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Highlights—March 5, 2016

  • IEEE Spectrum:

    Reports Coming in of Big IBM Layoffs Underway in the U.S. By Tekla S. Perry. Excerpts: Last week, IBM reported to investors that its workforce at the end of 2015 was almost as big as its workforce at the end of 2014 (within less than 1 percent), in spite of a year in which 70,000 employees left the company, to be replaced with new hires and acquisitions.

    By the end of this week, the picture may look quite different. Today reports are coming in that big layoffs across the United States are underway, likely one-third of the U.S. workforce, according to one soon-to-be-laid-off IBMer. (At the end of 2015, IBM had approximately 378,000 employees worldwide; it no longer breaks out numbers for individual countries.) Such reports used to be gathered by the Endicott Alliance, a union organizing effort that closed its doors last year. Now they are being collected by an informal Facebook group, “WatchingIBM,” that was started by former members of that organization.

    Likely adding to the pain of many of these workers is a recent change in IBM’s severance policy, reducing a potential maximum of six months of benefits to one month’s worth. The new policy only applies to those who lose their jobs due to the elimination of a position or due to unsatisfactory performance, and it should kick in during mass layoffs. However, employees in the past have complained, directly to me and to others, that the company often manipulates performance reviews to eliminate employees. There are some signals in the stories below that this is happening in this case.

    Here’s what some of those affected today reported to the WatchingIBM Facebook group:

    • "I am a GTS Strategic Outsourcing casualty of the mass firing today. My manager told me it was big and widespread, and I'd be hearing from a lot of people that will also be notified today.”
    • "After 41 plus years I got the call today. How many more ways can they take from hard working IBMers? I was ready to go last year when they had the severance package. Why didn't they do it then? We have been living and working with this ‘writing on the wall’ for years. What stings the most is the severance cut.”
    • “Latest areas getting cut: AA IBM CMS Cloud Division; AMS Strategic Technical Services; Global Services Parts Operations; GTS Strategic Outsourcing. Workers are also reporting work is being moved offshore to Hungary and Brazil.”
    • "I am cut while my replacement H1B visa worker stays."
    • “The 6 hardware planners in Poughkeepsie were all laid off as of as of 5/31 with one-month severance.”
    • “The big s$#* job is that I'm only getting 1 month severance instead of the 25 weeks I am entitled when I was hired.”
    • “Our Service Availability Management team got the axe today. Very sad day after 28 years with the company”

    I also received a phone call from a soon-to-be former IBM employee at a New Jersey IBM facility who had a similar story to tell. I had never spoken to him before but he was reaching out because he believed the media needs to get the word out about what is happening. Here’s what he had to say:

    “It is bad, really bad. It’s a mass layoff today. It is a sad day for IBM. People are being told not to talk about it. I was told by a manager in getting the news [of my job being eliminated], who was reading off of a script, that one third of the U.S. workforce is being ‘rebalanced,’ which is what they call it.

    Concerning performance reviews, I’ve gotten 2+’s [IBM employees are rated on a scale of 1 to 3, 1 being the highest] for years, this year I got a 3. The manager told me he’d been told that he needed to RA a certain number of people. But I’m hearing that even people with 2s were RA’d [another IBM term for layoff, it stands for resource action] today.

    They are giving us 90 days paid working notice, one-month severance, and $2500 in money for retraining.

    IBM is trying to candy coat this thing, they will frame it as a skill set change. But we think it’s more about jobs going to India and other places.”

    Selected reader comments follow:

    • AnOutsideObserver1: Of course they will do it right after the GDP payouts (a/k/a performance bonus) are announced to employees. My measly $1,000 for a 2+ performer is chump change to Ginny and the execs. They probably carry that kind of money in their wallet in the event they have to buy a cup of coffee. I'm more insulted that anything by the offer. Strategic planning for this resource action — they all knew it was going to happen and they changed the severance package because they didn't want to pay! Sickening...embarrassed to be an IBM employee.
    • Zero > AnOutsideObserver1: Agree 100%; I left IBM after being rated a "1" and told that i got the highest raise in all of the group; an insulting 3,000-4,000 dollars. Was fairly underpaid at the time; was off by about 40% in job market. Meanwhile you read the non-performers that are sinking the company in the ground are getting record breaking raises.

      This was after a stellar year in which the team and I truly hit it out of the park with working 90+ hour weeks to make the transition to IBM successful. We had a huge list of "kudos" and achievements (they bought us out the year before).

      After i put in my notice; all of sudden they had the 40% raise for me. Funny how that works. Thanked them for all the good times and exited stage left.

      Overall picture of IBM rewarding non-performers and getting rid of all the natural talent will truly be the demise. All the top engineers and techs left during transition or the following year. Mostly because IBM only recognizes mediocrity and either attacks, minimizes or ignores anyone great.

      Overall I walked away feeling IBM doesn't really value techs or engineers; they put their main focus on managers and self protecting their giant trees of hierarchy.

    • JohnS: Yes, I was given my notice today. I'm a remote worker but my team is in Littleton, Mass. My manager is being let go too.
    • observer: 5 days ago I was RA'd last year. Luckily I got the 6 months severance. I feel for those let go today.

      To this day the man I admire most in life was my manager at IBM Research. After a similar year when no one apparently "made their numbers" so GDPs were chump change, Sammy Palmisano still got a $3m bonus, similar to Ginny getting $3m+ for continuing to bring the company into bankruptcy. This man was so offended at the flagrant greed of the C level that he wrote Sammy P an email, ripping him a new one, and quit.

      This man had the talents and resources to be able to do that. Not many others can follow their consciences and separate from such a corrupt organization since their families depend on the salary.

      But every dog as its day, and these greed driven people will have to either account for their actions to whatever deity they believe in, or just old fashioned karma will get them. Their is life after IBM. Indeed today anything outside of IBM is more life affirming than that company.

    • PunkKitty: As a former IBM'er, I'm not shocked. IBM has become one of the worst companies to work for.
    • MunsonLung1: The 25,000 open positions are not in the USA, they are either in China or India.
    • Insider: Story isn't different in India either. People out of project for 2 weeks are offered performance enhancement plan (PEP) and if they do not clock 45 hours a week for next 13 weeks, they are out. If they refuse to accept the PEP, they are out anyway.
    • zaphed: I was told by my manager on 3/2/2016 that there was an RA underway and I was not affected. I wish I were because I could get unemployment and relax for 6 months. I will eventually find out who got laid off as their names go dark in my communication screen which has 100+ names of people I work/worked with. One thing I say, if you own IBM stock like Buffet, get the hell out now. The stock will go to zilch in 3-5 years if not sooner. The writing is on the wall, the Indians, Chinese and Brazilians will not make the cut.
    • not telling my name: I got it, they whacked my whole team...one month pay...that's it. 37 years...top performer until this year...don't know what I will do...live in the car I guess. The pension after taxes isn't enough to pay property/school taxes and medical insurance .
    • JHUnlimited: I worked at IBM for 16 years IT Specialist/Architect/Software Engineer. I left last June. I always hated the PBC system and the dreadful management I had at the end of my career there. The work was interesting and stimulating but the corporate culture sucked. I often enjoyed the customer environments far more than IBM.
    • Watchd0g: Indeed this is a scary time at IBM. Many got effected including myself. After 15 years working in the Tech Support Organization, I got RA-ed. Last year I was pushed to join the IBM Netezza Support team as this business segment was growing. It has been less than a year and I got cut with only 1 month of severance pay. After those years you would think IBM be fair and treat their formal employees fairly.

      BTW the GDP was not much either. My $500 (before tax) for 2+ was a joke. Pocket change for a big company such as IBM. Indeed it's a sickening feeling.

    • Plainspeak: I am sorry for all those losses. I think IBM is taking a large risk by cutting severance. Severance is typically used to buy goodwill, so former employees will not sue for wrongful termination. I'd forgo the one month, and sue.
    • AlmostNative: Can this company possibly have a future? I was laid off from IBM in 2009 after 23 years. And it would be impossible for me to be more bitter. Multiply my experience by hundreds of thousands if not millions (i.e. the total number of people who have been laid off by IBM), I wonder if there is a single person in the world who is more than 2 or 3 degrees separated from somebody who has been screwed by IBM. My kids watched what IBM put my family through, they were affected as well. Should they ever be in a position in their careers to buy something from IBM, do you think they would? Hell no. It affected them, too. I'd bet that almost every person on the planet has been directly or indirectly screwed by IBM at this point.
    • Pmarsh111: Australia is being slashed and burned too. In our local office, everyone is being axed, regardless of performance or profitability to the company.
    • Selected reader comments from the Watching IBM Facebook page follow:

      • Thanks for sharing this, Dave - I find it interesting that some Cloud folks are being let go.
        • Just another company IBM acquired...and then destroyed. Softlayer is dead in the water. I know several people from Cloud who were let go.
      • Like many it appears, I am close to retirement and got my package this week. My thought given only 30 days whats the real loss for not looking into or retaining the option of legal action, 6 months sure thats a lot to risk, 30 days and a few "extras" not worth at least exploring legal action. Setting up a meeting with a lawyer early next week. Have had many say "at will", "can't win", etc. But if this were all that slam dunk why would IBM even offer this incentive with its heavy verbiage releasing them from most lawsuits if you sign? It is not to help the employees!
      • Eventually the entire IBM workforce will be overseas and contractors. IBM used to take care of their employees. Those days are long gone.
      • When severance pay was 6 months, that was a big deal. But now that severance pay is only 1 month, would some victims choose to withhold information in retaliation to the company? There would be little risk - only a month's pay.

