IBM

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IBM Reviews in Portsmouth, South East England, England

Updated April 26, 2014
Updated April 26, 2014
11,963 Reviews

3.1
11,963 Reviews
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IBM CEO Virginia Rometty
Virginia Rometty
3,461 Ratings

Review Highlights

Pros
  • Most managers are pretty flexible if you want to work from home a couple days a week (in 1228 reviews)

  • There are no unrealistic expectations causing work-life balance to be messed up (in 1189 reviews)


Cons
  • Though the company espouses work life balance there is no getting away from work (in 373 reviews)

  • Senior Management thinks that too many metrics are replacement for good management (in 202 reviews)

More Highlights

19 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews

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  1.  

    IBM professional

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    A great company to work for very structured and open to change

    Cons

    Later years many functions have been outsourced and opportunity to progress has been limited
    Constant drive to raise the Bar puts extreme pressure on staff

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
  2.  

    Hiding behind company processes

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - IT Specialist  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - IT Specialist in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Flexible working hours - you don't necessarily have to work from 9-5 as long as you get your work done.
    Ability to work from home
    Lots of online training available for applications as well as management processes
    Well known company with a long history (over a 100 years) which has developed much innovative technology

    Cons

    Extremely focused on quarterly financial results
    Expected to work more than contracted hours
    Employees aren't always valued - a senior management mentor is essential if you want to progress within the company

    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  3. 4 people found this helpful  

    Great for grads, otherwise pretty dire

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anon  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anon in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Stay long enough, you'll get reasonable severence
    Excellent productivity tools
    Fantastic colleagues/great team
    Generally, a supportive and encouraging first line management team

    Cons

    Pressure on management to downgrade at annual appraisal
    Bonus/pay freezes
    YoY 10% expense (headcount) reductions, if you aren't in a growth region/in a Center of Excellence your job is probably at risk
    Crazy working hours

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Remove silos
    Stop the constant headcount reductions - cull then allow the team to recover - you can't be prodcutive and innovative when depressed

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
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  5. 1 person found this helpful  

    Positive and frustrating at the same time.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    1) People, technology and projects are world class.
    2) "You always have a friend in IBM" - back up in tight situations can be fantastic, when you finally find the right person or team. Finding the right person or team is the challenge.

    Cons

    1) Internal processes are like pulling hens teeth at times.
    2) The company can be seriously disjointed. Too much cross brand BS when trying to integrate an IBM stack for a client. This can be very difficult as the client sees the person on the ground as "IBM" without realizing that person has little or no sway over the resolution of their problem if it crosses IBM organizational boundaries. The root cause is down to different incentives applied to different brands/companies. They therefore they don't always work well together.
    3) The company is far too big for it's own good, applies global policies that make little or no sense to the shop-floor and does not seem to know where it is going. It's spent the last decade or more trying to re-invent itself ("On Demand", "Smarter Planet", Hardware, Software - who knows?)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop focusing on Earnings Per Share, stock prices and the race to the bottom of the cost barrel. Start focusing on what IBM actually is, what it can deliver and the people who work for the company. Start treating your workforce as stakeholders (not an inconveniently costly cost center), listen to them and learn.

    If the company starts listening, actively engages with the people who really know what is going on and acts on the collective experience the staff bring to the table then IBM can revolutionize anything it puts it's mind to. This spirit - borne out of the Apollo program; many, many radical inventions used daily by millions without knowing seems to have been lost today. It's the spirit that historically drove IBM in the past and made it hugely successful.

    Sadly I'm not expecting a change from a company that now seems more interested in accountancy as opposed to engineering quality.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
  6. 1 person found this helpful  

    If you love to sacrifice your life and give everything to a company for noreward, salary or bonus then IBM is for you!!

