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August 11, 2001 August 4, 2001 July 28, 2001 July 21, 2001 July 14, 2001 July 7, 2001 June 30, 2001 June 23, 2001 June 16, 2001 June 9, 2001 June 2, 2001 May 26, 2001 May 19, 2001 May 12, 2001 May 5, 2001 2001 Stock Meeting April 21, 2001 April 14, 2001 April 7, 2001 March 31, 2001 March 24, 2001 March 17, 2001 March 10, 2001 March 3, 2001 February 24, 2001 February 17, 2001 February 10, 2001 February 3, 2001 January 27, 2001 January 20, 2001 January 13, 2001 January 6, 2001 December 30, 2000 December 23, 2000 December 16, 2000 December 9, 2000 December 2, 2000 November 24, 2000 November 17, 2000 November 10, 2000 November 4, 2000 October 28, 2000 October 21, 2000 October 14, 2000 October 7, 2000 September 30, 2000 September 23, 2000 September 16, 2000 September 9, 2000 September 2, 2000 August 26, 2000 August 19, 2000 August 12, 2000 July 29, 2000 July 22, 2000 July 15, 2000 July 1, 2000 June 24, 2000 June 17, 2000 June 10, 2000 June 3, 2000 May 27, 2000 May 20, 2000 May 13, 2000 May 6, 2000 April, 2000

Highlights—September 19, 2015

  • Fortune:

    IBM CEO Ginni Rometty's secret to a successful career. By Ginni Rometty. Excerpt: Ginni Rometty, CEO, chairman and president of IBM Photo by Ben Baker Bet big and don’t look back. MPW Insider is an online community where the biggest names in business and beyond answer timely career and leadership questions. Today’s answer for:What is the biggest leadership lesson you’ve learned in the past year? is written by Ginni Rometty, CEO, chairman and president of IBM. I’d say the biggest lesson – or reminder – was the importance of moving to the future, making decisions for the long term and betting big. That’s something everyone says, but it’s easier said than done. When it comes to managing for the long term, we sold our semiconductor manufacturing operations last year. We did it in order to move to higher value. We actually shrank the company while many voices were calling out for top-line growth. And it’s doubly hard with something that has been part of your company for more than half a century. While chip research and development are critical, chip manufacturing was no longer core to IBM’s future. We’ve done this before — with PCs and commodity servers — and no doubt we’ll do it again. It’s what you do when your goal isn’t just short-term results, but successfully leading your industry in the future. And when it comes to betting big, we’ve placed a very big bet on an entirely new model of computing — what we call “cognitive.”
  • New York Times:

    A Toxic Work World. By Anne-Marie Slaughter. Excerpts: For many Americans, life has become all competition all the time. Workers across the socioeconomic spectrum, from hotel housekeepers to surgeons, have stories about toiling 12- to 16-hour days (often without overtime pay) and experiencing anxiety attacks and exhaustion. Public health experts have begun talking about stress as an epidemic.

    The people who can compete and succeed in this culture are an ever-narrower slice of American society: largely young people who are healthy, and wealthy enough not to have to care for family members. An individual company can of course favor these individuals, as health insurers once did, and then pass them off to other businesses when they become parents or need to tend to their own parents. But this model of winning at all costs reinforces a distinctive American pathology of not making room for caregiving. The result: We hemorrhage talent and hollow out our society. ...

    Bad work culture is everyone’s problem, for men just as much as for women. It’s a problem for working parents, not just working mothers. For working children who need time to take care of their own parents, not just working daughters. For anyone who does not have the luxury of a full-time lead parent or caregiver at home.