        Is IBM counter-productive in no longer incenting RA victims to cooperate? Which costs more, the extra 5 month's pay, or the knowledge walking out the door before anybody discovers they need it?

      • Once again, IBM upper levels management, whose job it is to set direction, has apparently failed, and is balancing their failures on the backs of the employees. Oh, and *they* get a bonus. Pigs.
      • Oh, there's a shock, not. Condolences to those who lost their job.

        But as always, the quoted anecdotes in articles like this surprise me, especially ones like "Why didn't they do this last year when the severance was more generous?" (because it saves them money, duh) or "How much more of this crap can the hard-working IBMers take? (clearly the answer is, "A lot more, since you took no steps to unionize and prevent this, nor leave for a better employer.")

        Deja vu all over again, alas.

  • TechWeek Europe:

    IBM ‘To Cut’ UK Research Jobs. By Matthew Broersma. Excerpts: IBM has confirmed it has begun a staff consultation process ahead of employment changes in its British research and development operations. IBM has confirmed it is planning staff changes at its research and development operations across the UK, following a report that it is planning significant job cuts.

    The company is planning to cut about 123 of 900 staff at development laboratories in the UK, according to a report by The Register. ...

    The job cuts will involve no voluntary redundancies, and staff leaving the company will be given only the minimum in compensation, according to the report, which cited unnamed sources within the company.

    IBM has developed technology in the UK since the 1950s in locations including Hursley House, the 18th-century mansion in which it established IBM Hursley in 1958, as well as in other centres around the country.

    Selected reader comments from the "Watching IBM" Facebook page follow:

    • They will continue to report losses. It is not enough to get contracts. You have to staff to get the job done.
    • It's easier to let people go than it is to cut the stifling bureaucracy.
    • Good people are the services differentiator. Looks like IBM's potential customers know that and are not willing to pay a premium for non-premium staff.
    • Payoff limited to statutory redundancy is pretty shocking. I very much doubt that any of IBM peers (!) would resort to that.
  • The Register:

    IBM is to cut more than 1 in 8 from its UK Labs, say sources. See that chopping block? Head down there, please. By Paul Kunert. Excerpts: The “Resource Actions” are expected to see 123 out of 900 divisional employees get made redundant following the start of a 45-day redundancy notice period. An Employee Consultation Committee has been established.

    “[There are] no voluntary redundancies and no package beyond the statutory minimum,” said one IBMer. “Last year they were voluntary first, and only involuntary if [the company] didn’t make the number.”

    The Labs are dotted across the UK – including Farnborough, Staines, London, Manchester and of course Hursley Park in Winchester, which includes Labs for the cloud, retail, public sector and energy & utilities sectors. ...

    Changes at Labs are not isolated - Big Blue is also making significant changes in Global Technology Services, putting 1,352 staff at risk of redundancy with a view to reducing headcount by 185 jobs.

    Selected reader comments follow:

    • Not just labs & GTS. In the UK, IBM Analytics is also facing the axe - with 45 out of 500-odd jobs to go. And Analytics is supposed to be one of the things IBM is pinning its future on. What is really a kick in the teeth (and confirmation that IBM is essentially Evil-Corp, lest we occasionally forget) is the fact that this is - like elsewhere in the company - involuntary and statutory minimum only. Thanks guys for your 20+ years service - have £14K - but only after completing your 12 week notice period (and yes we are expecting you to work it).

      IBM had showed some signs of sanity this past year - for example finally getting rid of the PBC system in favour of something that they assure us isn't forced-distribution. This is a very regressive step, and shows that the beatings will continue until morale improves mindset is still strong in the company.

      Personally, my skills and performance history mean I'll be unlikely to be selected for this involuntary round but that doesn't stop me being pretty sickened by how and why this is being done.

    • "Globally IBM continues to invest in skills needed for the future” I assume this means screw the UK and offshore the lot. They want to take UK contracts but they'll be serviced abroad, the UK guys are no longer required.
  • The Register:

    IBM slices heavy axe through staff in the US. After rumors of upcoming layoffs, Big Blue kicks off round of 'mass' cuts. By Chris Williams. Excerpts: Big Blue was due to lay off some staff at its Global Technology Services (GTS) wing in America back in January. That headcount chop was postponed, with the cuts being pushed back to this week and with more than GTS workers affected.

    Many of those losing their jobs are being offered a maximum of one month of severance pay – much less than the amount offered in previous rounds of cuts. This squeeze on payouts was introduced in January. They'll also get 90 days to clear their desks and find new work.

    "IBM is aggressively transforming its business to lead in a new era of cognitive and cloud computing," a Big Blue spokesman told The Register this afternoon.

    "This includes remixing skills to meet client requirements. To this end, IBM hired more than 70,000 professionals in 2015, many in these key skills areas, and currently has more than 25,000 open positions." ...

    "Workers are also reporting their work is being moved offshore to Hungary and Brazil," he added. Some staffers have complained that they've been training their replacements in India for a while now and thus knew the writing was on the wall. Some are upset that they have lost their jobs while their H-1B visa-holding colleagues are allowed to stay. ...

    This time last year, IBM CEO Ginni Rometty said she was going to focus her company on "strategic imperatives," including cloud, data analytics, mobility, social networking, and security.

    Selected reader comments follow:

    • Effing H1B. Nothing against foreign talent, but when talented people are axed and visa holders get to keep their jobs, only for less pay, I get really pissy. Just wish there was something that could be done about it. However, the laws are made by elected officials. Officials are elected by way of back room pay offs by the companies who hire the H1B folks in the first place. So not much hope.
    • Just a footnote about H-1B workers: it may be that a reason that contributes to why an individual with an H-1B doesn't get the chop is that, by definition, they have a limited shelf life: when the visa expires, they're gone. So bean counters may have included H-1B workers in the calculations, but left them off the mass firing because they'll be gone in a few anyway, and doing it this way avoids paying severance / having them on staff for 90 days.
    • Re: Effing H1B: There's also the bit about "long-term employees" getting the axe. A lot of companies dump employees beyond a certain number of years because the pay and benefits cost the company profit. In the very short term it works. The loss of experienced people who know the systems, etc. will always come back to bite the company later. And yeah.. the H1B is just a means of boosting short term profits. No loyalty, no reason to go the extra mile for the company. A pox on this.
    • Watson's advice: Ginny: What should I do Watson? Watson: The same thing I told you yesterday. Ginny: I'm not leaving. Watson: :( Watson: Same time tomorrow?
  • WRAL TechWire:

    Workers: IBM layoffs hitting RTP, other US locations. By Rick Smith. Excerpts: IBM, which recently sharply reduced severance pay packages for laid-off employees, is issuing layoff notices today to some workers in Research Triangle Park and at other U.S. locations, workers are telling the "Watching IBM" website. One described the cuts as a "mass firing."

    The job cuts are coming after IBM (NYSE: IBM) recently cut severance pay to one month rather than up to six months pay based on years of service.

    Contacted by WRAL TechWire, an IBM spokesperson declined comment on the layoffs.

    The job cuts reportedly hit IBM's "cloud" unit in the Park. A new data center in RTP is part of Big Blue's transformation under Chair and CEO Ginni Rometty to greater emphasis on Watson supercomputing services and data related services. ...

    "You are correct," one female worker wrote in response to a "Watching IBM note that a "resource action" - IBM's term for job cuts - was underway. "I get my packet in the morning. The big [deleted] job is that I'm only getting 1 month severance instead of the 25 weeks I am entitled when I was hired. I'm thrilled I will be gone in 90 days and 'stick them' for my vacation pay."

  • WRAL Techwire:

    IBM confirms layoffs in what it terms 'workforce rebalancing'. By Rich Smith. Excerpts: Workers at IBM began telling the media through a Facebook site that Big Blue had started another round of layoffs on Wednesday. Later that evening, the company confirmed that layoffs had begun in what it calls "workforce rebalancing." However, IBM also denied a report that it was cutting as much as one third of its workers in the U.S. ...

    There also are plenty of job openings. As IBM goes through an extensive reboot under a new strategic plan shaped by Chair and CEO Ginni Rometty, the company says it is looking to fill 25,000 jobs in areas of cloud computing, analytics, Internet of Things and other initiatives. Under Rometty, IBM has sold off traditional operations, such as x86 servers (to Lenovo) and semiconductors while making numerous acquisitions and redirecting efforts toward initiatives such as analytics based on Watson supercomputer technology.

    “IBM is aggressively transforming its business to lead in a new era of cognitive and cloud computing,” IBM said in a statement. “This includes remixing skills to meet client requirements.” ...

    Adding credibility to those numbers, a Wall Street analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. estimates IBM has cut between 90,000 and 100,000 U.S. workers since 2006. IBM no longer discloses how many employees it has at locations, such as at its campus in RTP, or by nation.

    Alliance@IBM estimated U.S. IBM jobs shrank to around 85,000 from nearly 134,000 in 2005.

