IBM Reviews

Updated July 7, 2015
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  1. Helpful (5)

    Expendable - Immobile - Ignorant

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Advanced Teleservices Agent in Boulder, CO
    Former Employee - Advanced Teleservices Agent in Boulder, CO

    I worked at IBM full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You are almost impossible to fire for gross misconduct, you will likely be given significantly less work than you can do, and the company is developing a significant amount of interesting technology (Watson).

    Cons

    You will never get a "1" on your annual review which is the key to getting any form of promotion/raise/bonus. These will be reserved for people who have hung out in your job position for more than a decade and came up with your manager.

    You will not be paid nearly as much as anyone who has been with the company for a long time, despite education/qualification/etc. This has nothing to do with seniority, the company just used to pay a lot more and long ago cut entry pay for everyone joining after a certain date.

    You WILL be paid the same as your peers in the same job role. This entirely disregards how much work you do, your annual rating, or any other factors compared to their annual rating or effort. For example at the time I quit, I was doing the work of 2.5 people in my position while I had co-workers who were doing half of their actual work and getting on just fine.

    Continual Education only has value if it's IBM's continual education, and even then, you'll have to pay for it. I have a masters degree and put in more than 1200 hours of continual education in the last two years on my own time and time. Upon completion I was told by management "That's great" and received zero recognition, advancement, or acknowledgment for it. To add further insult to injury, I was then told I could not train in their "program manager" career track because I wasn't qualified (pay grade).

    Nepotism is rampant. This may be restricted to my division, but several managers have siblings, kids, or _____-in-laws working for them. As a result, these people will take a remarkable amount of vacation, leave early and arrive late, get the best assignments, and somehow rack up a lot of Overtime despite never seeming to be in the office.

    The career track is a meat grinder. To get to my position and to advance beyond my position is this: Join the company as an extremely underpaid contractor via CCI or Kelly Services. Get worked to death for an unliveable wage. Prove that you're somehow special (maybe) and get the opportunity to interview for a Long Term Supplemental position (a 3 year contract at a flat pay rate that hasn't been adjusted in 5 years and if/when it does, will NOT be retroactively bumped), where you will then compete against about 100 other LTS staff for a chance at getting converted to an IBM "Regular" (the odds are about 1-3%). If you make it, you will not receive any raise or special recognition, you're just not going to get fired at the end of 3 years. Beyond this point, there is a layer of managers who have all worked there for at least a decade and who have no career motivation, so your only hope at advancing higher than this is that one of them gets fired or quits, and even then they tend to just double up over the accounts rather than leaving the position open.

    Advice to Management

    Re-work your services business model. You have annual attrition of 95% and it's a huge waste of talent and effort. Your emphasis on "speed to answer" makes it so that the vendor contractors will hire almost anyone so long as they have a pulse so they pick up the phone, resulting in huge wastes of training, coaching, and HR effort to keep these borderline retarded people still "working".

    Your emphasis on "think 40" for your staff is stupid. You force staff to educate themselves in things that have nothing to do with them (teaching HR about Cloud Infrastructure is akin to teaching field workers astrophysics; is it interesting? Sure. Is it going to help them do their jobs at all? No.) Your strategic initiatives are great ideas but your are executing way too slowly (by the economic definition you have been in two consecutive depressions).

    Your system for promotions/retention is insane and borderline abusive. You will hire someone off the street right out of college and pay them six figures, but if someone works for you and gets the same degree, you will not promote them or shop them around to other managers, nor provide them with any raise. This will *always* result in you losing that employee when they get tired of your "See this as a learning experience" BS.

    The ivory tower viewpoint of the company is killing the employees. I had two mentors who were 20+ year employees who received the fabled "1" ratings for years in a row, and both were placed on the "Developmental Plan of Action" in which you cut their pay by 10% and give them a day off during the week to "educate themselves to improve". This was done to save the company money in a year that it was going to fail to show a profit in 3rd quarter (2014), and resulted in you losing both of them. Don't insult your employees.

    Specifically to Ginny: Resign. Your tenure as a CEO cannot be excused under the "we're undergoing a strategic transition" blanket. It is 100% your responsibility to make the changes in a timely, efficient, and effective manner. It never occurred to you that the divisions you believed were "low margin" were still producing a margin, whereas firing thousands of talented staff to get rid of these low margin divisions has pushed them into the hands of our competition. You can't get away with giving little-to-no-raises at the company and then pay yourself a multi-million dollar bonus (yes I know the board awarded it to you, but I also know you're super-chummy people). You and your hairband have lost touch with the pulse of the company in a deeply fundamental way. You use and abuse the staff and expect them to be grateful to work at IBM, despite it not being the same company that it was when you were down in the trenches 20+ years ago. You live a charmed life atop your tower, and I'm pretty sure you thought Marie Antoinette was spot on when she said "let them eat cake."


