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IBM to Humiliate 20% of Workforce?

IBM to Humiliate 20% of Workforce?
by Daniel Nenni on 01-25-2015 at 7:00 am

 There are four big technology companies that I grew up with: Intel, Apple, Microsoft, and IBM. I still follow all four but it is sometimes hard to watch. Last week there was talk of a massive layoff at IBM and I have just confirmed it with my Upstate sources. According to an article in Forbes it will be 25% of the more than 400,000 workforce. According to my sources it will be closer to 20% but that is still more than 80,000 people who will lose their jobs. IBM is calling it a volunteer Transition to Retirement (T2R) which is a nice name for being terminated I guess. You can read about IBM’s 11[SUP]th[/SUP] quarter of declining revenue HEREbut take some aspirin first.

Let’s take a look at what happened after the x86 Server Division acquisition by Lenovo last October. Here is a comment from Alliance@ IBM (the official IBM Employees’ Union website) that suggests IBM “stuffed” the acquisition with employees that should not have been included:

Comment 01/06/15: Just heard from a former co-worker who was transitioned to Lenovo last year… As they returned to work for 2015 on 1/5/15 approximately 70% of the IBM’ers who transitioned to Lenovo as part of the System X buyout were told that they would be offered a package if they leave voluntarily. The majority of folks affected are said to be in the Development group. Folks in development who have been with IBM for 15 years are being offered one year of salary plus a year of health benefits. Folks outside development who had been with IBM for 25 years are being offered the same package. People who received the notice have one week to decide, if they volunteer to leave then their last day will be January 30th. If not enough people volunteer to leave then Lenovo will likely do mandatory layoffs. Lenovo is blaming IBM for sending too many duplicate and non-essential positions over with the buyout and not adequately reporting on what folks actually did relating to System X. I believe this to be accurate based on things I saw during the phase to “determine if you were in scope for the transition”. Our manager at the time told us you had to work on System X for at least 51% of your time to even be considered, but friends in other divisions were saying that people on their teams who didn’t even touch System X were being sent over. The common factor (anecdotal) was the person’s age. The theory at the time: “let the layoff be on Lenovo’s books and spare IBM from further claims of ageism”

You gotta love open forums! They are the best sources of information, absolutely. If you read some of the more recent comments you will see other claims of IBM abusing senior staff with Performance Improvement Programs as a motivation for the T2R “volunteer” program.

Comment 01/23/15: I’m also on T2R —- was planning to retire at the end of this year. I also got a 3 today without warning and told I would need to be on a PIP. Totally shocked. According to the T2R documentation, we are exempt from resource actions but not performance based termination. I think IBM is trying to figure out a way to get rid of us all early.

The question I have is: How is this T2R going to affect the IBM Semiconductor Operations acquisition by GlobalFoundries? If I was GF I would be VERY wary of employee stuffing!

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