    Selected reader comments from the Watching IBM Facebook page follow:

    • Should be a law that companies cannot hire H1B workers if they have employees in layoff status.
      • H1B workers are not the problem. My dear friend is an H1B PhD, and he makes much more than I do. IBM uses the H1B program as it should be used. We are incredibly lucky to have him working with us, and the expense to get him to this point just shows how incredibly valuable his skills are. I wont pretend there are not problems, because some of my best friends were impacted today. Still, I cannot put the blame on my peers, only on the short sightedness of managers outside of my area.
      • I am sure many H1B workers are nice people. That is not the issue nor is it the point of discussion. The point here is whether IBM is misusing the H1B program or not and whether IBM has lost its moral compass. Massive layoffs in all areas including Cloud Managed Services provides evidence that many of the thousands of domestic employees have the skills for the "strategic imperatives" You may think IBM is using the H1B program appropriately, but virtually nobody outside of IBM management believes that. You either choose to ignore what is obvious or you can not understand what you see happening or you are in fact in management or some combination of the above.
      • It's my understanding that the H1B program was designed to allow companies to use foreign workers for positions where no American was available to do the job. Considering that H1B folks are replacing Americans who were obviously available to do the job (since they were doing the job!), the H1B program is clearly not used as intended. As a former IBMer in an area where we used a lot of H1B folks, we budgeted their salaries at about 2/3rds of what the American folks made. While there are exceptions, they are just that: exceptions. IBM and many others are using the H1B program to get cheaper labor.
      • They replaced me (exact same job) with an H1B worker. Happened to me at two different companies. Exchange a female American with a male H1B worker.
      • I was "let go" a year ago because my job was "no longer available", Once month before 2 H1B employees were landed, nice guys that I worked with offshore. A month after, one was working full time doing what I did in production support and the other part time. In speaking to others they don't mind the terrible pay because they usually bring the wife over and any child they have is a U.S. citizen.
    • This story has been updated. IBM issued a "no comment" to the reporters inquiry about todays job cuts. That is why this FaceBook page is so important. Break the secrecy!
    • Very very glad I left.
  • Boulder Daily Camera:

    Workers report layoffs at IBM in Boulder, nationally. Employees allege age discrimination in workforce reduction. By Shay Castle. Excerpts: "Job cuts did happen at Boulder," Conrad said via email to the Daily Camera. "It impacted different business units, from software group, global business services to work groups like the managed storage team to hardware planners."

    An employee of Boulder's IBM spoke to the Daily Camera on condition of anonymity, confirming that she and others were affected by the layoffs that began Wednesday. The worker will receive one month's severance after more than three decades with the company.

    "That place is emptied out because of all the work being sent off shore," she said. "There's not many U.S. workers left. I'm kind of like the token U.S. employee in my department." ...

    The deposed worker also believes age played a factor in her dismissal. "I'm the oldest person in my group — everybody is a younger, foreign worker," she said. "There's a lot of discrimination that goes on at IBM." ...

    Clint Roswell, a spokesperson for IBM, gave the following statement when reached by phone Friday: "IBM is aggressively transforming its business to lead in a new era of cognitive and cloud computing. This includes remixing skills to meet client requirements. To this end, IBM hired more than 70,000 professionals in 2015, many in these key skilled areas, and currently has more than 25,000 open positions." ...

    "The Boulder population has shrunk like every other IBM site in the U.S.," Conrad said. The anonymous employee said half of the 2,800 figure "would be a very generous number."

    "This plant is emptied out — it's only contractors left," she said. "It's really a sad situation."

    Selected reader comments follow:

    • Mtneer: IBM has been quietly shutting down the Boulder site for the past 5 years or more. They structure the layoffs so they don't hit the WARN level but every 3 or 4 months there's another blood letting as the jobs go to India, Brazil, etc. Most of the offices are empty. Much of the "staff" is security, maintenance, etc. The main reason the site even exists in Tom Watson Jr's kids wanted to go to CU so they could ski. In a few more years, either Google will buy it or developers will have a field day.
    • AlmostNative > Mtneer: Well, I don't know about the Tom Watson story, I think that's probably mostly BS. But I'm at that facility every day and it's totally true that most of the buildings are empty -- of humans at least, Many have been converted over to server farms. The people you do see walking the halls are mostly contractors. (They have a different color badge).
    • boldened: In the 50's through the 80's IBM was considered to be THE place to work. Since the 90's it has been avoided like the plague by anyone in tech.

      I know a few people left working out there (they are assigned to Boulder anyway, most work from home), who have been there for decades. They are trapped there by the blatant age discrimination in tech, but they also know that their age puts a big target on their backs inside of IBM. Huge stress. If you are a teacher or a nurse or a lawyer or a civil engineer, your experience means something, but all it means inside of most tech companies is that they could fire you and hire an H1B for half your salary, you know, because of that "shortage" of "qualified" applicants, wink, wink.

      I love the statement by the IBM spokesperson that they hired 70,000 people last year. 90% were outside the US, and 90% of the US hires were H1B visa holders.

  • Watching IBM FaceBook Page. Selected posts follow:
    • Watching IBM: March 1 at 3:28pm, A mass job cut has started on Wed. March 2nd. For those that want to report a job cut anonymously send it to watchingibm@gmail.com I need division name or business unit, location and if work is moved offshore. Good luck to all.
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "At the beginning of 2015 our department had 25 people in it. At the beginning of 2016 our depart has 13 in it. June 1, 2016 the department will be 100% in India and 0 in US. We are located in 3 different states, slimmed down every 6 months or so since I got outsourced to IBM. Some even RA'ed last round offered to come back because they skimmed it too short, just to turn around and let everyone go because they are sending all jobs on this client account to India. The client account is CenturyLink. The support in India since the last layoff and most were already moved over there has definitely started to become slow response time even during critical times. These companies that off shore the work doesn't mean better work on the accounts or in general. You pay what you get for, low pay out of country, lack of knowledge employees. I am more pissed off that everyone got screwed on the 1 month severance that came out of no where and that we are replaced by India."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "After 41 plus years I got the call today. How many more ways can they take from hard working IBMers? I was ready to go last year when they had the severance package. Why didn't they do it then? We have been living and working with this "writing on the wall" for years. What stings the most is the severance cut. But as everyone who is now an ex IBMer I have only heard positive move in their lives. Praying for the same. Good luck to all who are caught in this today. "
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "I am a GTS Strategic Outsourcing casualty of the mass firing today. My manager told me it was big and widespread, and I'd be hearing from a lot of people that will also be notified today. My official end date is May 31, 2016 (90 days) and the severance package is 1 month. I was encouraged to look for jobs inside IBM and was told that they are "plentiful" and "open". Even if I were to believe that, I'm not sure why I would stay, looking over my shoulder every month or so waiting for the IBM axe wielders to come for me again. I'm looking forward to moving on and leaving this nightmare behind me. I wish everyone good luck, whether you are staying or going. I'm not sure which group is going to need it more."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "My team lost at least 3 members last week. Also, we were told that wherever possible, the work was going to India. We do/did requirements and architecture for GSMRT. My co-workers are mentoring (1 on 1) their replacements!"

        Our entire remaining US team, including our manager, are RA'd and our six jobs are being moved to Costa Rica. Lucky me, as team lead, I am now tasked with hiring and training the new team members.

        One month severance pay versus the six months that I would have received in any prior RA. This is the "reward" IBM gives those of us who have had the best performance reviews and avoided prior cuts and took on all the extra work as a result of prior massive RAs."

      • Sent to Watching IBM: Job cut. GTS division as a service delivery manager.
      • Sent to Watching IBM: RA'ed today in GTS Work@Home. Top performer with lots of work to do in deployment, automation, virtualization, but it doesn't matter.
      • "Working for IBM CEE. I am not fired but the so called Saturn project is launched. Many people across CEE getting fired, and many more to go. There is open threat to Sales that any who does not meet Q2 target can expect package.

        Situation has never been worse. We tried to organise a union but mgmt did everything possible to stop it. From open statements that if we see our future in IBM this is not the path to go, till giving promotions with condition not to work on Union for the main people involved.

        Business controls are very busy trying to discredit whoever they can so it is more easily to fire them.

        Women after coming from maternity leave getting message:" Be happy that you have any job, do not ask which job is it. We are well protected in our contracts..." - this is real experience! At the same time IBM is marketing itself as a great place for woman to work!

        People getting packages, Ginny gets $1.5m bigger bonus.

        Main message for employees is that we are all replaceable.

        Getting worse and worse.

      • Latest areas getting cut: AA IBM CMS Cloud Division; AMS Strategic Technical Services; Global Services Parts Operations; GTS Strategic Outsourcing. Workers are also reporting work is being moved offshore to Hungary and Brazil.
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "I am cut while my replacement h1b visa worker stays."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "FYI RA for me. EADS 90 days notice 1 month severance. Remote employee. At least 6 across 2 teams gone. Ameriprise account work being offshored."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "Cuts in Poughkeepsie. Laid off as off as of 5/31 with one month severance. I believe all HWP in the strategic sites are being laid off. Inconceivable on someone taking over for us in 3 months but never under estimate this place. My manager was also let go."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "Got my "package" this week. 90 day "transition" 30 days "severance" Intel / Steady state support and Projects and whatever else they threw at me. Band 7 - Over 10 years in, 2 rating last year. 51 years old. I'm done with this nightmare of a company. Good luck to those that remain."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "I was laid off from IBM last year. Just so you all know, I was 2 years away from retirement. I was encouraged to apply for open jobs, and I was actually hired for 2 positions. However, finance didn't approve the hiring since I had been laid off. Don't bother looking within IBM. With the new 30 day severance, one should consider legal options. I had 6 months severance, so not signing the severance contract was not an option. Good luck to you all."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: "14 year employee with IBM in the U.S., 4 years with Development with what is now Cloud Managed Services (CMS) Cloud. I was sent an email earlier today by my manager, followed by a phone call. She said effective today I was RA’d due to continued poor performance of the entire Cloud organization, specifically the CMS unit. I was to be allowed 90 days as a remediation period, followed by a 30 day severance. She also said vacation and personal holidays would be added, but I’m not confident on any of this. In fact I’d be surprised if it works out anything close to that. Sex: F Age: 63. We’ll see how it really pans out.

        Obviously this was passed to manager from HR, and **age** has everything to do with it. HR computes the RAs from criteria such as age, salary, PBC, and feedback from customer or team members. This in turn is given to people management, who have certain room to contribute to the process as they see fit such as identifying specific names."

      • Sent to Watching IBM: "I was hit yesterday in the RA. Was told at 4:00 pm and at 4:05 pm it was over. 90 days and one month severance, like others. I was in Compliance and Regulatory Group, working on data privacy matters. Was told my job was going overseas. Not sure how that makes sense. I was an IBMer through an acquisition, and although collectively have 13 years of work with the acquired company and IBM, I was told I was only an IBMer for 2 years. How does that work? I think they got that wrong. Thanks for having this FB page. This helps."
      • Sent to Watching IBM: It seems that massive layoffs are taking place across IBM today. I am now in the Cloud division (as the result of a reorg last month), based in the U.S. We have a cross-functional team of approximately 25 people responsible for one of the earliest (and most successful) Cloud offerings in our previous division's portfolio. Today found out that we are losing at least 4 people with the current RA.

        The team has been spread increasingly thin over the last year to the point where we really can't keep the service up and running smoothly and keep customers happy with the continuous improvements they expect. Instead, we are mandated to invest our limited resources in Marketing enhancements (that customers don't care about) that will enable us to sell more of the product. Customers are becoming increasingly unhappy. The wheels are falling off the wagon.

      • Sent to Watching IBM: Cloud Managed Services, was hit significantly by resource actions. Possibly 20-30% RAed.
      • 2 RA'd at GTS, TSS, FTO. One offshored, the other probably absorbed by those left.
      • GTS Sales Position: Received the standard 90 day package/1 month severance. 5 years with IBM, 100% Club 3 of those years never a bad review - consistently rated either a “1” or “2+”. Manager said it was “Skills & Performance based” Good luck to all
      • A Cloud Tech Sales team in Midwest region was affected and gave the number of 30 in the midwest region.
      • From Silicon Valley Lab:At least 10. Testers and Change Team programmers. Older and senior. Several critical / vital people. 05/31 1 month severance.
      • Entire group of 77 hardware planners fired.
      • IBM Analytics Sales Eminence Group 'RA' for about 1/3 of the team.
      • All remote EP & TM1 support staff from Ottawa to go regardless of ratings.
      • Job cuts in Software Group ICS-Analytics. IBMers go but contractors stay.
      • More cuts in GTS at RTP being reported. Reduced severance. 90 days.
      • Job cuts in TSS support for US and offshore hardware and software support centers.
      • GTS with Configuration Management
      • Job cuts in Cloud unit at RTP.
      • "Job cuts in Dublin Ohio. All of GRS development cut."
      • Several of us in GBS that were on the Century Link account were notified yesterday. We were acquired by IBM Apr 1 of last year with a guarantee of 15 months employment. So, our termination date is July 1. When we became IBM our Century Link years of service were transfered to IBM for purposes of vacation, pension and severance.
      • Sent to Watching IBM: I got my notification yesterday. Ninety days to find something else. One month severance. I was in IBM Cloud in the IBM Design Studio where nearly 1000 jobs were added in the last two years. Now we see the truth, the reality, of that failing effort. Let me confirm that although I had high hopes when I joined last year that place is one poorly-managed, directionless pit of total chaos.
      • Yep...20 year employee here, another 20 year on my team, and a 25 year on my team.. all got axed but others on the team are safe. I believe that maybe I'm being told to look elsewhere as I don't want to live my life looking over my shoulder waiting for it again. I feel there are bigger and brighter things for us with IBM on our resume regardless. Good luck to everyone and may you find something better!
      • Many have touched on how unfair the new 1 month Sev plan is, but just as evil is the increase to 90 days instead of 30 days notice. Previously you stayed 30 days to get the severance up to 26 weeks. Now you must stay the full 90 to get the 1 month severance pay. In reality, after being laid off, how many will want to stay the full 90? Most will either leave from anger/disgust or find new jobs. This is a subtle and brilliant move by IBM to save them tons of $... and truly devious and evil.
      • I was cut today...and many others I know... Cloud Unit... My manager was emotional as he read from the script... Do not care about being anonymous as they were with the axe they handed down to us!
      • Our Service Availability Management team got the axe today. Very sad day after 28 years with the company.
      • I too am posting anonymously. Heard notifications are going out tomorrow morning. Transformation and Operations. Aggressive. US and Global Delivery Centers effected. US employees are given 90 days notice and 1 month severance. Won't that be fun for everyone?
      • RA'd today last day is 5/31 in GTS, I'm a 20 year employee transitioned years ago from a client site. Have been training my replacements in India for more than a month now so I was fully aware this was coming - as it was openly discussed that they are my replacements. Mgr said the severance pay change is because IBM feels that 4 weeks of severance pay is sufficient since it's a 90 day RA notice - in other words he said that now we have more time to find new jobs and so the extra severance should not be needed.
      • To echo what somebody else said in another post... I left voluntarily a while ago, but I can attest to the fact that 20+ years of IBM on the resume are, unfortunately, a liability much more than an asset. Be prepared to confront scathing (and unfair) comments during your interviews: "You realize we do real work here, not meetings, right?" Or: "Here you'll have to be self-sufficient - you can't rely on 'the IBM team' to join you at customer meetings." Make sure you point out concrete achievements for which you were personally responsible - use numbers, figures, objective facts as much as you can. Be prepared to become tolerant of rejection, and never lose faith in yourself.
      • Have you been impacted by this recent layoff? Mindteck is seeking older seasoned business professionals to sell IT staffing solutions. Check out www.mindteck.com/transitioncare if you are looking for a new position. Best of luck to you!
      • OK, folks who have gotten the package - read it carefully. You DO NOT have to sign it within 21 days, as my manager read to me from the script. This is the exact quote in the document: "You can take up to twenty-one (21) days from the date you received this Agreement (even if your employment will end sooner) or until your last date of employment, whichever is longer, to consider this Agreement and the accompanying separation program information." So don't feel pressured to sign it right away, and seek legal advice before you do.
      • I am sorry folks. I am not a IBMer, nothing to do with them. A Google search got me here. I am so sad to read about the stories of my fellow citizens. What happened to this bluechip ? they definitely lost their path. Firing so many people before their retirement raises a lot of doubts. It saddened me and wanted to show support to everyone who is effected.
    • Watching IBM March 3 at 9:38am: As you all know a massive job cut took place in IBM USA. Hundreds of comments and emails have been received. All in all it was a brutal day for IBM workers. What is unclear is how many got cut. If any one has specific information on the number cut please contact me at watchingibm@gmail.com. Your name will be confidential. Lee Conrad, Admin, Watching IBM.
      • Yes, thank you Lee. Have not heard of any layoffs here in Boulder, other than a contract call center that was based on site. I would have thought that some cloud services would be based here but have not heard.
        • There were layoffs in the Materials and Research (M&R) group which is based in Boulder. Two departments impacted, 10 people between them (out of 28 total).
        • Software Group was hit in Boulder & Coppell TX, also around 10 folks.
        • If you would like to speak with the Boulder Daily Camera for a story, please contact me at 303.473.1626 or castles@dailycamera.com. Any information would be very helpful. Thank you!
      • Hi, Lee, where are these cuts taking place? Is GTS in a particular city or state, or is it nationwide?
        • Nationwide.
        • OK, great, I am going to reach out our New York bureau of our chain, American Business Journals, who will be writing a story on this. Anyone who has been laid off who will go on the record to talk about it, please contact our reporter, Michael del Castillo at mdelcastillo@bizjournals.com.
        • It's not only GTS. Analytics also although I hear it's more widespread in GTS.
        • IBM CMS Cloud ...really not Cloud! as well!
        • Software group as well.
      • Sad to hear of the layoffs, but personally I would love to see IBM fail. Their sales and business practices for years have been shady. Not only do they throw their employees under the bus, but they throw their customers under it too by selling them crap they don't need and by making systems so complex you need to hire IBM consultants to come in and help. IBM used to be a great hardware company but now they build and sell crap software.
        • James, I feel exactly as you do, but the only thing is I try to temper that "would love to see IBM fail" desire with the realization that all of my current, and former IBM friends will be the big losers if and when it does fail. That also includes IBMers who are also stock holders, retirees who are are dependent on the pension checks (not every retiree is so fortunate as to still GET a pension check), and retirees who are on some form or other of IBM sponsored medical insurance. I don't want to see THOSE people hurt, anymore than they already have been.

          Other than that however, I'd like nothing more than to watch the whole damn place meltdown.

        • I certainly would not want to see those who worked hard fail as their are a lot of good people at IBM. Unfortunately it has become such a big company that it has become this ruthless capitalistic machine. The hard working people at the bottom are slaves to those at the top.
        • Thats just crazy. Companies are investors and employees. Why would anyone want to cause that much harm to others. The reach of pain in a failing IBM would be devastating even for those that have never touched the company. This is the result of the Gerstner strategy. Each person is responsible for their own destiny. No loyalty from either party. It is pure and simple a business relationship between employee and employer. I have what you want, pay for it or I take it to a competitor.
        • Well if your statement is true, then IBM wouldn't be throwing their employees under the bus at every opportunity they can. IBM puts its A class shareholders first, and everyone else second, including its employees and customers. IBM has lost its way.
      • I am hearing from my friends who are still at IBM that many of them got hit. It sounds like a significant layoff unfortunately for them. However it will be overall good for them as they move away from IBM and to a company that will treat them fairly and with respect.
        • I dunno - I'm not so sure. From what I know, it didn't hit very many people in my area and it certainly hasn't gotten ANY coverage in the press (I'm talking the mainstream press not the publications mentioned here) and no mentions on CNBC. How big could it have been? And we all know that IBM keeps it below legal minimums so that they don't have to disclose.
        • I got several phone calls from friends. and the cloud area got hit which is supposedly the big growth area.
        • Many different product areas have Cloud components now ... as well as Cloud support itself which has some duplication with GTS. If you read the financial results and analysis, while the Cloud revenue is increasing steadily (good news), there are questions as to whether it is fast enough to compensate for the declines in other areas.
      • This happened to us last year and I never thought IBM would stoop so low. What was once a great company to work for and be associated with has fallen into the depths of only taking care of the stockholders. For someone who gave more to IBM than what they received, its just another slap in the face as a former IBM employee.
        • I absolutely believe, with all my heart, that the mistreatment of the employee started when PERSONNEL was renamed HUMAN RESOURCES. That, and that alone, points to the beginning of the era when you, me, us became serial numbered costs centers. Accounts and CEO's apparently have no respect for resources, regardless of the shape and form of those resources.
      • In Boulder several managers were hit and technical people. Unfortunately some bad managers moved to the Cloud from Boulder and good managers were laid off. This time around since I am in recruiting excellent staff was eliminated which will impact the clients. Their data is not secure because the remaining managers asks for resources instead of resolution of serious problems. They cannot resolve the problems because of lack of skills.

        The lack of skills comes from off shoring They are just not capable, and that is Germany, Eastern Block, India! Clients uncover issues and they have to come to IBM to tell them they have a problem. End result they can develop all of the cognitive...analytics...big words...all they want most of what they are hiring or what is left is just not capable! They just get around and use big words.

        Client has major issues...and they say in meetings oh everything is excellent so they can cover their ...with management! They all play a good game take trips spend money. Just their web site design is costly...it all looks great but eventually who is Old Ginni going to talk to? It is not about age because most of the Blue Suit HR people are old and frazzled the bean counters are all old and Ginni is old! End result apply to as many jobs as possible anything...all have a case because in the end they do not hire.

        Crazy people...so what if you get rid of paying someone 2 weeks/year that is excellent and dedicated and you hire someone at $30000/year that will chase the customer away that brings $2 million/month of business! Dumb Dumb and this time it will show because people will sue! Lay offs this time were discriminatory!

      • Shame on any human being that will take millions in bonus for yet another year of failure while thousands of other humans lose their jobs.
    • Watching IBM March 3 at 3:25pm: The following was sent to me today. What I saw was astounding.

      "I got word that after 34 years, I am gone. One thing that concerned me was my manager saying "we tried to target people who are retirement-eligible". Looks like the package has an agreement we have to sign "Arbitration Procedure and Collective Action Waiver". I have never gotten a 3 and last year was just below a 2+ in the rankings. Obviously my selection did not have to do with my performance but rather my age. Thankfully I am mostly prepared.

      One option is to find another job of those "25,000 openings". Given this treatment, I really no longer wish to work for this company."

      Hey Ginni, can you spell Age Discrimination.

      • It's really immoral how they are/have been getting away with such blatant age discrimination. The saddest thing is not being able to do anything about it and how at this age nobody else will give you a comparable job even though you still want to work and are capable of working - a real travesty!
      • I can't believe that an IBM manager was so stupid as to admit to age discrimination. They usually have better scripts to read.
      • The person with the above post did not mention that not only do you have to sign "Arbitration Procedure and Collective Action Waiver," but it specifically states that you are signing away your rights to bringing anything to court involving the "federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967" (along with the "West Virginia Human Rights Act") . Talk about shameless and blatant!
        • In individual situations, age discrimination is very hard to prove. You cannot expect a company to retain employees ... whether they are suited to the job or not ... just because they are aging. OTOH, from what I am reading here, there seem to be a large large number of people affected on this particular RA that are either close to or over 60 or with the company 25, 30, 35, 40 years. In large numbers like that, it seems suspicious. But still hard to prove I would think.
      • I avoided the layoff, with the Transition to Retirement program. I really figured I'd be on the layoff list if I didn't do it. I had heard the rumors of a shorten severance pay, and really expected last year, which Is why I took the T2R in '14, last day of work was 12/31/2015. I was planning on retiring at 62, short by 6 months, but it seemed important to me that I controlled my own destiny. I really feel bad for anyone laid off, it would suck.
      • IBM seems to semi-officially think that axing people who are retirement eligible is somehow better than mid career or early. My guess is then it is reported as a retirement, not a layoff, plus those people tend to be at the top of the salary band for their role.
        • You're right. After I was told that I was part of the RA. My manager said "Oh you're eligible to retire." Forcibly retired, but they can count it as retirement.
        • Retirement eligible and retirement possible are two very different things.
      • Why doesn't anyone sue? There's clearly age discrimination.
        • Because in the package you sign to get your severance you agree not to sue. so when faced with no income or taking "the package" and I got 6 months of pay at the time I was resourced, you really have no choice financially unless you have another source of income and benefits that you can live off of.
        • I don't see it holding up in court. A judge would rule that IBM cant break the law just because it forced employees to sign a document.
        • There have been many suits brought against IBM for age discrimination and to date, few have gone in favor of the employee.

          None have set any viable legal precedent in altering IBM's behavior in this realm. On top of all that... there's a myriad of practicable considerations that prevent many from pursuing legal actions. Foremost finding an attorney or law firm willing to take on a multi-year battle against IBM's formidable legal team without compensation upfront.

          But the top reason is how many folks want to spend their later years and bet everything they own fighting a corporation with little prospect of gain. Most choose to move on and make the most of what's left in their lives, which is usually a wise choice.

        • IBM and other large companies have legions of lawyers just waiting for people to try to fight them... We in IT missed the boat many years ago by not organizing. IT careers in the US are going extinct.
        • That may be true they may not have lost many cases but how many may have been settled out of court with some sort of non disclosure statement. I find it hard to fathom why IBM would go to the effort to have people sign these severance agreements, which sole aim is to waive a persons right to sue, if they were that confident that it will not happen or they can not lose.
      • I was dumped last July. When my manager was explaining my package, I said I know why you cut me...I am two yrs from being able to retire (albeit without any pension, lost that in 1999). On my last day I had to sign the paper you speak of above. The mgr said you don't have to sign these papers if you don't want to. Your severance will not be sent to you! So, what can you do? Severance or complain about age discrimination!

        Being cut two yrs away from Medicare and 3 years from full social security is very hurtful. And who hires a 63 yr old? (I never got below a 2+ either)

        • I'm in a similar position...5 years with IBM after an acquisition. I'm 63 and was 2+ until my last PBC, which was 3. I'll probably retire, though I'd hoped to add to my 401k for a couple more years. I work out of Littleton, MA in the Marketing Software Support team.
        • I was 63 yrs old but had only 22 yrs, so I lost my pension in1999 I did save for retirement but I am now paying $900 a month for medical until I can get to Medicare.
    • If you are affected by recent layoffs, you might be a good fit for one of our many open roles at Cloudera- whether engineering, marketing, professional services, G&A etc. Feel free to check out our careers page http://bit.ly/ClouderaJobs and/or ping me at infosourcer [at] cloudera [dot] com. Good luck folks!
    • For me, 36 years. Same package as everyone else. The people in the same role as I that were not affected were significantly younger, but I don't believe anyone will be able to make a case that can be substantiated for any kind of age discrimination. My manager said nothing about being chosen due to being close to retirement age. Only that it was due a workforce rebalancing, the "reinvention" of IBM, and duplication of skills given the business climate.
    • Sent to Watching IBM: I was laid off from IBM last year. Just so you all know, I was 2 years away from retirement. I was encouraged to apply for open jobs, and I was actually hired for 2 positions. However, finance didn't approve the hiring since I had been laid off. Don't bother looking within IBM. With the new 30 day severance, one should consider legal options. I had 6 months severance, so not signing the severance contract was not an option. Good luck to you all.
    • They did the same thing to my husband in 2009, nothing new. They been getting away with age discrimination for MANY, MANY years now, really sad!
    • When I was resourced/retired in 2012, three people in my department got the ax and we were all good employees and over 60.
    • Same thing when I was "resourced" in 2013, after 30 years with the company, they handed out paperwork with all the bands and ages of people who were hit. Looking it over it was obvious they are targeting the older workers in complete disregard of age discrimination. I think the IBM lawyers said, it'll be more cost effective to fight a couple lawsuits than to keep the older, higher paid workers. Probably the same lawyers that decided defaulting on a Service Level Agreement was most cost effective than actually performing the work agreed to in the SLA.