  2. Helpful (6)

    Culture of Distrust: External Hires Beware!!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I worked at IBM full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    When I was recruited to join IBM from another large company, it appeared to be wonderful opportunity. The people were nice and friendly. The worked was interesting and I felt like I was contributing straight away.

    Cons

    There is a horrible culture of distrust among the executive management team that flows downstream to the workers. The VPs are not transparent and communication is nonexistent. Many layoffs so morale is extremely low. IBM does a wonderful job ensuring that the Brand appears to be leading edge and in reality, the emperor does not have any clothes. The Cloud, Mobile, Social and Analytics are really far behind the industry but the world would never know because of the great Brand Management team that continues to promote a sinking ship. In the end I was treated horrible as IBM management does not like external hires.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of the horrible VPs that you have in place today...that is why Ginni is failing at her job because IBM lacks real leaders.


  3. Helpful (3)

    not recommended

    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Herndon, VA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Herndon, VA

    I worked at IBM

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    cant think of any at all

    Cons

    Middle management runs on deception and lies and gets away with it every time.


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  5. Helpful (2)

    Very bad lower management

    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer
    Current Employee - Senior Software Engineer

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Big, stable, definitely some great teams somewhere in the organization

    Cons

    Very few good team with good manager, very difficult to get in. In the interesting team, you will work on interesting stuffs, but with the same payment as the "relaxing" team. So it's good, but bad at the same time.

    Advice to Management

    IBM 1st-line, 2nd-line manger have become too non-technical, which stops the company to innovate because they don't even understand what their employees are talking about, let alone embrace and support ideas and innovation.


  6. Helpful (3)

    If you like unbriddled chaos, this is the place for you

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Business Delivery Analyst in East Orange, NJ
    Former Employee - Senior Business Delivery Analyst in East Orange, NJ

    I worked at IBM (More than 8 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Good benefits and time off, if you can get it.

    Cons

    No matter what your level of experience is, if you do not brown nose, you will be stuck in the same position until you quit or they fire you. They promote inexperienced managers who are hated because they don't know enough to get out of a locked room. You will be worked to death, and you don't ever expect a thank you. When they decide they want you out, they concoct ridiculous reasons to push you out the door. They lie to clients, don't meet deadlines because their management staff is incompetent and knows zero about the industry. They are behind the times in their thought process, think 1968. Seriously, what other company remotely thinks mainframes are a technological advancement?

    Advice to Management

    Step up and realize that your software is nothing without the worker bees. Start treating people in a professional adult manner, and get over the fact that you don't have the experience to lead anyone.


  7. Helpful (2)

    Advisory Systems Management Integration Professional

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Advisory Systems Management Integration Professional in Greensboro, NC
    Current Employee - Advisory Systems Management Integration Professional in Greensboro, NC

    I have been working at IBM

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    I've worked for IBM for 13 years. When I started it was a good place to work, good benefits, good training, but that's changed over the years. I can't remember the last time I got any real training. I guess the benefits are still reasonably good compared to what other companies have.

    Cons

    If you're in Strategic Outsourcing, good luck to you, but you have to see what's been happening, as more and more people are laid off. Like I mentioned above, the training (which was one of the best things about this job) has totally dried up. So now you have below average pay to go along with no training, and no opportunities to really move up in the company either.

    Advice to Management

    Decide what you want to be as a company and go for it. Treat your people better.


  8. Helpful (5)

    Incompetent Management / No Job Security

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Program Manager in Burlington, VT
    Former Employee - Program Manager in Burlington, VT

    I worked at IBM

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Co-workers (non-managers) are great and support you to get the job done.

    Cons

    No Job Security. Management only looks to save their own job. No appreciation for good job if you are not the senior management favorite.

    Advice to Management

    Get a Life.


  9. Helpful (2)

    Marketing and communications global

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Armonk, NY
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Armonk, NY

    I have been working at IBM full-time

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    A few good employees left to work with

    Cons

    Terrible leadership
    Mgmt are bullies
    No raises
    Tear down self esteem at every turn

    Advice to Management

    All mgmt should be fired from flm up to Ginnie. Start again


  10. Helpful (2)

    Senior Mechanical Engineer

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at IBM

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    Pros

    Good work life balance. Typical 8 hour days and they don't micro-manage their employees.

    Cons

    No respect for the employees. Poor executive decisions only have layoff consequences to low level employees. Execs still get their big salaries and even bigger bonuses, even when the company is bleeding. Not what it used to be.


  11. Helpful (4)

    Everyone is a Widget

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Department Manager in Rochester, MN
    Former Employee - Department Manager in Rochester, MN

    I worked at IBM full-time (More than 10 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Most people on the front lines are great people trying to make a difference.

    Cons

    To managers, everyone is a widget, interchangeable and disposable. Layoff are very common. 1st line managers have no authority.

    Advice to Management

    Poor business results leading to layoffs are the outcome of ineffective executive management with extremely poor business acumen.



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