Microsoft told its US staff on Friday that from 2013 they would have to pay contributions toward their healthcare costs. The company’s compensations and benefits veep J. Ritchie told MS employees at a 'Town Hall' meeting in Redmond that Microsoft was “not immune” to the “rising costs” of US healthcare. "We needed to evolve our …
Microsoft and experienced developer in the same sentence.
Sorry I couldn't resist.
Actually this is a good thing for Microsoft. Health care expenses are going through the roof and its better to reduce a benefit than to make US workers redundant and ship their jobs off to India.
(And we wonder why Software is getting crappy and full of bugs....)
Can't imagine the reaction was positive...
Would have been better to say, "Microsoft employees thought it was not as bad as it could have been".
IT professional are not regulated, it's possible to drive down costs. Off-shoring can be made to work (and, if you put the effort into specifying what you want, you can get good results).
However, Doctors are in a "profession" - you can't offer the services of a doctor unless you have a license from the government. It's the same for Lawyers.
So healthcare costs are going to rise unless there is a way of increasing, dramatically, the number of doctors. It's a closed club, in the UK, the MBA fight to keep their members in a protected position.
Not the doctors
It's the insurance companies who are pushing up the premiums, not the doctors. For example, our tiny company has had a 25% hike in premiums, so much that we had to go on a lower-level, cheaper plan.
Being an ex-pat Brit, I sometimes wonder why the hell I moved to this country. People moan about the NHS, but at least you know you have health coverage all the time. I dread the thought of being laid off and having to pay 500 quid a month just in case.
A huge company like MS charging its employees for health coverage? Even bankrupt local government here don't charge the employee, just their dependents. MS must be in trouble!
You can tell when the company you work for is about to hit the buffers
They start to cut back on all the freebies.
Make things uncomfortable
This is a profit saving move, and should affect share-price positively.
Also, staff might leave without the cost of severance packages and without MS having to announce layoffs which would affect share-price negatively.
I'm sure poor Bill Gates can hardly afford health care so he needs to make his employees help pay for their's. Like WTF? Anybody check Microsucks profits lately?
Yeah, that's a good point. What's wrong with giving all Americans coverage? Why doesn't Bill just spend his money that way. Quite simple, too. Guess it's more fun to travel the globe.
Had to happen
Some are already blaming Obamacare, merely showing themselves as the right wing crazies they are. Fact is that the costs are escalating. Someone has to pay. Does MS pay directly and hold salaries down? Does MS pay directly and have it affect the quarter's numbers? Does MS get their US based employees to hand over money in Co-Pay's (a-la prescription charges to Blighty based readers).
Someone has to pay something.
Obamacare will accelerate the jump
I'm close friends with the IT director of several clinics in my hometown and he's really sweating bullets to make sure they meet the coming wave of HIPAA compliance, especially the "fully digital" requirement to allow records to move freely move between providers/doctors. Nice to have for the patient, until the patient has to cover that cost.
Gov't regulation always results in the same thing: The regulated industry doesn't pay for anything...they purely pass those costs along to the consumer. And there's no nice way to sugar-coat it. At least in prison, you get sold for cigarettes first.
It is a fact of life
Like the French protesting about "draconian" pension reforms; the basic fact is that costs have towered up and there isn't money to go around. This will entail a loss of perks, across the board. It sucks, sure. I've lost a few small perks, but to be honest I would rather lose the perk than lose the job.
"Microsoft now looks ordinary to me”. Mmmm, reality now looks ordinary to me. But hey, what do you expect from a company where the employees once referred to themselves as "code warriors" like some sort of MUD roleplay...
These poor folk ...
should simply get a job at The Linux company. There, they'll receive full benefits, free lunches and beer.
When billions are spent each year butchering Muslims and arming Israel, small wonder that "costs have towered up". Dem drones be expensive. The "Democratization" of Muslim lands is far more important than providing you twits health care.
CAT scan machines, which are guaranteed to give you cancer, are expensive, also. Certainly you should expect to pay some of the cost for the benefit of receiving a cancer-causing treatment?
The little piggies always grunt when they approach the trough, especially if there is nothing in it.
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