IBM has begun allowing officials from China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to examine proprietary source code—the secret sauce behind its software—in a controlled space without the ability to remove it from the room, the people said. It wasn’t clear which products IBM was allowing reviews of or how much time ministry officials can spend looking at the code. The people said the practice was new and implemented recently.
IBM Greater China General Manager Shally Wang referred questions to the company’s media-relations office on Friday. An IBM China spokesman didn’t respond to requests for comment. Officials at the Chinese ministry didn’t respond to a request for comment. ...
IBM’s move could rile the Obama administration and some other U.S. tech firms, which have been trying to present a united front against Beijing’s demands for technology sharing. Many U.S. companies are drawn to the massive Chinese information-technology market, which research firm Forrester estimated is worth $136 billion this year. But they worry that allowing access to sensitive material like source codes will put their proprietary information in the hands of Chinese rivals and essentially help future competitors.
IBM has been willing to strike closer partnerships with China’s government than many of its fellow U.S. tech companies, people familiar with the company’s strategy said.
The Columbia center has experienced another dip in employment, according to a job report submitted to the state this month. As of June 30, IBM had only 388 full-time employees at its Columbia center, 65 fewer than in March and 219 fewer than in February 2014. The drop is significant enough that IBM has lost another of the incentives the state used to lure it to Columbia back in 2010.
The state earlier this year suspended IBM’s last remaining tax credit, which was designed to help it secure funds for infrastructure and capital improvements. After the Missouri Department of Economic Development verified IBM’s latest job report Oct. 1, the department halted another program.
“The fourth workforce training project has been deactivated and will remain deactivated until the company reaches employment levels at or above 400,” Department of Economic Development spokeswoman Amy Susan said in an email. “If they do not reach this minimum in the next year, their last training project will become permanently deactivated.” ...
IBM spokesman Clint Roswell offered no comment and said IBM does not publicly release employment information.
“Any information you seek about IBM employee numbers in Columbia will have to come from the state,” he wrote in an email.
The notoriously secretive company came to Columbia after the city and state teamed up in 2010 to create an incentives package worth up to $31.2 million, assuming IBM met certain benchmarks. That package included a $3 million building the city purchased to house IBM. At the time, company officials said they expected the service center to create about 800 jobs in Columbia, a target IBM never has hit.
In January, the company made deep cuts across the board, including layoffs at the Columbia service center. The state, which had doled out about $10 million in incentives, investigated the company’s job numbers and in April suspended its last remaining tax credit.
GlobalFoundries, the Abu Dhabi-owned semiconductor company, announced Monday that it plans to cut a “very minor” number of U.S. workers, including at its East Fishkill plant that it obtained July 1.
When IBM paid GlobalFoundries $1.5 billion to take over the East Fishkill plant and a plant near Burlington, Vt. off its hands, it also agreed to oblige by a deal between IBM and New York to maintain 3,100 high-tech jobs in the Hudson Valley and surrounding areas through 2016.
The deal was part of IBM’s expansion in Buffalo to create 500 jobs at a $55 million high-tech hub in exchange for state incentives. ...
The extent of the jobs cuts in New York is unknown, but it is drawing the ire of local leaders just months after GlobalFoundries vowed to uphold the deal with IBM, which is headquartered in Armonk, Westchester County.
Merge failed to show that it had adequately reviewed or evaluated complaints of malfunctions in its devices and allowed its Merge Hemo cardiac monitoring system to be widely used on patients when its effectiveness hadn’t been supported, according to the Food and Drug Administration’s letter dated Sept. 30. Merge also neglected to inform the FDA when the company recalled the product because it may cause computer systems to freeze and result in a loss of patients’ vital signs while the system reboots, the agency said. The warning letter came after a June inspection of Merge’s factory in Hartland, Wisconsin.
International Business Machines Corp. agreed in August to buy Chicago-based Merge and incorporate its imaging platform into IBM’s Watson Health business unit. The acquisition, part of IBM’s effort to bolster its health-care data and analytics offerings, is the third-biggest for Chief Executive Officer Ginni Rometty since she took the top role in 2012, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. ...
Steve Tomasco, a spokesman for IBM, declined to comment on the letter.
Rometty was talking at Fortune's Most Powerful Women Summit going on this week in Washington, D.C. when her interviewer, Fortune editor Alan Murray, asked her about the merger.
Rometty shrugged it off.
The reported Dell-EMC deal, one that neither company has confirmed, epitomizes the sort of financial engineering that has inflamed older tech companies of late. Companies like EMC, IBM, and Hewlett-Packard garner headlines more for their M&A activity (or litigation) than for their new products and services.
HP is busily cutting itself into two companies while IBM generates press releases about acquisitions and new Watson business units at a fearsome clip. And Dell, with Silver Lake Partners, spent the better part of 2013 taking itself private and is now apparently in hot pursuit of EMC. ...
So maybe it’s just optics, but it sure seems that Amazon has been building new cloud services while these legacy players have been distracted by financial and legal moves that don’t bring new and better product to market faster. Of course all those other companies are burdened (blessed?) with legacy products that have become less relevant in an age of consolidating compute and storage power in public clouds running commodity hardware, so they have to figure out how to move into this new world while lugging all that baggage.
"Absolutely," said Robert Le-Blanc, senior vice-president of IBM Cloud, when asked about the possibility of acquisitions in India. "We tend not to invest in (startups) because we don't want to be like a VC, but we identify gaps.
Pros: Learning centre. No other pros...other than the one mentioned above.
Cons: Management is totally Czech based...on paper diversity. No cultural ethics within the team. Make you feel out of place every time you try to interact...will always demotivate you. If team lead is Czech I think it would be better if it is out of Czech they will lick Czechs like anything.
