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Surviving Outsourcing?

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the frying-pans-and-fires dept.

Businesses 234

An anonymous reader writes "As some of you may know, HP is negotiating with DPWN, parent company of DHL, to take on outsourced parts of DPWN's global IT Services business unit. As a worker in that business unit, I and my colleagues are part of what HP is negotiating for. I moved into my current position fresh out of university and so far haven't experienced corporate shake-ups or outsourcing initiatives. I enjoy my work and the opportunities that go with it, which is why this announcement was so distressing to me at first. Then I began hearing about the opportunities HP has internally. If you've been through a similar experience, what advice would you give for someone being outsourced? Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?"

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Why not try it? (4, Insightful)

F'Nok (226987) | more than 6 years ago | (#24113973)

It's always a good idea to have the CV up to date, but I don't see why you shouldn't ride the wave for a while until you can determine just how good the surf is.

If you don't like them, you can always leave then.

Re:Why not try it? Its experience (4, Insightful)

kubitus (927806) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114101)

You get an opportunity there! Write down the differences of both. Learn as much as you can. Take good old common sense to see what was good in the one and whats good in the other place. And also note what was bad in the old and what is bad in the new place. Then after some time look at your CV, add your new experience and rethink if you are better off at a different place.

Re:Why not try it? (5, Interesting)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114173)

Just what I was thinking - do both!

I went through something similar a couple of times within a few months a little while ago. First time round I got a lot of reassuring "we want your expertise" noises, then a payoff and a goodbye. Then I got a new job at a small company and it happened again.

Second time it was another big company (let's call them "large indigo") and we had all the same talks and speeches and the same reassurances, only they actually meant it. Unfortunately it's very hard to tell this. Anyway,I'm still with them and am not only very happy (and in the same job) but it's kinda cool having the opportunity to move around the company and the world once you're on the inside.

So, YMMV, but don't be too pessimistic.

Re:Why not try it? (2, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114341)

Listen to Nursie, buddy. Do both FTW! Unless they keep paying you through a downturn, you're employer isn't thinking in terms of loyalty to you, so don't get emotionally attached to a job (not in this industry at least).

Stay flexible, market yourself and always keep an eye on the door (to see who's coming in and going out).

Good luck. This kind of experience can be really stressful, so this is a good time to learn to relax and take care of yourself.

Re:Why not try it? (4, Interesting)

VdG (633317) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114215)

This would seem to be the obvious thing to do.

I got outsourced a couple of years ago, (not to HP) and I couldn't say it's any better or worse than it was before. I do have the advantage of UK employment law on my side, which in theory ensures I remain on cmparable terms and conditions. I ended up with a poorer pension scheme but a higher salary to make up for it, and a few minor changes in other benefits - mostly good.

Not everybody stayed on, but most people did. One guy left, then got re-hired because he was too valuable to lose. Most of us are doing pretty much the same job as we were before, although those in leadership roles probably have more responsibility than they did before.

In theory there are more opportunities for me. A lot of that is going to depend on me seeking them out. At the least, I shall end up doing work for other customers besides my original employer which gives me exposure to different ways of doing things.

In my limited experience - I got sort-of outsourced once before: massive reorganization which involved setting up a new company to handle IT for the whole group - it needn't be bad for you. I certainly think that some of the other posters are being needlessly alarmist and cynical. Go with it, and try to be involved in the changes.

Re:Why not try it? (3, Informative)

supremebob (574732) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114837)

Yeah... I wouldn't worry about finding a new job quite yet. As someone who's currently in the middle of an IT outsourcing to HP, I noticed that most folks have at least six months after the official announcement before they start laying people off.

That said, I wouldn't put too much faith in finding something on the HP internal job board. You'll soon have tens of thousands of EDS employees looking at those jobs as well.

Re:Why not try it? (3, Insightful)

19thNervousBreakdown (768619) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115071)

Until you've personally proven yourself to a management chain that's proved itself all the way up to the CEO, be ready to be fired at any time.

That means have your resume ready, credit cards paid off, and a savings account. If you can't go six months without any income, just start looking for a job right now.

If you're one of those guys that "does everything" but really has a nebulous job that no one can define, be ready to be fired soon. I've been through three of these things and survived them all, but by God at times I wished they would just fire me and get it over with.

From my experience (5, Insightful)

jskline (301574) | more than 6 years ago | (#24113979)

You should do both. Face it. The reason the shake up is there in the first place is because someone in the food chain isn't making enough money and wants to change things around so that they make more.

This likely will result in a possibility you come on to the new company... or not. Remember a lot depends on how much you are willing to accept as a reduction in pay which ultimately will happen at some point.

In the event that they don't want to pay you what you believe your worth, they will go for the lesser costing options (other people), and you would ultimately be out looking elsewhere.

Been there; done that.

Not necessarily (3, Informative)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114199)

"Remember a lot depends on how much you are willing to accept as a reduction in pay which ultimately will happen at some point."

Not necessarily.
Been through 2. First ended in a payoff and redundancy, the second resulted in more money as they realised how useful I can be when properly motivated :)

Re:From my experience (4, Interesting)

ShannaraFan (533326) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114621)

"This likely will result in a possibility you come on to the new company... or not. Remember a lot depends on how much you are willing to accept as a reduction in pay which ultimately will happen at some point."

I've been through two corporation acquisitions in the last 10 years. First time, I wound up making $5K more per year, as an incentive to stay, doing the same job. Second time, I was offered a different job in the new company, making $11K more per year. We've all heard the stories about people being forced to take pay cuts to keep their jobs, but I personally don't know a single person who has experienced that.

