Though IBM does not discuss job-cut figures, the group Alliance@IBM, a union supported group, said IBM cut thousands of jobs in the United States in 2009 while increasing its overseas work force. State records show about 1,000 jobs were cut in Dutchess and Orange counties, reducing IBM’s Hudson Valley work force to below 10,000 for the first time since 1999. “Last year IBMers remember the company also announced record profits and the very next day terminated about 5,000 employees around the country,” said Lee Conrad, national coordinator of Alliance@IBM, who worked 26 years for the company. “So when employees look at record profits, they don’t see any connection between record profits and them keeping their job. All they see is shareholders doing well and employees finding the unemployment line.”
Doug Shelton, who was identified by an IBM spokesman as the company official who could discuss job cuts, did not return a call seeking comment.
According to Alliance, IBM had 105,000 U.S. workers at the end of 2009, down from 115,000 in 2008, continuing a trend that saw their domestic work force shrink from about 134,000 workers in 2005.
Meanwhile, IBM hired tens of thousand of workers overseas in 2009. According to Alliance, citing IBM reports as their source, Big Blue hired some 13,300 workers in the Asia-Pacific region outside Japan, where about 850 workers were hired. IBM hired 18,800 people in India in 2009, and 7,000 in Latin America. Meanwhile, the company hired some 3,500 workers in the United States and 2,900 in Europe. ...
“IBM is not making the company smaller, jobs are being off-shored and sent out of the United States,” said Conrad. “Worldwide the company is growing, it’s just not growing in the U.S. They are getting record profits by cutting jobs here and paying lower wages, lower benefits overseas. They can pay Indian and Chinese workers a fraction of what they pay workers here. It’s about cost cutting to improve shareholder profits.” ...
Conrad said that he expects IBM will reduce its American work force soon, so as to maximize profits for the year. “The next couple of weeks we’re going to see job cuts again,” said Conrad. “Last year it started right about now and continued right through till May. They like to get this done early in the year to reap the full benefits. “It’s pretty scary,” said Conrad. “How do you have an economic recovery if companies like IBM keep throwing employees out of work in this country and moving jobs off shore?”
One year ago Obama was inviting Sam Palmisano to all kinds of White House affairs to discuss job creation. I assume Obama meant in the US - but for sure we know Sam Palmisano did not. Check out UTube and you will see Obama and Sam Palmisano shoulder to shoulder talking about high speed rail service and the Grid and how the government and Uncle Sam Palmisano (a cousin) to Uncle Sam apparently where going to create all kinds of work when Obama gave Sam all those Omnibus Stimulus dollars of yours and mine.
Did anyone believe it then- well you know I didn’t. Did the White House ever clue Obama in about Sam Palmisano’s out-souring of jobs to all the BRIC countries?
So in his State of the Union address Obama says he will not put up with off-shoring all those good American jobs out of the country. He goes on to say NO MORE TAX incentives for companies who do that. Was Obama crossing his fingers, did he say behind our backs oh- but we will excuse IBM because Sam Palmisano made those big campaign contributions. He might say to Joe Biden- lets make Sam Palmisano an earmark- we just won’t tell America. What the heck they will never know. We kept the health plan a secret this will be easy.
Then Obama went on to say that China , Brazil, and Germany were not sitting on the side lines they were building their infrastructure and creating jobs, but of course he did not say IBM and other American companies where the backbone of this job creation via outsourcing.
It was a quick and simple answer. In IBM, everyone below a lettered band position is a RESOURCE and everyone in lettered bands is an ASSET. All efforts will be done to retain assets, primarily because they have knowledge of sensitive and many times embarrassing information of the company. An asset is part of the inner circle, with a "svengali" mentor, etc.
Resources, on the other hand, are disposable, just like tools. You know the rest of the story.
If I would have the chance to ask I would try get a perspective on social responsibility. This not only for IBM, but also for the industry in general and leadership in specific. Reading thru the comments it seems many her seem to have a similar issue than I do related to the throw away culture of US employers. These employers are deemed to be entitled to receive bail-outs, but in return do not do anything related to their social responsibility.
In the "old" IBM an employee was an investment, that needed to be fostered to strive and invent. Today it is purely a numbers game. What do leaders like Sam think about their responsibility to their employees and how do that plan to make it not just about the numbers. Don't get me wrong I understand that cuts are sometimes necessary, but it seems that in a downturn companies start to just blindly throw 10 - 20% cuts around.
