But Alliance officials hope to make inroads now that IBM's decision to lay off 1,315 of its U.S. workers -- including about 50 employees in Research Triangle Park -- has sparked rumors that tens of thousands more jobs could be cut.
The grassroots power of the Internet is also helping. Some employees are turning to the union for what they see as unfiltered information. "They look to us as a way to find out what's going on," said Lee Conrad, an Alliance organizer in New York.
"I want to get hiring capability to where we are able to hire 100 people a week," Chow said, adding that seasonal fluctuations meant that some periods needed more manpower and some less.
The former Sprint workers complained the company lowered performance ratings and moved workers who were older than 40 into positions slated for elimination. The case has been cited as an example of “forced ranking,” an employee-evaluation system made famous by Jack Welch, the former chief executive of General Electric. Major corporations sued in recent years over forced rankings include Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., Ford Motor Co. and Capital One. [...]
The layoffs occurred during William Esrey’s tenure as Sprint’s chief executive officer. In 2002, while many of the layoffs were under way, Esrey was paid $1.1 million in salary and given a $919,937 bonus, according to depositions in an unrelated lawsuit. In early 2003, Esrey was forced out by Sprint’s board during an imbroglio over the use of the company’s accounting firm in devising personal tax shelters. Court filings show he got at least $10.5 million in severance pay. [...]
In a case similar to the one against Sprint, older workers who were laid off during a restructuring of IBM between 2001 and 2003 sued the company for age discrimination in 2003. The trial judge threw out the lawsuit because workers had signed waivers promising not to sue. But a federal appeals court in San Francisco reinstated the suit in August, holding that the waiver was not “written in a manner calculated to be understood” by the average employee.
Unlike the IBM workers, Sprint employees did not have to sign agreements not to sue as a condition of receiving severance pay.
Then, the criminals emptied their victims’ bank accounts.
Believe me the reason IBM doesn't have a voluntary package is folks would take it now and leave in droves. Forget folks leaving through the door, they would be climbing through ground floor windows to get out of this IBM!
There's a good chance that you'll see some interesting cases of subordination, pushback, rebellion and essentially chilling out on the job by September if not earlier. People who have been hurt over the years and who know they are leaving and are vested will have ZERO INCENTIVE to do anything the last few months of the year. I also predict that there'll be an announcement that due to the backlog of people retiring the Fidelity 60 day average for retirement processing will be increased to 3-4 months so they know who's leaving and try to screw them going across the fiscal year boundary.
They know there's some trouble ahead in late 2007. They are pumping the stock and painting a rosy scenario so that it when the sh_t hits the fan at least the share price drop won't be too bad.
Many experts argue that chief executives have a particular ability to drive their own pay upward, in part by manipulating directors they work closely with and encouraging the use of consulting firms that have a built-in incentive to increase pay packages for those who hire them.
The study, the first in a series on economic mobility undertaken by several prominent think tanks, also says the typical American family's income has lagged far behind productivity growth since 2000, a departure from most of the post-World War II period.
The findings suggest "the up escalator that has historically ensured that each generation would do better than the last may not be working very well," says the study, which is scheduled for release today. [...]
In 2004, the median income for a man in his 30s, a good predictor of his lifetime earnings, was $35,010, the study says, 12% less than for men in their 30s in 1974 -- their fathers' generation -- adjusted for inflation. A decade ago, median income for men in their 30s was $32,901, 5% higher than 30 years earlier.
“Sicko” purposefully does not focus on the 50 million or so Americans who don’t have health insurance, as scandalous as that is, but on the horror stories of middle-class working folks who believed they were adequately covered. There are so many of these they begin to blur into each other: the woman in Los Angeles whose baby was denied treatment at an emergency room outside her HMO network, and died as it was being transferred hours later; the woman in Kansas City whose husband was repeatedly denied various drugs his physician prescribed for kidney cancer, and who in the last stage of life was denied a bone-marrow transplant that could have saved his life; the woman who was told her brain tumor was not a life-threatening illness, and died; the woman who was told her cancer must have been a preexisting condition, and died. [...]
