IBM Reviews

Updated July 31, 2015
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IBM CEO Virginia Rometty
Virginia Rometty
4,807 Ratings

Pros
  • You can work from home or office (when you are in town) (in 1347 reviews)

  • Depending on projects - excellent work-life balance (in 1315 reviews)

Cons
  • Work life balance is basically non existent (in 423 reviews)

  • Senior management has lost it's sense of what the corporate mission is (in 214 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

14,624 Employee Reviews

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  1. Helpful (213)

    Advisory Engineer in STG, IBM

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Advisory Engineer in Hopewell Junction, NY
    Current Employee - Advisory Engineer in Hopewell Junction, NY

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than 8 years)

    Neutral Outlook
    Neutral Outlook

    Pros

    Disclaimer: A lot of what I'm writing below of course depends on the work area and management chain. But I found this to be fairly pervasive policies in IBM in my 9+ years with the company. 1. IBM's policies and management are very flexible when it comes to working remotely or accommodating various life situations (sick days, doctor visits, etc.). Management is encouraged to measure an employee by their work and impact, and not by hours spent at their office. 2. Great colleagues! Though unfortunately, many have been leaving due to the instability of IBM's HW development business. 3. At least in my area, there's a high level of flexibility on which projects should I undertake based on my and my management assessment of business impact.

    Cons

    1. Unfortunately, IBM still uses the "normal distribution" rating system, where at the end of the year each employee is ranked as a top contributor (5%), above average contributor (15%), average contributor (~75%), and bottom contributor (5%). This curve is difficult to apply in the R&D world, where you may have many members of the team working long and hard hours, and end up being "average contributors" at the end of the year, because there just isn't room for all to be top contributors. 2. The above may not be so disturbing, if only IBM didn't practically cancelled all raises, performance bonuses and incentive for the non top-performers. I've had a consistent "above average" rating in the last 4-5 years, and my raise and performance bonus were ridiculous mere 1.5-2% of my salary. Were I rated "average contributor" I would have gotten NOTHING. So you can imagine that people can go year after year without any raise to their salary. From talking to manager friend, this is IBM's way to eliminate the non-top-performers without having to fire them, as part of its direction of reducing US manpower. 3. Hiring freeze in many areas - again, as part of IBM's attempt to reduce its workforce across North America and Europe we see many jobs move to the India and Far East markets. This is of course upsetting to see local teams shrink and disappear, especially when many great local IBM colleagues and experts begin to drop out. From my experience thus far working with India SW teams - they are still very far away from the standards I would have expected from US and Europe based teams. 4. Poor top down communication about company's and divisions' future. Employees learn from rumors and news websites what's about to come...

    Advice to Management

    Management must keep in mind that it today's world, which is saturated with brilliant companies that hire top talent, IBM must remain competitive to attract great talent and hold on to it. In the meanwhile, we're seeing the opposite trend, where great people leave IBM for other companies, be it because of a more competitive package, dropping morale and many other reasons.


  2. Helpful (33)

    Great place to work if you have the right manager

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Service Planner in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Service Planner in Boston, MA

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

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

    Pros

    There are boundless opportunities and it is one of few companies where the sky might be the limit. There is a real commitment to work life balance and the company provides opportunities for volunteering.

    Cons

    This is one place where one person holds their career in your hands. If the manager does not like you, your career is pretty much over. There is a constant fear of being RA'd (IBM's term for laid off). The relative contribution metric pretty much assures that you will in fact not share your accomplishments with the team. Instead of making the slice of cheese larger, an increasing amount of people compete for a smaller slice of cheese while the executive ranks get the big bonuses.

    Advice to Management

    They really need to do away from the relative contribution model. STOP bleeding mid career talent in favor of college kids! Today's millenials are taking jobs and training and then leaving in two years because they are not afforded any oppotunities. The middle management needs a vigorious shakedown.


  3. project manager

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at IBM full-time

    Pros

    good place for work, good benefit and work from home

    Cons

    big company's problems happens here too.


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  5. Good Company to work for

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

    I have been working at IBM

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Pretty flexible, work from home facilities, Lots of technologies to learn

    Cons

    sometimes you will not get good projects


  6. The best and worst of times

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at IBM full-time

    Pros

    Awesome peer related employees to work with and interesting projects

    Cons

    Management politics and procedures often get in the way of productivity.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of PBCs and understand the work performed by your employee.


  7. Software engineer

    Current Employee - Systems Administrator in Colo, IA
    Current Employee - Systems Administrator in Colo, IA

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Working with the finest minds on the planet.

    Cons

    Innovation may lead to boredom.

    Advice to Management

    Scale down to SMEs and Micro-enterprises in your product development.


  8. Not Bad

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

    I worked at IBM

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    IBM gives you a very good "name" and background to go vy

    Cons

    Practically an On Call job

    Advice to Management

    Consider people management not only in numbers but in happiness


  9. IBM Solutions Architect

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

    I worked at IBM (More than 10 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Excellent people, highly skilled and motivated. You'll find yourself challenged here and if you like constantly learning about new technology, this is a great place.

    Cons

    Management lacks flexibility and seldom has time to guide your career goals within the company. Also, focus is only on a quarterly basis.

    Advice to Management

    If you foster advancement within the ranks, you'll have more satisfied workforce and people motivated to make their career with IBM.


  10. Interesting work - lots of opportunity

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC
    Current Employee - Consultant in Washington, DC

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than a year)

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    Working with a lot of smart people, and kept abreast of new technology

    Cons

    Can't think of any - happiness at your job is what you make of it

    Advice to Management

    there's quite a hierarchy here..could probably do with less layers of management


  11. Place to work

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

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than 5 years)

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Brand Image reputation; financial health, worldwide presence, Global technology outlook

    Cons

    processes too blinding, legacy management behavior, poor or absent space to growth, sometime too slow to react on change



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