular field or build proficiencies across many areas. You might be an individual contributor or become a manager. Because we have so many kinds of jobs in so many different places, you can stay in one building, city, or country, or you can cross borders—in person, or virtually.

Your career and professional development is a partnership between you and your manager, reinforced by our numerous career resources. And as much as we’re here to support you, we believe your career is an individual adventure. You drive your career development plan while your manager assists and coaches you, and we provide a framework with the tools and resources you need to succeed.

One thing is certain: You’ll never stand still at Microsoft.

Our Philosophy: An individual adventure
Employee with a laptop.

Defined roles. Each of our jobs has clear requirements for success but lots of room to push boundaries and grow. Managers provide ongoing support, but ultimately you are empowered to shape your personal experience and chart your own career path. You can go deep in an area of expertise, or move across functions or businesses to experience a breadth of opportunity.

Career path options. You don’t have to be a manager to move up. Both individual contributor and management careers progress all the way through senior levels—we highly value both.

Movement across professions. We define desired results and consistently apply them for all professions available in our business groups. This makes it easy for you to learn about each profession and identify and develop the skills you’ll need if you want to make a change.

Our Career Guide: a clear way to manage your career
Microsoft Way sign.
Our Career Guide is a tool that describes careers across the company and provides visibility to those opportunities to help you manage your career.  The Career Guide helps you understand the skills and capabilities that contribute to success in today’s environment, and provides a variety of ways to develop both in role and for your future career.  As part of your development, you’ll have the option to engage in some 2,000 training programs taught by instructors from leading educational institutions and offered online, virtually, or in classrooms around the globe. You can’t beat the level of investment we place on career development.
Mentoring & Networking: Connections to help us grow
Group of employees chatting.

At Microsoft we share knowledge, experiences, and resources to help each other achieve our career goals and grow both professionally and personally.

Mentoring allows you to learn from the experiences of professionals within and outside of your own area of expertise, and to build a network to help find opportunities that can promote your development. Mentoring is a great way to make a big company feel smaller—and its opportunities more accessible—to each of us.

Employee Resource Groups, Employee Networks and Employee social groups allow people with common interests or backgrounds to connect with each other. Do you love pets, vegetarian cooking, or the environment? Do you share a cultural background or special need with other employees? Chances are you’ll find a network of people with similar interests and/or needs at Microsoft, and you can connect with them as you develop your career and lifestyle. Being a part of the Microsoft community is a rich, fulfilling experience.

Microsoft ranked 8th out of 125 companies for employer sponsored training and development.

We're tops for training

Microsoft ranked 8th out of 125 companies for training programs.
Gladys
Portrait of employee Gladys.
Marketing Manager, Startup Business Group
"After years as a software developer, Microsoft helped me transition into a job marketing technology to the developing world. I love thinking, 'What impact am I going to have on the world today?'"