  • Glassdoor IBM reviews. Selected reviews follow: `
    • “Good company, but drastically different now than it was in the past”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Flexible work schedule. Local management easy to work with. Cons: Many business decisions are being driven by finance instead of by common sense. Advice to Management: Look at retraining your existing workforce for new skills before bringing on new hires.
    • “Product Manager”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Great work-life balance. Some nice friends. Cons: The split between "executives" and "employees". Advice to Management: Grow up and see how other companies in this century are run and get off the "executive" culture of the early 1900s.
    • “Was a great company”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: There are still many different technical disciplines you can pursue with IBM. There are also opportunities for online education and skill development. Cons: Unstructured resource actions (layoffs to the outside world) are no longer annual or even semi annual; they happen quarterly or more frequently. Advice to Management: Level compression and asking lower-banded employees to perform the roles of higher-band positions is a short-term benefit to IBM and long-term harm to your customers and higher-performing employees.
    • “Business Analyst”

      Former Employee — Business Analyst. I worked at IBM full-time (more than a year). Pros: Strong, well-known, and respected brand with a lot of smart employees. Great opportunity to be mentored by more senior employees. Good salary and benefits and access to a lot of educational resources. Cons: Growth is slow because there are so much senior management. Atmosphere is very corporate, which also means there are a lot of processes that waste time. Advice to Management: Focus on your young employees. There was a large generational gap and a lot of the young employees left within 2 years out of school.
    • “People make the Company great”

      Current Employee — IT Transition Manager in San Jose (Costa Rica). I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Good employee benefits. Work-life balance. Outstanding learning resources for free; you put your own limits on how much you want to grow Cons: Bureaucratic as hell. Too much pressure is put on people doing the day-to-day operations with cuts happening with almost no attention on how they will hurt the client or the remaining guys. Salary increases have been on hold for the last couple of years, but hey, there is always billions in earnings. Advice to Management: Listen to senior employees, open up, and for Christ's sake, get on the floor, understand what people do on the day to day before chopping some heads. Executive offices are a long way from where people do their jobs. For that you will have to get off conference calls every now and then.
    • “IBM on the way of the dodo”

      Former Employee — Line Manager. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 5 years). Pros: Working from home was a good option for those with families and located far from the office. A good internal culture before the dreaded RAs hit. Cons: Recent resource actions (RAs) have promoted infighting and instability across a large IBM population with job satisfaction and morale at an all-time low. The inability and lack of transparency from upper management shows a limited view of success. Advice to Management: Bring back transparent management lines and show leadership. Offshoring will not ultimately save the share price in the long term.
    • “IBM Remote Worker”

      Former Employee — IT Architect in Saint Paul, MN. Pros: Large company with many options, CBT-based training available, flexible work schedule, average benefits. Many areas of technology available. Cons: Over worked, under appreciated, very minimal career growth, ever changing staff and management, outdated hardware that is never refreshed. Advice to Management: Take care of the people.
    • “Losing its way”

      Current Employee — Senior Managing Consultant. I have been working at IBM (more than 10 years). Pros: Some of the best tech solutions around. Innovative research and projects Cons: Many of the staff who used to make the company great to work for have either been fired or have left.
    • “Application Development Specialist”

      Former Employee — Applications Development Specialist in Baton Rouge, LA Doesn't Recommend Negative Outlook CEO I worked at IBM full-time (more than a year).

      Pros: Experience. Opportunities to get certifications. Get your experience and RUN. You can work from home (2 days a month).

      Cons: Underpaid. Very misleading. Training is inconsistent. Management/HR says one thing and does another. Fresh college hires are placed on projects requiring experience by managers, then penalized if they're released from the project due to lack of experience and sometimes terminated from the company. Some former employees are still being paid after notifying management for months after quitting so the turnover rate doesn't seem so awful. The performance rating system is terrible.

      Advice to Management: At least pretend to care about the well being of employees rather than project placement. Don't be evasive to the point that employees can't approach you. Don't lie to employees.

    • “Elephants CAN dance! But they will kill you!”

      Current Employee — Architect in Fort Worth, TX. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).

      Pros: Great technology and lots of smart folks. 100% self direction, no micro-management. A company big enough to have expertise in nearly everything and if they don't they carry enough influence with partners to assure someone gets on a plane to help finish a difficult project if needed.

