Big Blue workers – some of whom were determined to be deficient in the latest skills and hit by a 10 percent pay cut – lit up the comments board at the website run by the union seeking to represent IBMers. They talked about the move as being “SCAMS” – a play off an IBM term for CAMMS, or “Cloud, Analytics, Mobile, Security and Social.”

The pay cut and mandatory retraining over a six-month period was delivered via memo on Friday. (Check WRAL TechWire’s full report online.)

Here’s a sampling of the reaction:

  • “For all those who were not flagged as being camss deficient – and I mean no disrespect to those who were – will they be given a 10% pay increase as they will now have to pick up this work?”

So posted “CAMSShaft”

  • “IBM announces internally a mandate of 8 hours training per week for the next 6 months along with a 10% salary reduction during that time. Can you say cost cutting and furlow (sic) manipulation?”

The poster was anonymous

  • “The lastest SO [referring to the business union affected) action is definitely a SCAMS. I’m an SO employee and was notified 9/12 of my salary reduction and the 6 month timeframe to improve my skills. Funny thing is I have spent the whole of 2014 improving my skills and my manager has reviewed and approved my ‘skills Update’. I have received recognition this year for sharing my expertise and offered to be a mentor when asked. So just where are my skills lacking? And btw I have not been offered any assignment to utilize my new acquired skills.”

So wrote “Lacking Skills”

  • “Ibm announcing 10% salary cuts for approximately 75% of there SO employees. Ibm is offering them to work only 80% of there current workload. The remaining 20% is to be used for up training on new products and services. This is clearly a cost cutting measure disguised as a benefit to the employees. Statement is this is through April ’15 at which time employees would get their full salary reinstated. Only time will tell if that is true. Either way affected ibmers are in a tizzy.”

So wrorte Bob

  • “I don’t know if this is considered appropriate but yesterday. 12 SEP 2014, the “GTS US SO SKILLS DEVELOPMENT PLAN” was deployed. Many, I have heard up to 70%, of SO staff were informed they were deficient in (client) SCAMS skills (Social, Cloud, Analytics, Mobile, Security (SCAMS) – of course “big blue” prefers CAMSS”). For 6 months starting in October those affected are required to dedicate one day a week (23 total) to skills augmentation. Target skill levels were provided along with an rduction path. For the same 6 month duration all people affected will have their salary reduced by 10% (affecting 401K payouts and bonuses). Supposedly day-to-day work will be rebalanced to accommodate the reduced day-to-day staffing.”

The “Anonymous” was made on Sept. 13.

IBM employs some 7,500 people across North Carolina. The vast majority of those are based in RTP.