      IBM wonders where all their customers went, Sam and Ginni have driven them away with inferior products and service. IBM's name is mud when you talk to state agencies around the country. Who would've guessed that twenty or more years ago? Watson Sr. and Jr. must be turning in their grave's with what Sam and Ginni have done to this once great company.

    • I was never laid off at IBM, but upon reaching 30 years a lot changed...and for my contemporaries, too. Having never been appraised less than a 2 and mostly a 1, suddenly I was a 3! My appraisal was an ambush; I was dinged for things that were never in my performance plan. Manager then told me "never to expect another raise." It was made VERY clear to me and my friends that retirement was all that was left, so I did it. Within a year, most of the people in the function where I worked had been fired. I expect that would have been my fate too if I hadn't left.
      • I cannot prove this with any empirical data, but I'm of the belief that the appraisal system became a cart-before-the-horse process. By that I mean that the salary plan for each individual was handed down from on high long before the appraisals were made; the appraisal was adjusted as necessary so that it met the pre-determined salary action.
      • Grading on the curve became ingrained years ago. Manger of Department X was told what the distribution should be and made adjustments accordingly. That might possibly be reasonable with very large populations of bell-curve workers, but it really broke down time after time. There were departments in the area where I worked where nearly everybody was a PhD and a 1 performer. How do you fit that to an arbitrary distribution?
    • I was let go in April 2014 at the age of 58 and 61 days before my 15 year IBM anniversary at which time I would have been eligible for FHA. Never had a 3, was always 2 and above. Didn't bother looking .... took the package and never looked back.
    • Why would anyone stay is my question.
      • They're like prisoners of war. Some of them are looking to get a payout after all the years of service dedicated to this slave pit before switching to another job and leaving that severance money behind. I can't believe there isn't a minimum severance payout in the US and they can pull this off. In Canada it's minimum 1 week per year of service paid by law.
      • Australia, I hear, has a new redundancy package capped at 3 months which is a reduction from past packages, 2015 was 13 weeks + 1 week for every year of service.
      • It is higher in many countries in Europe because the IBMers belong to unions and have contracts. Also the laws and benefits for workers is better. There is no legal requirement to pay severance in the US.
  • BusinessInsider:

    Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff extends an 'open hand' to laid-off IBM workers and asks for their resumes. By Julie Bort. Excerpts: After word went out last week that IBM continued its multi-year restructuring by handing pink slips to an unknown number of workers, at least one person decided to try and help: Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce.

    Salesforce has been growing revenue like crazy lately and he once called IBM (along with Oracle and SAP) the "dinosaurs" of the tech world. ...

    As we previously reported, these employees were the first to be subject to IBM's new policy that began in 2016 of reduced severance pay. Everyone let go from IBM from now on will get one month's of severance no matter how long the person worked at the company.

    IBM declined to comment to Business Insider about the number of employees affected last week (IBM doesn't disclose layoff information).

    Selected reader comments follow:

    • I had an IBM head hunter email me yesterday. I told them no thanks, I don't work for companies that reward loyalty with only 1 months severance. Worked 9 years each at my last companies and grew my portions of the businesses significantly, so good luck IBM, you are going to need it.
    • I think that is going to be an issue for IBM in recruiting.
    • Too bad because you're turning down an opportunity to work for a great company based on a rumor that isn't even true.
    • You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. Everything written here, explicitly or implied, is true. IBM is a terrible company to work for to to buy from. Its glory days are well in the past, and from every angle it's an aging dinosaur in decline.
  • Silicon Angle:

    Report: IBM looking to offshore as much as 80 percent of services biz. By Maria Deutscher. Excerpts: The latest round of layoffs at IBM Corp.’s professional services business may be shaping up to be much smaller than it could have been, but the long-term outlook for employees is still bleak. The Register this morning leaked the contents of what is described as a confidential letter in which the company’s management discloses plans for a broad-reaching offshoring initiative to a U.K.-based worker group.

    The Employee Consultation Committee, or ECC for short, was reportedly formed last month with the intention of providing a venue for staffers to have their voices heard as the local leadership team works to implement IBM’s restructuring plan. Three weeks after the group’s creation, it was revealed that as many as 1,352 people may soon to be terminated in what would mark the single biggest cut to the company’s U.K. operations since the beginning of the downsizing. Today’s leaked report indicates that the layoffs are part of a division-wide effort to achieve a “Global Resourcing ratio of 68 percent”, a choice of words suggesting other locations will also be affected.

    The precise meaning of the excerpt is clarified in another part of the document that reveals Big Blue originally intended to achieve a “ratio of 24/76 by the end of 2016 and 20/80 by the end of 2017.” With the Register claiming that 63 percent of the work that the company’s professional services business handled for U.K clients is already performed in other countries, it’s clear who is set to receive the short of the end stick if and when the goal is finally met.

    Selected reader comments from the Watching IBM Facebook page follow:

    • Don't see anyway that this could go wrong. Customers love working with people on the other side of the planet with completely different cultures. As usual, IBM management is doing a bang-up job with their cost cutting measures. Way to go Ginny!
    • Still operation roadkill...same crap for years..and Brazil was too expensive, the Argentina too expensive...who knows where it ends up next.
      • Vietnam
      • Cambodia. Philippines. N. Korea if they can figure out to actually do it AND get out again. It doesn't matter though. They're not going to stop until there are only 10 people wearing an IBM badge instead of a contractors; those 10 people meet 4 times a year in Armonk, and 9 of those 10 are probably not IBMers themselves anyway.

        I've seen far too many friends, co workers, and REALLY skilled people get slapped down by these so-called "leaders"

      • And if they can't offshore it, bring them here....sigh!
      • Costa Rica
      • Haven't you heard, Africa!
    • Unethical company such as IBM combined with a government that doesn't care and does not stop IBM and like, results in this. I am surprised we are losing 10 out of 10 GTS workers! But again, we care about dancing with star and how Barbie doll going to shape in these days...Amen!
  • Business Cloud News:

    Fresh redundancies illustrate IBM’s continuing cloud challenge. By Jamie Davies. Excerpts: Within the last twelve months, the company has inducted more than 70,000 IBMers and spent more on acquisitions than in any other 12-month period in its history. Focusing on data analytics, security, machine learning and mobile, the business is attracting a new breed of employee to its ranks. All would seem well until you consult social media.

    The Facebook group, Watching IBM, has increased its following by more than 66% over the last week. The group has taken responsibility for bringing light to the 70,000 job losses experienced by the firm in the past few months. Comments such as “At the beginning of 2015 our department had 25 people in it. At the beginning of 2016 our department has 13 in it,” highlight the decline. ...

    Back in January, Clive Longbottom, Service Director at Quocirca commented that IBM could risk being left behind, should the transition take too long. With AWS, Microsoft and Google continuing to surge forward, that risk is continuing to grow, though the consultancy skills nurtured in IBM will remain in demand “I still believe that IBM will remain a major force in the IT world, it just has to make sure it positions and messages itself effectively to its existing customers and to its prospects” ...

    Despite some negative press, and a surge in social media activity being directed towards the tech giant, it seems the workforce transition is far from complete. “We’ve been shifting resources aggressively,” CFO Martin Schroeter commented last week “and we’d like to shift them more aggressively.”

    Selected comments from the Watching IBM Facebook page follow:

    • Another IBM "I got mine" corporate shill. I hope I live to see the day this once great company goes out of business. You have some great employees how about retraining rather shift. You can't get loyalty by treating people as disposable commodities.
  • Glassdoor IBM reviews. Selected reviews follow:
    • "Needs to go back to basics"

      Former Employee — Consultant in Canberra (Australia). Pros: Work from home. As long as you deliver, no one cares.

      Cons: Milk the initial salary negotiation for as much as you can as there are no increases for many years to come. Bad morale due to inefficient management practises. GTS looks to be retired by 2018.

      Advice to Management: Clean up the top management structure and go back to basics. Corporations do not want to do business with IBM due to the inefficient internal processes and lack of understanding of what builds and maintains customer satisfaction. Your staff are people not 'resources' - treat them as such.

    • "Nothing more than billable hours"

      Current Employee — Software Developer in Kansas City, KS.

      Pros: There are lots of opportunities to work on a multitude of projects for a wide range of clients and it looks good on your resume.

      Cons: From my experience, it is only one step better than being unemployed. You get paid and benefits, but otherwise, you are continually on the hook to find another project to work on, and if you take too long because the projects are either not in your skill set or not in your area, you get booted back out to the street. The impression is that they hire people indiscriminately just to see who sticks and who doesn't.

      Finding a project to work on is no easy task either. The internal job marketplace is a horrible system that seems like someone was trying to figure out how to make a job posting board fit a Magento test install.

      Explanation on how to be an "IBMer" is full of how great it is to be an IBMer, but very light on what it actually means and how to actually do your job.

      The company culture seems to be about as lively as a bag of wet hair.

      The whole company seems to be built on layers and layers of VPs with no sense whatsoever in terms of an actual organizational structure. Emails come out every day from one executive or another with no rhyme or reason why you should be paying attention.

