SINGAPORE — Microsoft has hired Tara Bal from NetApp as communications director for Asia-Pacific, overseeing Australia, New Zealand, South-East Asia and Korea.

Bal reports to Justin Spelhaug, Microsoft Asia-Pacific GM of marketing and operations. According to a company spokesperson, her arrival does not impact the role of Microsoft Asia senior director Andrew Pickup, who continues to lead communications for Asia-Pacific, Japan, India and Greater China.

Bal spent the past three years as NetApp's head of communications for Asia Pacific and Japan, where she directed the company's thought leadership strategy, focusing on such areas such as smart cities, innovation, digital transformation, IoT, artificial intelligence and cyber security.

She began her career as a broadcast journalist with 938LIVE, before moving into the communications field for technology companies.

"Microsoft is one of a handful of technology companies globally that can make a material difference in people’s lives," said Bal in a statement. "This unique position has been one of the biggest draws for me and I’m excited to have this opportunity to lead Microsoft’s Asia Pacific communications team as the company breaks new ground and develops new markets in the region."