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United States Businesses Government IBM The Almighty Buck

IBM Promised Domestic Jobs, But is Firing Thousands of US Workers and Moving Some Jobs Overseas (siliconbeat.com) 194

As companies fall all over themselves to hype creation of U.S. jobs, IBM is catching flak for promising thousands of new ones while firing folks right and left. From a report: Company CEO Ginni Rometty said in a December USA Today op-ed that her firm would hire 25,000 people for U.S. positions in the next four years, 6,000 of them this year. "She didn't mention that International Business Machines Corp. was also firing workers and sending many of the jobs overseas," reports Bloomberg. Big Blue wrapped up its third round of 2016 firings -- or "resource actions" in IBM HR parlance -- in late November, and job losses for the year likely totaled in the thousands, current and former employees told Bloomberg. Many of the jobs were shipped to Asia and Eastern Europe, and the firings have continued into this year, employees said.
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IBM Promised Domestic Jobs, But is Firing Thousands of US Workers and Moving Some Jobs Overseas

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  • Trump! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:01AM (#53727887)

    Another Trump victory! All hail the chief!

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Desler ( 1608317 )

      Fake news! Fake news! These are clearly economic leftovers from " /s

    • Re:Trump! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by jebrick ( 164096 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @11:12AM (#53728347)

      Another Trump victory! All hail the chief!

      Companies are adjusting their PR to give Trump apparent wins so he will lay off of them. Ford did the same thing. Both companies have had their plans set for a year or more but the PR changes. Yes IBM is hiring American workers in place A and yes they are laying off more American workers in place B to expand over seas.

      • Another Trump victory! All hail the chief!

        Companies are adjusting their PR to give Trump apparent wins so he will lay off of them. Ford did the same thing. Both companies have had their plans set for a year or more but the PR changes. Yes IBM is hiring American workers in place A and yes they are laying off more American workers in place B to expand over seas.

        The truth is the truth. One year to find a plant site, one year to get plans, one year for licenses and then financement. A new plant is probably a 8 year project

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Tomorrow Trump will just announce IBM has just created 250,000 US positions after talking to him that morning....

      He's a professional fraudster. Do you think he can't just make up a few numbers, while he can bar any government agencies from saying anything that contradicts his lies? He can both lie, and conceal the lies now!

      e.g.
      Trump: "I spend $196 million refurbishing the Washington Post Pavillion", this is the number he tells the "National Capital Planning Commission".

      Yet documents filed with the "National

    • Re:Trump! (Score:5, Funny)

      by tobiasly ( 524456 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @11:30AM (#53728467) Homepage

      Another Trump victory! All hail the chief!

      I'm sure it's all just a misunderstanding about the facts; job size numbers are very difficult to estimate accurately. I expect him to send out a tweet any minute now to clear it all up.

      • Re:Trump! (Score:4, Informative)

        by Baloroth ( 2370816 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @12:07PM (#53728775)

        I mean, I'm not Trump supporter (by any means), but from the original Bloomberg report:

        In late November, IBM completed at least its third round of firings in 2016, according to former and current employees. They don't know how many people have lost their jobs but say it's probably in the thousands, with many of the positions shipped to Asia and Eastern Europe.

        Or, in other words, TFA has absolutely zero numbers on how many people were actually fired. They instead asked employees to estimate how many of their fellow employees they thought were fired. No facts, no figures, pure 100% speculation from employees who we have no reason to suspect know anything at all about how many people were actually fired. It might be true, but there's precisely zero evidence that it is, and it's being reported like a well-sourced fact. Modern day journalism, everybody.

  • by Nidi62 ( 1525137 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:06AM (#53727909)
    You thought IBM meant 25,000 net jobs?
  • That's 25,000 overseas people to replace U.S. positions.
  • by sjbe ( 173966 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:16AM (#53727973)

    Just a reminder that the name of the company is INTERNATIONAL Business Machines, not American Business Machines. Just because the company is based in the US doesn't mean it will necessarily hire people in the US. IBM gets roughly 65% of their revenue outside the US. One would expect their staffing to reflect that fact.

    I am NOT trying to defend IBM's actions. Merely pointing out that they aren't necessarily surprising and without more context it's hard to make an informed judgement about them. I'm all for the home team but that may or may not make sense for that particular company.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      That's not what International means.