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Information Security Manager  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Information Security Manager in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    flexibility is good, opportunities for developing skills and experience is also good

    Cons

    salary, bonuses - don't expect more than 0.5% increase in salary over a 10 year period even if you are a consistent high performer!...You can give 200% of your life into IBM and they will reward you with nothing.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give recognition to those who deserve it or suffer from the consequences of loosing top talent to other companies.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
  7.  

    Good team, poor salary increases

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Client Manager  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Client Manager in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Overall good management. Good products and largely good people to work with. Ability to move within the company to different roles.

    Cons

    Very poor salary increases. Lots of red tape.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    There is no point in giving advice to management. The local management have no power and the high level management only care about share price.

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  8. 5 people found this helpful  

    Work generally ok, management poor, pay very poor, little reward

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - IT Specialist  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - IT Specialist in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Great people, knowledgeable, often interesting work

    Cons

    pay, management especially senior management are very poor, no recognition in meaningfully ways (i.e. pay!), too much unreasonable process for pay rise and promotion etc

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Reward your employees much more, rather than the pay and pensions of very senior management. Stop buying back shares that only benefit senior management and not 99% of employees or shareholders. Invest better in all parts of business not just 'research division' and invest in people not yourselves!l

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO
  9. 5 people found this helpful  

    Getting worse every year

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Technical Support Engineer  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Technical Support Engineer in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Work/life balance good. Plenty of locations to work from and opportunities to work from home.

    Cons

    No salary increase unless you're in the top 5%. Yearly bonus gets worse every year. working environment driven by accountants.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The staff are the company's biggest asset and you need to go back to that mindset. It's all about the share price these days

    Doesn't Recommend
    No opinion of CEO
  10. 3 people found this helpful  

    Flexibility to work remotely is great, major downside is the amount of time spent on laborious and inflexible processes

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Procurement  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Former Employee - Procurement in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Life at IBM is hugely influenced by who your direct line manager is - if you have a good manager, you are likely to be treated fairly. Upside is that remote working is widely available - working from home is seen almost as a right, not a privilege as in many corporations

    Cons

    There's a lot of process to get through - often it feels like you spend more time on completing the various processes than in doing the real job - that's a huge frustration. Rigid process also means that very few employees consistently get reasonable salary increases - if you want a decent salary, make sure you negotiate before you join because the policy seems to be to pay the very least that they can.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Recognise that salary increase profiling cannot be applied to small and highly-skilled teams but has to be operated across large staff groups to work - pathetically small salary increases can actually demotivate

    No opinion of CEO
  11. 6 people found this helpful  

    IBM - oh dear.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Manager  in  Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)
    Current Employee - Manager in Portsmouth, South East England, England (UK)

    Pros

    Work from home, though this can leave employees isolated.
    A lot of highly-skilled colleagues.

    Cons

    No work-life balance.
    No, or minimal, pay rises (3% max). Staff go for 7, 8, 9 years with zero pay rises.
    Very low morale. At an all time low in the UK.
    Zero training budget.
    No job security. Jobs in the UK are being shipped to India/Hungary/South Africa/Poland. This has gone on for years, and is continuing. This has led to the....
    CULTURE OF FEAR - ie. I must work every hour God sends, and must work longer than the next guy, otherwise I might lose my job in the next round of job cuts.
    Crazy appraisal system, with forced quotas for PBC 2 / 3 ratings. PBC 2 and 3 means zero pay rise, and probable redundancy. At least 50% of the workforce get these ratings.
    Abuse of disciplinary process to "manage poor performers". (ie. disciplining people who were given poor appraisals because of forced PBC quotas).
    Eroding benefits. The UK final salary pension scheme has just been closed for people who have paid into it for decades.
    Greed of upper management. Sam doubled his pension pot to $40M in 2009.
    Ineptitude - process is king in IBM, and the processes often don't work.
    No vision. IBM is boosting profit at a time of decreased revenue, by cutting costs. Through job cuts, it is hacking away at its skills base and eroding staff morale. IBM is heading for a big fall.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Apart from all the cons listed, you're doing a fine job. Keep it up.

    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

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