The OP should ride this out, keeping a positive attitude and an open mind. Opportunities are born out of situations like this.

Don't think like an engineer (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114721)

The reason the shake up is there in the first place is because someone in the food chain isn't making enough money and wants to change things around so that they make more.

One: it depends on who's doing the figuring. Two folks, equally honest, can come up with two vastly different figures for a particular business unit. I has an issue like this once where one guy was attributing more of the company overhead to the unit than the other, so his "costs" were vastly greater.

And when you outsource, the costs are calculated very differently. That's the mistake a lot of folks make is that they don't look at the acid test: cash flow. Trump once said cash is king! The big corporate types have a tendency to forget that. I blame MBA programs. Watching cash flows was never really taught.

Two: Numbers in the business world are NOT based on physical laws as they are in engineering and science. Many times, the numbers are someone's best guess - estimate, pulled out of their ass, etc...

Re:From my experience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114813)

"Survival of the fittest", that's my motto.

Seriously, get known by the people who are acquiring you, develop new contacts/friendships, know who's who, and establish yourself some latitude.

Riding the wave is passive, and you usually get pushed/shoved into positions/mandates that may not necessarily interest you, and to the point that you start hating your job afterwards.

Granted, be careful, since your immediate boss won't like the fact that you're just running-off on him. I've been through 3 similar events in my lifetime, always a little fun to play the corporate mayhem.

Join the internet instead (1, Redundant)

unity100 (970058) | more than 6 years ago | (#24113987)

we are becoming a separate nation, hell, world on the internet. by 'we' i mean all of us here.

join it. be flexible. go with the flow. accept outsourcing yourself. if there are people outsourcing, there needs to be firms accepting outsourcing. go post a listing in elance - they post anything there these days, from technical writing to cad/cam. post in other agency sites. make a name for yourself.

Get some (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24113989)

Get some lubricant, bend over and enjoy your first experience, and remember, it's business and not personal.

Been there - Survived that (4, Insightful)

Onetus (23797) | more than 6 years ago | (#24113995)

Here's how it works when you get outsourced:
1. You have your job and you do it.
2. You/Your section get outsourced.
3. You have your new job, which is the same as your old job, and .. you do it.

If you weren't dusting off your CV/Resume at your current job, why would you suddenly do it now? You're going to get the same money for doing the same tasks that your currently doing. If nothing is broke, most likely no-one is going to try and "fix it". You're likely to see less change than if your bosses boss resigned and was replaced by someone new.

Disclaimer: I worked in IT and my area was outsourced. After a little bit in the new company, I moved away from maint/support roles into development roles that just weren't available in my old company. YMMV

Re:Been there - Survived that (3, Insightful)

jrumney (197329) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114299)

You're going to get the same money for doing the same tasks that your currently doing.

That might be true in some states, and it is certainly true in the UK where TUPE regulations protect employees' packages when transferring to a new company, but my impression from other discussions is that in general US workers don't enjoy many rights, and a pay cut or redundancy with little/no compensation and immediate hiring of someone cheaper could well be on the table.

Re:Been there - Survived that (3, Funny)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114351)

"UK where TUPE regulations protect employees' packages when transferring to a new company"

I'm certainly glad my package is protected, otherwise new managers could be real ball-breakers :)

Re:Been there - Survived that (2, Informative)

squoozer (730327) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114719)

While TUPE does protect the employees rights to some extent it's not half as strong asmany people think it is. Having just been through it and seeing both sides it was quite clear to me that people could be shed for any number of reasons. Don't bank on TUPE saving your job long term.

Except it rarely makes sense (4, Insightful)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114495)

"If nothing is broke, most likely no-one is going to try and "fix it"," is a good principle, but obviously doesn't apply when the whole deal is aimed at fixing it. If nothing were broke, DHL wouldn't "fix it" by pawning off the whole department.

Anyway, the fact is, DHL thinks it can save some money by passing these guys off to HP. Going by your scenario, it means that, basically we have two sums:

X = how much DHL pays for these guys, managing them, computers, electricity, building rent, overhead, etc

Y = how much DHL would pay HP for the same results

Now DHL thinks X > Y, and HP must think that Y includes a profit margin for itself _and_ pay for whatever they bought that department for. (It's not signing this just to subsidize DHL.) It makes no sense for Y to be the exact same old X plus a positive profit. Basically for your scenario, you have simultaneously X > Y, Y = X + P _and_ P > 0. Something doesn't add up, according to the maths as I know it.

One possibility that happens rather often, is that actually HP will end up fleecing DHL. I.e., that (maybe after a short time) actually Y > X. Quite a few companies found themselves at the bad end of that kind of a deal. (Though in the short term HP takes a small loss to sweeten the deal, the new CEO/beancounte/PHB can show some positive financial results in that quarter, and the shareholders cheer.)

The other possibility is that HP _will_ reduce the costs somehow. Maybe they'll force everyone to do more projects in the same time, so it's not going to be really the same job for the same money. Maybe they'll phase some people out after a while and move some of those jobs to Elbonia. Or maybe after a while they figure out that they can't make that much money there, gut the department and keep just some maintenance or service contract with DHL. Or whatever.

There _are_ a few such outsourcing or privatizing deals done just so someone else gets to fire those people, or ask them to take a pay cut.

So basically indeed YMMV. I'm glad it worked out well for you. Sometimes it does. In some other places it doesn't work like that.