      "International companies have no foreign direct investments (FDI) and make their product or service only in their home country. In other words, they're exporters and importers. They have no staff, warehouses, or sales offices in foreign countries. The best examples of international companies, in the strict sense, are exotic retail shops that sell imported products, or small local manufacturers that export to neighboring countries." : http://www.cbsnews.com/news/get-your-i

    • Thanks for ruining the bitchfest.

    • by Zontar_Thing_From_Ve ( 949321 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:31AM (#53728051)
      You probably don't know this, but IBM is also protecting US based management jobs while they are letting US based employees hit the bricks. Were you aware of that? I have a sort of relative by marriage (related to someone related to me through marriage) and he's been in middle management at IBM for probably at least 20 years now. IBM will keep him around forever even as they lay off other US based employees where he works. I'm guessing that maybe they make these people remotely manage foreign employees, but he hasn't given a lot of details and I rarely see him. I only know that he's said he has zero worries about ever losing his job there. A lot of what IBM is doing doesn't actually make a lot of sense. It's just designed to prop up the stock value.
      • by Thud457 ( 234763 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:43AM (#53728123) Homepage Journal
        ob:

        two lions escape from the zoo, split up to increase their chances but agreed to meet after 2 months.
        When they finally meet, one is skinny and the other overweight.
        The thin one says: "How did you manage? I ate a human just once and they turned out a small army to chase me â" guns, nets, it was terrible. Since then Iâ(TM)ve been reduced to eating mice, insects, even grass."
        The fat one replies: "Well, *I* hid near an IBM office and ate a manager a day. And nobody even noticed!"

    • Another reminder: IBM has been going down the shitter for over a decade now. Is anyone really that surprised that a once mighty company that divested all of it's actual products probably doesn't need all those people any more?

      People hired IBM consulting in the old days because they also had IBM hardware. Now there isn't any IBM hardware to speak of, so why the fuck would you hire them as consultants? I know I wouldn't hire IBM to consult on someone else's Linux distribution, or someone else's servers.

      I

      • by dcw3 ( 649211 )

        "Another reminder: IBM has been going down the shitter for over a decade now."

        You wouldn't know it by looking at their ten year stock chart. They tanked, like everyone else, during the recession, but are about double their value from 2007. So, if they're not meeting the needs, who's needs are they satisfying to make an ROI?

    • Or you could read TFSummary and see (bold mine)

      that her firm would hire 25,000 people for U.S. positions in the next four years

      That context was not very difficult to find.

      • by plopez ( 54068 )

        layoff 26000 US employees. Hire 25000 workers. Trumpet how you hired 25000 workers

    • Just a reminder that the name of the company is INTERNATIONAL Business Machines, not American Business Machines. Just because the company is based in the US doesn't mean it will necessarily hire people in the US. IBM gets roughly 65% of their revenue outside the US.

      Where their revenue is made is irrelevant. What created the revenue IS relevant. If American-based ingenuity is still their moneymaker, then their hiring practices should reflect that.

      On a directly related note, perhaps the infamous INTERNATIONAL Business Machine organization needs to be reminded of the fact that they continue to rape and pillage revenue by making the UNITED STATES Patent system their bitch to the detriment of innovation itself.

      • by ranton ( 36917 )

        If American-based ingenuity is still their moneymaker, then their hiring practices should reflect that.

        Well that is obviously going to be the case. If US worker ingenuity is building their products, then by definition they are employing US workers. If foreign born ingenuity is building their products, then by definition they are employing foreign workers. I don't understand the point of your comment.

        • If American-based ingenuity is still their moneymaker, then their hiring practices should reflect that.

          Well that is obviously going to be the case. If US worker ingenuity is building their products, then by definition they are employing US workers. If foreign born ingenuity is building their products, then by definition they are employing foreign workers. I don't understand the point of your comment.

          Given the fact that IBM is infamously the largest US Patent whore, I wonder how many foreign lawyers they maintain to help stifle innovation and generate revenue by litigation.

          My comment also relates to why US citizens trained and skilled in IT are being replaced with foreign personnel that hardly qualify for the word "counterpart" in requisite experience. That kind of abuse isn't exclusive to IT, and "cheaper labor" should not be the standard by which the greedy elite line their pockets. They've lobbied

      • Where their revenue is made is irrelevant. What created the revenue IS relevant. If American-based ingenuity is still their moneymaker, then their hiring practices should reflect that.

