The sooner the better, as the saying goes. Internal corporate stuff at Microsoft has moved quickly since summer, from Ballmer announcing the reorganization to making official his retirement plans.

And while the company is currently in search for a new CEO, a report claims that there has been some progress on finding the new person, the right person to lead Microsoft. So much so that the technology titan may make an official announcement before Christmas.

CNET is reporting, citing sources close to the matter, that Microsoft’s board of directors has picked the timeframe between Thanksgiving and Christmas to announce the new CEO.

The changes, then, will come into effect on January 1, 2014 — nice, clean date.

No new pointers on who is the favorite to take over the hot seat, though previous reports on the matter have hinted that this is somewhat of a five man race. Alan Mulally, currently in charge of Ford is said to be in pole position, as the only external candidates.

Stephen Elop, Tony Bates, Satya Nadella and Kevin Turner are the other top contenders.

Having said that, another recent rumor that popped up was that Kevin Turner could be named temporary CEO for two years, which would then be followed up by the appointment of Stephen Elop as the permanent choice.

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