      Cons: These are near endless, just like the hours, phone calls and failure of the internal systems. Most folks with any tenure work in international teams. This means continual early morning or late night conference calls that when added up will equal 70+ hours per week. In the extra time an employee has between 6 am and 11 pm calls, one must fit in time for expense reports, booking travel and answering emails. The travel booking system is abysmal, the expense report system is very difficult to use when it works at all, and the email system is extremely flaky.

      Advice to Management: I've been trying to fill mid-level SE positions. Given the ongoing "resource actions" that happen every 6 months there is no one with any skills that seriously consider IBM anymore. You have been so flip about firing people the last 10 years we don't get good candidates anymore. Please change this corporate perception.

    • “IT Specialist”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Amazing culture that is ingrained into everyone that works there. My boss was the best boss ever. Cons: I can't think of a single con at all. My time there was exceptional. Advice to Management: Keep up the good work, and thank you for taking a chance on the intern class of 2015!
    • “Review”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee in Congers, NY. I worked at IBM (more than 10 years). Pros: Opportunity to work with different clients and companies. Cons: Not many opportunities for advancement due to recent downsizing. Advice to Management: People's skills should be more valued vs reviewing the number of people in a team.
    • “Big Blue”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Flexibility, mobility within the company to learn about lots of different technologies and business areas. Decisive. Depending on the group/functional area/project, it can be very fast-paced, engaging, challenging work. Good benefits. Cons: Compensation, lack of RSUs, negligible salary increases even for top performers, paltry profit sharing. Lots of growth laterally, but not many promotions unless based near NY (HQ).
    • “IBM”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. I worked at IBM full-time (more than a year). Pros: Big company, lots of skills and available resources to learn and improve knowledge. Well-know brand, still really appreciated by the market. Cons: Very high pressure level customer-related employees. IBM has a very complex organization. Customer can getting confused trying to guess how company is moving. Advice to Management: Management has to be more involved in customer facing activities. In some cases managers feel more comfortable in making pressure on timing and revenue only.
    • “Project Manager”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Good career prospects if you can manage 12 hour days. Cons: Expected to do exceptionally long days all the time: 7:00 am to 6:00 pm. Advice to Management: Consider that employees can work effectively from home from time to time.
    • “Not the IBM it used to be”

      Former Employee — Program Manager in Chicago, IL. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Flexible work options, including work from anywhere. Cons: Toxic culture. Upper management only cares about the current quarter earnings. Quality work is no longer valued. The wisdom of spend money to make money is ignored. Customer needs are secondary to process. Accountability at mid- to upper-management levels is non-existent. Rank and file employees get the blame for any problems.
    • “Turn-around needed”

      Current Employee — Senior Project Manager in Philadelphia, PA. Pros: Good benefits, even though they are diminishing. High visibility. Good pay. Cons: Corporate culture words don't match their actions. Current strategy is to cut costs with no regard for profits or customer satisfaction. View of resource roles as purely a commodity to be outsourced to cheaper alternative regardless of experience/qualifications. Advice to Management: New leadership essential.
    • “Global Services”

      Current Employee — IT Specialist. I have been working at IBM (more than 10 years). Pros: A lot of learning opportunities, through a large catalogue of Web-based training classes. Many jobs have you working from home, than being required of going into an office. Cons: The company has been getting rid of many US-based jobs, moving them overseas. Employees are treated as a number, than how valuable they really are. Advice to Management: Take value in your employees. The success of IBM depends on teamwork at all levels!
    • “Great starting job”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: The culture is amazing. The people I've met are intelligent and friendly and hard working. Easy to be mobile within the company as well. Cons: Change details of offer and employment without much notice. My start date was moved back months. In addition, I know people who have had to change locations or training length.
    • “Strategy and Transformation (GBS)”

      Current Employee — Senior Consultant Pros: Your parents will recognize the name of your company! Most of your coworkers will be able to spell your company's name! You enjoy lying, backstabbing, and cutthroat office politics. Cons: None! This is a great place to waste your life, potential, and liver. Advice to Management: Quit, you worthless human beings.
    • “Applications Developer”