        Presumably IBM is well aware of the source of their "moneymaker". Probably far better than you and certainly better than me. Show me your evidence that US based talent would provide a better outcome (greater profits) to IBM than what they are doing. Frankly you are talking in unsupported hypothetical ideas rather than evidence based facts.

        Furthermore where their revenue is made is very much a relevant consideration as is the location of the best talent to make it. IBM is a global company and has the res

        • Where their revenue is made is irrelevant. What created the revenue IS relevant. If American-based ingenuity is still their moneymaker, then their hiring practices should reflect that.

          Presumably IBM is well aware of the source of their "moneymaker". Probably far better than you and certainly better than me. Show me your evidence that US based talent would provide a better outcome (greater profits) to IBM than what they are doing. Frankly you are talking in unsupported hypothetical ideas rather than evidence based facts.

          The greedy elite have worked hard to lobby and create legislation and abuse loopholes that allow them to prioritize greater profits by moving jobs away from the country they still consider home. They also abuse the shit out of the UNITED STATES Patent system to literally crush the concept of competition and stifle innovation.

          We know that US based talent will affect profit. Ironically that's a side effect of this thing we used to call The American Dream. The point here is the evidence of lobbying abuse and

          • by ranton ( 36917 )

            Ironically, unending greed will eventually cause the concept of Eat the Rich to become reality, as the unemployed masses look for their just desserts.

            Considering so far it has only led to the unemployed masses putting a billionaire in the White House, I'm fairly certain the wealthy will be able to continue creating bogeymen like immigrants and terrorists to keep the masses from understanding the root causes of their problems. Throwing in the delegitimization of the free press and its nearly impossible for the masses to rally against their oppressors.

            • I really hate to agree, but the masses are simply either too stupid or too misinformed. Things will continue, I suggest doing everything you can for when the results of this greed hit, and they're going to hit soon. They have theirs, why do they care?

          • by dcw3 ( 649211 )

            "The greedy elite have worked hard to lobby .... "

            Um, no. It's simply how business I done because we as a nation have not been forceful enough in getting money out of politics. We've let SCOTUS tell us that companies are people, which has completely subverted the value of the individual voter. Get term limits put in place, and we'll see a lot of this BS change.

            • "The greedy elite have worked hard to lobby .... "

              Um, no. It's simply how business I done because we as a nation have not been forceful enough in getting money out of politics. We've let SCOTUS tell us that companies are people, which has completely subverted the value of the individual voter. Get term limits put in place, and we'll see a lot of this BS change.

              As we both have identified, finding the root cause of the problem (corporations controlling government through lobbying) is not the challenge.

              Harnessing the power to effect real change, is.

        • > What makes US workers such special snowflakes?

          They're special little snowflakes because teacher told them they are.

          Next question?

    • Mod parent up! This is exactly the same situation as with International House of Pancakes, who likewise will be letting go millions of waitstaff and cooks this year, instead hiring people in India and China to do the same work, at a fraction of the cost. Sure, you'll have to yell your order a little louder so they can hear you in India, and wait 7-14 days for your pancakes to be shipped to you from China, but the 2% cut in prices will be worth it.

    • If they want US protections, they play US ball. Even if that means actually having to hire US citizens en masse.

  • by Oswald McWeany ( 2428506 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:28AM (#53728035)

    It's IBM, International Business Machines not DBM, Domestic Business Machines.

    All they're doing is being true to their name. Now if Apple would go back to selling fruit, and Amazon started selling warrior women the world would be less confusing.

    • TFSummary says

      that her firm would hire 25,000 people for U.S. positions in the next four years

      Have we fallen so low that we can't even get to the third sentence in the summary?

    • by 4im ( 181450 )

      And here I thought IBM stood for "I Buy Macintosh"... of course, they've actually been migrating to Apple stuff, lately. The joke is getting old, as am I :-/

  • Six years of jobs coming faster than people. Falling unemployment. Lay-offs all over the place by the tens of thousands, job growth by the millions.

    If you gave someone a million gold coins, they'd only see the scratch in the dusty used bowl you brought them in.

    • by fluffernutter ( 1411889 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:43AM (#53728125)
      Why don't you give me a million gold coins first, and then we'll see what I see in them. Wake up, we're trading good jobs for Uber sleeping in the parking lot jobs. Low unemployment may mean people are desperate and taking whatever they can.
      • Not really. We have a measure for marginal employment (UE, U6--currently around 9.2%) and a measure for full-time employment (UE3). What's left is minimum wage or its replacement with a universal social security.