His portrayal of the Canadian, British and French systems is undoubtedly simplistic , and several Canadian reporters took that up with him at the press conference — although all of them admitted they wouldn’t trade their system for ours. But Moore’s overall point is, I think, inarguable: Flawed as they may be, those systems are a hell of a lot more humane and civilized than anything we’ve got. (Life expectancy is significantly higher, and infant mortality lower, in all of those countries than the United States. Whatever outdated stereotypes you may hold, these days poor people in Britain are statistically healthier than rich people in America.)Addressing a series of questions from foreign reporters at the press conference, Moore said: “We should do what we always do as Americans, steal the best things you’re doing and make them our own. The Canadians do certain things very well. The Brits do certain things very well. The French have the best system in the world, and that’s not my opinion. That’s how the World Health Organization rates them. None of them is perfect, but it’s not my role to make criticisms. It’s my role as an American to say, why don’t we take the best elements you’re doing and blend them together, and call it the American system?” [...]
When Moore interviews Tony Benn, a leading figure on the British left, his larger concerns come into focus. Benn argues that for-profit healthcare and the other instruments of the corporate state, like student loans and bottomless credit-card debt, perform a crucial function for that state. They undermine democracy by creating a docile and hardworking population that is addicted to constant debt and an essentially unsustainable lifestyle, that literally cannot afford to quit jobs or take time off, that is more interested in maintaining high incomes than in social or political change. Moore seizes on this insight and makes it a kind of central theme; both in the film and aloud, at the press conference, he wondered whether some essential and unrecognized change has occurred in the American character.
Act two: when did it all start going wrong, asks Moore. The answer: in August 1971. President Richard Nixon and his adviser Edgar Kaiser plot to break the system. “The less care they give, the more money they make,” says Nixon, caught on tape. They? Their friends, the health industry moguls, the same ones who fund the political campaigns of US congressmen. Moore shows us the price tag on every single one of them. One in particular, Billy Tauzin, leaves Congress to become CEO of the drug industry’s top lobbying group, PhRMA, with a $2m a year salary.
Meanwhile astute national publicity campaigns have demonised the concept of universal healthcare by associating it with “socialised medicine”, which in American English translates as “Soviet medicine” - the kind such oppressive regimes as Canada, Britain and France have adopted for their citizens. [...]
I know what you’re thinking, I know what you’re going to say. And so what? Yes, Michael Moore has an agenda. No, he isn’t among the giants of documentary film-making. No, he isn’t an ordinary journalist. He is, as he says, the op-ed variety, the kind who is constantly angry. He has issues with the way of the world and wants to set records straight. His goal is simply to put universal healthcare back at the centre of the American debate. And while Moore’s main objective is to reach his fellow Americans, his film should also make Europeans ponder on the system they too often take for granted. George Orwell would hate it. But forget about him for a minute. There may sometimes be such a thing as good propaganda.
In Washington, a conference held by the American College of Emergency Physicians revealed that New Orleans may have it worst, but emergency rooms everywhere are drowning in patients. Mandated to care for the uninsured, they are increasingly unprofitable. So although the influx of patients has grown, 500 emergency rooms have closed in the last decade. The result: 91 percent report overcrowding — meaning wait times for the acutely ill of more than an hour or waiting rooms filled more than six hours per day. Almost half report this occurring daily. [...]
A few days later, the Commonwealth Fund released one of the most detailed studies ever done comparing care in the United States, Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand and Britain. We’ve known for awhile that health care here is more expensive than anywhere and that our life expectancy is somehow shorter. But the particulars were the surprise.
On the good side, the study found that once we get into a doctor’s office, American patients are as likely as patients anywhere to get the right care, especially for prevention. Only Germans have a shorter wait for surgery when it’s needed. And 85 percent of Americans are happy with the care they get.
But we also proved to be the least likely to have a regular doctor — and starkly less likely to have had the same doctor for five years. We have the hardest time finding care on nights or weekends outside of an E.R. And we are the most likely (after Canadians) to wait six days or more for an appointment when we need medical attention. Half of Americans also reported forgoing medical care because of cost in the last two years, twice the proportion elsewhere.
I asked Leana about her health insurance coverage, just in case she catches leprosy on the Africa trip.
“Actually, I was going to become one of the 45 million uninsured for the summer,” she said. “The think tank does not provide insurance for ‘temporary’ employees, and my school did not allow extension of health insurance post-graduation. I still haven’t found a reasonably priced insurance plan for this period.”
Aaaaargh! When a newly minted doctor investigating Americans’ access to medical care has no insurance — then you know that our health care system is truly bankrupt. [...]
The U.S. now spends far more on medical care (more than $7,000 per person) than other nations, yet our infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate and longevity are among the worst in the industrialized world. If we had as good a child mortality rate as France, Germany and Italy, we would save 12,000 children a year.