In my perspective a leader has a certain amount of responsibility and cuts like the described are just an excuse for bad long-term planning. The responsible company plans with buffers and has strategic plans for expansion/reduction. However, it seems we still subscribe to the roller-coaster model of hire and fire.
I would also contest that this is a reason for motivational issues in the work force, if you are seen as cost and a number you act like it, as well as the customer and quality focus, with people not taking the pride in their work and the brand as they have been shown they are not an investment the company has made they are just considered a cost factor.
How do leaders at that top tier see factors like this and find a good balance of growth/revenue and responsibility to their workforce. I would like to believe that solving this inherit conflict will transform a company and make it succeed in the long-term and add longevity to their company. I'm not saying everything can be explained this way, but think it would be interesting to hear about this topic.
The PBC system is ridiculous. The managers decide on your number first and then come up with the reasons for it afterwards. And, of course, you're 'graded on a curve'. You can only get a good PBC rating if one of your colleagues gets a bad rating. It makes for an unpleasant work environment. They try to give the appearance of objectivity to something that is hard to quantify. It would be nice if your manager could just tell you at the end of the year whether he thought you did a good or a bad job without all the rigmarole of the PBC process. And forget about ever getting a pat on the back from your manager or a kind word.
Basically, there are no I/T jobs in the US anymore unless I move to one of the new GDF sites. IBM offers no moving and living. That might be ok I'd suck it up and move my family if I would have some sort of job security for the next year or two. IBM requires a one year commitment from anyone taking a job at the new GDF. However the kicker is that IBM will not make any such promise to the employee. They have the power to lay you off whenever they want.
All the employees pretty much know that our salaries are higher than any of the new hires coming into the GDF. Also, the position levels are several bands below the current structure. At this point, is an unwritten fact that if you move on your own dime to the new GDF, you will be kept around ONLY until they can find someone cheaper to replace you.
IBM is keeping costs to a minimum. That means NO education for US employees unless you can find something free, and then you're on your own to make the time to take the class.
I think even management has given up on IBM. The first line managers have become face-less drones on the other end of a telephone. They don't offer any information, rarely offer a pat on the back, and even rarer still are they aware of what is going on with the customers we support. They are all pretty much technically challenged (read - not I/T skills).
My U.S. co-workers are great. I have never seen such a great group of technically adept people anywhere. They put in countless overtime hours, without any form of extra compensation, handle 24x7 pager rotation duty (again without any extra compensation). They always go above and beyond what is expected, even knowing it be compensated in the form of an award, or come through on their appraisal or in the form of a raise. It will be difficult for IBM to duplicate that level of expertise in the BRIC countries for many years to come (if at all). But hey, they're cheaper, so it's ok.
I have to mention benefits. Every year, IBM attacks another benefit. From the decimation of the pension plan, to raising the cost for the employee stock offering. (Employees used to be able to purchase IBM stock at 15% off the market price, it is now 5%). Every year, we have to pay more for medical (I pay over $400 a month for my family).
Pay used to be above average, now is stale even as other benefits and bonuses have eroded. PBC rating system is bogus, it's all about your manager's opinion of the job you're doing. Working from home is great, but the number of hours offsets that. I'm seriously considering bailing for a local job with fewer hours.
There are no education or training opportunities here (and even if there were, there's no time to do them, because we are so short staffed that there aren't enough people to do the work even when everyone is here, let alone when someone is taking vacation, training, etc) and IBM has lost all of their respect for the individual.
There was a time when we had the opportunity to do the right thing, but that has passed and now the only thing that matters are quarterly earnings. Customer sat is in the tank and employee morale is at an all time low. Advice: don't join IBM if you have another viable alternative, and if you are an IBM employee in the US, like me, your days are numbered.
Why? Unfortunately, the IBM of today is totally focused on the bottom line, is led by bean-counters (accountants types) who are helping prop up the stock price on the backs of laid off workers and the poor souls left behind who have to do 2 to 3 people's jobs, seems to be solely focused on padding the pockets of the senior executives who have a LOT of stock options they want to exercise in a couple of years (thus the need to artificially drive up the stock price), has a very flawed appraisal system (called the PBC system) which forces managers to "skew" the ratings to match a normal "bell shaped" curve distribution (a system that is demoralizing and an unfair means of keeping pay increases and bonuses low), expects everyone to put in at least 50 to 60 hours per week or more (anything less just won’t do or you’ll end up way behind), has lost any sense of decency or respect for the individual (you’ll be a small cog in a big machine), often promotes incompetent kiss-ups into management and executive-level positions (OK, I was a manager, but I didn’t get there by being a kiss-up), and will work you to the bone as you live in daily fear of losing your job (since in a global economy this global company has the hots for low-cost, “global resources” and will turn you out in a heartbeat if they can find a way to “offshore” your job).