Re:Except it rarely makes sense (3, Insightful)

superskippy (772852) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114993)

DHL doesn't necessarily think it can save some money. Y might be larger than X at the offset, but Y might be lower risk. That is to say, DHL might be able to negociate a fixed deal with HP, but if DHL employ staff themselves it might seem cheaper, but costs could be highly variable.

E.g. suppose a load of your staff leave. Your faced with costs of hiring, and costs of getting expensive contractors in to fill in. X has rocketed here. HP will have to pick up the tab if that happens. Or suppose a project goes titsup. HP will end up paying to get it straight under the new scheme, not DHL.

Re:Except it rarely makes sense (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24115041)

From what i have seen at HP is that they already have a system where they can have low-knowledge ppl onsite (and get rid of a few from the site) and then throw in some of their consultants whenever they need. Also they have a "working" system of employee-resources from everything from salary to education. So what they are basically doing is just taking the production, reduce the local workstaff and then using the already existing staff within HP for anything a bit more advanced. (ie fire all the good guy's and keep the low salary ppl)

Re:Been there - Survived that (2, Informative)

tdp252 (519328) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114669)

That isn't always the case. While your salary may remain the same, chances are if your new employer can do the same job for less you are loosing benefits. I worked for AT&T back in the 90's. When we were outsourced to IBM-GS we were giving crappy health care plans, and lost many of our other benefits. Don't believe the hype.

Re:Been there - Survived that (1)

LoaTao (826152) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115081)

4. New company off-shores your job to save money.

At least that seems to be the CSC model. I don't know about HP.

Re:Been there - Survived that (1)

RMH101 (636144) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115131)

TUPE isn't all that long term. If an employer is outsourcing, chances are the outsourcing company that they're using wants to send a quantity of that work to an area of the world where labour costs are much lower: such as india. I've been through this a few times from both sides of the fence.

Basically, the job market's not all that secure. In order to reduce your personal level of mither you want to take control of your level of risk: this means having your CV up to date, your skills current, and having a good idea of how to make yourself employable.

No brainer. (3, Interesting)

TeraCo (410407) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114007)

Join the new company, there's more opportunity for you being 'an IT guy in an IT company' than 'An IT guy in a widget company.'

Re:No brainer. (1)

mh1997 (1065630) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114633)

If the new company has someone with the same position/title as yours in the old company, start looking for a job.

India or Bust! (5, Funny)

feedayeen (1322473) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114009)

You could move to India, the land of opportunity.

Re:India or Bust! (4, Informative)

Sesticulus (544932) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114509)

Not so much anymore. I work for a big company who a few years ago did a lot of off shoring (not outsourcing, they were employees of the company) to India. We learned a few lessons, including that it's not really the bargain management expected. There's good, there's bad, but it's no free lunch. Now Romania is the new India. I expect the outcome to be the same.

Re:India or Bust! (2, Interesting)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115093)

In episode 2 of the second season of "30 days", they tracked a US worker who did just this. They moved him over to India and had him go through the whole process of applying for a job and working for a call centre. It made or very interesting viewing.

Here is a link to the episodes of season 2 of 30 days [tvshowsondvd.com]

Been there, done that. (1)

jimicus (737525) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114013)

Life doesn't offer you a great many opportunities. It does, however, throw a great deal of crap your way.

If you see a chance to turn the crap into an opportunity, go for it.

what should you do... (4, Insightful)

KillerCow (213458) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114017)

Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?"

1) You should always have an up to date resume. Especially when there is some kind of "restructuring" going on.

2) You can do both. Try on the new company. If you don't like it, you can always leave. You can even spin it to new employers as "I stayed on to ensure a smooth transition" to make you look like a team player. This is a great way to get into a new company without having to wade through the throngs of HR drones trying to screen you out of new-hire interviews.

Jumping ship before the move is kinda dumb -- as long as they don't make you sign anything ridiculous. It could be a much better place. Why would you leave when you don't have a reason to? What would you leave for? An unknown new company? Then you are no better off then where you are right now.

Re:what should you do... (1)

Kokuyo (549451) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114059)

I agree. Put your CV out there. If nothing else, you'll at least get a feeling for what you're worth in the economy. If you like the new company, great, your problems end there. If not, you've already got a head start.

Re:what should you do... (3, Informative)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114311)

1) You should always have an up to date resume. Especially when there is some kind of "restructuring" going on.

2) You can do both. Try on the new company. If you don't like it, you can always leave. You can even spin it to new employers as "I stayed on to ensure a smooth transition" to make you look like a team player. This is a great way to get into a new company without having to wade through the throngs of HR drones trying to screen you out of new-hire interviews.

3) I collect job adverts from newspapers. I know this sounds dumb, who uses newspaper adverts to find personnel these days? well some employers do and I find it is useful to do this. Even if it is only to find out who in my locality is doing .Net, Java C/C++, Web development, App development, Embedded etc.... I also like to keep regular track of what is on offer at online job centers/forums even if I am not in danger of being laid off or thinking about moving, for much the same purpose. At the very least it results in me being able to target my job search more accurately.

Jumping ship before the move is kinda dumb -- as long as they don't make you sign anything ridiculous. It could be a much better place. Why would you leave when you don't have a reason to? What would you leave for? An unknown new company? Then you are no better off then where you are right now.

