Microsoft Forbids Mac, iPad Purchases By Sales And Marketing Employees

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Microsoft may have banned the use of company funds to purchase Macs and iPads, according to a purported internal memo.

The memo, obtained by ZDNet, claims to be from Alan Crozier, chief financial officer of Microsoft's Sales, Marketing, Services, IT, and Operations Group (SMSG). Though "current purchase levels are low," they are apparently too high for Microsoft's comfort, and the company feels that sales and marketing personnel should not be using a competitor's product.

Here is the email in its entirety:

From: Alain Crozier
Sent: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 1:17 PM

Subject: Apple Purchases

Within SMSG we are putting in place a new policy that says that Apple products (Mac & iPad) should not be purchased with company funds.

In the US we will be turning off the Apple products from the Zones Catalog next week, which is the standard purchasing mechanism for these products.

Outside of the US — we will work with your finance and procurement teams to send the right message and put the right processes in place.

The current purchase levels are low, however we recognize there will be a bit of transition work associated with this. Details of historical purchases in the US are provided in the attachment to help understand the changes that will be needed.Thank you for your support and leadership on this.

Alain Crozier
CFO | WW Sales, Marketing & Services Group
WW SMSG Finance

A policy like this really shouldn't come as a surprise. If anything, the surprising part should be that this policy wasn't in place years ago. While it's certainly in Microsoft's best interest to keep up with what Apple is doing, letting sales and marketing personnel - the people whose job it is to sell Microsoft's products - use company money for Macs and iPads doesn't make much sense.

What do you think? Should Microsoft let employees use company funds for Apple products? Let us know in the comments.