In January of 2009, the day after IBM announced the highest earnings in the history of the company, I was advised my services were no longer needed because I was being vastly overpaid for work that others in overseas locations could likely do (although not as well, but who cares) for 1/5th to 1/8th the cost. My job didn’t go away, it was just transferred to an inexperienced team outside the U.S. IBM has even laid off senior project managers who were 100% billable on external, customer engagements – just to save a buck – and has left customers high-and-dry. Why? Because they felt they could get cheaper resources to do the job. It didn’t matter that the customer was miffed, only that IBM could save money.
If you like the idea of developing stress-related illnesses such as insomnia, arrhythmias (irregular heart beat), hair loss, skin rashes, headaches, muscle tension, and ulcers – then by all means, give IBM a try. If, however, you prefer to be treated decently, shown a reasonable level of respect, paid fairly, and have the chance of really enjoying your job, then by all means -- look elsewhere if IBM comes knocking.
First the reimbursements for telecommuting costs were eliminated (ie., broadband). Then all the administrative assistants were kicked out. The IBM Help Desk was 're-branded' the IBM Lack-of-Help Desk by almost every employee which experienced some kind of frustrating problem. Education reimbursements dried up, and you basically had to be on the "pet list" to have any chance of participating. IBM AZ became the company's health-care "experiment", by introducing new plans (which usually did not benefit the employees) and seeing what kind of reception they garnered. There was a 'type' of work/life balance, if you can call it being able to come and go as you please as long as you attended all kinds of after hour meetings, worked until all hours of the night, and gave up going on vacation to meet the "needs of the business". But 'oh yeah, if you don't take all your vacation this year you'll lose it'. I don't see any problems with managers hiring their kids and relatives, however if those people are morons then all they're doing is wasting company resources.
By the time I got swept up in the mass layoffs earlier this year (2009), there was no resemblance to the IBM of the late 20th century. Promotions are now given by managers to their pets without merit, every department has at least 4 or 5 band 9's, education reimbursement what?, and incompetent project managers and underlings seem to run rampant. If you don't participate in meetings all day long, you're considered a pariah. I was frequently chastised by a former boss when I was not actively attending every possible meeting she could assign me to. I guess she felt our jobs could be done at night, when there weren't any more meetings. She also thought it was appropriate to berate myself and my team members in her office with the door open so everyone down the hall could hear her yelling.
It's unfortunate that most managers of the Tucson site today are incompetent and only use intimidation to get things done or force their people into line. What happened to the people who inspired loyalty by giving their employees respect and treating them fairly? Sadly, most have left IBM years ago. What a pity.
The company does not value quality, only cost. You will be treated like an animal and will be worked to death. You will deeply regret investing any loyalty into this company as it would be one-sided only (your side) and will not be returned in any shape, fashion, or form (company side). The executives are greedy and are only in it for their own short-term personal gain before they can jettison out with their golden parachutes, leaving the company and our country raped, pillaged, and destroyed.
Independent of company performance, they will skin-flint you out of any raises, promotion, or training opportunities. The company is continuously devising clever ways to skirt the law and utilizes co-employment schemes to cheat workers out of benefits. The company is forever rebalancing the workforce to lower-cost labor, and ultimately would like to enforce the return of slavery, so that "resources" can be free again at zero cost to the company; with no other purpose than to enrich their greedy and hell-bound executive overlords. For the love of God, do not work here!
That little stirring you feel in your heart when you see your coworkers, friends and country get systematically abused, mistreated, fired and replaced for cheaper labor, and those left in your group underfunded, understaffed, and grossly overworked to pick up the pieces; when the company cheats workers of jobs and benefits through supplemental employment, H-1B visas, and co-employment schemes, then robs the rest of their pensions; not because the company is doing poorly, but in times where the stock price continues to rise on record profits; and you see these things done not for the long-term good of the company, but only for short-term greed and executive rape - that little stirring is God's way of reminding you of your sense of decency, morality and human dignity.