In my experience when a merger or a wholesale outsourcing happens, the PHBs/corporate-weasels running the transition will either lay off the entire complement of people employed by the 'victim' or they will pick and choose. They will keep the best employees from either side and lay off a whole bunch of others. Few things get a PHB more brownie points than saving personnel/wage costs for the company. The employees that will qualify for the great "...opportunities HP has internally..." are the best and most experienced ones except maybe if this happens during an economic boom period, then you may have a better chance if you are young and less experienced. If there is one thing new arrivals on the job market should learn quickly is that companies will demand loyalty and hard work from you but reserve the right to drop you from the payroll the instant it takes their fancy do pep up their quarterly profit returns by reducing costs. Get used to being stabbed in the back a lot, recover quickly and be prepared to find a new job even before it happens. Choosing carefully what jobs you take is important not only because of the wages you will get but also because of the experience you will get. They pay may be good but can you market that experience easily next time you are looking for a job? I know a few people who fell into the trap of considering only the money.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

Some outsourcing insights (5, Insightful)

technormality (1086527) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114025)

Outsourcing is always done for one thing and one thing only. To save money. What this means is that those who get outsourced are expected to do the same work or more work for less cost. It wont be apparent immediately, often you move over to your new organization with your salary and most of your benefits intact. What happens over time is salary increases and bonuses become smaller than they would have been had you not been outsourced. Also your new employer may not backfill workers who retire or quit. Other places they start to pinch would be training and travel budgets, maybe even redo your 401k contributions to give you less, etc. Over time they will reduce costs one way or another. Hard to give advice on this since its a very personal decision. How confident are you that you can move to another job? Do you like your current job and coworkers? You need to factor these things in when deciding to move over or find a new employer. You may want to ask if you would be entitled to a severance package if you decline to move. If severance is a sizable chunk of money its another component to factor in. Best of luck!

Re:Some outsourcing insights (2, Insightful)

PhilHibbs (4537) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114219)

I work for a company which, among other things, does outsourcing of IT projects. I didn't come in on an outsourcing deal myself, and I joined the project side of the company rather than the outsourcing side, but the people that I've worked with who were "outsourced in" from clients have been more than happy with their decisions. Essentially, it's cheaper for an IT company to run a dozen IT departments than it is for a dozen separate widgets companies to run their own IT department. Sure, someone might get cut out of the chain, but that's what redundancy packages are for. I can't speak for DHL/DPWN/HP, but ours are pretty generous.

Re:Some outsourcing insights (1)

Jellybob (597204) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114867)

Essentially, it's cheaper for an IT company to run a dozen IT departments than it is for a dozen separate widgets companies to run their own IT department.

I think you've got to the meat of the issue here. In all likelihood the OP is going to end up not only working for DHL, but for several other company's IT departments as well.

Personally I think that's a really good thing. You get experience of how other company's are setup, and potentially get to play with things that you wouldn't have otherwise.

There's also the advantage of working for a company that makes it's money from IT, rather then a company that sees IT as a money sink, which generally leads to a much nicer environment to be working in.

Re:Some outsourcing insights (0)

riperrin (1310447) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114785)

I am studying for and MSc purchasing as well as doing my current job. Having read quite a lot on this I would actually say the biggest cause of wasted money is bad management, something which outsourcing slowly removes. Its by no means always right, always works or just replaces with different bad management, however this is what outsourcing is actually trying to get rid of.

G

Based on my experience (5, Informative)

sthomas (132075) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114029)

I've been on one side or the other of 35 acquisitions. My experience is that the only people absolutely guaranteed of a job when it's all done are those who are have a written retention offer as an incentive to keep them in place and not bail prior to the merger closing. Many people will keep their jobs, some will lose them, and no one other than the aforementioned can be certain of either.

If you are uncomfortable with the uncertainty around your continued employment, then there are two options: live with that stress and all of the potential negatives and positives continued employment or sudden termination bring -OR- take your fate into your own hands and go in search of employment elsewhere ahead of time and on your own terms. No one can really tell you which is better, as you have to determine what your threshold for uncertainty and stress is.

I have known many people who have done both, and have had it work out better or worse for them. Some can handle the stress of uncertainty, some really can't. For those latter ones, taking the initiative to determine their own fate was far better for them health-wise. I have always stayed on through the acquisitions, and it has always worked out well for me personally.

One last word of advice I have for everyone I have ever worked with, for, or over: always keep your resume up to date! Don't wait until you are in fear of your job or suddenly terminated to get it out and "dust it off." Changing jobs is stressful, and this is one thing you can do in happier times to help see yourself through the rough ones. Also, it's great to update it with accomplishments when they are fresh in your mind.

I always encourage my employees and peers to get out their resumes and update them no less than yearly, but ideally as often as quarterly. At the successful completion of any large project, I let my teams know "that is resume-worthy, and these are the points you should include" and list the things I think they should be proud of accomplishing.

Don't let your resume get stale, or when you're out of a job it's one more roadblock to getting yourself back in the saddle.

Good luck with the acquisition, whatever you choose to do!

