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Customer Zero

Welcome to Customer Zero, Microsoft’s journey to harness behavioral insights to fuel our data-driven transformation. Across our company, we are using powerful tools to understand how work gets done in ways we’ve never been able to before.

Information sharing, collaboration, network formation, employee engagement, time use: all these actions and more influence business outcomes.

As we empower our customers with insights into how behaviors affect their success, we are also relentlessly experimenting ourselves. By operationalizing the use of data to explain and predict the impact of day-to-day actions, we can then drive change.

At Microsoft, we’ve discovered that this workplace intelligence helps us learn faster, adapt better, and innovate obsessively.

We’re building a transformative learning culture through data.

Planning for Productivity

The most strategic, effective workspace planning translates the needs of people to the environment and has a positive impact on the way workers feel, interact, innovate, and find productivity. In reality, organizational space design and change is often time-consuming, expensive, and political. A better understanding of how people and teams work can change all that.

Below the Surface

Research shows a positive correlation between employee satisfaction and customer loyalty and a negative link with employee turnover. And employee satisfaction is linked with higher productivity and profitability. So what do you do when your organization has a work-life balance problem? You can’t make things better for employees and for the company until you find the cause.

Running on Ritual

Do your people have time to get work done? Are they meeting efficiently? Do they have the right networks with each other, customers, and partners? What are the barriers to concentrating and recharging? Seeking answers, one team, driven by customer obsession and radical experimentation, measured and then reimagined itself to improve focus, balance, and relationships.

Secret Sales Sauce

Customers expect more than ever from sales teams, yet sellers find it harder and harder to spend enough time with customers. In order to free up sales teams and generate more revenue, leaders first need to understand how sellers and managers spend their time. When Microsoft sales leadership embarked on this journey of discovery, they gained critical insights that led to powerful change.

The Measure of a Manager

Successful leaders understand that their people are their most valuable resource, and that managers must spend time on coaching and mentoring in order for the business to succeed. But what happens when process gets in the way? One team learned that by measuring ways of working, it could ultimately become more agile, better support employees, and unlock more sales.

The nature of work is changing—it’s no longer about routine tasks, it is about unlocking the creativity inside of your organization. It is about going beyond individual productivity to teams, dynamic teams.

Satya Nadella

Microsoft CEO

We were way too internally focused in terms of business reviews, internal meetings, new reports—it’s a culture of internal-ness. It came at the expense of spending time with customers and partners, and we had to radically change. The thing that matters is customers and partners, and the data validated that.

Chris Weber

CVP, Microsoft Small, Medium & Corporate

Fundamentally, your people are what drive all your outcomes within your culture. Companies need to figure out how to harness the collective experience and wisdom of their people and put them into a mindset of curiosity, learning, and adapting.

Ryan Fuller

CVP, Microsoft Workplace Intelligence

We’re moving to using data insights for space optimization at our own Microsoft properties around the globe. It’s a higher-level, more people centric view as opposed to a real-estate point of view. We’re using the intelligence in the Office Graph to help us with the physical layout of buildings.

Rimes Mortimer

Innovation Lead Digital, Microsoft

We took Microsoft’s mission to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more and internalized it to its deepest core. Underneath this concept, everything is data. That is what took us from old to new.

Ernst-Jan Stigter

GM, Microsoft Netherlands

When you bring the data to bear, it's difficult to ignore. There's a problem that maybe you know about anecdotally, you grumble about it, struggle over it. But when you quantify it, you have to act because you can see this is what's holding your company back. Data can be the catalyst to trigger action inside of an organization.

Chantrelle Nielsen

Senior Director of Solution Design, Microsoft Workplace Analytics

We identified that managers were spending 39 percent of their time on internal processes. As soon as we saw the real business impact of these processes, we were able to make a change and ensure managers spent less time managing processes and more time supporting their teams and leading our transformation efforts.

Steven Worrall

Area Vice President, Microsoft Australia