Pros: Easy hours, come and go as you please as long as you get your work done. Good work/life balance.
Cons: Pay is at least 1/3 lower than the rest of the industry, unless you are a new hire. Management has no interest in career development for most of their employees, only for certain people in the organization. Promotions are few and far between. Many employees just waiting around to get laid off so they can get a (severance) package and then retire. Future of the company is uncertain.
Advice to Management: Wake up! You need to value all your employees, not just the squeaky wheels in the organization.
Cons: Not all IBMers and IBM departments are created equal. There is a lot of disillusionment. Also a big company like IBM, while certain areas might be bleeding edge, inertia keeps other parts back at least 20 years. There is a lot bureaucracy and even duplication of effort.
Advice to Management: Make everything simple. Reduce hierarchy. Make departments international. Make IBM a place where the opportunities to stay get greater and greater the longer you stay.
Pros: Team work, good atmosphere, nice colleagues...you will get used to the culture pretty fast and adjust yourself.
Cons: There is nothing bad as such...it depends upon you how do you take things...at some points you have to ignore things and move on.
Advice to Management: Please do proper management...you cannot treat resources like teddy bears...all have some plans so let your plans be proper.
Pros: IBM has a lot of job possibilities to offer. The company is over 400,000+ employees. IBM deals with state of the art tech you will not find at other companies. The shear volume of customers will give you a huge amount experience that you can not get at smaller companies.
Cons: People are just numbers or assets to be used and discarded as needed. This is true for most major companies, so just be prepared. The focus is on cost/profit so depending what business unit you work for you could be expected to do the work of a number of people. It can be hard and grueling at times.
Advice to Management: Senior management needs to understand that the people are the foundation of the company. The bean counters (accountants) should not be running the direction of the company they should be assisting it.
Pros: High performance team. Highly skilled, highly effective. You can place a team of IBMers from anywhere in the world into a room. Within 5 minutes they will be up and running as a team. The culture to function as a team is highly developed organization wide.
Cons: Three is significant economic uncertainty. You never know when the next shoe will drop and IBM has not had any good economic news in decades.
Advice to Management: IBM has excellent talent. Focus on market needs and leverage your existing talent. They are up to the challenge to make IBM great.
Pros: Somewhat flexible hours...but that flexibility is shrinking each year. Peers are considerate and want to help one another but management is self serving. IBM lacks likable managers who actually care about their employees.
Cons: Do more with less people corporate mentality. Inconsistent rating system...rated average one year and received 1% raise...rated above average the next year and received 1% raise. That demotivates employees.
Advice to Management: People are your greatest resources; invest in them.
Pros: They are very good about hiring inexperienced people. A good place to get your foot in the door if you are new to the industry. IBM always looks good on a resume and head hunters will frequently recruit from there.
Cons: The pay at the delivery centers is a good 30% below that of the industry average. Pay at the delivery centers also seems to be substantially lower than at normal IBM. Most jobs are working on client teams and can end unexpectedly and it is up to you to get yourself on a new team or else you employment will end.
They also tend to hire people with low skill sets and try to sell them as senior programmers to clients. Training is spotty at best, so expect to spend your own time training yourself. And employees are expected to work a minimum of 44 hours a week. If you don't achieve this, you can expect to not be promoted. Getting promoted out of the center is next to impossible. Most leave for other jobs.
Advice to Management: If you plan on hiring low skill set people, then provide better training. Otherwise, hire experienced programmers. And pay better and you will prevent the massive turnover that the center has.
Pros: Good Benefits. Throughout the company, there are islands of excellence. The ability to interact with some truly brilliant people on those islands. I was able to learn a great deal about some technical issues because of the IBM connections in a day or two — it would have taken a month or more, otherwise. There are a good number of individuals at IBM that *really* know their stuff!
Cons: Their review system is a joke. Ratings are predetermined, have less to do with your personal job performance and much more to do with your managers' personal agenda. Overly bureaucratic. Management is more concerned with checking boxes and CYA than with actual results. Employees can and do get blamed for issues that are totally outside of their control. Unstable work environment — the "Resource Actions" will continue, as will the practice of having employees train their low cost, less skilled overseas replacements unless they want to lose their severance packages.
Advice to Management: Get your golden parachute in order — you will need it!
There is a way to keep prices low while encouraging drug companies to innovate: Look to Europe and elsewhere, where drug prices are a fraction of those in the United States. Germany, Spain, Italy and a half dozen other countries have pushed drug prices lower with a system called reference pricing. It has led to drug price decreases and significant savings in the Canadian province of British Columbia as well as in Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain and Sweden. A study published in the American Journal of Managed Care found that price reductions ranged from 7 percent to 24 percent. ...
In pushing prices down, reference pricing doesn’t suppress innovation; it encourages a different form of it. The market still rewards the invention of a cutting-edge drug with novel therapeutic effects. Such a drug might be placed in a new class and therefore could be priced high. But, within classes, the market also rewards innovations that lead to lower-priced drugs, because consumers switch to them to avoid out-of-pocket costs. In these ways, reference pricing promotes cost-effectiveness.
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-
There is a growing push for breaking the company up, by activists or otherwise. The Dell/EMC deal was a strong drumbeat. Amazon's announcements usurp everything IBM has going on. Watson is smart, but my phone can answer just about any question I can throw at it, without spending a billion to teach it first. Siri, Cortana, and Google can all do that.
The 3Q results call on Monday should be interesting. You can look into the 4Q pipe and see the sky on the other side, it's so empty. In the mean time, do something constructive and help the Alliance help us. Spend a few bucks a month. If you get cut, at least you'll know you did *something* other than just sit there like a lamb being led to slaughter. Fight back. -ReadTheTeaLeaves-
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