Lie like you have never lied before (5, Interesting)

DCFC (933633) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114055)

Although many factors are beyond your control, you can give the impression that you are really positive about the whole thing. Cooperate enthusiastically about the whole process. You can't stop it, or even slow it down, your goal should be to ensure that management think you are "part of the team" and "have the right attitude".
You need to do wholly BS stuff like ask those controlling this mess if there is some way you can help.
As a techie turned CIO turned headhunter I laugh openly at the "great opportunities" at HP or any outsourcer. My former colleague at PC Magazine Guy Kewney refers to these as "Industry Standard Lies".
They have as much credibility as the many fine offers I get in emails from Nigeria and China for wealth and health.
But you must not share my laughter.
You must sound impressed with these fake offers, maybe even apply for some. This is best done as innocent questions, like asking the new management about them, and how you could apply. They will be selling them to you, so we now have both of you faking it to each other. That will look good when they decide who to dump.
You may wonder if they will be taken in by this fake enthusiasm. The odds are better than you think, unless you have already met some HP managers, and then been amazed that people like this are allowed to be in charge of anything.
They're not exactly very bright are they ?
You will want to leave of course. Anyone who has seen outsourcing knows that the good people will want to walk.
But in any market, you want to be the one who decides when you leave. Buy some time and maybe the horse will learn to sing.

Re:Lie like you have never lied before (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114593)

You will want to leave of course. Anyone who has seen outsourcing knows that the good people will want to walk.

Good advice. I have been through two outsourcing deals now. The first time, I stayed on and tried to adapt to the new culture. The outsourcing team never quite accepted me. I wasn't part of the club.

After a year of agony without being invited to meetings or being invited just minutes before the meeting started (with no time to prepare), I decided to leave.

Recognize these signs and leave soon:

- Your current job title or unit isn't listed on the new (yet nameless) org chart.
- Your current job title is the same of someone already on the outsourcing team
- You are not invited to meetings where the future organisation is decided
- You are not Cc: on emails about outsourcing
- You are not introduced to outsourcing management when they first visit the site

If management truly wants you to stay after the outsourcing deal is complete, they will say so openly, and will be very clear. If they don't state so clearly, you should ask yourself why.

Re:Lie like you have never lied before (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24115125)

I work in the outsourcing industry and I can assure you that not every manager is taken in by this sort of kabuki theatre. Can't speak for HP though.

you work for HP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114063)

Since HP dumped PA-RISC they've just become another bottom-of-the-barrel outsource/mass market printer ink and Dell clone supplier. DECHPaq comprises the dregs of a fairly cunning coup by Intel, via the Itanic, to destroy what were the only two interesting competing CPUs (remember this is pre-amd64).

And on the prosumer end with their once excellent RPN calculators, they fired their employees, tried to outsource development to the Far East, failed, endeavoured to get assistance from their ex-employees (who helped for a while but were horrendously treated), then a couple of years later abandoned the platform entirely - and are how selling high end calculators with no updates.

This is pretty much a standard pattern for HP, and it's happening to you now. HP are rotten to the core. Unless you're more interested in your paycheque (by sucking up to the right managers) than your integrity and productivity as an engineer, hand in your notice yesterday.

Don't be easily boxed (3, Insightful)

Toreo asesino (951231) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114069)

I.e, don't be just a programmer; learn server management too (if nothing else, you should know how servers work to help you be a better programmer), and get involved in areas outside your job scope as much as possible. That way they can't containerise you easily and therefore know fully the impact of you not being there any more. Not to mention it's more interesting to have a broader skill-set.

Don't panic (3, Interesting)

cerberusss (660701) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114075)

A comparable thing happened to my wife. When she told me, I started mirroring her fears and it turns out that wasn't a good idea. I gave her the advice to look around. That was just one possible advice, fueled by anxiety. She basically had to solicit for her own position. We did so, but actually aimed higher. Turns out in the new situation she's much better off.

Now I'm not saying that's going to happen here. First, take the FUD out of your head and put it besides you on the couch. Then, ask around. It's better to find out more from your manager and HR if possible. In the new situation, what kind of jobs are availailable. For young people there are often opportunities here. Keep all options open, but shop around internally as well.

Was in a similar position last year. (2, Interesting)

dragonlady726 (1322471) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114083)

I am employed by HP through an acquisition and wish I had started looking for a new job instead of waiting to see what the new organization had in store for me. The reality of the situation for me was that it took so long to complete the acquisition that our team was effectively in limbo for almost a year. Those of us that did weather the long painful integration jumped through tons of hoops just so we could get back to some sort of daily routine. As someone in a customer service role, I could see how the constant internal policy changes drastically affected customers. Not to say that acquisition is always a bad thing. Depending on where you fall on the org chart there may be opportunity to work on logistics for the acquisition/integration itself, the individuals in our group that performed this function got the recognition and the nice jobs elsewhere in the company. However, these people were few and far between, far fewer than those that left the company and didn't stick around to go through the integration exercises. I'm in the process of looking for a new position now, but in retrospect I wish I hadn't wasted my time waiting as it resulted in a year of needless headaches, IMHO.

I work for DHL (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114085)

I know who you are, now stop posting to Slashdot and fix my printer. No wonder you're being outsourced =P

Re:I work for DHL (1)

superskippy (772852) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115009)

-1 Flamebait??? Come on- this is funny!

Enjoy (3, Informative)

jandersen (462034) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114135)

Just to be sure: Your company/department is being bought by HP, right? I don't how HP works at all, but it is my impression that they aren't all that bad; though, there was a rough patch some years back.

Some 5 years ago I was in a small, but successful company that was bought by Informatica - I'm still here, in case you wonder. I think for the first year or so we all hated it; we really felt like we were pariahs - part of that was our fault; we we resented the whole thing, for a large part because nobody asked our opinion, and I think we all felt rather betrayed. Since then we have worked out our differences, but it didn't happens automatically - management, from the very top, understood that there was a serious problem, and they have consistently tried to do all the right things and address the real problems (as opposed to just trying to look good).

