A tablet displaying the number 200 is photographed in front of a wall bearing the Microsoft logo, leading into the company's Dublin campus.
Microsoft’s campus in Leopardstown, Dublin. Image: Naoise Culhane

Microsoft Ireland announces 200 digital sales roles and new training academy

2 Feb 2021

Microsoft’s Irish workforce will reach 2,800 following two recent recruitment drives for its Dublin team.

Microsoft Ireland will grow its digital sales team with the announcement of 200 new jobs.

The company is seeking sales representatives, technical sales specialists, cloud solution architects, account executives and sales managers to join the team at its EMEA digital sales centre in Dublin.

Candidates with fluency in languages including English, French, German, Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian and Spanish are of particular interest to serve the EMEA region.

The announcement today (2 February) also revealed details of the Microsoft Sales Academy, which sets out to train a diverse pipeline of people in digital sales.

Among the 200 roles announced, 25 of these will come through the academy. These candidates require no prior experience and will be recruited from a variety of backgrounds, according to Microsoft Ireland. They require little or no digital skills to begin with, and the six-month programme will train them in the skills they need to sell digital transformation tools to companies around the world.

At the end of the programme, these 25 recruits will transition into digital sales representative roles at the company.

Transforming digital sales

“Our existing digital sales team has been working hard to provide organisations in Ireland and across Europe, the Middle East and Africa with digital technologies they need to transform their business model and achieve success,” said Microsoft Ireland MD Cathriona Hallahan, who is due to step down this year after eight years at the helm of the Irish operation.

“The creation of the Microsoft Sales Academy further supports those efforts by building and nurturing a diverse pipeline of talent both now and into the future, ensuring our team reflects the diversity of the customers we serve. By adding to the diversity of skills and backgrounds within our Dublin-based team, we can continue to innovate at speed as we reimagine Ireland’s future.”

Recruitment for the jobs announced today is already underway, with all roles expected to be filled by as early as May this year.

These 200 recruits will join more than 1,000 sellers at the EMEA digital sales centre. “This rapid growth is creating superb career development opportunities for the dynamic team, which today represents more than 75 nationalities and fluency in over 35 different languages,” said Lisa Dillon, vice-president of EMEA digital sales.

Dillon added that this team uses technologies including artificial intelligence and machine learning to enhance sales capabilities. “This allows us to meet and exceed the needs of our customers and partners, engaging them at the right time in their digital journey to help drive their business success.”

In its latest earnings report, Microsoft showed strong performance across its cloud business, beating analysts’ expectations for the quarter. In the three months ending 31 December 2020, the company’s quarterly revenue surpassed $40bn for the first time as demand for cloud services saw continued growth.

This was largely attributed to growth of Azure cloud services, Office 365 and Teams. The company also reported a spike in PC-related business, all of which is seen as a result of increased remote working.

“What we have witnessed over the past year is the dawn of a second wave of digital transformation sweeping every company and every industry,” said CEO Satya Nadella in last week’s earnings announcement.

Microsoft in Ireland

Microsoft’s latest expansion in Ireland follows an announcement in November last year, when the company said it would create 200 new engineering roles and invest €27m in a new engineering hub at its campus in Leopardstown, Co Dublin.

Recruitment for these roles across software engineering, customer engineering, program management, product design, user experience and data science is also underway.

Upon conclusion of the current phase of recruitment, Microsoft Ireland will employ more than 2,800 people in Ireland across its Leopardstown campus and within its data centre operations.

“In the coming months we will be focusing on delivering a recovery that is both inclusive and sustainable, central to this will be getting people back to work and protecting and creating employment fit for the future,” said Taoiseach Micheál Martin, TD.

“Attracting highly sought-after digital jobs like those created by Microsoft today is an important step in that journey.”

Elaine Burke
By Elaine Burke

Elaine Burke was editor of Silicon Republic until 2023, and is now the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. Elaine joined Silicon Republic in 2011 as a journalist covering gadgets, new media and tech jobs. She later served as managing editor before stepping up as editor in 2019. She comes from a background in publishing and is known for being particularly pernickety when it comes to spelling and grammar – earning her the nickname, Critical Red Pen.

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