IBM raising axe for 'significant workforce balancing in Europe', says staffer rep council | 6/10/2019 | Staff
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The Global Technology Services division at IBM will bear the brunt of the latest round of bloodletting in Europe, according to a letter from the organisation that helps impacted employees navigate redundancy.

In a letter to staff mid-May, seen by The Register, the European Works Council (EWC) warned of "significant workforce balancing" across the region.

Action - Note - Chairman - Backfill - Result

"This action will be largely voluntary," the note stated, adding: "The Chairman made it clear that no backfill will be possible; as a result, the EWC foresees a further increase in workload for the remaining IBMers."

The exact number of volunteers being sought in Europe was not detailed in the document, though IBM admitted late last week that globally around 0.5 per cent of its employee base, some 1,700 heads, will be eased out the door. Watson Health, Cloud and GTS were said to be the major areas forcing through the change.

EWC - Letter - Impact - Headcount - Reduction

The EWC letter stated: "The total planned impact of the current headcount reduction is comparable to the last downsizing in the first quarter of 2018. The impact varies by country and can on average be described best as a low single-digit reduction."

In Q1 last year, IBM put more than 1,100 staff in GTS at risk of redundancy, and more than 500 exited the business in that round.

Operations - UK - Ireland - DACH - Countries

Operations in the UK and Ireland, along with DACH countries (Germany, Austria and Switzerland), are where the "current action" will be "felt mostly", accounting each for "one-fifth of the total reduction across Europe, followed by IBM Nordics".

The EWC said it was "most concerned" by the search for volunteers to take redundancy in "strategic growth areas" including Cloud Platform, Cloud Data Platform, Cognitive Applications and security.

Members - Cloud - Cognitive - Software - Revenue

Members noted "that the Cloud and Cognitive Software revenue of IBM in Europe in the first quarter was not in line with the corporate model. However, if...
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