It is disgraceful that an American mother has almost three times the risk of losing a child as a mother in the Czech Republic. According to a new report from Save the Children, a woman in the U.S. has a 1-in-71 chance of losing a child before his or her fifth birthday.
In March, The New York Times reported that some long-term care insurance companies had developed procedures that made it difficult, if not impossible, for policyholders to get paid. That article — which focused on Conseco and Penn Treaty — was cited by the House committee and in the senators’ letters as the instigation for their investigatory requests.
“We have two companies that seem to be engaging in questionable practices, and we have every reason to think we will turn up other companies engaged in questionable practices,” said Representative John Dingell, Democrat of Michigan who is chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. “Now that we’re aware this is occurring, we’re going to shine a light on it that won’t be extinguished.”
Have a few people from outside IBM review your resume content... if they don't understand it you can bet that an employer won't either. Post on Monster or Workopolis, I've also used LinkedIn successfully. Personal advice - Take the leap, cut the umbilical cord & start your real career.
Looking back, a few of the people I worked with will remain lifetime friends but the IBM company was SOUL DESROYING. Now making 40% more ... better benefits.... a real expense plan.... a realistic and stable quota. I actually trust my leaders and feel positive - every day. I hold no nostalgia for IBM...-beentheredonethat-
Some plans are even changed when they are leaked and announced on this board, so thank the Alliance for delays and cancellations of resource actions. Most of the identified as affected so far are in IGS. One female Senior VP in IGS who is from the UK leaked some of the data to a employee and we know that at least another 2.1K in GTS IAS will be given notice through 6/1. 6/1, not 5/31 is the last date for forced attrition for 1H07. -GTS Slave-
Of course at the institution investor meeting none of the investors present would have the guts to ask IBM this: "Sam (Palmisano), so you will invest further in BRIC's but since IBM is an AMERICAN company what is wrong with IBM in the USA? IBM has done great since Watson created IBM in the USA now what is the REAL story? Sounds like you are clearly abandoning America." -sell(out)_IBM-
Vault's IBM Business Consulting Services message board is a popular hangout for IBM BCS employees, including many employees acquired from PwC. A few sample posts follow:
It will be interesting to see how IBM's management intends to apply principles developed for an assembly line Paying people based on their value to the company = -100 points. Training employees in order to meet the long-term goals of the company = -80 points. Reclassifying employees to non-exempt status and allowing them to work over 60 hrs/week = +125 points. I wonder how well Sam and Lou would do playing this? to software consulting. Personally it sounds to me like they're confusing apples and feathers. One is a repetitive process in a controlled environment, the other is almost entirely defined by the individual client's business requirements.
Gerstner and SP both came to the realization that IBM was bigger than both of them, and they didn't have the board imperative, the intellectual capability, or the strength of character to transition IBM from the big 1970s market leading fiefdom-laced bureaucracy into what it needed to become - a truly integrated and market-efficient one stop IT product/service shop.They instead opted for the easy cost takeouts that did absolutely nothing in terms of investing in the future or improving organizational capabilities. Gerstner and SP both came to the realization that IBM was bigger than both of them, and they didn't have the board imperative, the intellectual capability, or the strength of character to transition IBM from the big 1970s market leading fiefdom-laced bureaucracy into what it needed to become - a truly integrated and market-efficient one stop IT product/service shop.They instead opted for the easy cost takeouts that did absolutely nothing in terms of investing in the future or improving organizational capabilities.
Even the manufacturing propeller heads we have in the front office realize that Ravi is no substitute for a real domestic business-savvy consultant. Heck, Ravi isn’t even a good substitute for a Little Rock support desk clerk. They are just making one final dress-up of the P&L while we still have a decent portfolio of long term contracts at pricing that assumed that we still had the business-savvy consultant and the Little Rock support desk clerk. Clients will need some time to unwind their IBM connections, and in the meantime, we have cut labor costs by two thirds.
They are just looking to get one more big personal score – it’s that simple.
The game, called Innov8, is meant to address a lack of skills in understanding and improving a company's internal business processes. Innov8 stems from a business school contest where students were asked to come up with good ways to educate business and IT people on business process management and service-oriented architectures concepts."
The game won't be released until Sept. I'm guessing it's scoring is being changed from what the students thought was correct to what IBM thinks is correct in the business environment.
I wonder how well Sam and Lou would do playing this?
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