Microsoft and Employee Discrimination*



Case Code : SCHROB011
Publication date :2005
Subject : Human Resource Management
Industry : Information Technology
Length : 8 Pages


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Abstract: ICMR India ICMR India ICMR India ICMR India RSS Feed

The case examines the charges of gender/racial discrimination and sexual harassment against leading IT company Microsoft. It explores in detail the treatment meted out to female employees in the company's initial years and the measures Microsoft took to improve the work culture of the organization. The case also discusses the lawsuits against Microsoft that allege racial discrimination, and analyzes the implications of such changes for the company.


Factors that contribute to discrimination and harassment, and the impact of such behavior on the company and its employees.

Questions for Discussion:

1. Examine the nature of sexual discrimination at Microsoft during its initial years. What factors led to this type of discrimination?
2. Discuss the impact of discrimination and harassment at the workplace on employees. What consequences did the company have to face by not taking action against discrimination?
3. Discuss and critically evaluate the steps taken by Microsoft to deal with discrimination at the workplace.

Key words:
charges, gender, racial, discrimination, sexual harassment, IT, company, Microsoft, treatment, meted, female employees, initial years, Microsoft, improve, work culture, organization, lawsuits

*Note : This case is a simplified version of a longer case study, and is intended for learners for whom English is a foreign language. The longer version of this case study (HROB011) is available at: