The site features a job cut tracker and salary tracker. One section likely to be very popular is the Dear Sam page, designed for posting open letters to the IBM CEO, Sam Palmisano. On the site, visitors may post positive comments about IBM and its transformation too. There is also a page for former employees to describe their lives after IBM. Most pages include multimedia, ranging from informative to humorous to even controversial videos, to spark dialog. For more information, visit the http://bigblueblues.wetpaint.com site.
Health care in the US is insurance, middleman driven based on denying care after people are sick. The rest of the industrialized world delivers preventative health care and treats people before they really get sick, giving them better outcomes than the US.
My salary is now only slightly lower than what I made at IBM and there is nothing like getting home at 2:45 and having time to spend with your families, friends, do errands, etc. And having summers off is wonderful!!! Just an idea because they do need more teachers in NY state and you WILL retire with a pension and health benefits!! Also, since we're unionized, you get pretty decent raised yearly and also when you complete a certain number of courses your salary automatically is increased. Being in a union gives you a much better sense of security! -Anonymous-
BTW, teaching is a very draining job. I guess, however, having never done it yourself you have no idea of what I am saying. The best teachers are those focused on teaching then resting. They make fewer mistakes, and their rest gives them the ability to be patient, guiding instructors. If the current set of IBM employees would teach, they'd fail;, because they are all stressed out and overworked, which makes them poor teachers.
Dedication does not mean overworking a person to death, no matter what they do. Unless, of course you are a trained slave driver, like most IBM leadership. That's why IBMers keep working harder and the company keeps falling further behind in the market. Flogging kids, like IBM employees or common slaves can only produce productivity for just a short period. After that, the condemned realize that any more sacrifice just isn't worth it. Just see IBM's current workforce as evidence. -Trend Watcher-
Vault's IBM Business Consulting Services message board is a popular hangout for IBM BCS employees, including many employees acquired from PwC.
Same as what they teach in marketing, people voice about adverse experiences far more than do than pleasant ones and with much more vehemence. I doubt any of the happy IBMers would be on this board. I think your experience at any employer is what you make it.
I joined The Vault recently hoping to garner some useful information regarding the consultancies I would be interviewing with. Sadly, I am disappointed with the level of flaming of previous employer and unprofessionalism displayed at times on the boards.
I can turn the clock back 2+ years and tell you about the dozens of posters that debuted here with a post much like yours. Roll the clock forward a year or so from then, and you will see the same guy kicking himself for not listening to the advice he read on the board, and echoing the same evaluations that he scoffed at a year earlier. If you want to really get value for your $3.99 take a look back and you will see for yourself.
Use your powers of analysis and deduction. If this were simply a matter of disgruntled employees who couldn't hack it, why would we continue to post here after four years?
So you joined the Vault to get information, you didn't like what you heard, so you decided that the information isn't valid. That sure sounds like post cognitive dissonance to me, or perhaps nothing more than simple wishful thinking. If you can manage to actually live in fantasy land, then perhaps you can be happy here. However, i you are smart, and you have both feet on the ground you won't allow yourself to become another Vault turnaround statistic.
Oh I love those days when I thought I was in control of my career! My youthful arrogance played right into their hands. Ignoring the data you see rationalizing it with your feelings of superiority and academia logic is suicidal to anyone's career.
You are correct that your experience at any employer is what you make of it. However, that's only half, if not less, of the total deal.
Remember these words.
Your future will be largely determined by what this employer's customers and the employer's reputation will make of you by association. Think of that every moment you're in GBS.
Be sure of yourself, be a puppy dog lapping it up and feeding the egos of the leadership. Accept the ignominious anonymity that's required for the brand to persevere and executives egos to remain in place.
You'll do well. You are the kind of person they seek. Godspeed as a member of the collective.
Personally, I'm an undergraduate student (graduating soon) with 1-year experience (in various internships) in the field of Six Sigma. I can already get a corporate job (Caterpillar, John Deere, Lenovo), but I'm looking at IBM GBS because of the concern that if I take a corporate job, I might be pigeonholed in one area, one system or one discipline.
Consulting as a career, from my viewpoint provides experiences with depth and breadth that exposes me to the latest best practices and technologies and overall makes my skill-set more marketable. I don't think I will get that kind of exposure in some Supply Analyst or Commodity Manager position at company xyz.
Also from an earning potential standpoint of comparing corporate job career paths vs consulting, there is much higher potential on the consulting side because of the current job market demands for solutions and delivery consultants in implementing systems like Siebel, SAP.
Sure I'm expecting to put up with probably more difficult work-life and working in an environment of dog-eat-dog politics, but I think to me many other soon-to-be graduates like myself, it's a trade-off we're willing to to make.