No more US layoffs! "Evil triumphs when good men do nothing". Let us not assassinate this country further, Mr. Palmisano. You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?
When we were bought back by IBM in 2008, it was the usual two-faced BS about how glad they were to have us back, what a mistake they had made selling us in 2002, and then 6 months later they were telling us our jobs would be offshore in a year. I was lucky enough to get out before the axe fell, and found a real job for an employer that appreciates my efforts, recognizes I have a life outside of work, and provides me with work more meaningful than making the IBM executives rich.
Most of my coworkers weren't so lucky, and now find themselves out of work. All this is my long-winded way of saying if you want to be just a faceless commodity to be bought, sold, and discarded on a whim, go work for IBM. You'll fit right in. If not, look elsewhere. Don't let the cache of IBM sucker you in because the company today is not the IBM of even ten years ago.
The other reviews here are true...PBC's are a joke with ratings determined high above immediate management, raises are paltry and arbitrary, respect for the individual gone, training non-existent unless you count lame web-based pabulum, byzantine outdated processes, and poorly defined lines of responsibility. IBM continues to survive only because of it's sheer size, but sooner or later even that won't save it unless executive management wakes up and starts to look past their next stock option exercise or quarterly P&L results.
The rationale for those that were not resourced within my division was a total lie, as their skill set did not match the "future" direction of the division. The true criteria was age, salary and attachment to the incompetent management that made the decisions. There were actual people who were "on the bench" and had not been utilized who were retained. I worked on a project where all of us resourced had well above 100% utilization and solid prospects for continued utilization.
Flash forward six months. IBM chose to cancel my COBRA for no apparent reason. After an extensive process, during which I was given inaccurate information MULTIPLE times, it was reinstated. I continued to regularly apply for jobs but at the time of my COBRA cancellation, my account mysteriously disappeared on the NetMedia job board.
I would never recommend IBM as an employer. They have systematically eliminated millions of U.S. jobs. There is no forward vision, respect for employees or opportunity for advancement unless you are a "declared' diversity employee.
In 2009, IBM decided to get rid of as many over 50 workers as they could and they also eliminated a lot of the original Lotus experts in favor of lower paid and totally inexperienced IBMers from other divisions. They had no experience or history with Lotus software but now are selling it. Terrible decision and not one person in my group could adequately represent or demo the products. Microsoft and Google will take major market share from Lotus but the accountants only see lower cost of sales.
Avoid IBM at all costs and avoid selecting their products. They laid off over 10,000 Americans in 2009 and many of the jobs were moved to communist and third world countries
How wrong I was.
Over the years IBM has showed its true colours as an employer time and time again. IBM is a greedy, immoral, dishonest, disrespectful, miserly, untrustworthy, lying, two-faced, bloated weasel of a company. It treats its employees with utter contempt. It has no loyalty.
As a manager, I have been forced annually to deliver poor appraisals to team members who have bust a gut for IBM. I have brought good people to tears by telling them that they are "relatively low performers". These low performers get no bonuses. These low performers get no pay rises. Year after year after year. Yet these same "low performers" work long hours FOR FREE, to keep this sick puppy of a company afloat. These low performers continually pick up the pieces when services off-shored in haste to India fall in an undignified heap under the supervision of inadequately skilled off-shore employees.
I've had enough of IBM. I've tried for years now to help IBM improve from the inside, to persuade my managers that we are damaging ourselves and our company in our approach to business. I've failed. I've now decided that I'll get out of this vile, decrepit bucket of an organization as soon as possible in 2010. For my colleagues' sakes, I really hope that IBM improves. Sadly, I fear that it won't.
As a footnote, I Ieave you with this. A good friend of mine, an ex-IBMer, lost her fight against cancer in 2009. I know she wouldn't mind me mentioning this. She had left IBM a couple of years prior to her passing. Her sons read her eulogy, which she had written herself before the end came.
In that eulogy she found time to mention how much she had grown to loathe working for IBM. This was a rational. capable, intelligent, funny, normal, brilliant woman. In her last testament to this Earth, she took the time to pen a couple of sentences on what a horrible company IBM had become. To me, that says more that an infinite number of monkeys blogging for an eternity on IBM could do (I include my self in the number of monkeys). Think about it, if you had one speech left to make in this world, how deeply would you have to dislike your employer (or ex-employer) to rubbish them in that speech?
