The Skinny blog is written by Rick Smith, editor and co-founder of WRAL Tech Wire and business editor of

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. – IBMers (NYSE: IBM) told that there would not be raises awarded the company’s Global Technology Services group might be able to get a pay increase – if they move to India.

Sources have told The India Times that GTS employees in that country will get what the paper describes as “increments.”

“The sources said that the performance assessment exercise had been completed and increments were expected across the organization in India next month,” the newspaper said.

“For the best performers, the increment may be in double digits ,” a source told the newspaper.

The report out of India came just hours after news broke that IBM executives across the company would not receive raises.

A memo emailed GTS workers earlier this week said that raises would be awarded only to selected individuals such as those with “high-demand skills.”

By the way, India reportedly is home to the biggest number of IBM employees. While U.S. payrolls have fallen to under 95,000 based on estimates by Alliance@IBM, the union seeking to represent IBM workers, the Indian newspaper estimates that IBM now employs more than 130,000 in that country.

Competition for IT workers is fierce in India where IBM, Cisco and other firms have established deep roots.

Citing the GTS memo, the Times said “Sources within IBM India indicated that “high-demand skills” refers, among others, to employees in India.”

The Memo 

Here’s the GTS memo, in case you missed it earlier this week:

“GTS Employees,

“The Employee Salary Program takes into account a number of elements, including compensation competitiveness in markets we serve, our ability to attract and retain people with skills we need, our business performance, and other employee investments.

“It is essential for a services business to provide value-added services to clients at competitive price points. Our objective is to ensure a competitive labor cost structure while moving aggressively into areas that are strategic to our clients and require innovative solutions. This is fundamental to driving clear return on investments for our clients and to increase opportunities for all IBMers.

“To balance our ability to remain competitive with the need to invest in people who have high-demand skills, there will not be a broad-based salary program in GTS in 2012. Instead, we will target the 2012 investment to skill groups or focus areas as identified by each GTS line of business, based on local market needs. These decisions do not affect the significant investments IBM makes each year in talent in addition to salary, including bonus programs, recognition, promotions, and skill development.

“Your manager or leadership team will communicate additional information to you over the next few weeks.”

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