End Gender Inequality and Discrimination at Microsoft

Microsoft Building Sign

Target: Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft Satya Narayana Nadella

Goal: Allow for gender diversity and workplace education at Microsoft.

Katie Moussoris, a former security programming manager at Microsoft, is suing the company on claims of gender discrimination that held back her career opportunities at the company. Moussoris has also filed internal, unrelated claims of sexual harassment by another coworker, who after her claims were found to have merit was only reassigned to a different part of the company. One of Moussoris’ attorneys, Kelly Dermody, claims that the stack ranking system used by the company to evaluate productivity and promote employees is, “an artificial system that requires winners and losers…There’s no performance-based need to do that.”

Gender diversity issues at Microsoft are clearly a problem from first glance. Seventy-six percent, over three quarters of the company, are male, as well as 88 percent of the executive branch. Under the stack ranking system, women more often than not receive lower scores than their male peers. This issue only seems to have come to light with the recent lawsuit filed, as the company contrarily claims to be “committed to a diverse workforce.” Tell Microsoft to replace stack ranking evaluation and to involve more diversity and sexual harassment education to the company.


Dear CEO Nadella,

I am greatly disappointed by the lack of gender diversity amongst your employees. Seventy-six percent of your company and 88 percent of your executive branch are male, despite the company’s claimed commitment to a diverse workforce. Recently a former employee of yours Katie Moussoris filed a lawsuit against you because of her feelings of gender discrimination within the company, and had previously filed an unrelated internal complaint of sexual harassment against another employee. The company’s response upon finding merit in her allegations was to transfer the offender to another department.

The particular problem that Moussoris found with the opportunity difference between male and female workers is in the ambiguity of your stack ranking evaluation system. There is no clear formula to its function, but it is clear that women tend to score lower than their male peers and counterparts. Your company’s employee productivity evaluation system has to be revised to more clearly and specifically measure workforce efficiency and decide position promotions. Along with that, please provide regular diversity awareness programs and resources to your staff as well as sexual harassment awareness programs to bring more equality to your company and your workplace environment.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Robert Scoble

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