There is no job security at IBM. I have seen 1, 2+, 2 and 3 performers fired during resource actions. I have seen an entire 2nd line organization fired during a resource action (-5). Work/life balance - Multiple deliverables per year (>5), developers are expected to be on call 24x7x52 (continuous crunch time) - (-5). There is no career potential/growth in the United States/Canada/Europe (US/Canada/Europe are seen by the Executives as places for "cost savings"; i.e. outsource all the jobs to BRIC) - all growth is in the BRIC countries (-5). I can work from home a couple of days a week, which seems like a pretty typical bennie for the industry (0).
Co-worker competence - This varies wildly dependent on whether or not you are dealing with a global resource, a H1-B/L-1 visa holder, or a domestic employee, so I'm not going to rate it. Work environment - the above list says it all (-5).
Work/Life Balance: That is now an old-school phrase...its now Work/Life Integration...which essentially means all work...and squeeze in some Life if you're lucky...the preventative HealthCare programs and initiatives offered are fundamentally meaningless if you have no time to do them.
Career Potential/Growth: Ahh...in my first managerial role, I was ranked a 1 (top of the statistical heap). I did not see any potential job/role that would further negatively impact my Work/Life Integration...so I voluntarily ceased to be a manager...but not a leader...the story continues...but I am looking outside for better opportunities.
Location: Flexibility is nice, but expense accounting is horrible. I work from home, but am not allowed to account for mileage from home, even when I cannot get a mobile work area at the local office...its just a way to foist more expenses on the rank and file...and improve the quantitative bottom line.
Competence: I continually have to set context and direction for co-workers...they are all good people, basically, but some just don't get it...so others have to cover for them and do their work for them.
Work environment: Lets just say the reality does not match the corporate rhetoric...bottomline...everything is about the money....revenue or expense....which goes to Wall Street and the return to the stockholders. Smarter Planet is a nice marketing initiative, which has its roots in reality. The issue is that once you understand being smarter...understanding true sustainability and true carrying capacity of the earth...the quantitative model of corporations and Wall Street breaks down. We need new, qualitative measurements on how to gauge human progress...GDP is not the only criteria of a life well lived.
Oh, well..on to better, not necessarily bigger, things...
The Court’s decision will strengthen the hand of incumbent interests over unorganised emerging interests. That is not good. Incumbent business interests often see upstarts as competing unfairly, as needing to be regulated, and as deserving of being suppressed. Incumbent businesses like politicians to squelch new entrants. With their chequebooks now opened up, they will support politicians who seek to regulate and suppress upstarts. Upstarts do not have money yet to finance their own political campaigns, they are disorganised, and they don’t yet know the ropes in Washington and the state legislatures. They are new, weak, and inexperienced.
The ruling will also strengthen further the hands of managers and directors inside large American companies. They, after all, are the ones who decide whether to contribute to political campaigns, not shareholders. Corporate and securities law in the US already strongly favours managers over shareholders. Usually, it is just fine that shareholders are distant from the corporation and its directors; shareholders don’t know the company’s business, while directors and managers do. But when directors or executives stumble, American shareholders (in contrast to British and other nations’) today have only weak tools to influence or replace the faltering chief executive.
The ruling was a victory for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the AFL-CIO, the National Rifle Association and other interest groups most likely to run ads with money from their treasuries. It's unlikely major corporations would want their name on an ad, but they can avoid that by giving money to interest groups, who would then run ads and disclose the spending under the groups' names. It also presents a new option to wealthy individuals who were allowed to spend millions on their own to run election-time candidate ads before, but now can join forces to do so and get more bang for their bucks. ...
Campaign finance watchdogs predict members of Congress now will cast their votes on controversial legislation with an eye to whether their position on it risks inviting a barrage of special-interest ads against them before the election, or on the flip side, could draw outside spending favorable to them. "I just think the court got it dead wrong if it thinks that a $10 million expenditure in a campaign can't buy influence of a corrupting nature the same way that a $10 million contribution can," said Fred Wertheimer, president of Democracy 21, who pressed for the ban on election-season corporate- and union-financed ads that the court swept away. ...
Heartened by the court's view that corporations have the same free-speech rights as citizens, opponents of campaign finance restrictions think the time is ripe to press the justices to go still further and do something not allowed since the robber-baron bribery scandals of a century ago: let corporations and unions give money directly to candidates. ...
