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IBM has lost a lot of big corporate and government customers in recent years like Disney, Hilton Hotels, and the State of Texas. I have talked to these former IBM customers and many more. The story they tell is of a smooth marketing organization that sells customers on the size of its business and the success previous IBM customers have had. Add to that a rock-bottom price and the deal tends to look too good to pass up. But, former IBM customers report, these pre-sales perceptions are seldom confirmed. To make its profit targets from low-ball contracts IBM starts cutting corners from day one. That’s what happens when you take the value of the contract, subtract the target profit, subtract sales commissions, then tell the people delivering the service to do so from whatever money is left over. Honest to God that’s how they do it. ...
IBM’s management will not generally get involved if the accounts beg for help or raise awareness that things are about to go badly. In general most accounts leave without IBM doing much to keep them. Sometimes a customer CEO will complain to IBM CEO Ginni Rometty. Being the good salesperson that she is, Rometty will promise to fix the problems. IBM technical SWAT teams are dispatched to the account like an invasion force. They check everything, typically finding hundreds of pages of things to fix, do better, etc. All costs for the SWAT teams and the corrections are paid by the IBM team responsible for the account. Herein lies a further difficulty: the financial conditions that caused the original problem have not been fixed, according to IBM SWAT team members I have met. Those problems started when IBM did not budget enough money to do the original work. Now the account team has a boatload of new costs from the SWAT teams and no budgetary relief. The funding problem just gets worse, so more heads are eliminated hurting even more customers. It’s a downward spiral. ...
This week IBM announced the signing of a deal with Lufthansa for $1.25 billion. Over 7 years that is $178.6 million per year. In the spreadsheet on this page I have collected IBM’s revenue from services (both its Global Technology and Global Business divisions) for the last 4 years. I’ve estimate the year end numbers for 2014 and converted the revenue lost to the number of equivalent Lufthansa deals. Over the last 3 years IBM has lost 24.4 Lufthansa-sized deals. Every six weeks IBM loses a Lufthansa-size customer.
U.S. District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in New York granted IBM's bid to stay the lawsuit as it involved issues central to an arbitration pending before the International Chamber of Commerce.
In 2010, Iusacell signed a contract with IBM's Mexico unit, which under the agreement would improve and operate Iusacell's IT systems.
In a lawsuit filed in April, Iusacell alleged that IBM claimed it would provide "virtually unlimited" resources to the company for the project, even though it only intended to provide limited, inadequate amounts of resources to Iusacell.
Iusacell contended that under Mexican law it was entitled to recover both its actual damages and lost profits, including $2.5 billion (roughly Rs. 15,400 crores) in lost revenue.
Pros: Still nice place to work, good work life balance, relatively secure workplace.
Cons: Common sense lost, endless cost cuts and cost take outs, increasing workload, same salaries, decreasing benefits. Over regulated, micromanaged, bad atmosphere.
Advice: Redefine goals, define motivation system that makes all levels of management interested in doing what is required, empower them and then let them work individually. And keep/rebuild skills; I hardly believe I work in an IT company based on the IT skills the employees have here on average (alternatively IBM could turn to a compliance consulting firm, as we are quite strong on that).
Pros: Awesome people to work with, some of the best minds anywhere. Processes and procedures in place for everything. Fantastic potential in a company to ride the cloud generation and pull out the guns it has and the incredible reputation. Watson technology can take it over the top once again if they let the Ginny out of the box.
Cons: No visionary at the helm that would inspire the masses. Good candidate for a show like CBS's Undercover Boss to see the reality of the field. Massive brain drain occurring due to lack of leadership. Too much emphasis on dividends and rate of return, stock buybacks. Selling of key parts of company continues (hardware, chip development) creating a shell with a volatile inside.
Advice: Go back to your roots. Provide real value not earning projections. Stop shipping jobs away and believe in America. Measure your success by customer satisfaction not by Wall Street analysts recommendations.
Pros: When you join IBM you are an IBMer for life. There are so many talented, intelligent, innovative people working side by side with you every day that you are inspired to be the best you can be.
Work/life balance is extremely important as are the happiness, satisfaction and safety of all staff.
All new ideas, no matter if they come from the mail room or the executive board are treated with the consideration and enthusiasm.
Cons: I really have no negatives to report at all. If I hadn't needed to move away I would have happily been an IBM lifer.
Advice: Keep on keeping on!
Pros: It's kept me gainfully employed for quite some time (but at quite a cost of foreseeing all the layoffs and becoming a pro at the game of musical chairs). Being able to work and live in VT was a real plus!
Thank god Global Foundries is buying the place; it's been in an ongoing death spiral the past five years with no investment or real strategy.
Cons: Salary and benefits are really just average, no better then anywhere else. Constant threat of layoffs. Profit sharing plan is better known as "the annual insult."
Advice: I won't waste my breath.
Pros: Great working environment and schedule flexibility. You have opportunity to work with engineers from all over the world. You will definitely gain experience, with additional education opportunities for self development.
Cons: Job stability isn't that great. Company focus is no longer customer or employee focus, but rather financial earnings. People are loaded with work, so you have to do more with less. This also affects educational self development and work-life balance. Employee morale also is affected.
Pros: Quick and easy interview for the job.
Cons: They hire many contractors; very high turnover rate. Managers also come and go. People just don't stay long. People in the office have little sense of responsibility. When they make mistakes, they often point noses to each other or other departments. Managers from the headquarter in U.S. show disappointment on the department.
One of the signals of negative outlook for the Global Fixed Asset department is that you don't even see a couple of analysts or associates there actually graduated from an elite school. One of the team leaders even scolded new analysts because they point out mistakes in the work procedure. Don't expect them to act like a refined person.
Advice: Hire one smart person and pay well is better than hiring a team of low-paid average workers that keep making mistakes.
Pros: There are a lot of nice people to work with and opportunities to learn and take leadership/responsibility. Relatively good job security unless you are in the hardware/storage side of the business.
Cons: Even with multiple years in a row of '1' PBC performances, salary raises are incredibly limited. Typically 1-2% a year would be 'great' year. This is coming from someone who put in 50-60 hours a week. Teams and entire groups make it extremely difficult to move laterally within the company because they have such a hard time back filling positions (getting open reqs).
Get used to having a used (old) laptop and then having to hold on to it for 4 years before an upgrade. Basically "BYOD" is mandatory if you care about your equipment. The security/process is ridiculous...easily spend 20% of your time just doing that stuff.
There are too many people who were acquired and have great salaries. There is just no incentive for them to work hard. For example, in the same job role, there could be one guy making $150k, and another making $75k for the same job. The guy at $150k has no incentive to work hard because they are capped at their band level and are unlikely to make more money. The other guy at $75k also has no incentive to work hard because even if they are an all-star, they will get maybe a 1% raise if they are lucky.
I can't even count the number of people that work remote that just stay in "meeting mode" all day. You know perfectly well they are just making themselves look busy...ridiculous. Get them back into the office and productivity would likely increase 2x.
Advice: How can you possibly attract motivated and skilled employees when the salary gap is 30-50% off from other companies? Figure out a way to reward EXISTING employees who work hard and demonstrate clear potential. IBM is rapidly suffering a "brain drain" phenomenon — at least outside of R&D.
Stop letting so many of the higher paid employees "coast" through their jobs. Make it easier for managers to lay people off, but also make it easier for them to reward employees that do well (financially).
Pros: Over the past three years I've had three different jobs at IBM. Each with its own unique challenges and opportunities. The best part about the experience—the people. IBM attracts some of the smartest people on earth and it's a great privilege to work with and learn from them. Second best part is the work/life balance. I work from home; as such I have a lot of flexibility to get out for a walk at lunch time or run an errand in the afternoon without it impacting my day negatively.
Cons: Management is hit and miss. We have some amazing managers who execute flawlessly, but at the expense of their employees. Employees get frustrated and either put up with managers who degrade, insult, and overall infuriate them or they leave. A 360 review process that enables employees to review managers would solve this. Some people just weren't meant to manage people—and that's okay; let's just move them into roles where they can continue impacting the business positively and give their people to better managers.
Advice: It's time to "Restlessly Reinvent" our compensation structure. Why is it that I do the same job as my colleagues and return equal or better outcomes and yet am compensated so much lower (20-30% as per Glassdoor) just because I've been here 2 years instead of 10+? Stop compensating people for the "length of time" they've been at the company. I take on projects that go above and beyond and deliver and yet still am not being fairly compensated. Compensation should be normalized for performance/outcomes, not for time you survive the company. Just my .02. If you're a manager it should be tied to both a review by your manager and by your employees. As another reviewer said, let's trim some of the dead wood and elevate those who both perform and manage their people well.
Pros: Ability to work from home or pretty much anywhere; you can find a subject matter expert on anything; many different kinds of technologies; most of the people are really great to work with and very dedicated; great place to work for a few years for your resume.
Cons: There was no such thing as work/life balance and morale was low in the area I worked. The salary plan was poor even for good performers, if you were in an area that does not receive commissions. Variable pay has been drastically reduced for years. I agree with other reviewers that there is too much middle management.
Advice: Upper management seems to have forgotten the two things that make a business thrive — the employees and customer service — if employees do not feel valued, they cannot perform at their best levels.
Pros: Flexible working (within the long hours), co-workers mostly good, some benefits are not bad. Can be a variety of roles if you push to take them.
Cons: Leadership, direction, and even local management is generally appalling. Process and admin way way over the top. Treated like naughty children. No prospects without tons of paperwork. Impossible targets and hours for zero recognition, especially pay. No pay rise of any meaningful nature for over a decade. Steer clear unless you need a job and its local to you!
Advice: Quit and hire your replacements from OUTSIDE IBM. Stop messing with share buybacks as the shares are doomed anyway when the major investors realise what is going on (i.e. very little that makes money). Stop lining your own and the shareholders' pockets and give the employees a big pay rise. Forgo any profits for at least the next 2 years and use to invest in employees and fixing issues.
Despite having Medicare coverage, U.S. adults age 65 or older were the most likely to report that cost posed a barrier to care. One-fifth (19%) said cost was the reason they did not visit a doctor, skipped a medical test or treatment recommended by a doctor, did not fill a prescription, or skipped doses. ...
U.S. survey respondents were also the most likely to report trouble paying their medical bills (11%). Only 1 percent in Norway and Sweden reported the same. ...
The Bottom Line: Compared with their counterparts in 10 other industrialized countries, older adults in the U.S. are sicker and more likely to have problems paying their medical bills and getting needed health care.
This doesn't even count adding dental. Another IBM lie. After spending most of my working life with IBM, this is my reward. IBM had really stuck it to the people who made IBM once a great company to work for. I wish a news corporation would put this out for everyone to know. IBM belongs on the wall of shame. -Over55-
Meanwhile Ginni has sold all this year's share options just before announcing the ship was sinking. See http://tinyurl.com/paeqprd.
Her fellow 'executives' did likewise. See http://tinyurl.com/RatsGoFirst -OnThinIce-
BTW, you don't have to have a college degree to be a good manager. You have to have high EQ (emotional intelligence), be able to relate to human beings, and have organizational skills. You also have to have honour and integrity, so people are willing to trust you and follow you. That's it. Most IBM mangers do not. TJ Watson did not have a college degree. Tom Jr. barely made it out of college. They were the greatest managers of all time. -TJ-
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