      Advice to Management: What management? I know who my direct manager is, and I know who the CEO is. Other than that, it's just a big jumbled mess of people with titles that make no sense. I've never worked for a more cold, lifeless, faceless company. That's saying something for a company with nearly a half million employees!

    • "Intern"

      Former Employee — Intern in Sydney (Australia). Pros: Love the people. Very intellectual, humble, willing to take time off to chat with you about anything. Cons: Very process-oriented company. Have to gain approval for every tiny thing you want to do. Makes organisational change very difficult.
    • "IBM customer support"

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: None. IBM is no different than any other company, unless you work in India. Cons: Many. They promise you a career and opportunities then tell you that you don't have the skills they need and lay you off and they will train their India replacement The old IBM culture and values are long gone. There is very little respect for the individual unless you've got rare knowledge. Advice to Management: Quit lying to new employees. Unless they have hard to find skills, their jobs will go to India
    • "People turn red when you say IBM ISC"

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee in Bratislava (Slovakia).

      Pros: Working from home model is a pro as you don't need to commute = save time and money. IBM ISC (following may not be true for IBM finance center or IBM SK) is a good place to start out but...

      Cons: ...leave as soon as you gain some confidence on how to move around corporate environment and before the toxic and unhealthy atmosphere hurts your self worth. IBM will not make it right for you. Since financial crises 2008 it has become just another company in terms of caring for employees. Every year they take away a little bit more, pay has flat lined. Benefits suck. Internal education is a joke. Can't get the tools you need to do your job.

      Advice to Management: Genuinely take care of your hard working employees and they will take care of business including customers. Respect you workers. Remove "people" managers with all the authority and NO accountability and give them professional process/project managers. They are your future.

    • "Senior IT Specialist"

      Former Employee — Viewpointe Account in Boulder, CO. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: The site was close to where I lived. Cons: They treat their customers and employees very badly. It is only about the bottom line to them. Advice to Management: Learn it is more about the bottom line; figure out that people matter.
    • "Flexible but not challenging"

      Current Employee — Advisory Software Engineer in Dublin, Co. Dublin (Ireland). I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 3 years).

      Pros: The environment is lively loads of projects, and they are now opening to use some of the latest technologies, the work from home is a very good benefit, especially if you're an expat.

      Cons: Some of the projects are stale, and the people working on some team are not the most talented. Dependency on US is sometime affecting productivity. Campus is far from city centre, so consider commuting options. Meritocracy is shadowed by some sneakier ways to build your career.

      Advice to Management: They should change the speed of software cycles, and everything else. There is a widespread misunderstanding that if you leave things settle down they will find their own right space, they need to change perspective but this is difficult if you work there since ages.

    • "Plan to leave"

      Current Employee — IOS Developer in Shanghai (China). I have been working at IBM full-time (more than a year). Pros: Good platform; maybe you can meet some nice colleagues if you are lucky. Cons: Bad salary, overtime with no compensation. Advice to Management: If you always treat 6G this way, eventually no one will stay and when that come, how do you suppose to do to feed all high band no output management people?
    • "Software Engineer at IBM"

      Former Employee — Software Engineer in Jerusalem (Israel). I worked at IBM full-time (more than 3 years). Pros: Good salary, flexible on working hours and availability to work from home. Good work-life balance. Cons: Not much mobility within the the company. A lot of time an effort to support maintenance projects for customers instead of looking forward. Advice to Management: Make bigger efforts to advance the careers of valuable employees, instead of using them at the company's convenient alone.
    • "IBM Market Manager"

      Former Employee — Senior Marketing Manager in Plainview, TX. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 3 years). Pros: Lots of smart people to work with. Can work remotely. Compensation is good. Excellent research teams with people that are smart and communicate in big picture scenarios very well. Cons: Way too management heavy. Seems that the meaner someone is the higher they go. Not taking care of their employees. More focused on their own political success. Advice to Management: Get rid of half your executives.
    • "If you are passionate and show your value you can go a long way..."

      Current Employee — Senior Project Manager in Somers, NY. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).


      • Opportunities to have a lot of different jobs throughout your career, but remain in the same company.
      • Merit is a true statement here. If you deliver and prove your value, you will be promoted, can move to different challenges, can be sent abroad.
      • It is a company that can reinvent itself in many ways and it is very rewarding to be part of these transformations.
      • Very smart and passionate people and overall great/visionary leaders.
      • Great for leaders and leadership development.


      • Work-life balance is really a challenge if you want to be above average.
      • Employee appreciation is not a strong point, simples things not available like: coffee, gym, meal subsides.
      • Less and less training opportunities (self training only).
      • Awards, bonuses and overall benefits are really behind other IT companies around.
      • A lot of high executive layers that does not seem to add value, but add costs and complexity.
      • Micromanagement, aggressiveness and lead-by-fear (depending on our leadership) can cause burnout and make difficult work environments.

      Advice to Management: Invest on the employees well being and appreciation. Keep and accelerate simplification and agility in the company.

    • "IBM Is broken, but still gives CEO 45 million dollar bonuses"

      Current Employee — Staff Software Engineer in Littleton, MA. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Flexible schedules — depending on manager. Cons: There are too many to list. Management is 100% broken. Beware — don't work here! Advice to Management: Get rid of the managers who don't know that management isn't friends or check lists, nor is it just cashing a check.
    • "Lost our way"

      Current Employee — Executive PM in Sydney (Australia). I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Job flexibility, great clients, incredibly skillful teams. Cons: Rubbish management with a strategy they continue backing and which continues to show quarter-for-quarter declines in growth.
    • "Contributor"

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: None...it is not the IBM we all grew up with. Cons: It is not a company that values loyalty, handwork and experience. You will be laid off after you reach the age of 55 regardless of your performance. And you will be set up for that layoff with negative evaluations two years prior. Advice to Management: Be honest with and value your employees. That is the best way to ensure a healthy bottom-line (stock prices).
    • "Supportive Employer"

      Current Employee — Education Quality Assurance in Austin, TX. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 5 years).

      Pros: Strong support for internal and external education. Flexible scheduling. Improved review processes. Support for volunteerism. Great benefits both medical and financial. Positive reinforcement from colleagues is encouraged through BlueThx program. Mentorship encouraged.

      Cons: The only downside that I can think of is that change has been slow because of the massive size of the organization. But as the company is turning to an Agile methodology it appears that changes are happening a little more quickly. Also, while IBM encourages employees to learn about new IBM applications, it could do a better job of ensuring that all departments have the means of incorporating appropriate software into their department processes.

      Advice to Management: Ensure that all departments have the means of incorporating appropriate software into their department processes, perhaps by allowing consultants to do internal implementations in those departments where the skills don't already exist.

    • "Good people, challenging management team"

      Former Employee — Senior Strategy Consultant in Boston, MA. I worked at IBM full-time (more than 5 years). Pros: Bright team to work with, decent benefits, global brand recognition. a decent benefit program which has been reduced over the last couple of years. Many internal positions if you want a career change. Cons: Horrible travel policy, multiple processes that limit flexibility. Company is driven to a large extent by the legal and finance departments who (long ago) lost touch with the field.
    • "It's like the Army, or Hell"

      Current Employee — Systems Architect in Raleigh, NC. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).

      Pros: They still allow many, most people to work from home. The benefits are no better or worse than any other large company. If you work in one of the groups that Ginni Rometty touts as the future of IBM you're more or less OK vis-a-vis continued employment at least for now.

      Cons: Twenty years ago the average tenure of an IBMer was probably 16 or 17 years. Now I doubt it's more than 3. You get out of school and do your bit and leave as fast as you can. Or, if you work for one of the many many acquisitions you do your bit, and again, head for the doors. Either you will be forced out or you will be so disappointed you'll leave on your own.

      The 'change' from PBC to this new system is pretty bizarre. They have spoken much about it but people are already supposed to have submitted their interim goals. So word to the wise, make up your goals out only those things you know you can do and put a shine on it.

      As far as money is concerned don't look for much or for much improvement over time. There is none. Get the best deal starting with them as you can because it's highly likely that will be as much as you ever earn.

      Movement in the company is nonexistent. Don't even bother. Every silo is so overloaded and pressed to deliver that no one will ever let you move and no one is ever allowed to take on anyone new. Your department would have to be circling the drain from overwork for management to OK even a single new person. First and second even third line managers who leave the company are not replaced. Which in and of itself isn't terrible since there's an astonishing number of management levels but it does tend to create a lot of churn.

      They're going to this 'agile' model which is highly highly process and metrics driven. Essentially bringing a Common Core mindset to the company. There is one way to do everything. Period. One form, one check box, and one process. The process and the paperwork are really the only things that matter. That's your job.

      So if you're a whiz with paper work, extreme detail and micro management you will thrive here. It's important to understand that that truly is your job. Documenting and data gathering. Not technology. What ever you thought your job was it's really being a clerical assistant slash paralegal. Process process process process. I really can not stress this enough.

      IBM believes that they can solve all their problems by dumbing everything down to process and using the data gathered by that process to dumb it down even more.

      One bright spot is the legal field. IBM probably has more attorneys per capita than the White House. Everything you do will be bounded and gated by an attorney. They, for the most part, get first and last approval over everything. If you're a lawyer this is not a 'con'. If you're not, you will have to make your own decision whether essentially working for a lawyer is for you.

