IBM Employee Benefits Review: Are Their Careers Worth It?

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IBM Employee Benefits Review: Are Their Careers Worth It?

The International Business Machines Corporation (IBM) is a pioneer of the information technology and services industry. Currently headquartered in Armonk, New York, it was founded in 1911 as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording by combining four different companies. The name was changed to IBM later on.

Now the company specializes in cloud computing, computer software, computer hardware, and artificial intelligence. Present in 177 countries across the world, IBM currently has over 360,000 employees. The company is ranked at 38 on the Fortune 500 and had a revenue of $79.591 billion in 2018.

If you’re looking for an IBM job, continue reading to learn more about IBM’s employee benefits.

IBM Employee Benefits Team


Diane Gherson – Chief Human Resources Officer

Diana Giberson was promoted to Senior VP and CHRO of IBM in June 2013. She initially joined IBM as the VP of compensation and benefits in 2002. Currently, she oversees the entire HR functions of the company, making her responsible for the entire 360,000-person workforce in all 177 countries.

Before IBM, she worked as the Principal & Global Practice Leader at Towers Perrin (now Towers Watson) for 11 years.

Gherson completed her BA (Hons) in Political Science in 1978 from the University of Toronto. She then completed her MILR in & Labor Relations from Cornell University and was elected as the Fellow of the NAHR (National Academy of Human Resources).

Find Diana Gherson on:


What are IBM’s Employee Benefits?

Employee BenefitDescription
Health InsuranceProvides an option to choose between PPO and HMO. Most of the hospitals are covered with low co-pays.
Dental InsuranceInsurance that goes up to $2,000 per year that can cover routine dental procedures, braces, cleanings, etc.
Vision InsuranceProvides 2 free pairs of glasses or contacts per year and a discount card for checkups.
Health Savings Account (HSA)You can opt for the HSA during the annual medical enrollment and can have an add-in of up to $300.
401(k) PlanIf you’ve been with the company for over a year, IBM matches 6% of the pay while requiring you to at least invest 5%.
Retirement PlanOffered through Fidelity, you can choose a certain amount to be allotted in the retirement fund each month. You can also choose to roll it over into your 401K.
Employee Stock Purchase PlanEmployees get a 5% discount and exclusive rights to company stock.
Maternity & Paternity LeaveFor maternity leave, it’s 16 to 18 weeks after birth; if it’s a C-Section, you get 20 weeks. For paternity leave, you get 12 weeks in total which can be split up in any way you want.
Family Medical LeaveYou can get anywhere between 2 to 12 weeks off to take care of sick family members.
Work from HomeEmployees can work from home as long as the work gets done. You can be flexible with the hours you put in the office itself.
Vacation & Paid Time OffYou get 15 days of PTO along with 5 floater holidays.
Paid HolidaysYou get a total of 12 paid holidays per year.
Employee DiscountYou get 23% off mobile networks. 5% off rental cars, clubs, movie theatres, hotels, and Lenovo products. You also get free passes to museums in select cities like New York.
Travel ConciergeYou get to talk and discuss travel matters with professionals for free.
Diversity ProgramEqual opportunity and quotas are provided to each group of people
Tuition AssistanceYou can get up to 100% tuition reimbursement if your grades show potential.

What Employee Benefits is IBM Known for?


IBM is known for the major employee benefits it provides that include the following:

  • Healthcare insurance.
  • 401(k) match up to 6%.
  • Up to 15 days of PTO.
  • Up to 16-20 weeks of maternity leave.
  • Employee Stock Purchase Plan (ESPP).
  • Employee discounts of up to 23% on cellular networks and 5% on rental cars, museums, movie tickets, and other items.
  • Health Savings Accounts (HSA).

IBM’s health insurance plans offer employees a PPO or HMO. Most hospitals are covered in the plan, and there are relatively low co-pays, compared to plans offered by other companies. It also includes HAS, dental, and vision insurance at low rates.

The company’s 401(k) plan matches up to 6% of your pay but you need to have been with IBM for over a year, otherwise, you get matched up to only 3%. It also requires you to contribute at least 5%.