It is very important to feel welcome in a new company, and to feel that you and the way you do things enjoy respect and are valuable. In the beginning I would have left, given half a chance; now I would be very reluctant to change job.

It is very important that feel confident in yourself if you stay in your new company - they have bought you guys because they believe in your product, but also because they believe in you guys. Where the problems can come in is when the lower to middle managers aren't willing to give an inch; they have more direct influence over your daily lives than upper management.

There's always a killing spree!!! (1, Funny)

tjstork (137384) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114185)

But don't do something with guns, otherwise, liberals and weak old ladies will get bent out of shape and vote to ban them. Bring swords to work and maybe a bunch of slings and big rocks.

Be prepared (1)

Confused (34234) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114201)

It all depends on how much you depend on this one job. You say that's your first job after university, I assume you're quite young and I hope you don't have too many mouths to feed.

Try to be open and give the outsourcer a chance. Sometimes new avenues open up and you can move into directions you didn't expect before.

Start looking for a new job. The outsourcing is a change, and while you're changing, you might change to something better, if it presents itself. That makes the outsourcer compete with the regular job market.

After the outsourcing there'll be a lot of shuffling around and your new overlords don't know you. Visible people tend to get noticed more, the quite guy sitting in his corner and doing a good job is often missed. Try to be welcoming to them, appear cooperative and friendly. At the same time expect to be fed only bullshit, but that should be business as usual.

At the same time, don't take any crap - if you can afford it. If you don't like your new employer, this might be your one chance to fight for your rights and find out what your right are. Give the new employer good reasons to believe you won't go silently and go though all those fun worker protection regulations. Outsourcer really hate that. They want sheep they can slaughter in piece and who'll run to the abattoir on their own and wait silently in the queue to be processed. This obviously doesn't work if you have seven kids to feed and it's the only job you'll ever get.

If you don't want to stay there, it might be worth waiting for a decent severance package. Very often, at some points packages are offered and it would be waste if you left on your own without it shortly before it came availble.

Do both (1)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114249)

One of the worst mistakes that people make when changing jobs is underestimating the need for a "plan B."

Re:Do both (1)

smoker2 (750216) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114409)

I don't agree.
There is only Plan A - make enough money to continue to live. If you get that right, then you can make choices. There is no point in changing jobs with the sure knowledge that you don't want to work there really. Unless there is a financial advantage, but why then would it be short term. Change jobs, make money, get on with life. If another opportunity comes up, weigh it up and proceed. No need to have several moves planned out in advance. If you are trying to get to a certain point, then it might make sense, but life is for living, not working. If shit happens, you rely on yourself to get out and keep providing, no matter what the source of income. Too many people think they can corral their ambitions and not suffer for it.

Oblig (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114257)

DPWNed!

Opportunities in HP are fleeting ... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114263)

Even as you hear of opportunities in HP keep in mind that they too are constantly restructuring. One of their support centers in Colorado is moving to New Mexico and the current workers have essentially been told "move or find a new job" (and since they aren't being laid off there's "no package").

Also keep in mind that the Ann Livermore (Executive VP, Technology Solutions Group) has openly stated that her job is to outsource (in most cases this means offshore) as many of hp's jobs as quickly as possible. This is done to improve hp's bottom line but obviously impacts the displaced workers even more.

Make sure your parachute is packed well and ready for deployment.

Re:Opportunities in HP are fleeting ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114805)

I'd stick it out, but keep your resume updated. I used to work for HP. The current executives there are very interested in saving money. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it can be at the expense of the employees. Things like low or no raises are common, even when your review is positive. Also, don't believe anything until you see it in writing.

Redunancy money (1)

superskippy (772852) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114297)

If you think the end is nigh, it often pays more to be pushed than jump. I'd cling on and see if I could land a redundancy payment.

Re:Redunancy money (1)

OSXCPA (805476) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114399)

If the orig. poster is straight from school, in the US s/he is unlikely to get a decent severance package - my experience is 1 weeks pay for every year with the firm, with no one getting less than 2 weeks, maybe a month. Maybe different elsewhere, but I've seen this dance at three employers, and for newer employees, there is seldom a good incentive to stay. Can't hurt to ask, though.

GET OUT NOW !!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114303)

I worked for @Home internet service for about 2.5-3 years before it was taken over by Comcast. In less than two months after the take over, nearly ALL of our network access was stripped away, our troubleshooting tools were stripped away, and our ability to provide support to not only the customers but also our field technicians was dwindled to nothing.

Everything that we had before (tools, access, etc.) was replaced with internal "web based" tools that were 20% accurate at best.

On top of that, the company turned our senior level support group (which was rated #1 in the country before Comcast came in) into a living nightmare. Myself and the rest of my group suffered on with the company for about another 3-4 years before we all finally got so fed up that many of us ended up quitting the company without having another job to go to.

I can't speak for HP as I've never worked directly for them but my ordeals at Comcast are not in short supply across the corporate business models of the world. I would hang on for a while to see how things work out after the take over. Though at the first sign of things going south, start looking for a new job ASAP and save yourself the stress and eventual rage that ensues.

If you're green, you're fine (1)

EmagGeek (574360) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114317)

If you are fresh out of school, chances are you will be the last person to go during a transition like this. You are cheap, and best positioned to pick up on the newest technologies. The company will prefer to buy out people who are close to retirement, so as long as there is gray hair walking around your office, you are probably just fine.

A friend of mine works for a company who was bought by HP a year ago and they didn't let go of anybody. Not that it's a guarantee, but I think it's false to assume that a merger means layoffs all the time.

