Microsoft Corporation’s Corporate Social Responsibility

Microsoft Corporation is a giant multinational company registered and headquartered in the US. The company is publicly traded and registered in the NASDAQ stock market. As one of the premier technology companies in the US and the World, Microsoft is universally known by people all over the world as well as one of its founders, Bill Gates. The company’s mission is to empower every individual and organization to achieve by offering them the tools necessary to drive productivity, competitiveness, and efficiency. It was founded in 1975 and offers a variety of products that include software, operating systems, devices, desktop and software management tools, and many more. As of the end of the fiscal year 2021, Microsoft employed up to 181,000 full-time employees, with 103,000 based in the US and the rest based overseas (SEC, 2021). In terms of finance, the company operates three reportable segments, namely More Personal Computing, Productivity and Business Processes, and Intelligent Cloud (SEC, 2021). Despite the hostile environment brought about by the pandemic, Microsoft Corporation continued to make a profit throughout the period, and its shares soared.

Corporations such as Microsoft are expected to contribute positively to the community where they operate through a process known as corporate social responsibility (CSR). CSR is a concept meant to ensure that businesses play a positive role in a community by making sure that they take into account the social and environmental consequences of business decisions. It is not required by any statute, rule, or regulation but because of internal norms and expectations, companies must engage in it. According to the Reputational Institute, which is an independent organization that ranks the 100 most reputable companies, Microsoft ranks 17 out of 100, with a reputational score of 75.9 (RepTrak, 2022). This strong showing by the company is anchored on CSR work done on sustainability, addressing racial injustice and inequality, and investments in digital skills.

According to the Microsoft Corporation, they work to ensure that their technology products are trusted, inclusive, and promote sustainability. In particular, the company is accelerating its sustainability commitment by actively reducing its carbon footprint, and advancing research to help customers receive sustainable products. In 2020, the company committed to being carbon negative by 2030 and to removing all the carbon it has caused since its founding in 1975. This commitment was followed by a commitment of more than $1 billion to finance new technologies and innovative climate solutions (SEC, 2021). This commitment was reinforced by the company’s other commitment to be water positive and zero waste by 2030. Microsoft also helps its customers globally use their products to reduce their carbon footprint. These commitments started by being realized in 2021 when the company announced they had removed 586,683 metric tons of carbon and purchased the removal of another 1.3 metric tons (SEC, 2021).

In addition to the environment, Microsoft Corporation is committed to helping achieve racial justice and equality. In particular, the company has committed to doubling the number of black people working in the company at all levels by 2025 (SEC, 2021). The company also uses its massive systems to analyze data meant to achieve racial equality and justice for Black and African Americans in the US. In 2021, Microsoft spent more than $25 million financing projects and initiatives in Black communities across the United States meant to achieve racial equality and justice (SEC, 2021). Further, through sustained efforts, the company has more than doubled its transactions with Black and African American-owned financial institutions. Additionally, the company has increased its deposits with minority-owned depository institutions and ramped up funding to local communities. The company has also actively promoted its black supplier base, which has led to tangible growth along with other programs meant to help underrepresented communities.

Finally, Microsoft Corporation is committing a significant portion of its resources to fund the acquisition of digital skills. As economies recover from the coronavirus, the company is committed to ensuring that no one is left behind. In the middle of the pandemic in 2020, Microsoft announced the expansion of its digital skills programs which impacted my jobs worldwide that had recently been negatively affected by covid. The digital skills program includes certification programs, LinkedIn opportunities, GitHub, and Microsoft Learn, among others. Further, in the fiscal year 2021, the company spent $20 million funding non-profit organizations working in communities excluded from the digital economy (SEC, 2021). Overall, more than 42 million people across the globe have interacted with one or several of Microsoft’s digital skills programs surpassing goals and expectations while helping people develop core skills necessary for employment in a technology company (SEC, 2021).

A Company’s approach to corporate social responsibility can affect my purchasing decision. A socially responsible company normally has the best reputation among buyers and it is widely known. This means that its products are often recommended as opposed to a company with a negative approach to CSR. In this regard, I am likely to purchase a product from a company that engages in CSR while leaving out products from a company that does not because the brand that engages in CSR is more popular, reputable, and generally liked and preferred by most people. Another aspect of purchasing decisions affected by CSR is the premium payment for a product. Regardless of other factors such as the quality of a product, I would be willing to purchase a product at a premium from a company that engages in tangible CSR than buy at a lower price from a company whose CSR is non-existent.

Notably, due to increased visibility due to engagement with stakeholders through CSR, I would repeat purchase a product from a company that engages in CSR. On the other hand, a company that does not engage in CSR is relatively unknown, and a customer may be unable to purchase their products for a second time due to unfamiliarity. Thus, CRS affects purchase decisions by influencing premium payment, initial purchase, and repeat purchases.

Corporate social responsibility is an undertaking by a business to give back to the community where it operates. For Microsoft Corporation, the attempts at giving back are classified into three categories, namely, investment in digital skills, addressing racial inequality and justice, and commitment to sustainability. Through these initiatives, the company has impacted millions of people worldwide and earned position seventeen on the Reputation Institute’s Top 100 Most Reputable Companies. Through sustainability, the company has committed to zero waste, carbon zero, and to be water positive by 2030. Through the digital skills initiative, the company’s resources have exceeded expectations by impacting the lives of millions of people globally by giving them the necessary skills to assist their careers. Finally, the racial equality and justice initiative have seen the company commit to doubling the number of black employees at all levels and increased engagement with minority-owned financial institutions, among many other commitments.


RepTrak. (2022). Global RepTrak Report 2022: Microsoft Corporation. RepTrak. Web.

SEC. (2021). Microsoft Corporation – Form 10 – K. Security Exchange Commission. Web.

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