      Which raises my last point. Most of the middle and senior people are not technologists or technical people. Few have any knowledge of the technology you work on and have arrived at their jobs by finagling the organization and shining when it comes to process.

      You will often be confronted with fairly senior people who have no earthly clue what you're talking about and they're not shy to tell you. It's like a badge of honor to say "I'm not technical'. So if you want to stay in a technical track your career will be severely limited.

      Advice to Management: I think it would be pointless to suggest anything to a management who aggressively does not listen to anyone about anything, ever. That is seen as complaining and not being a 'team player'. Plus there's no process for that.

    • "Good team, bad company"

      Current Employee — Staff Software Engineer (Band 7 Software Developer) in Durham, NC. I have been working at IBM (more than a year).

      Pros: Tons of opportunity to learn new things, my team is great and very helpful, my manager is the most technically knowledgeable boss I've ever had and the area is great. Just got moved to the new agile workspace and it's nice and clean and open. Work from home and a decent amount of company credit to get things like monitors and the like.

      Cons: Hard to get promotions, raises suck, bonuses suck compared to last job, benefits have been cut hard even in the year I've been here. To the higher ups, you are just another cog in the wheel and they don't care.

    • "IBM"

      Current Employee — Technical Deployment Manager in Armonk, NY. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years). Pros: Medical, vision, and dental benefits. Cons: Continued job cuts, off-shoring and unable to change positions for most employees.
    • "A mixed bag"

      Current Employee — Senior Product Manager. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).

      Pros: You'll meet a lot of smart people from all walks of life. You'll learn a lot about selling to and making offerings for the largest companies in the world. Senior management can be inspirational and incisive.

      Cons: IBM is like a retirement home for once-great software (or at least once-successful software). A retirement home that is well connected to the government and has strong PR, but really no hope of resuscitation. An east-coast retirement home that looks yearningly at successful Silicon Valley and Seattle youngsters playing volleyball in the sun, and wishes it could be young and matter again. But it's just not in the DNA.

      Advice to Management: Get over yourself. Build products that companies — and the people within them — actually like. Promote based on competence. Stop reclassifying existing products and revenue streams as the category-de-jeur (Cognitive, Cloud, yada), and start building real revenue in new categories from the ground up.

    • "I was bullied at IBM"

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee. Pros: Trained me, taught me a lot. I would not be what I am today without IBM. Cons: Manager was a bully. Many people, before me and after me, tried to report him; however you had to go to the boss, which was not confidential. Advice to Management: Do not expect team members to work 14 hours a day just because you do. There is no work/family balance with 10 hours a day, but when after that you get calls and need to work it is just too much.
    • "IBM Retiree"

      Former Employee — Marketing Manager in Ballwin, MO. I worked at IBM (more than 10 years). Pros: Loved the job. Loved working from home. Great people to work with. Cons: Too many layoffs which make people despondent. Advice to Management: Quit sending jobs out of the USA.
    • "IBM Australia"

      Former Employee — Business Transformation Consultant in Armonk, NY. I worked at IBM (more than a year). Pros: Exciting projects and things happening with the organisation. Cons: You need to drive your own career projection. Found it difficult to get placed on a project, particularly if you're not in a growth market. Constant redundancies, where some made no sense. Some bullying. A lot of people are "old tech" rather than "new tech". Advice to Management: Employee engagement is key.
    • "No career advancement potential, top performers always living in fear of layoffs"

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


      • Good work/life balance
      • Flexible schedules
      • Ability to work from home
      • Great people doing the real work


      • Executive and management teams care only about offshoring and getting the work done for the lowest cost with no concern for quality.
      • Management doesn't understand the importance of the work done even by their top performers
      • In recent years, wages have either been stagnant or have even decreased
      • All bonus pay has been eliminated
      • All ability to work overtime has been eliminated for those unlucky IT folks who had been "reclassified" as non-exempt
      • Severance package has been cut from six months to ONE month regardless of time with company
      • Most IT jobs at this company are dead end jobs with no opportunities for advancement or promotion whatsoever

      Advice to Management: Start recognizing the value of your employees and understand the important work they do instead of only focusing on how to reduce labor costs no matter what.

    • "Don't assign jobs according to your skills"

      Former Employee — Associate Systems Engineer in Pune (India). I worked at IBM full-time (less than a year).

      Pros: I joined as Graduate Hire as an Associate System Engineer. According to me, pros are mainly varies from team to team. [My perception]

      Light environment, good for someone who is not good in technical skills, Team is very cooperative, WFH facility. (But this facility is enjoyed by only those employees who are lovable to team leaders).

      Cons: Most of the time in IBM, you will think that you work in Call Center. If you are good in programming, no programming work will be given to you. Instead of programming you are forced to learn and work on some other skills. Salary is quite low.

    • "Financial Analyst"

      Former Employee — Financial Analyst in Rochester, MN.

      Pros: Terrific resume builder, flex Fridays, very casual dress code, nice and friendly co-workers. You will have the opportunity to learn a lot and say you did a lot because you are working with large dollar amounts with big clients/expense depts within IBM.

      Cons: Everything is gray, dark, and blue in building. Day 1 will be very important for you, as you could get placed in a good or not so good department. Roles open up all the time because the turnover is very high. You will probably get a second role around your one year mark (probably no pay increase).

      Work-life balance varies from role to role greatly. If you are unlucky you will get one of the roles that require 65+ hours/ week, and can easily get paid the same as a person who works 30. You could get a few days of relevant role training, or a month depending on if the person training you is still there.

      Higher up people in COE will tell you their success stories from being in the COE. I have only heard success stories from people who left IBM, or are way older and were there before COE started, so they were already at the top.

      Advice to Management: I still think IBM is a great company outside of COE, and I wish I were able to experience that. Take time to evaluate employees, give a career path and better pay.

    • "IBM Review"

      Former Employee — Systems Engineer. Pros People, global teams, teamwork; people, opportunity to work with global teams. Cons: Employee morale low for years; no raises for years; bonus are dismal; CEO continues to take bonuses when company has 15 dismal quarters; offshoring is a regular occurrence. Advice to Management: People before profits; when people are valued, profits will excel.
    • "Program Management Office Lead"

      Current Employee — Anonymous Employee in Atlanta, GA. I have been working at IBM full-time (more than 10 years).

      Pros: Global, manage implementations for small to complex projects, multiple business areas, work from home, remote and mobile work opportunities, international assignments available.

      Cons: Long hours, employees are salaries not names and are expendable, frequent lay offs globally, poor internal financial applications, no investment in training for experienced resources.

      Advice to Management: Take a risk to invest in the employees through cross training or rotating staff into different departments for new ideas, encourage company pride, enable varied training opportunities, look for alternatives to downsizing (reduce salaries across the board, do not pay out exorbitant bonus at upper management levels for poor performance), value innovation in the lower employee tiers, reward innovation.

    • "No respect for their employees"

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

      Pros: Colleagues are good. Work is interesting. Everyone in delivery teams do a good job and help each other. You get to work with interesting clients.

      Cons: Management above delivery teams have no idea who we are and what we do. No respect or loyalty shown by company to its employees. Always at risk of being made redundant. Redundancy package is as little as is legally allowed. Bonuses are derisory. You are expected to work extra hours for free and it counts against you in reviews if you don't.

      Advice to Management: If you want loyal, respectful employees then show some respect and loyalty in return.

    • "Director Marketing"

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee in Somers, NY. Pros: Great company to work for with many career and development opportunities. Very flexible if need to work from home. Excellent benefits. Cons: Bureaucratic. Very slow to change direction. Too much overhead and management layers. Multiple sales reps calling on the same client which is often confusing. Advice to Management: Too many layers. Need to streamline the management layers. Excellent job acquiring new, exciting and relevant software companies. This is creating a new energy within the company.
    • "Global Technology Services & Cloud BDM Role"

      Former Employee — Business Development Manager in Melbourne (Australia). I worked at IBM full-time (more than a year). Pros: Great products, good account management and relationships with all the large accounts, sound top-level strategy. Cons: Horrendous bureaucracy, constant reorganisations every 6 months, most employees don't seem happy to be there, cumbersome internal systems and processes, highly political, very old fashioned attitudes to business. Advice to Management: Management need to consider what it is like to join IBM as an outsider who is an experienced hire from elsewhere; the problem is most mangers at IBM have been there 10 years plus and are now "institutionalised" in the IBM culture. Most managers there have no idea what it is like outside IBM so unfortunately can't see the issues that exist, because they don't have an outsiders perspective
    • "GBS UK HCM Team — many Indians left!!!"

      Former Employee — Anonymous Employee in London, England (UK). I worked at IBM (more than 5 years). Pros: Pro to graduates; not for experienced professionals. Cons: Many Indian guys who joined GBS UK HCM team left due to lack of opportunities. Advice to Management: Management are pro to graduates. Not giving the right roles for the experienced guys — not a fair system.
  • Alliance for Retired Americans Friday Alert — March 4, 2016 (PDF). Stories this week include:
    • Super Tuesday Results: Clinton Favored by Seniors
    • Gallup Poll: More People are Confident that Social Security will be there for them
    • 401(k)s have Left the Overwhelming Majority of Americans Unprepared for Retirement
    • Western Regional Conference is 4 Days Away; Dates Announced for Northeast Conference
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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