IBM Applications Specialist Reviews | Glassdoor

IBM Applications Specialist Reviews

Updated Jun 17, 2019

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2.8
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26%
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34%
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IBM CEO Virginia Rometty
Virginia Rometty
11 Ratings
  1. "Nice company. But upper management is not very transparent. have to be ready for surprises."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applications Specialist in Remote, OR

    I have been working at IBM full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    good benefits, work life balance

    Cons

    upper management need to be more transparent.

    Advice to Management

    need to be more transparent.

    IBM2019-06-18
  2. Helpful (4)

    "This isn’t where you want to be."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Keyser, WV
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at IBM full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    It’s a job and you get paid, even though it’s about half of what you’re worth.

    Cons

    I don’t know where to begin. There are very few people who enjoy working out of Keyser, WV. Management doesn’t value developers- you’re basically a code monkey with zero room for growth, while getting less benefits than the staffing folks or the people with jobs far easier than development work. It’s really backwards and kind of shows problems at the company level. Giving worse benefits to the people making your... products really isn’t the right move.

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    Advice to Management

    Pay your devs what they’re worth or you’ll see a lot of attrition

    IBM2019-05-06
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  4. Helpful (1)

    "Application Development Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Baton Rouge, LA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at IBM full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Good Place to start. Difficult to grow if you are not in the right place. This is a massive company, so there are a lot of interesting opportunities. My direct managers were good people.

    Cons

    Low Pay in IBM GBS, especially for new graduates. Very difficult to move in between teams. Sometimes you will get stuck on boring projects that do nothing to enhance your skills.

    Advice to Management

    If you stick technical people into non-technical roles, they will immediately look for an exit plan. Don't string people along with promised projects and roles that never materialize.

    IBM2018-09-06
  5. Helpful (2)

    "IBM Rocket Center - Abandon All Hope..."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Applications Development Specialist in Keyser, WV
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at IBM for less than a year

    Pros

    We recieve a paycheck, that is it.

    Cons

    I don’t know where to begin.... 1) Rocket Center is the epitome of “Glass Ceiling”. If you’re in the CIC, you’re a second class citizen. Period. They will try to tell you otherwise, but it’s painfully clear they don’t expect much from CIC and refuse to care about CIC employees. Many benefits (401k, time off, education reimbursement , basically all benefits) are watered down. We get less matching that people... who non-development jobs, and we are expect to work 44 hours without overtime pay. Meanwhile the people who work “Staffing” jobs, the people with zero technical background, get paid overtime and receive a higher 401k matching. This is completely backwards. The turnover rate at Rocket Center is insanely high. Seriously never seen anything like this. It’s a complete shitshow and I’m embarrassed to be a part of this.

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    Advice to Management

    I don’t know where to begin. There is so much wrong with this place that every day I have to go in, another piece of me slowly dies.

    IBM2018-04-04
  6. Helpful (3)

    ""Pretend IBM" at Rocket Center (Keyser), WV"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Keyser, WV
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at IBM full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    - Work from home option 1 day a week. - You qualify for tuition assistance under the pay here. - You’ll add the IBM title to your employment history for future opportunities. - You could potentially earn your public trust and/or secret clearance. - The training (immersion project) that comes after orientation. - The workload/experience ‘can’ be very laid back.