        All part-time underemployed make up 3.7% of the labor force as of December 2016, with U-3 at 4.7%. In December 2000 (best month in the past 16 years), U-6 was 6.9%, U-5 was 4.7%, and U-3 was 3.9%--so your "Uber sleeping in the parking lot" jobs were 2.2% of the labor force with U-3 at 3.9% and

        • Uber is just the circling vulture over the dead carcasses. How many full time jobs have gone to crap? More work crammed into less hours, a longer commute, higher house prices. How does that show up in your numbers? The productivity of the American worker is declining because they are burnt out. Most people are trying, but they're tired. Then they get pissed off about it and vote for Trump.
          • Housing is actually an odd market. It's not a productive market per se; it's more of a traded commodity, and speculators have convinced homeowners their houses are worth a lot. At the same time, falling mortgage rates mean the $1,200/month you're willing to pay for a house buys a bigger sale price--$350,000 instead of $120,000--so the same house has a higher price, yet comes with the same mortgage payment. You sort of pay about the same either way.

            At the same time, the size of new-construction houses

            • I don't know why a lot of people go on about how we are getting more square footage for the dollar today when we buy a house. What matters to me when I buy a house is the area that it exists in, as well as whether it will work for me. Perhaps 950 square feet worked for a family back then, but today even if I wanted to buy such a small house I would be living under a freeway and not living in an area conducive to family living. So there are limits to the kind of house I can buy today, you cannot ignore it
              • So there are limits to the kind of house I can buy today, you cannot ignore it.

                This is true. You also can't get a car built out of a big block engine tied to an axle with no management systems or safety systems. Besides regulation, you generally can't buy things which aren't in sufficient demand to warrant their production.

                That means the houses which are available are available because they serve a sufficiently-large market--the same proportion of the population as back in 1950, in fact, in terms of affordability and demand.

                The average cost of a car has doubled from $16.5k to $31k and I dare say a vehicle is more expensive to maintain today

                Ha.

                HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

                "A vehicle is more expensive

        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          And the people who have been out of work for 6 months or a year, how are they tracked? What's that number doing?

          FWIW, the unemployment numbers have been "fixed" so many times that I have no trust at all in them. One way the "part-time unemployed" numbers are reduced is by stopping counting them.

          That said, just expect this to get worse. Robots are increasingly cheaper to use than humans for an increasing number of jobs. It's not a steady trend, but it rarely reverses.

          • And the people who have been out of work for 6 months or a year, how are they tracked? What's that number doing?

            That's U-3. They're tracked by knowing the population over age 16 and the jobs taken. When you're legally hired, your employer files identifying documents (SSN, driver's license, etc.--the W-9 stuff) with the IRS. The BLS publishes statistics by counting unique jobholders and comparing that to birth records, death records, immigration records, census, etc. That gives them population, age, and number of employed.

            Persons unemployed who have sought employment in the past 4 weeks are U-3. Persons unempl

    • by plopez ( 54068 )

      And adjusted for inflation, stagnant or dropping wages.

      https://www.weforum.org/agenda... [weforum.org]

      • The median $54,000 income in 2015 buys roughly 42% more than what the median income in 2000 bought.

        The expense share of food and clothing has fallen. At the same time, cars, phones, computers, and other electronic products have become highly-complex. Rather than spending $20 (in 1995) or $10 (in 2005) to buy a CD with 9 songs, you can spend $10/month and have Spotify. Rather than $21 for a DVD, you have Netflix for $9/month. Rather than $35/month for 128k ISDN (1998), you spend $83/month for 200,000k

        • by plopez ( 54068 )

          I notice you didn't mention the price of shelter, education, health care, or transportation. Cars are at the point where people are having problems affording them, https://www.nytimes.com/2016/0... [nytimes.com]. Do I have to even link to stories about health care, education, or housing prices? So what if the new gadget is cheaper. If your wages can't afford those big items you are screwed.

          Your simple model is deeply flawed and doesn't account for things like farmers turning their farms into developments if they can't ge

          • Cars are at the point where people are having problems affording them, https://www.nytimes.com/2016/0 [nytimes.com]... [nytimes.com].

            You linked an article that says cars are more affordable in some cities than others, and that the median-income household can't afford the average price of a new car. That's a statistical trick: you're confounding between different classes. There are economy cars, luxury cars, and loads of things in-between.