Read your new contract carefully (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114345)

One reason to outsource people for large companies here is to circumvent work councils. Many large companies here have pretty good social plans for their workers, good pension plans, good health plans, and a key incentive to move your workforce into some subsidiary is to cut those costs.

So read your new contract very, very carefully. Just because something was a given in your old contract doesn't mean it will be in your new contract. If it's not there, consider it gone. This can include things like a cafeteria that was free for the workers (i.e. part of the social plan) suddenly charging you for your meal.

Always Dust The Resume (3, Insightful)

lousyd (459028) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114347)

Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?"

Dust off the resume! *Always* dust off the resume. Keep that baby dusted even when you're happy and foresee no imminent change. I'd ride the wave for now. You'll know when the time is right. But keep the resume dusted.

Re:Always Dust The Resume (1)

kilgor (461669) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114673)

Based on my experience, you can't trust anything they say about job openings at the new company, or about the future of your job. Their goal is to keep warm bodies in chairs as long as they need them and they'll blow smoke up your ass to keep you there. Unless you have signed papers saying they'll keep you, they have no intention of doing so. You are a headcount and nothing more.

Personally I'd be shooting resumes out as fast as possible in that situation, but I'm supporting a family of six and can't really risk being out of a job.

Good luck!

I know the feeling. (3, Insightful)

OSXCPA (805476) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114375)

Happened to me. I learned that if you are not considered a 'revenue center' you will likely be the first to go - IT Departments, internal audit, accounting are all 'cost centers', and since businesses live to minimize costs...

Given what you do, moving to HP or one of their ilk (Accenture, etc.) will make you such a revenue center, and thus less likely to be laid off. In those environments (where I currently work) if you do good work and have a good senior manager (director level, selling work to clients) you will remain chargeable, and therefore, employed. It can work out well. One thing I do recommend, though, to someone straight from University - don't fall in love with your job, because it won't love you back, and it may break your heart. Good luck!

Re:I know the feeling. (2, Informative)

ArminK (317771) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115321)

Same here.

Our IT department was outsourced to HP several years ago. At the time I was glad I was not in the IT department, although I work mostly with IT things.

In the meanwhile my view has changed completely:
- the people who were outsourced have safe jobs at HP. Some changed to better jobs inside HP, others are still doing the same job.
- My own company has started moving everything offshore and laying off more and more people. No chance of any career or promotion any more.
- The people who stayed are now fighting for their jobs every day, while the people who were outsourced have safe jobs and can even move to other parts of HP.

If you are asking for advice:
- Don't Panic
- keep your CV up to date (this is always good)
- see what HP offers to you. Usually they pay the same, but raises and promotions may be handled differently.
- Quickly Switch to HP mentally: you should now do what is best for HP, not what is best for your old company.
- look for a career at HP: they will probably offer better opportunities than your current employer.

My experience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114381)

My unit at IBM was sold to another company a couple of years ago. My experience is:

  • There are likely to be redundancies, but if you are recognised to be good at your job, they will keep you
  • In the UK at least, it's worth waiting to see if you get redundancy money. I'd have loved to have been made redundant: with long years of service, I could have funded at least 6 months of traveling.
  • There are other advantages to being pushed rather than leaving - you get assistance in jobhunting for one.
  • If you still have a job, it's worth seeing how the new owners treat you. You might even prefer it. If not, you're in a secure position from which to explore the job market.

Redundancy isn't necessarily a bad thing. (1)

WibbleOnMars (1129233) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114401)

One thing I wouldn't suggest is to leave now -- you can always quit after the shakeup if it doesn't work out for you, but even if there are layoffs and your job looks shaky, stick around until after they've happened; they may keep you on after all, and even if they don't, there ought to be a payout for making you redundant.

You should definitely make sure you CV/resume is up to date, though -- if the worst happens, you'll need to get it out there quickly.

A friend of mine was made redundant in a shakeup like this. It was the best thing that ever happened to him. (well, best work-related thing, anyway... ;-))

He had been there a number of years, so he got a really decent payout when they made him redundant (tax-free in this country too! don't know whether that's the case everywhere), and he went straight from there to a better paid job.

stand back (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114415)

do what you love. let corporations collide. in the end mergers, outsourcing and smartsourcing mean very little to anyone but stockholders.

It depends where you are located (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114419)

If you are part of the DPWN staff in Germany then sit tight. The German laws make 'rightsizing' very difficult.
IF you are elsewhere, be afraid, VERY Afraid.
Watch out for the HP tactics of:-
  1) Moving your location by hundreds of miles/km
  2) Moving you to and existing HP facility where there are :-
          a) Not enough desks for the existing staff
          b) Not enough car parking for the existing staff.
  3) The sudden appearance of Indian IT staff who have come to learn your job
This is all to get you to leave on your own without them making you redundant/laid off/rightsized.

You mangers may well have hidden targets and therefore bonuses for getting rid of say 30% of staff.

If you are not someone who is a 'Yes Sir, Three Bags full, let me lick you boots sir, kinda guy' then beware the arrival of the pink slip within days of the takeover being completed.

I survived the Compaq takeover of DEC but got the chop 2 days after HP took over. Then went back as a contractor to complete the multi million $$$$ project I was working on. HP is one place I wouldn't ever work again. They SUCK royally.

Embrace it and enjoy the ride (1)

CmdrGravy (645153) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114447)

Although I've never been 'outsourced' myself I have worked at an outsourcing company alongside many people who had. This wasn't HP so I don't know what they're like but my experience is that it is, in general, a fairly positive experience.

