Yesterday, the International Program Manager for our recruiting system stopped by my office to say hi (what can I say...people like me...hee!). I had done some work with her when we launched the system in the US...I was a trainer and SME for the system (I just like to say SME). Anyhoo, she has been rolling out our system to our international subsidiaries, so aside from catching up with Danna, I asked her some questions about the process for international candidates. Many of you have asked me about applying for roles in our subs...this seemed like a good opportunity to get the real scoop. So let me tell you what I found out and then make some recommendations for you folks in other countries that may be considering Microsoft.
We have one system for US based candidates. When you submit your resume to our careers site or the job postings you see here in the US, your resume ends up here. Trust me...if you've sent it, we got it and we search that database a lot!
In our subsidiary offices, most of the recruiting is done by HR generalists (an exception would be our Dublin office which I understand has a very active recruiting team). These offices, from what I understand, take a more traditional approach to recruiting (or what I think of as traditional in the US). They post their job on their web site and review the resumes of candidates that apply to each specific job. Here in the US, we can't review every candidate that applied to each job so we do lots and lots of keyword searching. I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that we most often call candidates about roles other than the one(s) they originally applied to, hence the importance of using the right key words on your resume. But that's a soap box I've been on before.
Most of the International Microsoft offices share one system. The following geographies each have their own recruiting system: Canada, Germany, Austria, Brazil, Japan. So if you wanted to be considered for roles in Singapore, US and Brazil, for example, you would need to apply via our international site (for Singapore), the US site and the Brazil site. The international site contains a map so you can narrow down your geographical preferences. You can also use this site to get to the Canada, Germany, Austria, Brazil and Japan careers pages (so I won't bother supplying all the links, just go to the International site for jobs outside the US)...just keep in mind there are separate databases on the back end. The UIs are fairly consistent across geographies.
So here comes that part where I provide some recommendations:
1) Keep in mind the different geographies that share recruiting systems and apply via the web site to all that interest you: US, Canada, Germany, Austria, Brazil, Japan, all other International (this last one covers many countries).
2) When applying for a role outside the US, it is important to apply to a job directly. As I mentioned, we do a lot of keyword searching here in the US because we have a dedicated recruiting staff. For many international jobs, the person responsible for recruiting will review resumes of everyone that applied to the job they are working on (I was surprised, but Danna assured me that the international HR folks are excited that our system shows them exactly which candidates applied to each job).
3) All other recommendations about resumes and the submission process apply. I've blogged on this topic ad nauseum (OK, maybe that's just me).
Good luck to all of you that are looking and please let me know if you have any questions...I'm sure I can track Danna down and ask for more details if you need them!