IBM Reviews in Chicago, IL | Glassdoor

IBM Chicago Reviews

Updated April 20, 2017
286 reviews

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  1. "Consulting By Degrees Program - Consultant"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    - Cool project opportunities are out there, but its competitive to get on them
    - Good Benefits
    - Decent Pay
    - Looks good on a resume

    Cons

    - Management seems to only care that you are billing/staffed on projects rather than how you are developing as a consultant
    - Depending on the project, work/life balance can be an issue
    - Travel a lot, but that also depends on the project

    Advice to Management

    Place more emphasis on placing consultants on the right project based on their interests/experience, rather than placing them on projects just so they can bill.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Great company, great benefits"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Designer in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Designer in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    • Competitive Salary
    • Lots of educational opportunities
    • Long vacation time (everyone gets around 30 days off a year)
    • Great benefits
    • Some programs offer business casual attire

    Cons

    • Budgets can sometimes get cut and educational opportunities and resources can get minimized
    • If you are a consultant you basically have to find your own work. You are in charge of your destiny within IBM

    Advice to Management

    invest in more educational opportunities for your employees!


  3. "Too Big to Fail or to have to be honest."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Account Executive in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at IBM full-time (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    Large company - Lots of potential opportunity if you leverage politics correctly. The key is there are a LOT of politics in this organization. IF you are in sales for instance the politics will help your solution get sold over a much better fit solution (right solution) simply because you have that relationship with the appropriate client executive in an account.

    Cons

    Large company - Too large. Right Hand and Left Hand have no idea what each is doing - Lots of wallowing and floundering and reinvention of the wheel here. Don't expect to make $ in Sales here as big blue is constantly changing your comp plan -even, and particularly mid term- to ensure you are not getting the full benefit of your hard work. Recently I won a large deal and expected a sizable, mid 5 figures, commission payment based on the "IBM Commissions calculator" but ended up receiving just over 4 figures instead, because the plan was changed about 3/4 of the way through the quarter...Even executive level within sales has told me that IBM is making sure their sales people do not make too much money....Thats not a good sign. More people on my team that know nothing about what they are selling that do...Knowledgable well experienced people (50ish in particular) being cut loose. Then they(mgmt) wonders why they aren't hitting their numbers.
    --Benefits are VERY expensive - more than doubled from the cost before they acquired the small company I was with previously. This also resulted in IBM apparently selectively deciding what will or will not be paid for in terms of pharmaceuticals. Myself and my wife both had expensive prescriptions that big blue will not allowed to be covered under their best plan. Last year the 401k match plan was changed to include a stipulation that you must complete the year or there is no match AT ALL, whether you leave on your own or they are downsizing or whatever the case is. Many just downsized 15 DAYS short of the term will get NO MATCH. IBM is the perfect example of corporate greed and lack of ethics. Combine this with the fact that the right and left hands are clueless of each other and you would be nuts to work here unless you are starving.

    Advice to Management

    The reason IBM is struggling is because you keep making major changes to things that have been proven to work or finally had started to work. You are, without thought or reason, cutting people and process loose that have built the organizations you keep buying, then wondering why they fail....It's simple - Don't do that anymore....Part of an organization I was acquired from was one of the best $ makers in our IBM division, then IBM dismantled that group to role into another IBM group that had no idea how to run it and it is essentially gone, the people that made it work cast to the wind and IBM wonders why that segment failed. It goes on and on and on.


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  5. "Chaos"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Downers Grove, IL
    Current Employee - Project Manager in Downers Grove, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Cutting edge technology in some divisions, solid values, the usual big company benefits, exposure to world-wide coworkers, change is a constant.

    Cons

    GTS is a complete mess. Executives are scrambling trying to make thing meet expectations that are unrealistic and there is never a mention that the goals could be wrong. There is a complete lack of tools, test environments, reporting, and automation. All of GTS is run on Excel.

    Advice to Management

    Get rid of the folks who do the estimates. They have been wrong for more than a decade. Get some automation for internal use and start eating your own dog food.


  6. Helpful (2)

    "My Experience"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - IT Risk & Compliance Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - IT Risk & Compliance Analyst in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You are allowed to work independently or as the member of a team with minimal supervision.

    Cons

    Management is following the direction from above to reduce costs wherever possible. Unfortunately, this does not align with the company publicly stated goals. While the company states that customer satisfaction is top priority, key resources are stripped from account support teams and moved over to lower cost labor pools overseas. Service quality is reduced, overall morale is low, and many customers are supported by teams that have little or no understanding of the systems that they support.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in current personnel and reestablish the quality of service delivery that IBM was once known for. Quality customer service cannot be automated or replaced with artificial intelligence.


  7. "IBM going through a change of direction"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Some interesting new business directions - AI, Health Care, Analytics

    Cons

    There have be a lot of layoffs recently.

    Advice to Management

    Communicate why your laying off people and what the future holds for them.


  8. Helpful (1)

    "Burnout high"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great horizontal move potential and accessibility to senior leadership

    Cons

    Minimal career development and contact w direct managers

    Advice to Management

    Focus on your people and what they want to do


  9. "Senior Consultant"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at IBM full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    IBM is an excellent company to work for. They have a great support structure and very formal guidelines leading employees down their desired career path. Benefit package is outstanding.

    Cons

    Because there are several hundred thousand employees, it is difficult (not impossible) to be recognized for outstanding effort. It is difficult to 'fast track' up the corporate ladder and depending on the band you are hired into, it may be difficult to receive annual increases.

    Advice to Management

    Flatten the organization structure.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Sinking Ship"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Technology Architect in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Technology Architect in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

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

    Pros

    Good training for new hires. IBM's way is often different than the rest of the industry. Keep educated on what the whole industry is doing.

    Cons

    The ship is sinking. Poor service has alienated many customers and damaged IBM's reputation. People are expendable "resources", costs that can be cut. If you accept a job, do it because it will help your career -- then plan your exit strategy.

    Advice to Management

    Revenue comes from customers, not Wall Street. Return to your values. Remember how business is SUPPOSED to work.


  11. "Exhausting if Consulting is Not Your Thing"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Senior Consultant in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Great compensation, health benefits, employee discounts on a variety of things. Easy for relocation as there are offices just about everywhere in the world. It's been around forever so it's stable in that aspect of job security. Nice 401k match and various financial options, tuition reimbursements, spousal and family perks, etc.

    Cons

    80%+ travel for consultants, which can be very draining if it's not your thing. Very poor work-life balance. The sheer size of the company makes it extremely easy to get lost in the shuffle. Lots of unnecessary bureaucracy and hoop-jumping for things like promotions and performance reviews, although there are signs of an attempt to improve this. Employee site very difficult to navigate.I still don't really know how to answer people who ask me "so what do you actually do?".

    Advice to Management

    Try to simplify your internal processes and resource and knowledge databases, even basic navigation. Give employees a wider range of lateral career options to improve retention and show them you care. Provide internal knowledge building and training.


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