    Cons

    - The pay is very low ($40,000 - $45,000 /annual salary). - Saving money due to the pay and cost of living is very demanding of a strict and boring life. - Benefits are ok at an individual level. No way will you be able to afford adding a spouse or kids. - The training does not match up with the tech you will be using on billable projects. - You are chosen for billable projects based on the need to fill a... position and make it billable as soon as possible. It has nothing to do with your skills, work ethic, or your passion. - There is no mentor or peer to peer system whatsoever. You are on your own. - Most billable projects will require you to work 44 hours a week with no overtime pay. ‘Some’ projects will give you a workload that will put you well over 44 hours a week. - The majority of project members do not work at this site, so you will often if not always be very much on your own. - Projects members at other IBM sites will receive almost double your pay doing the exact same job. Even though cost of living is much higher where they live, they are banking $1,000’s a month. - Gaining valuable experience here can be lacking or nonexistent, which will require you to maintain a very demanding and strict study schedule on top of working here if you plan to move on from this location. - The management here is the worse I have ever seen. They do not care about you at all and you will be lied to over and over. - Transferring from this location is as rare as a unicorn. - Promotions/raises can be as random as filling positions for billable work. You might see a poor performer receive a promotion while someone working 60+ hours a week never receives one. - The turnover rate is somewhere around 50%. - The site loses projects constantly, so you could possibly be switched from project to project.

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    Advice to Management

    - I don’t have any advice to management as they truly do not care. This place is working as intended by management. Pay very little and bill very high. - Also, watch out local talent. They have upped their resources to start hiring locally due to the fact they can’t hold onto anyone not local. They hope to pull people into this death trap that they can take advantage of permanently due to the fact they will not... leave, such as due to local family, etc.

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    IBM2018-04-09
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Application Developer Specialist"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Applications Developer Specialist in Cumberland, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at IBM full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    This review is primarily for GBS in Rocket Center, WV. If you are considering joining IBM elsewhere, just know that in this sector, and this location, things are much different than the rest of the company. - If you either went to a smaller university or didn't do so great in school and want a big name on your resume to get you good job opportunities in the future, IBM is PERFECT for that. I'm going to get pretty... heavy in the cons section, but just know that this point here was what made the experience for me so worth it! - This location is ~2 hours away from both Washington, D.C. and Pittsburgh, and... - If you want to travel, there are opportunities to travel. If you don't want to travel, you probably won't have to. - Health benefits are pretty decent - Most people get to work from home at least once per week - There is a pretty good chance that you will get the opportunities you need to advance within the company if you want to - If you want to become a good consultant, you will be working with a lot of good consultants.

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    Cons

    - The location. Cumberland is a "city" with not much there. Most people that end up staying long term already have an invested interest in the area (nearby college, family, etc.) - Turnover is very high. New hires come in groups, and generally if you're still around by 6 months, you are either THE last or one of the last left in your group. - Turnover is high because when you are hired, you are put "on the... bench". That means you have to come into work...but there is nothing to do. This time frame usually lasts between 4 weeks to over a year (it sounds nice to get paid to do nothing, but it gets old real fast). - If you come here for experience in x type of work (development, testing, functional analyst), you're definitely rolling the dice. The "staffing professionals" are not technical people, they're trained to look at requirements for projects and match them to resumes. Their job is to keep you billable, not get you the experience you need in your career. There is a pretty good chance you get placed in a project doing work that you don't want to be doing (they will tell you that it is easy to switch down the road...don't take the bait). - There is practically no technical screening (for developers). You have a technical interview and test, but you can get EVERY question wrong and still get an offer (this actually happened in my hiring group twice). So...this goes without saying... - If you're looking to work with great developers, you're digging for needles in haystacks. You probably won't find what you're looking for. IBM has a lot of new hires that don't know what they are doing, and a lot of people with a lot of experience, but just don't make the cut. - The pay is well below average. Not only that, but even if you are good at what you do and outperform everyone you work with, chances are a year down the road, new hires (on the bench) will be making more many than you. Management will say (this happened to me twice), "Oh that's not right, but there's nothing I can do". Raises happen at earliest every 9 months, and your performance generally doesn't play any significant role. Everyone gets the same raise. - The performance review process has currently undergone a change (from what I'm told is for the better). However, managers are very inconsistent as to what the requirements are, and if you happen to be caught in a re-organization, you may quickly find out that what you are doing that was considered acceptable for your old manager is unacceptable to your new manager. - You are told that after 2 years in this program that you can transfer out, and they will help you do so. This is true, you can, and they will...but corporate IBM will actively work against you on this. I never saw anyone get transferred out. Places like Rocket Center are where IBM actually makes their money because they can afford to pay you less for the same work that people in DC -> More winning bids on government contracts.