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee in Monroe, LA. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than a year). Pros: Great opportunities to travel while on projects. Meeting awesome co-workers. Able to get vacation time even if you started with the company in the middle of the year. Cons: They are not completely honest about the job description while in the interview or with the posting online. You have to be on a project. If not, you are at risk of being fired within a few months, even if there are no projects in your service line. Advice to Management: Be honest with the job description and maybe the turnover rate wouldn't be as high as it is now. Be able to work with your team and help them find projects.
    • “Staff Software Engineer”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Good benefits and flexible work policy made for a good work-life balance. That coupled with some of the smartest engineers around kept me with the company. Cons: Multiple layers of management and politics made for a challenging work environment. Our location was a satellite site so the fear of being lanced was always present. Advice to Management: My first line manager generally had his hand tied when it came to making any kind of decisions. Everything came down from the main corporate office. Only advice would be to listen to your employees.
    • “Project Manager”

      Current Employee — Senior Project Manager in Bradford, MA. I have been working at IBM (more than 10 years). Pros: Flexibility, good team of people to work with. Management can be good depending who you work for. Cons: Pay is below market. Several reorgs in the past few years. Extremely poor communication.
    • “Great Place”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. I worked at IBM full-time (less than a year). Pros: Good place to work for. People very friendly with one another. People very smart and intelligent and know what they are talking about. Management very friendly and easy to talk to. Cons: Location is not ideal. Not ideal in finding a local gym to work out at lunch time. They do not let us access social media while at work. Advice to Management: Keep on doing the best job that you currently are. The management is very important and one of the best attributes that the company has and will have for long to come.
    • “Good to work for, great people”

      Current Employee — Senior Program Manager in Southbury, CT. Pros: Good benefits, work environment including work life balance flexibility and high standards. Cons: Very bureaucratic; executives look out for themselves and are not in touch what happens on a day to day basis. Advice to Management: Retain talent by shifting to areas of the business that is needed, take the time to provide necessary training for new career paths and don't just talk about it.
    • “Outsourced from AT&T in 2005 and laid off in 2015”

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Large teams that generally support each other. Cons: If they can automate you out of a job or have a foreign country do it then you're out of a job. All efforts and money for improving the department went overseas. They did their best to turn the tap off in the US.
    • “More to like, then less, but depends on your preferences!”

      Current Employee — Information Developer in Pittsburgh, PA. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 5 years). Pros: Access to a wide range of resources. Work from home opportunities aplenty. Flexible hours. Great benefits. Cons: Career development literature does not match reality. Poor support for continuing education. Advice to Management: Greater transparency in the process for filling upper level jobs.
    • “A Stumbling Giant”

      Current Employee — IT Specialist. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).

        Pros:

        • Because of its sheer size the company has a very large number of above average or brilliant people.
        • Extremely broad portfolio of technologies.
        • Some truly great products.
        • Good compensation and benefits.

        Cons:

        • Because of its sheer size the company has a very large number of below average people.
        • Lacks a cohesive, consistent vision for the future.
        • The reaction to adversity is to increase the level of micromanagement.
        • Lots of exceptional people have left. More are trying to.

        Advice to Management:

        • Decide what you want the company to be and then make it a point to become that rather than trying to catch up with the companies that have already done it.
        • Realize that size isn't necessarily a benefit.
        • Believing that you'll win because of your name and history despite being late to the game is not a strategy for success.
        • Admit when you're wrong and don't try to paint failure as success by painting it in bright colors.
        • Realize that not everything behaves mechanistically.
    • “Consultant”

      Former Employee — ITSM Consultant in Melbourne (Australia). I worked at IBM full-time (more than 5 years).

      Pros: Good colleagues, project teams bought out the collective best in delivering solutions to our clients. IBM is infused with deep knowledge accessible when required.

