January 5, 2009

Rumor: Massive layoffs are coming to IBM later this month

An unofficial online employee Web site,, says massive layoffs are coming to Big Blue later this month, according to Times Herald-Record.

“All divisions in IBM will be affected,” says one entry, adding the majority of those cuts will be announced Jan. 23.

“Several more posts say approximately 16,000 employees, mostly in the U.S., will be affected.”

  • IBM has more than 386,000 employees worldwide, according to its Web site. If the rumored 16,000 figure proves accurate, then, it would equal roughly a 4% reduction in headcount.

IBM’s been cutting people every couple of weeks, but they’re small, silent cuts. What we’re concerned about is a massive one, according to various insider sources.

Update: Union tries to organize IBM workers

Update 1 (Jan 06, 2008): IBM Employees Buzzing About Layoff Rumors

Update 2 (Jan 11, 2009): IBM approves Obama’s IT stimulus package; $30bn will create 900,000 jobs, healthy IBM

Rumor (Jan 19, 2009): Massive layoff packages offered on 1/27

Update 3 (Jan 19, 2009): Stress levels rise at IBM as word of job cuts swirls

Update 4 (Jan 20, 2009):

  • Several sources warn of imminent job cuts announcement.
  • IBM Profit Tops Forecast; Outlook Better than Expected, according to CNBC: “The guidance of $9.20 is awesome… looks like their outsourcing, packaging, cost containment strategy is working. They executed really well..”

Update 5 (Jan 21, 2009):

  • According to rumor, IBM started to cut sales and engineering positions in US.
  • The arguably more-important indicator of IBM’s performance — its top line — fell 6.4%, according to WSJ

Update  6 (Jan 22, 2008):

  • IBM confirms job layoffs: “28 out of 45 cut,” according to a another entry, from Austin, Texas. “Young and old, top and bottom performers. Never show me great 4Q numbers again.”, according to Betanews
  • IBM employees reported yesterday that the layoffs are already happening in IBM software and distribution divisions in the US and Canada, according to multiple news sources

Update 7 (March 11, 2009): Scattered layoffs in IBM can touch 4,600

Update 8 (March 25, 2009): IBM to Cut 5,000 U.S. Jobs, Shifting Work to India

~ Please feel free to comment this info and/or send us your updates regarding IBM layoffs. ~


  1. […] Mass Layoffs at IBM in January 2009 Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Rumors: IBM plans Mass Layoffs of 16,000Chasing Value: No layoffs at United Parcel […]

    Pingback by Today’s Hot Layoff Topics « — January 11, 2009 @ 2:35 pm | Reply

  2. Please let me know if this rumor is true. Most likely massive layoffs would eventually happen. Massive Layoffs means …bailout? just a guess.

    Comment by ultimoAdios — January 13, 2009 @ 12:10 am | Reply

  3. #2, stay tuned for the topic updates then

    Comment by DF — January 13, 2009 @ 12:47 am | Reply

  4. Probably sending those jobs to India. What else is new? These companies should be brought up on charges of destroying our national security, entire economy and fined huge fees for giving US jobs to people in India and China and elsewhere. This bullshit needs to stop now.

    Comment by Mike — January 14, 2009 @ 7:39 am | Reply

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    Comment by T — January 14, 2009 @ 8:35 am | Reply

  6. By leaks from inside (Richmond, VA): technical support seems safe for now

    Comment by DF — January 15, 2009 @ 8:05 pm | Reply

  7. Massive layoff packages offered on 1/27. Stand by….

    Comment by Anony Mouse — January 19, 2009 @ 2:17 am | Reply

  8. […] Rumor: Massive layoffs are coming to IBM later this month An unofficial online employee Web site,, says massive layoffs are coming to Big Blue later this month, […] […]

    Pingback by Top Posts « — January 19, 2009 @ 4:31 pm | Reply

  9. The layoffs are real. The managers in Software Group are laying off employees today. I have this confirmed from my manager and from 2 other managers within software group.

