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IBM to cut more jobs in Europe

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After announcing the termination of staff in January, IBM will hand out another round of job cuts according to a statement issued by European Works Council (EWC).

The EWC which represents staff from large European firms said it requested, but did not receive, any insight in the financial business case or master plan of these restructurings from IBM.

The job cut in January affected around 400 staff from IBMs Global Technology Services, Global Business Services and UK Labs.

“The total foreseen headcount impact of this second reduction is almost 50% higher than the first round of job cuts,” said Marc Born, secretary of the EWC in the statement.  “The combined impact of both restructuring actions varies by country, but primarily Western-European countries are confronted with reductions which sometimes exceed 10% to 15% of current staff.”

Over the past three and a half years,  the technology giant had conducted almost ten restructuring actions in Europe, which sliced roughly 25% of jobs in especially the Western-European countries.

The latest round of sacking, had attracted much attention on the package that IBM is offering staff.

According to Born, the latest round of sackings is taking a stronger focus on “involuntary reductions”.

He noted that in some European countries, IBM is only providing the absolute minimum notice period or payment packages to staff members who are shown the door.

The involuntary approach triggers extremely negative sentiments, unrest, stress and disengagement amongst the European workforce.

ALSO READ: CIMB cuts 65 jobs across Singapore, Hong Kong, India

In various European countries, IBM employees have started to share their views in blogs and write for example that “their executive community have found new and exciting ways to screw employees into the ground”.

It is heard that employees and representative bodies in various European countries are considering suing the tech giant.

“To the EWC, this is not acceptable,” said Born. “The EWC wonders if IBM is aware of the destructive impact of the chosen approach to the company’s brand image and reputation. The EWC believes that IBMers should leave the company as ambassadors, not as opponents or enemies.”

According to ChannelRegister, which first reported the IBM lay-off plans, payoffs are now being calculated on the statutory minimum as required by government.

This is unlike past programmes when staff said they were offered better leaving terms, in both voluntary and involuntary exits.

IBM is to reportedly give workers under 22 years old half a week’s salary for every full year of service, while for those between the ages of 22 and 41, the firm will pay one week for every full year worked.

For staff aged 41 and above, the computing giant is to offer one-and-a-half weeks’ wages for every year worked. The length of service is said to be capped at 20 years, with the maximum payment being £14,250.

An IBM spokesperson told IBTimes UK: “IBM has begun a consultation process with employee representative groups. IBM continually remixes skills – our clients expect no less as they look to IBM to help them take advantage of innovations and new technologies. Globally, IBM continues to invest in skills needed for the future.”

ALSO READ: IBM expected to axe employees

Image: Shutterstock

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