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    Advice to Management

    I understand that in a big company, regulations need to be put in place so that managers can't easily abuse/favor employees, but you've made it very hard to reward (in a meaningful way) high performers. Actually try to keep high performers around to get better longevity out of your products (and other high performers). Hire staffing professionals that understand the fields that they are working in, and you won't... have employees quit for being stuck in project positions that are detrimental to their career paths. Please please please actually put weight on the technical interviews.

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    IBM2018-02-11
  8. "It is what you make of it"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Baton Rouge, LA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at IBM full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    So many incredibly smart and driven colleagues. A lot of learning if you avail yourself of the opportunities. Discounts and investment options

    Cons

    Getting help with basic desktop troubleshooting can be daunting at times. A bit of red tape

    Advice to Management

    Please be there for your employees . Listen and be supportive. When they need a simple signature that only you can provide, please do that as soon as you reasonably can

    IBM2017-10-21
  9. Helpful (4)

    "Rocket Center is mediocre at best"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Cumberland, MD
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at IBM full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Fresh college grads get much needed experience and a foot in the door, a lot of resources available to you to grow as a professional, very laid-back and relaxed atmosphere, great work/life balance

    Cons

    Salary and benefits are not even competitive for the area, career growth and prospects are virtually non-existent or entirely too long, low morale among employees, location itself is a little too remote, policies in place without any justification to their existence, project deployment is slow and the work is often unsatisfying

    Advice to Management

    Until IBM as a whole starts listening to its employees concerns and addressing the core problems, employees will continue to leave and morale will continue to decrease. If you're not going to adjust the salaries to be competitive, you need to do whatever else it takes to entice people to come here and stay.

    IBM2017-06-15
  10. Helpful (2)

    "Ok place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Applications Programming Specialist in Okemos, MI
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at IBM for more than 3 years

    Pros

    IBM is so big that the Pros/Cons depend somewhat on what group you are working in. Where I work all my coworkers were good, hardworking people willing to help out. There is a good work life balance, lots of vacation days, sick leave, and flexible hours. Medical, Dental, and Health insurance.

    Cons

    Management has very poor communication with its employees. My direct manager goes months without checking in on my to see how things are going. Emails from upper management are full of near meaningless business jargon such as "Creating a playbook to sharpen your digital edge". The business model in my group requires employees to find projects on their own. IBM does provide a tool for finding projects but often... times that tool call doesn't list all the projects or lists incorrect information about the project. Often times, projects are found through less formal methods such as word of mouth. Pay is atrocious. Far below the industry average. Email spam. Various people from around the company send you emails about projects and events that are not relevant to you at all. It got so bad I had to create a junk mail folder.

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    Advice to Management

    Talk to your employees, and not in business jargon or about irrelevant topics. Simple, practical communication like "How are things going?", "Do you need anything?", "You need to do X, Y, & Z". Have a group of people dedicated to find projects for your developers so developers can be focused on their projects and not worry about what to do after the project ends. It will improve idle time and employee moral. If... not that, then improve Professional Marketplace, the tool for finding projects. It should contain a comprehensive list of all projects and have accurate, up to date information.

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    IBM2016-05-25
  11. Helpful (8)

    "Look elsewhere for opportunities with IBM"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Applications Development Specialist in Baton Rouge, LA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at IBM full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Decent benefits; opportunities for learning and growing capabilities; good work location and new building

    Cons

    Management is unorganized and unprofessional; salary received when brought on is far below national average for consultants; true promotions are a rarity

    Advice to Management

    Please treat employees like other members of the IBM organization and not a sub-class of employees or children, pay employees like on par to typical consultants

    IBM2016-05-02
Found 23 reviews