Microsoft Keeps Its Finance Head Count Flat With AI, Bots and Other Tech

The new tools help automate tasks. But ‘we love Excel,’ says Cory Hrncirik, who leads Microsoft’s Modern Finance project.


Microsoft Corp. employs about 5,000 people in its finance team, a number that has remained largely flat in recent years, even though the company’s operations, profit and market capitalization have grown tremendously. Microsoft had 181,000 employees at the end of June, when its fiscal year closed, up from around 163,000 a year before.

A host of technologies, including artificial intelligence, bots, the cloud, data lakes and machine learning, are helping Chief Financial Officer Amy Hood keep a tight lid on finance head count. Cory Hrncirik, who works on Ms. Hood’s team and leads Microsoft’s Modern Finance initiative, told WSJ’s CFO Journal about the new tools, and why the organization still uses Excel for some tasks.