The ruling could bring more than office politics to the workplace. Bopp reads it to permit corporations and unions to speak freely about elections to employees and authorize partisan politicking on their property, rather than stop at simply encouraging workers to vote, as they've had to do until now.
But in all honesty, what I heard from my HP friends was even more alarming. Mark Hurd apparently takes HP in and out of businesses frequently in his continual drive to make HP more profitable. When a decision is made to exit a business, the employees associated with that business, according to my friends, are simply fired. There is no retraining, no pretense that a position might be available elsewhere in HP. Out of curiosity, did a search on layoffs at HP and found an interesting read. According to Mark Hurd:
"In this country, we have a problem. The source of this country's greatness has been its technical talent . . . But you have to go where the tech talent is, and right now the tech talent is in Asia." "We often can't keep [engineers] in the country even after they've graduated from U.S. universities like Stanford."
Bottom line: What's happening at IBM is industry wide and there are very few places to hide, even in Silicon Valley. For additional details, see: http://nerdtwilight.wordpress.com/category/layoffs/
I wanted 6 months severance pay, and the ability to collect NY State unemployment insurance. Neither of which I'd have gotten if I had voluntarily raised my hand. Your friend may not be located in New York, and therefore collecting unemployment insurance could be different for her than it was for me. If she raises her hand and volunteers to retire, IBM will gladly shake it, but as for putting any severance pay in it, she can forget that.
Look, IBM has treated it's employee in a very shabby manner since the early 1990's. Due to that, I made it a priority to try to get something in return from them. I think I earned that after being treated so poorly for 16 years. All I ever did for the 17 years prior to 1993 was work as hard as could for IBM, simply because they treated me so well during those years. When their attitude towards me changed, I changed mine towards them. IMHO, anyone with 30 years is crazy if they leave voluntarily after what IBM has put the employee's through since 1993.
Things had gotten entirely too annoying. First it was White House (and populist) complaints about Wall Street recklessness and greed (humongous bonuses). Now it was White House desire to attach new regulations and taxes to banks. Enough!
And so a rally was organized at lunchtime on the 23rd floor of 14 Wall Street, directly across the street from the New York Stock Exchange, in the cushy offices of John Thomas Financial, a three-year-old investment house. It was much more comfortable than, say, the street. As Thomas Belesis, the 35-year-old chief executive of John Thomas who hatched the idea, put it, “It’s cold out.” ...
The event didn’t quite go the way it was foreshadowed. The press alert promised a “rally with hundreds of brokers and traders.” In fact, about 30 of the attendees were from elsewhere on Wall Street. The rest were the brokers and traders at John Thomas. Since the rally was held on the firm’s 25,000-square-foot trading floor, where some 100 brokers had their desks, most of the attendees were basically working.
According to media sources, the key players in giving IBM the money do not know. State, local and economic development officials all repeat the IBM line that hiring is “on track”. So how many employees does “on track” mean? How is it possible that those responsible for handing out the money do not know the number of employees hired? Where is the accountability to Iowa taxpayers? Why isn’t IBM disclosing the employee number?
While there certainly are positive aspects of IBM establishing a facility in Dubuque, it must be remembered that IBM is notorious for not being transparent and open on hiring and job cut numbers. IBM’s stonewalling of information must end.
The Alliance@IBM is calling on IBM to disclose the following:
IBM must immediately disclose the true number of employees in the Dubuque facility. The citizens of Iowa deserve transparency and accountability for their money.
Knowledge Transfer Plan The key component of this transformation is achieving an efficient and effective transfer of institutional knowledge of the product set and of the DFS-managed environment. Tasks to address these knowledge gaps and the associated knowledge transfer will be scheduled into a labor transition plan which is separately shared with DFS. The IBM project office and Sr. Project Delivery Executive will work with DFS to ensure a smooth transition. This timing of transitioning labor is dependent on IBM's ability to staff positions and perform knowledge transfer with the effort scheduled to begin in 1Q2010 and continue into 2011. -A Nony Mouse-
Alliance reply: If you have the opportunity to retire (you listed 31 years service); then it may be your only option to sanity. We thank you for joining and supporting Alliance@IBM, and organizing, encouraging your co-workers to join and organize, as well. Please tell us more about your situation: Contact Us
"But dependency on government has never been bad for the rich. The pretense of the laissez-faire people is that only the poor are dependent on government, while the rich take care of themselves. This argument manages to ignore all of modern history, which shows a consistent record of laissez-faire for the poor, but enormous government intervention for the rich." From Economic Justice: The American Class System, from the book Declarations of Independence by Howard Zinn.