    Comment by Chock — January 21, 2009 @ 12:17 pm | Reply

  10. This is the 2nd round on layoffs in the last few months – about 300 people in software group went at the beginning of Dec and now they’re culling the sales teams. I’m hearing about 10% of US software sales people are gone along with ‘almost all’ of the sale team.
    This is a significant cut in sales people which is combined with the usual massive quota increases – and management wonder why moral is low….

    Comment by Ex-IBM — January 21, 2009 @ 1:23 pm | Reply

  11. The key is to survive the layoff by keeping the impact as low as possible. the best way to ride this wave is to be prepared for the extreme . I firmly believe in the Murphy’s Law especially the 3rd one, ” Whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and at the worst possible time, in the worst possible way”

    if any one interested in a no-nonsense game of “layoff survival” check out , a fun way to see different options to survive layoff.

    Comment by ban Jovi — January 21, 2009 @ 3:23 pm | Reply

  12. I really wouldn’t doubt that this is true. IBM has some great commercials, but I doubt it’ll save ’em.

    Comment by spinnakerjksc — January 21, 2009 @ 3:35 pm | Reply

  13. I’m in the software group, and there were layoffs today. We lost one of our team and all the positions (3-4) that we had that were still open. About 10% of our team all told. I think we got off lucky, only because we were already running understaffed due to attrition.

    Comment by Staying for now — January 21, 2009 @ 6:16 pm | Reply

  14. #5: Is this ‘plan B’ (‘B’ stands for’Bangalore’)?

    Comment by DF — January 21, 2009 @ 6:39 pm | Reply

  15. Yes, I can confirm layoffs are starting to happen for IBM USA. I’m aware of them in Software Group.

    Comment by Jules — January 22, 2009 @ 6:48 am | Reply

  16. Interesting how it seems the layoffs are mostly in the US. I guess no one values our purchasing power globally anymore. The more US workers laid off – the less imported (or local) products and services bought. But I guess that doesn’t matter to the businesses IBM supports. This recession is a depression done in a way that the eggheads have never seen before so the models and numbers are out the window.

    For years the global corporations and government have had this mentality about the bottom line. Whatever it takes to get there matters the periphery doesn’t. Well, you cant simply reduce people’s salaries in major technical job sectors, or export millions of factory jobs, or bring in tons of cheap labor and replace the natives here without it impacting tax revenues, purchasing power, and other basic things to a growing economy. Both have created a situation where to import goods and services is cheaper than building or having them here locally, but its slow mtion suicide. When we try to export the same we are faced with resistance and taxes from our global trading partners. Its all come home to roost. Get this song on your radio station today!!!!

    Comment by Madia — January 22, 2009 @ 7:41 am | Reply

  17. “Interesting how it seems the layoffs are mostly in the US. I guess no one values our purchasing power globally anymore. The more US workers laid off – the less imported (or local) products and services bought. But I guess that doesn’t matter to the businesses IBM supports. This recession is a depression done in a way that the eggheads have never seen before so the models and numbers are out the window.”

    I think this is purely as US workers are easiest to lay-off. Lack of labor laws in the US.

    Comment by Anon — January 22, 2009 @ 9:22 am | Reply

  18. I think US workers are easiest to get laid-off. Lack of cheap labor in US is the reason.

    Comment by Drgunzet — January 23, 2009 @ 2:15 am | Reply

  19. IBM has over the years developed a case of organizational bloat. They have been doing ‘redistribution’ of jobs offshore wherever they can. Everyone who gets laid off now has my whole hearted sympathies of course, but hey, IBM’s got to do what they got to do.

    Comment by dogwithoutabone — January 23, 2009 @ 7:04 am | Reply

  20. very sad news

    Comment by Hira — January 23, 2009 @ 10:00 am | Reply

  21. I cannot imagine how these people who get laid off will survive in the current economy. There aren’t many jobs available.

    One of my friends just got laid off and got a package saying that they will help them find a job in China.