Other than the 401(k), IBM also provides a retirement plan. You can contribute a small, monthly amount while the makes its contributions. You can also choose to roll over the retirement plan into your 401(k) plan.

IBM’s vacation & paid time off benefits outshine most of its competitors. Fifteen days of PTO are provided to all employees, along with 12 paid holidays and 5 floater holidays. You also have the option to work from home.

Massive companies like IBM can provide such employee benefits to hundreds of thousands of employees due to the sheer size of the company. This helps retain employees and cuts down on hiring costs.

How does IBM Help with Student Loans?

IBM began helping employees out with their student debt through the MoneySmart program. IBM pays for the financial counselors that help employees strategize their payback system and around 25% of IBM employees make use of the program.

However, IBM does not make any direct contributions to paying the loans back. At most, they attempt to negotiate discounts on loan rates. Up until now, IBM employees have been able to refinance over $50 million in student debt.

IBM has also partnered with other companies like CommonBond that help manage student loans. The company also offers 100% tuition reimbursement.

Nowadays, there are platforms such as FutureFuel, that help employers understand how to pay off student loans, as well as directly contribute to ridding their employees of student debt. Companies that want to implement a student loan support program can do so efficiently through this platform.


How do IBM’s Employee Benefits Change for Different Jobs?

IBM’s employee structure is similar across all regions and all employees receive similar benefits.

However, you need to have been employed for at least a year to be eligible for most of the secondary benefits.

Furthermore, the reason why IBM’s benefits don’t change as much is due to their systematic relocation benefit, as in, opting to relocate shouldn’t affect existing benefits.

How Has IBM Improved its Benefits Packages Over Time?

IBM is known for its disruptive innovations and takes the same approach when it comes to things like employee benefits.

It was one of the first companies to introduce student loan assistance to its employees. It’s one of the few companies that provide an equity incentive plan and travel concierges.

Furthermore, IBM has consistently opted for partnerships with companies to provide better health insurance plans, retirement plans, employee discounts, etc.

Are IBM Careers Worth It?

IBM has always been at the forefront of technology, which makes it a good addition to your resume. An IBM career not only puts you on the front lines of the tech world but also provides some of the best pay and employee benefits in the industry.

For a career in information technology and services, consider an IBM career because:

  • It is the pioneer of multiple world-changing technologies like the hard-disk drive, DRAM, magnetic stripe cards, UPC bar codes, etc.
  • It provides equal benefits to all its employees, while long-term employees receive better versions of the benefits.
  • Becoming an ‘IBMer’ gets you benefits across 177 countries.
  • The ‘Big Blue’ is synonymous with multiple awards, rankings, and brands across the world.

An IBM career is one of the best careers you can have in the IT sector. At the very least, it opens up a world of possibilities.

Discover IBM Jobs and Careers

If you’re considering building your career at IBM, keep an eye out for job openings on the following platforms:

IBM Careers

The Careers page lets you search for jobs according to the experience level needed, job category, and/or job country. You can also search for a job through specific keywords. You can opt to join IBM’s talent network to receive updates on new openings. There are over 8,000 jobs posted on the page, such as Package Consultant, Application Developer, Tech Specialist, Senior UI Consultant, Desk Lead, etc.

IBM LinkedIn

IBM is very active on LinkedIn and posts more jobs than the site itself. There are almost 13,000 jobs posted that include positions like Digital Marketing Consultant, Content Marketer, Digital Strategist, Campaign Manager, Data Consultant, etc. The majority of the jobs are entry and manager-level and feature no executive jobs. However, there are over 600 internships available.

IBM Indeed

IBM is relatively less active on Indeed with over 1,400 jobs posted. The current openings are for Application Developer Apprentice, Mail Reporter, Entry-Level Full Stack Developer, Research Scientist, etc. You can also check out the Q&A section for answers to questions like, “On average, how many hours do you work a day at IBM?” Additionally, you can check out reviews by former and current employees. You can also check the average salary for each position. For example, an Application Developer earns up to $81,000 per year on average.


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