      Cons: Large anonymous corporation driven by share price earnings and lead by dubious managers with their own agendas. Little respect for staff and career ambitions; very poor at providing training and career growth. Does not walk the talk and is very good at spinning and window dressing. For all its talk about being 'agile', IBM is a lumbering behemoth struggling to reinvent itself and is constantly throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Has not learnt that offshoring for cheaper rates doesn't equal high quality work.

      Advice to Management: Get back to your roots of being an innovative company not run by bean counters!

    • “Great job out of college

      ” Former Employee — Managing Consultant in New York, NY. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 5 years). Pros: If you are coming out of college, don't know what you want to do, and are looking to learn about a number of different businesses and industries, IBM is a fantastic place to work. Cons: If you don't want to travel, stay away. You'll be on the road almost every week. But for some, that might be great! Can't beat the miles! Advice to Management: Work harder to keep your young employees part of the company. For recent graduates, most treat it as a first step in their careers. I would suggest making it clear that there is a career path for them at IBM.
  • Alliance for Retired Americans Friday Alert (September 04, 2015). This week's topics include:
    • Number of Uninsured Americans over 55 Drops to Lowest Point Ever
    • Tell Congress to Stop Garnishing Social Security to Pay Student Debts
    • Ben Carson Says Seniors Need to “Voluntarily Opt-out” of Social Security
    • Ohio Alliance Joins Forces with Progressive Nuns Ahead of Papal Visit

    Download a PDF version.

New on the Alliance@IBM Site

http://www.endicottalliance.org/thedisintegrationofemploymentinIBM.htm To all Alliance supporters, send and share the above link to the article "The disintegration of employment in IBM" far and wide. Put it on your FaceBook page; send it to newspapers; send it with comments to your political reps and send it to your co-workers. Help break the secrecy of IBM job cuts. Put some pressure on IBM. -Alliance-

Job Cut Reports

  • Comment 09/12/15:

    Job Title: IT Specialist; Location: Work from Home; Customer Account: State Street; Business Unit: EADS DTS; Product Line: Tivoli Monitoring. Message: RA'd on 2/27 Separation package gone, unemployment gone; been 6 months and no jobs on the horizon. Being 63 and handicapped doesn't help. Of course I had to train my replacement in India who told me that she could not handle my job responsibilities and was planning on leaving IBM. All people in India move on to new jobs often as it is their way of moving up and getting more pay. To stay in a job too long in India is seen as failure. Now I have to file for early retirement. IBM will offshore all jobs from all countries to India so no one is safe. Thank you IBM for destroying my way of life. My family appreciates your loyalty (NOT). -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/13/15:

    Name: -HelpYourself- Job Title: Toast, like all of you. Message: IBM acquires StrongLoop and everyone is in a tizzy internally, acting as if this is the savior come to save the company. One exec on an internal call said this is "the most important acquisition in the history of IBM". Really? Even SoftLayer recently was more important than this, because before that, in cloud IBM had nada. It's the same strategy — running around trying to stuff putty into large holes in a sinking ship. Even SoftLayer didn't help IBM cloud much. Why do these fail? Because these products are square pegs that must be put into the IBM round hole of ancient products designed for on premises

    It creates a cobbled together patchwork of stuff that of course doesn't work well or at all (see IBM's SaaS offerings). It's a false facade to impress (who else?) the financial writers and shareholders, while the execs cash out, cover their butts, and the band plays on.

    Think of where IBM would be if they had spent that acquisition money on their own R&D (imagine — actually designing and building good stuff from the ground up, instead of cobbling!) and rebuilding employee morale. The new "revolutionary, ground breaking" email system they bragged about called "Verse" is a massive failure. It's the same old pig (Lotus Notes) with lipstick. Employees are unable to attend meetings because it 'loses' them; emails get lost, and you can guess the chaos from that.

    In fact, internally this is referred to as "you've been Versed". The execs continue to send emails begging people to go read their useless blogs, and the band plays on. If we had representation, we could help to fight against these horrible misuses of corporate funds. Please join the Alliance today! It takes a few minutes, can be anonymous, and is only the price of a Starbucks per month.