    Comment by JOE — January 23, 2009 @ 3:43 pm | Reply

  22. If I had to put a wager on who would do a better job (money not being a problem), I would put that on an American Programmer.

    That said, I believe that it is easy to get an Indian Visa and live in India. There are some Indian companies that are hiring in Bangalore… Infosys and Wipro to be specific.

    It may be worth for us Americans to work there if we can afford mortgages for 1 year. It is global experience after all.

    I hear that Indian Aviation has our of work American pilots because they couldnt get jobs with AA, UA etc… May be worth thrying the IT sector too.

    Comment by Brutal Reality — January 23, 2009 @ 5:05 pm | Reply

  23. @22 Brutal Reality
    its quite funny that this is now an option ! What abt the H1Bs coming to the US ?

    Comment by Matrixguy — January 24, 2009 @ 11:18 pm | Reply

  24. […] Dan ada rumor bahwa IBM berencana sejumlah 16.000 karyawan […]

    Pingback by Tren Teknologi Informasi dalam Resesi Global « Ha–Dhiku–suma Wahab Blog — January 24, 2009 @ 11:52 pm | Reply

  25. A statistical analysis has been performed on data for the four “software engineer” categories from IBM’s list of people being laid off. It shows that older workers are more than twice as likely to be let go than younger ones (at 1% and 5% significance). This information is being passed on to the law firm representing the IBM employees let go, in exploration of a class action lawsuit.

    The numbers thus far do not reach 16000, but another wave is coming in June.

    Another rumor is that the IBM plant in Burlington, VT is in trouble – they are operating at only 15% of capacity. A semiconductor fab cannot maintain quality nor profitability at even double that level. If this is true, IBM will soon be faced with the need to sell off their last manufacturing capabilities.

    Comment by Physicist — January 25, 2009 @ 4:32 pm | Reply

  26. Physicist – Is this really true about someone looking into a class action lawsuit? I was RA’d October 2008 with a last day of 12/1, and now my spouse has received the RA notice with a last day of 2/23. Both of us from SWG, S&D. Both of us are in the 55 and older crowd, with my spouse just about at retirement. We both felt that older workers were being let go on a larger scale, but there didn’t seem to be a way to prove it. I am angry. I wasn’t before, but I am now. We have saved money for retirement, but that will go downhill very fast, and without a quick turnaround, I truly fear we will lose everything. And we are not people who just go out and spend everything we have.

    Comment by exibmer — January 25, 2009 @ 11:59 pm | Reply

  27. […] Seattle HQ the rest will be within the regions and “field” employees Autodesk: 750 IBM: Rumored to be 16,000 Home Depot: 7000 Ericsson: 5000 Pfizer and Wyeth: 8000 combined jobs after […]

    Pingback by Getting MUCH worse before it gets better | How To Fix America! — January 26, 2009 @ 11:37 am | Reply

  28. Everyone at ibm who doesn’t get ra’d is scared anyhow. It’s not fun working there always wondering if you’re next. They see their friends get ra’d, they wonder “why them and not me?” they see top performers get ra’d and they wonder again, “why them and not me?” on top of that, the ones that remain are reminded that they can also just as easily get ra’d and their work load and pressure is doubled. I would rather collect unemployment and use their education money than work their making little money compared to other companies in the industry, working 12 hour days, sacrificing relationships for my extensive workload only to get ra’d.

    Comment by dontcareforibm — January 26, 2009 @ 10:37 pm | Reply

  29. It’s true…it’s happening today across marketing as well in the US. I find it interesting that the major media is staying quiet.