Focus group participants say they are concerned about the deficit? Then let's throw in a 3-year spending freeze, delivered with a populist spin. "Like any cash-strapped family," the president said, "we will work within a budget to invest in what we need and sacrifice what we don't. And if I have to enforce this discipline by veto, I will."
Sure, the freeze will actually have little impact on the multi-trillion dollar deficit, exempts budget-bloating defense spending, and, as Steve Clemons puts it, "will essentially forfeit America's growth future to China." But "spending freeze" moved the test dials -- so spending freeze it is!
Remember when serious health care reform was going to be the main path to reducing long-term budget deficits? Not anymore. Now we're going to freeze spending -- except, of course, on the wars of choice we are fighting, at a cost of $250 billion a year, in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The president and his team know that the spending freeze is little more than what The Economist's Ryan Avent calls "a bright shining gimmick." And no one in the administration could really have believed that conservatives would suddenly swoon and fall into line at the mere mention of "freezing discretionary spending." Indeed, the reaction of Republicans to his announcement that the freeze won't take effect until 2011 was so derisive that Obama fired back with a caustic ad lib: "That's how budgets are done."
The truth is, the American people are not angry because of all the money the government has spent this year -- except, of course, the people who believe Obama was born in Kenya, is a Muslim, and a Socialist. The rest of the people, the ones Obama has a chance of reaching, are angry because the vast majority of that money went to -- and continues to go to -- rescuing Wall Street, which has thanked taxpayers by reducing lending, recording record profits, paying out massive bonuses, and using our money to pay lobbyists to scuttle financial reform. That is what is putting voters on the electoral warpath.
One week later, in the State of the Union address, President Obama proposed a temporary freeze in nondefense discretionary spending.
Wait, it gets worse. To justify the freeze, Mr. Obama used language that was almost identical to widely ridiculed remarks early last year by John Boehner, the House minority leader. Boehner then: “American families are tightening their belt, but they don’t see government tightening its belt.” Obama now: “Families across the country are tightening their belts and making tough decisions. The federal government should do the same.” ...
Meanwhile, health care reform faces a troubled outlook. Congressional Democrats may yet manage to pass a bill; they’ll be committing political suicide if they don’t. But there’s no question that Republicans were very successful at demonizing the plan. And, crucially, what they demonized most effectively were the cost-control efforts: modest, totally reasonable measures to ensure that Medicare dollars are spent wisely became evil “death panels.”
So if health reform fails, you can forget about any serious effort to rein in rising Medicare costs. And even if it succeeds, many politicians will have learned a hard lesson: you don’t get any credit for doing the fiscally responsible thing. It’s better, for the sake of your career, to just pretend that you’re fiscally responsible — that is, to be a deficit peacock.
So we’re paralyzed in the face of mass unemployment and out-of-control health care costs. Don’t blame Mr. Obama. There’s only so much one man can do, even if he sits in the White House. Blame our political culture instead, a culture that rewards hypocrisy and irresponsibility rather than serious efforts to solve America’s problems. And blame the filibuster, under which 41 senators can make the country ungovernable, if they choose — and they have so chosen.
I’m sorry to say this, but the state of the union — not the speech, but the thing itself — isn’t looking very good.
Vault's IBM Business Consulting Services message board is a popular hangout for IBM BCS employees, including many employees acquired from PwC. Sample posts follow:
We all have to play nice-nice with our GR (global resource) peers. and when your GR team lead sends notes to IBM US mgmt that they need MORE WORK from their US counterparts, IBM mgmt. rolls over and gives them more work. Reminds me of an old CCR song: Fortunate Son.
And when you ask them, how much should we give? Ooh, they only answer more! more! more. What a sad, pathetic, f'ng company.
What's more pathetic is how India is not held accountable since they are Sam's chosen ones and how anyone who reports problems with India are considered anti-team, racist and uncooperative.
The sacred cows over in India aren't cattle, they're the "office boys" pretending to be IT professionals working for IBM. What a sad, pathetic f'ng company indeed.
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