  • Comment 09/14/15:

    Job Title: IT Specialist; Location: NL; Customer Account: Portfolio; Business Unit: GTS; Product Line: SD. Message: Jobs offshored on a large scale, starting with staff. People to train their replacements within a few weeks. Rumours say 200 more before end of year, no packages, just fake redeployment attempts. -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/16/15:

    HP following IBM's example, from Reuters: "HP said it was moving more of its workers to lower-cost locations as part of its efforts to cut costs. In its 2013 fiscal year, the company said 36 percent of its employees in enterprise services worked in what it called low-cost locations. This year 42 percent do, and executives said they plan to increase that percentage to 60 percent by 2018." http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/09/16/hp-redundancies-idUSL4N11L59S20150916 -Barb-
  • Comment 09/16/15:

    IBM continues on its path to near oblivion as the brilliant Rometty stakes its future on Watson and little else of promise. Huge organization of 2K is a clear message that IBM population as a whole will shrink massively. In spite of all the fine effort by the Alliance Team, I'm afraid it needs to move on, any hope to mobilize the IBM population against the very limited goals of its inept Senior Management Team is doomed to fail. Rometty and her incompetent Stooges will hang on to cement their own fortunes before the whole house falls apart. IBM is done as a major company. -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/17/15:

    RA in Germany. IBM Germany is closing down one of its 18 subsidiaries firing the whole staff, more than 100 people. It is believed to be a test for further actions in the country of Germany. Here's the announcement (excerpt):
    The IBM Global Account (IGA) is integrated in the IBM internal CIO organisation. The alignment to domains with global allocation of responsibilities leads to further synergies on the one hand—but to over-capacities on the other hand.

    The optimisation and globalisation in the CIO organisation will foster and accelerate this situation. Against this background the strategic decision was made not to serve the client IBM out of Germany any longer, but to use global services going forward.

    Additionally, the German IGA would be in global competition with further—for the CIO organisation—strategic locations, without being a strategic location itself. Therefore, the business model of IGA—grounded in the IBM Deutschland Enterprise Application Solutions GmbH—will not be pursued going forward. The delivery for the CIO organisation will be discontinued. The projects will be transferred to the CIO organisation on global level. This is why we plan to close down the Enterprise Application Solutions GmbH as of 31/08/2016. As a consequence it is intended to terminate the employment relationships of the affected employees.

  • Comment 09/17/15:

    Job Title: SW analyst; Location: WFH. Message: I am still an IBM employee, but have watched most of my co-workers be RA'd in the last 8 years. Work was moved to China and there are only a few Americans left. It has been a very depressing work environment for all. I have worked for IBM for 30 years and now do entry level work because the better jobs are in China. I have asked to do more meaningful work but was told by my management that I was not a "strategic" employee and therefore I could not move into another job. Any new job openings can only be filled by someone in China. I feel like a second-class citizen. It is so unfair, and I feel discriminated for being American. I work just as hard as the employees in China but cannot reap the benefits of my hard work. Is any others in the same situation as I am in? -Non strategic-
  • Comment 09/17/15:

    "Hewlett-Packard expects to cut up to 30,000 workers" http://finance.yahoo.com/news/hewlett-packard-expects-cut-30-205420021.html While this is not good news, I respect HP for being upfront and honest about upcoming layoffs. This is very different from IBM's well-known dirty tricks to hide layoffs and evading the public's attention. -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/17/15:

    Job Title: RA'd; Location: The Nether; Business Unit: GTS; Product Line: SSO. Message: Bombard IBM with comments and questions on all social media sites where they make announcements! Create a new email account and register new profiles on LinkedIn, FaceBook and twitter. IBM makes all kinds of announcements and this might be a good campaign to bombard them in social media with questions and statements about what is REALLY going on behind the scenes. The media/general public needs to know or be reminded! Oh, BTW heard (another) MAJOR RA coming up in 4th quarter. Another 30% to be gone. -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/18/15:

    Job Title: retired. Message: Are folks still thinking they don't need collective bargaining and a union contract? Verizon workers with CWA had limitations on layoffs in their contract. But you need an NLRB certified union to gain collective bargaining rights, and since IBM'ers seem to think they don't need that, they still don't have any protection at all. A collective bargaining contract could also result in a much better separation package among other things. What's in YOUR contract? Here's an example of what a contract and arbitration can do.
  • Comment 09/19/15:

    Here's an example of how insane things have gotten. I'm on call this past weekend and work changes both Saturday and Sunday for two different accounts. I'm on call though so I accept it as part of the job as I have for the past 32 years. I'm off call on Monday and power off my high-tech, circa-1970's one-way communication device that is the only thing IBM is willing to pay for (aka: pager).

    Late Monday night I get a phone call on my personal cell phone from my manager about a high visibility account that inexplicably has no defined on call schedule but expects assistance 24x7 365. My cell phone is in the kitchen right where I left it and I'm in bed right where I normally am at that time of night and miss the call. I get an email the next morning chiding me for not responding the previous evening. I replied that I was not on call and didn't have my phone nearby when the call came in and thought that would be the end of it.

    The next thing I receive is a one-on-one meeting notice. In the meeting I'm told that it's a requirement that I be 'available' 24x7 365 if he or anyone else needs to get in touch with me. I reply that being 'available' 24x7 365 is just another way of saying 'on call' 24x7 365. He says he doesn't understand my viewpoint and that it's just a requirement of the job. When I asked when this had become a requirement the reply was 'oh about 6 years ago'. I must have missed that memo.

    The conversation degraded from there into something that I can't say I'm proud to have been a part of. In a followup email I summarized our meeting discussion and asked him to reply confirming what he told me were the requirements of the job that I had somehow misunderstood until now. I received no confirmation. I'm sure if he were to tell his side of the story it wouldn't sound anything like what I described here. It sounded to me like he really believed what he was saying.

    It's almost a week later and I'm still shaking my head over the whole thing and left to wonder if I'm the one that is out of touch with today's reality. Either way it's just very sad for me to see where this is all headed. -Anonymous-

  • Comment 09/19/15:

    Not being an IBMer but as a union supporter I see IBM management masquerading as contributors in their comments here. All to try to finally break the Alliance IBM union. Why? Because IBM management knows they have no class or substance and are afraid of even an outside threat. Since IBM management as a whole is a bunch of greedy ego driven power hungry pariahs that thrive on unduly scared and indecisive employees. My advice to IBMers on the fence about joining a union: what do you really, at this point, have to fear or lose? You will lose your job eventually at the most inopportune timing if you still sit on your hands and THINK and do nothing. -Anonymous-
  • Comment 09/19/15:

    Job Title: Software Engineer; Location: US; Business Unit: Systems; Product Line: Storage. Message: I would have joined the Alliance had I ever intended to stay long term. IBM hired me as a new college grad. I accepted a position that paid about 15-20% lower because I had a high opinion of the IBM name and thought the opportunity would be worth it. I was wrong. While many of the people who work there are smart and very capable, learning skills that are of limited use outside of IBM for below industry average doesn't make sense.

    Since joining they have hired 10 new grads. They only hire (full time) or consider candidates that have graduated within the past 2 years. Because they hire people at a low starting salary the quality has suffered. Some are smart, some barely made it through undergrad. Sad situation, lots of smart people, issues at levels beyond the 2nd line. -Anonymous-

If you hire good people and treat them well, they will try to do a good job. They will stimulate one another by their vigor and example. They will set a fast pace for themselves. Then if they are well led and occasionally inspired, if they understand what the company is trying to do and know they will share in its sucess, they will contribute in a major way. The customer will get the superior service he is looking for. The result is profit to customers, employees, and to stcckholders. —Thomas J. Watson, Jr., from A Business and Its Beliefs: The Ideas That Helped Build IBM.

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