    Comment by anon — January 27, 2009 @ 8:29 am | Reply

  30. There does seem to me to be a heavy lean toward experienced older workers. The package includes a list of title/age of those RA’d and, without adding it up, it seems very tilted toward those who have been around. That being said; there are definitely young workers included and, in my case, it seems that I and a few of my coworkers were selected based on a reorganization of the Hardware sales organization. Either way, they do seem to be doing it in a sneaky way and I too am curious why there isn’t more in the news about it. You would think that they could get more PR by being the company that is making an effort to keep people employed than to spill thousands more into a crummy job environment. BTW, I’ve been with IBM for 11+years and over-achieved my numbers by almost 100% in 2009 and got cut…go figure

    Comment by Anonymous — January 27, 2009 @ 5:36 pm | Reply

  31. Has there been any update on this topic of layoffs at IBM.
    These are tough times for some comanies now.

    Comment by mayhemgod — January 29, 2009 @ 7:57 am | Reply

    “IBM WILL DO layoff engineer designate without BE/BTECH”

    Comment by samual — February 4, 2009 @ 5:49 am | Reply

  33. IBM layoff people with seperation packages (stating about performance). All gymics. IBM is letting go employess with a gymic about performance.

    Comment by Anonymous — February 4, 2009 @ 11:13 am | Reply

  34. Amazing how they have people fighting over the positions, even willing to go to India or China (I assume none of you have family), while the executives make mega salaries. They are the ones who fail, outsource them.

    Comment by myphotoscout — February 4, 2009 @ 4:47 pm | Reply

  35. I amazed at who it is who decides the layoffs. Obviously those at the upper management. Aren’t they the ones who have these outrageous expenditures on transportation, retreats, entertainment budget etc and then “cook” up the books to mislead the rest of us? They are the ones that still get perks, bonuses etc.
    Its not just IBM but the banks, Kodak, Xerox, and the big box companies that are laying off hard working employees, some with little children and family who are uninsurable because of health reasons. How do they manage without health insurance?
    Anyone out there who could give advice to these laid off workers?

    Comment by ipo — February 5, 2009 @ 4:37 am | Reply

  36. am still hanging in here, just, sorry to all you guys/girls who have gone, yes you are correct about the senior mngt/execs. 30 plus years and IBM are very very greedy, whats goes around, comes around

    Comment by michael — February 6, 2009 @ 7:30 am | Reply

  37. What is the severance package at IBM layoff?

    Comment by FD — February 6, 2009 @ 9:33 am | Reply

  38. extract, Palmisano with our President.

    In the past several days, I have been in contact with dozens of business leaders across the country. I know I speak for them when I say that we stand together in supporting your goals, Mr. President.

    To re-ignite economic growth…
    To create not just jobs, but 21st century jobs…
    To invest in ways that build the basis of future competitiveness for the U.S.
    There is no reason to undertake projects simply for the sake of activity. Rather than simply stimulate, let’s seize this opportunity to transform our country’s infrastructure and economy… to create more and better jobs… and to develop new and more valuable skills.

    WHO IS KIDDING WHO, here Sam

    Comment by anibmer — February 7, 2009 @ 1:21 pm | Reply

  39. IBM is having employee account with ICICI(another instable company).Employee with mimimum 4 lakh per annum on average went for 20lakh loan for apartment/home through ICICI. Alredy 50%-60% cut in performance linked salary.EMI may be 18 To 20 thousand per month.Slary itself is less thnan 20,000/- PER all eemployees are panic.

    Comment by ramkumar — February 7, 2009 @ 10:21 pm | Reply

  40. more layoffs for IBM next week… and then more in June…. stay tuned….

    Comment by anon — February 26, 2009 @ 5:14 pm | Reply

  41. f*ck IBM maybe they should move the entire company to INDIA.
    worthless POS’s they are..

    Comment by OHBOY — March 25, 2009 @ 10:10 am | Reply

  42. I can confirm this – I was notified today MY job went to ARGENTINA! I hate this company and hope for it’s complete failure.

    Another thing…Has anyone else noticed that here in the ol’ USA we can’t STOP Latin Americans from getting in to this country and we can’t stop our JOBS from GOING to Latin America?

    Lets here it for that POS OBAMA and his POS “stimulus” plan to wipe out middle class america right before our eyes.

    I’d like to say more but I might get arrested if I did.

    jeeeeeeez uzzzzzzzzz

    Comment by stiletto81 — March 26, 2009 @ 5:07 pm | Reply

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