In consulting, we have this concept of utilization. Most teams in GBS want you working on billable client tasks >90-95% of the time. Any time you take vacation, training, sick leave etc, it is unbillable and impacts your utilization. Utilization is directly tied to your annual bonus/raise (regardless of what anyone tries to tell you, it's true). That's why most teams force their employees to work 45+ hour weeks: to make up for personal time off.
You may know some of this already, but did you know that most managers/resource managers (those that staff you on projects) do not care what type of work you do, as long as you're billable? You may be six sigma certified (I am too), and that may hold a lot of value in the open market, but at IBM, you can have the term 'java' on your resume and they will pressure you to take a position that requires hard core coding. Anything to get and keep you billable.
So when you first join IBM, you will be excited and eager to be a team player and start work wherever they need you all the while thinking that in six months or a year, you'll start to make moves to establish yourself in your niche market and yadda yadda..but guess what? The moment you start working in one area, whether it be for a specific client type (federal, DoD etc) or a specific skill type that you don't particularly care for, you will have that stink on you for a long time. So each time your current project finishes up and you want to 'diversify' and get some new experience, it will be nearly impossible because they will turn around and staff you on the same type of project you just rolled off.
That's what it's all about. It's about keeping employees billable for the long term and long term contracts do not want to take a chance on someone because they want new exposure. At IBM, I can assure you the chances are strongly in favor being pigeon-holed and stuck in one field or area. You would be better off working for a boutique firm for a few years then making the switch to another one that allows growth into a different discipline, then another and so forth.
IBM is the worst that I have experienced when it comes to professional growth and experience. I fell for it all and signed up. I was looking for a break from the fast paced consulting lifestyle and wanted to try something new. I ignored the posters on this board because I knew that with IBM's HUGE client base, there MUST be all kinds of opportunity out there. I was terribly wrong.
Keep in mind, teams do not like to lease you out to other teams for very long. So if your team is primarily in the Federal client spaces and you want to work commercial, or vice versa, you are screwed. IBM consulting is truly the worst I have ever experienced and I've worked next to consultants from many many places. It's not so much the people at IBM, most are bright and very talented, it's the culture that screws the employees.
After the first face to face sniff test by HR, you may be invited to talk to a "real Manager" who will make a cursory determination if you are employable and tell you sweet nothings to make you slobber. He'll tell you it's just a matter of a week or two to process the paper work to hire you, but you'll see that nothing will be put on paper like a real offer.
Then you will sit by the proverbial phone waiting for that call which will probably never come because the contract they had you penciled in for never came to pass. Your calls to the Pig will got unreturned for months, etc.
I'm not lying, but check out my warning by ponying up the tariff to look at past postings and you'll see for yourself.
After 2 years of pushing paperwork mixed with coding in the deep, dark trenches in the 2 projects I was stuck on, I left. Now working in industry as a contractor coder, I've actually been presented with an opportunities to do business analysis work, which in my humble opinion, is a stepping stone for young graduates into developing actual consulting skills. Hearing back from friends still stuck at Big Blue, they bemoan being stuck on the same project doing low-level tech work with chances of their line manager supporting them in being assigned a business analyst role to be something like "when hell freezes over"(something that's even more unlikely due to the global warming phenomenon).
It's funny that I had more chances of developing business consulting skills as a contract coder rather than within the "consulting" division of IBM Global services. IBM was my first 'real' job outside of college, so I never really got to realize how badly IBM employees were treated compared to most other companies. As an eager young grad, I was willing to work insane hours and put up with negligent management, thinking it would get me somewhere. My fellow grads who went to other consulting firms and directly into industry in the meantime passed me by in terms of salary and skill development by leaps and bounds.
It's no skin off my supposedly "bitter ex-employee nose" to see you go into Big Blue 6SigmaGrad. People on these boards only offer truth. If I had been smart enough to read through these boards prior to graduation, I wouldn't have flushed 2 years down the toilet. I would've sent my job applications to boutique consulting firms, or looked for an financial company with a good graduate program.
To all other grads trawling these boards, why don't you use those clever consultative minds to track down BCS employees not sent by HR to talk to in real life. See what they have to say. Talking to someone from HR, you can't really expect them to say bad things about the company now, would you?
The project I am current on has just requested that you stay at work as long as it takes to complete the assigned days work, the problem is the amount of work is much more than 7-8 hours worth. They have also requested that when asked people will be willing to work weekends.
I have worked for various companies in the US, UK, NZ and Australia and all of them had a much better work life balance than IBM.
At the moment my hero is Wally from the Dilbert strip, why bust a gut, you work hard get a 2+ or 2 and get a joke of a wage rise or take it very easy and still get a joke of a rise. My career is now stuffed thanks to IBM so I'll just hang in here until they package me out with a large redundancy.
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