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Microsoft’s acquisition of LinkedIn could help high-turnover retail industry


The blockbuster $26.2 billion purchase of LinkedIn by Microsoft may benefit retailers trying to effectively recruit and manage employees who typically do not stick around for long.

The acquisition is being touted as Microsoft’s entry into social networking, an area where the tech titan has not been that active besides holding a stake in Facebook. However, LinkedIn is primarily a professional services platform and will probably not become a major consumer touchpoint anytime soon.

LinkedIn will retain its separate identity and continue to operate as a standalone platform. Its recruitment, management and HR features and capabilities will also be absorbed into Microsoft software products such as Office 365 and Dynamics. Microsoft has already offered a few examples of likely synergies that could help retailers better locate and retain talented workers, such as:

· Unified professional profiles that are consistent across platforms such as Word, Excel, LinkedIn, Skype, Outlook, PowerPoint, etc.

· Predictive digital assistant that can identify recruitment targets and employees with common attributes to managers, such as alma mater or mutual professional acquaintances.

· Detailed analytics of organizational performance, such as identifying high-value employees and departments and tracking employee interactions.

· Opportunities for employee training and professional growth via the LinkedIn Learning service.

The all-cash transaction has been unanimously approved by the LinkedIn board. It is expected to go through by the end of the calendar year.

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