Report: More layoffs planned at IBM

Posted March 25, 2009

— Thursday will be a bleak one for Big Blue workers, according to The Wall Street Journal and Alliance@IBM, the union seeking to represent IBM workers.

In RTP, some 300 people will be cut as part of what IBM (NYSE: IBM) calls a “resource action,” Alliance@IBM has been told. The union is already labeling March 26 as “Black Thursday.”

“Rumor of 4,000 being fired,” Alliance@IBM coordinator Lee Conrad told Local Tech Wire and “Off-shoring jobs,” he added.

A comment section at the union Web site also contains numerous posts warning about layoffs. The comments are from people who say they work at IBM. IBM employs some 11,000 people in RTP, one of its largest employee campuses in the world.

The Journal reported Wednesday afternoon that IBM is cutting jobs in the global businesses services, or GBS, unit in the U.S. and the responsibilities will be shifted overseas, including India. The GBS unit is IBM’s largest with some 180,000 employees.

As the newspaper noted, IBM is off-shoring jobs despite a 12 percent increase in profits in the fourth quarter to more than $4.4 billion despite the global recession. IBM also has forecast revenue growth for 2009.

Various media outlets also have reported recently that IBM could acquire rival Sun Microsystems in a deal worth some $8 billion.

The newspaper cited a “person familiar with the situation.”

IBM seldom announces or confirms layoffs.

Big Blue, which recently cut thousands of jobs in its software, sales, semiconductor and finance work groups, reduced its U.S. work force by 6,000 while adding 18,000 jobs overseas in 2008. Of nearly 400,000 employees, some 115,000 are based in the U.S.

IBM declined comment about the rumors, according to the Journal.

“IBM managers have been receiving training from human-resources specialists on handling the layoffs, according to one manager involved in the process,” the newspaper said.


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  • wrx44 Mar 25, 2009 code is nowhere near as appealing as paying Indians $5k a year for software development jobs versus $60k to Americans.

    That is the MAIN driver for these changes....quit letting your ideology blind you to reality.

  • blisstate Mar 25, 2009

    IBM outsources because it makes more money for the largest shareholders and VIPs. My question is why do the employees help dig there own graves?

  • Ripcord Mar 25, 2009

    "I would love it if EVERY IBM employee in this country failed to show up TOMORROW. Just quit, and find another job."

    Why? To satisfy your emotional response to a business decision?

  • Ripcord Mar 25, 2009

    "IBMs moves are solely based on cheap labor....So the answer is not tax code"

    You think our tax code has nothing to do with moving labor and operations overseas? That's hilarious!

  • protestthis Mar 25, 2009

    No one wants to see this kind of thing happen, but there are certainly no laws preventing this. Is it morally wrong? Yes
    But if they want to put all their eggs in that basket - so be it - everytime I have to talk to support and it's someone who can barely speak english - thats another product i won't buy again.

  • wrx44 Mar 25, 2009 point was not about the free point was IBM is outsourcing jobs cause they are cheaper in India....accordingly the executive jobs should be cheaper there too...why are those jobs not going to India as well? a "free market"...they should, right?

    Whatelseisnew.....yeah infrastructure...soon as they can find labor cheaper than India....all that "infrastructure" will be moved to whatever country fits the bill...It is a cheap labor play...the americans train the Indians, and then are fired. Simple as that.

  • whatelseisnew Mar 25, 2009

    IBM has been making more money overseas than it has been making in the US for decades. It will be great when they have the U.S. workforce down to bear bones.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Mar 25, 2009

    I would love it if EVERY IBM employee in this country failed to show up TOMORROW. Just quit, and find another job. (Of course that is easier said than done, but I would love it if they did that!)

  • ThisIsMyName Mar 25, 2009

    wrx44, the free market allows the execs to make that much money. Don't complain.

  • TruthBKnown Banned Again02 Mar 25, 2009

    I would never work for IBM. It seems they are laying people off more often than they're hiring. Maybe if NO ONE worked for them, they would be forced to change the way they deal with their employees.

    Hey IBM, if you like offshoring so much, maybe you can offshore your ENTIRE U.S. workforce!