IBM Reviews in Ottawa, ON | Glassdoor

IBM Ottawa Reviews

Updated September 25, 2018
107 reviews

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Ottawa, ON, Canada Area (Canada)

4.0
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IBM CEO Virginia Rometty
Virginia Rometty
35 Ratings

107 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • "Bad work life balance in the company" (in 1049 reviews)

  • "Low salary increments since last 2 years" (in 488 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Great Employer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Very flexible work/life balance
    Great benefits
    Great opportunities for those constantly challenging themselves

    Cons

    Slow raises and easy to get lost as a number in such a large company


  2. "Good coop"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Intern - Core Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Intern - Core Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook

    I worked at IBM as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Good team and lots of learning

    Cons

    The work isn't all that exiciting

  3. "Great Experience!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Former Intern - Front End Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Intern - Front End Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)

    I worked at IBM as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    The product is fairly interesting insofar as it is a large and non-trivial user interface, with a lot of different components interacting with one another. As such it is a great learning experience.

    The work life balance was great and included the opportunity to work remotely on occasion.
    The team was excellent in terms of both their onboarding/ramp up process, and their mentorship throughout.

    Competitive compensation.

    Free gym membership and personal trainer

    Occasional social outings covered by the company

    Cons

    I ended up mostly working on defects (with a bit of QA). Would have been nice to do feature development as well, but the whole team was in a defect fixing mode during the entirety of my stay.
    The onsite food is not free or (so far as I can tell) subsidized.


  4. "Not cool but it pays the bills."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

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

    Pros

    Excellent pay, very good managers, lots of opportunities to move within the company and try new things.

    Cons

    No real culture. IBM has the issues with any large company, opaque leadership decision making, not much individual pride in products.


  5. "Software Developer coop"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Developer Coop in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Software Developer Coop in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at IBM (Less than a year)

    Pros

    amazing team, amazing food, amazing coffee

    Cons

    nothing,nothing ,nothing, nothing nothing


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Solid employer, good job experience"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Technical Curriculum Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Technical Curriculum Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

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

    Pros

    Multitude of resources available
    Supportive of learning and personal development
    Very competitive salaries
    Good work/life balance

    Cons

    Large company, so some processes take a little longer, or have more red tape


  7. "Cognos Technical Analyst"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Intern - Cognos Technical Support Analyst in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Intern - Cognos Technical Support Analyst in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at IBM as an intern (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Competitive Salary and excellent working environment

    Cons

    Inefficient and hierarchical system makes things slow

    Advice to Management

    Excellent employer to try as an intern

  8. "Software Developer"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Intern - Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Intern - Software Developer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)

    I worked at IBM as an intern (More than a year)

    Pros

    Good company culture and mentors

    Cons

    Lack of freedom to choose tasks


  9. Helpful (1)

    "unrewarding"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Developing Software in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Current Employee - Developing Software in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

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

    Pros

    salary, benefits, flex hours, friendly collegues

    Cons

    - poor project planning,
    - poor coordination between teams,
    - weak management team, unable to strategically plan and coordinate resulting in chaos, which falls onto the backs of the developers to soft out and save the day (and not be rewarded for that)
    - poor hiring standards (low competency)
    - managers rarely care about people they manage, professional assessments are arbitrary
    - degree of professionalism is low, IBM used to have a very strong engineering and innovation leadership, not anymore - it dissipated in the last 8-10 years; uses 20 year technologies, slow to adopt new things
    - does not reward passion, in many cases managers of the type "steal the credit, shift the blame", environment tends to get political
    - keeps cutting essential services - HR, IT are cut and moved to a site in a different city
    - work is boring
    - environment is gender bias
    - very bureaucratic
    - lots of process overhead (e.g. annual re-certifications "how not to get bribed" trainings)
    - talent is fleeing the company

    Advice to Management

    - start caring , make sure your managers are technical and understand the effort and competencies required to get tasks done;
    - pay attention and reward engineering talent - mugs and t-shirts don't get people inspired, they don't foster talent,
    - focus on fare assessments, make sure these aren't pulled out thin air,
    - make banding definition formal and transferable across teams, add peer reviews. Reward passion


  10. Helpful (4)

    "Not good for acquisitions"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Former Employee - Software Engineer in Ottawa, ON (Canada)
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at IBM full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Personal responsibility for training
    People can give appreciation rewards to colleagues

    Cons

    Too much cost-cutting
    Bureaucracy is overwhelming, particularly for acquisitions
    Leadership at the top needs to be changed

    Advice to Management

    Better leadership needed


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