            In the real world, families buy lots of new cars. The price paid for a new car is typically 56% of the household income--$30,000 for the median income--financed over a 5-year loan. That's been tru

            • by plopez ( 54068 )

              1) What do you mean by "lots"? Is it growing as fast as the rate of population growth?

              2) Silicon Valley income is over inflated compared to all US wages. Nice job picking the highest paid workers in the US. People in Flint make far less.

              3) Americans get the best health care they can afford or go without. Incomes continue to drop while health care costs rise. Income: http://www.weeklystandard.com/... [weeklystandard.com] and health care costs:
              http://www.weeklystandard.com/... [weeklystandard.com]

              4) If you are making $10 an hour then 600 USD a month

              • What do you mean by "lots"? Is it growing as fast as the rate of population growth?

                That was phrased poorly. Families at all levels buy new cars--that is, "lots". I was intending to indicate that the price of a new car ranges from $12,700 (Ford Focus) to several million dollars, and people at a broad range of income levels actually buy these things. Your basic premise is that people with X amount of income can't buy a "new" car; the fact is they can, but...

                ... the used car market is pretty vibrant; it's always been larger than the new car market, and there's a rather lively dispute be

        • Whenever I see someone like you talking about gadgets like they have anything to do with the quality of life, I think that they must be very very young.
          • Well, gadgets are food--gadgets like pickles, wheat, and the like. Gadgets are clothes--gadgets like shirts, pants, etc. Air conditioning. TV. Medical technology. Cars. Ovens.

            If I strip you naked and drop you into the middle of the African jungle, what's your quality-of-life like?

  • by DeplorableCodeMonkey ( 4828467 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @10:41AM (#53728109)

    Being removed from the GSA schedule for goods and services should be a good wake up call pour encourager les autres. After all, a vendor that is essentially angling itself as a foreign company shouldn't expect federal contracts.

  • by Overzeetop ( 214511 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @11:24AM (#53728415) Journal

    Last year they had only 422,000 jobs in the US, but this year they will be increasing that to 397,000 jobs! It's a win for everyone - more jobs, more cost savings, and 397,000 US jobs. How can you possibly argue with that?

    Oh, and chocolate rations are going up again, too.

  • I figured the 3 or 4 they had left would be gone by now.

  • blacklist from the HB1 system!

    • by plopez ( 54068 )

      We can't get rid of H1Bs,. Where would we get our indentured servants?

      • by creimer ( 824291 )

        Where would we get our indentured servants?

        According to Trump, 96 million Americans are out of work and need jobs. Start with them. You might have to wait for the child labor and retirement laws are repealed to force the youngest and oldest to work. Should have plenty of people in between those two age groups.

  • Was BS all along (Score:4, Informative)

    by rijrunner ( 263757 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @01:05PM (#53729195)

    Ginny stated she would hire 25,000 in the US over the next few years.

    Which is roughly the number of people who would normally retire or otherwise leave IBM over the same timeframe. This was more about backfill than adding positions. (I suspect the number hired would still represent an overall loss to the US employment figures).

  • Gosh, it's almost like they were fibbing...

  • Pfft, this is just leftist nonsense. I prefer the Alternative Fact that everything is just peachy and IBM is hiring locally just as Trump told them to.

  • by TheSync ( 5291 ) on Tuesday January 24, 2017 @02:58PM (#53729999) Journal

    The fact is that IBM just reported its 19th straight quarter of declining revenue. They will have zero jobs soon unless they turn it around.

    IBM cognitive solutions and technology/cloud platforms divisions reported small year-over-year revenue increases. Meanwhile, global business services saw revenues sliding 4% lower, and systems sales came in 12.5% below the year-ago period.

    • hopefully, trump will announce that all CONtacts that were awarded to companies like IBM, GE, etc will be re-bidded and awarded only to American companies.
  • If IBM thinks itself to be invulnerable, time to disabuse them of that notion.

  • "Jobwashing" - Similar to "greenwashing" but updated for the present era.

  • Seriously, the feds can simply stop all contracts with IBM and open them up to American companies.
    And no, Companies like IBM, HP, GE, MS, (increasingly Google), etc are not American companies, but international ones.
    It is time for us to spend our trillions on American companies, just like China does on Chinese companies and Europe does on European companies.

The IBM purchase of ROLM gives new meaning to the term "twisted pair". -- Howard Anderson, "Yankee Group"

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