Blockchain Unscathed In IBM Job Cuts As Distributed Ledger Technology Looks Bright


The business world is ever-changing and the fortunes of a firm can rise and fall depending on the economy and various other factors such as new business strategy and when these changes occur, there is usually some loss of jobs within the firm and this is the at IBM who dismissed nearly 2000 employees this month. Interestingly enough, this mass of job cuts did not quite extend to its blockchain division.

Its blockchain project has been the subject of much criticism over the years but nonetheless has maintained its status within the industry and this can be seen in the stability that surrounds the team behind the project.

In the month of June 2019, 1700 Employees were laid off from the firm but surprisingly, only a small percentage of those layoffs affected it's blockchain division, according to a source within the company.

“The product team had no layoffs, there was nothing out of development. It was very limited on the blockchain side,” the source said.

IBM has thus far not given any specific details about the degree to which the layoffs had impacted the blockchain division but did state that the project intends to see growth in the future.

“Blockchain skills are the priority…And we’re full-steam ahead of blockchain.” Jerry Cuomo, VP of IBM Blockchain Technology, told The Block “We plan to grow for a very long time.”

The State of Blockchain in the Job Market

The lack of production division at IBM is quite telling as it does testify to the increased interest in blockchain-related jobs in the last few years as job listings on the various job sites show that there is a healthy demand for such jobs and also the fact that LinkedIn stated in 2018 that blockchain developer was one of their most searched jobs across the platform.

IBM, according to online sources, is still hiring for blockchain-related jobs and the firm has stated in the past that they want to focus their hiring on businesses such as analytics, securities, and blockchain.

“We are continuing to reposition our team to align with our focus on the high-value segments of the IT market, and we also continue to hire aggressively in critical new areas that deliver value for our clients and IBM,” Ed Barbini, an IBM spokesperson, told CRN.

This, however, does not suggest that no layoffs took place within the blockchain section of the firm at all as a handful of roles were terminated during this process.

However, it has been clarified that a majority of the jobs that were cut with regards to blockchain were those that had to do with consulting with the engineering aspect being left intact. The consulting allegedly was one of the blockchain team’s three pillars and a steady cash cow but it is unrelated to the technological side which is the IBM blockchain platform and the IBM Solutions products.

While IBM has been adamant that this is simply part of a restructuring effort on their part it will be interesting to see just how much these layoffs and acquisitions they have engaged in the last few months will affect their business in the long run.

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