You may not end up doing exactly what you were doing before, or in exactly the same way which might be an issue for you but on the other hand you ought to have a lot more opportunities to get involved in different things which may not have been available to you before.

One thing I did notice is that people outsourced from the same company do tend to form their own little cliques within the new company which could work well for you if a lot of your management is also being outsourced or not so well if you are a smaller company.

For example although most of the management had come in on specific contracts/projects related to the company they came from at the beginning after a couple of years they'd be doing something totally unrelated to the company they were outsourced from and yet their team would still mostly be comprised of their old co-workers.

The other option ( in the UK at least ) is an excellent chance of a fairly generous redundancy package so I'd say if you want a big lump of cash take redundancy and leave to do something else or if you prefer career development go with the move.

Develop alternate revenue streams (1)

stevegee58 (1179505) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114497)

Your CV/Resume should always be kept up to date no matter what, even if you're currently not looking for another job.

That said, you should learn a separate skill in another field so you're not totally dependent on your "day job." I'm a software engineer in my day job but I'm a "finance nerd" at home. I develop day trading software on the side to sell, and for my own use. The whole field of trading is intellectually stimulating; if you're really good at it you might even be able to ditch the day job one day.

Remember that being an entrepreneur doesn't necessarily "taking the plunge" and quitting the day job and joining a start-up. A creative and focused person can develop a side business for extra income. And who knows? Maybe it'll take off. You're young enough to develop this entrepreneurial habit. Think of the possibilities!

Both (as others have said) (1)

rindeee (530084) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114499)

Your CV should always be up to date. Always. No exceptions. That said, outsourcing can be lucrative for the employees. Often you'll get a bump in pay or a retainer bonus. Replacing a mass exodus immediately after an outsourcing deal is highly problematic and most companies will do all they can to keep staff and convert them.

Ah, the sweet feeling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114519)

Nothing like having the pee in a cup, again, to work for the same company.

PWNd? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114529)

Surely someone whose job got eliminated as a result of this would feel a bit... D-PWNd? (/ducks) /CF

Mod entire page and comments 'insightful' (1)

edmicman (830206) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114539)

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I am going through this exact thing - our small company was recently acquired by a much larger company (and our previous #1 competitor to boot!), and I am seeing myself in both the original question and all of the comments. The fear of the unknown, the apprehension, the prospects of putting my resume back out there....they're all there.

I, too, felt disillusioned in the system, frustrated with the powers-that-be, and distrustful of the whole thing. My initial thoughts were that this whole mess wasn't going to be for the better at all, and that we were getting sucked in to their crappiness. I've decided to keep my eyes open a little more for whatever opportunities are out there, at least moreso than I was before. But I'm going to wait awhile longer to see how things pan out. Corporate communication throughout the whole thing has been little to non-existent, though. The biggest struggle I've had is that my job role has changed. Well, no one has actually told me it has changed, but my previous role was lead developer in our small company - and the new company outsources all of their dev work to India (which is VERY subpar quality work I might add). I get the feeling they've got all these new people now, and don't really know what to do with them. I'd really rather be doing software development and programming that "managing" or doing this "project leader" BS.

I've either learned that things will begin to smooth out, or that I should just stop caring about putting out a better "product" and giving everything my best effort. If upper management only cares about the bottom line, no matter how crappy the quality of our company's product and service, why should I bother?

As a Manager (1)

Yo Grark (465041) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114547)

As a manager I can tell you the list of employees that will have "protection" has already been made by management opinion. No use trying to change yourself now.

I would suggest updating the CV, but stay on, and keep a positive attitude about the shift in culture.

1) If you're getting downsized, they owe you severance. If you leave, you don't get it. After 8 years, it might be worth it.

2) People who are negative usually go first. Look at the positives, do some preliminary work researching the new systems, culture, expectations etc which will help you make new contacts and increase your "corporate worth". Make sure to name-drop those connections and forward looking technologies around your manager and higherups.

3) Ride it out. If you're a good employee, you'll survive with more opportunity then you think. If you were a sub-par employee always doing the minimum, you can ride it out for the severance. Either way you're covered.

4) Put your feelers out to headhunters. They may be greedy, pushy, and rude, but they're on your side and have a better idea of your market value then anyone else. Just don't use a headhunter that is corporately known. People looking for a job has a way of leaking out, especially if Management deals with them on a regular basis.

I survived a few downsizes and shifts. My positive attitude while the sky was falling was always greeted with appreciation by the new overlords.

Yo Grark

Outsourcing is pain (1)

Fractal Dice (696349) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114555)

Outsourcing is pain. Anyone who says differently is selling something.

The expectations are not going to be lower, so outsourcing just means there is another set of mouths to feed in the corporate food chain between your work and the company's income. In my experience, from a worker's point of view, there is very, very little good that can come of it: if you were a cost before, you will still be a cost. The CIO is trying to avoid actually being accountable for anything or the company is playing games with its "revenue per employee" statistic to pull the wool over investors eyes.

Some tips from the "other side" (5, Interesting)

saigon_from_europe (741782) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114563)

It seems that I am on the other side of the story (dark side?) since I actually work in an outsourcing company. I work in Serbia, and we provide some programming for one company in USA.

It may be that we are not a typical example, but in our case there are about 60 employees in USA and 20 here in Serbia.

Complete R&D, marketing, and all top-jobs in IT are done in USA. Here in Serbia we do very basic tasks only.

In our particular case, we are not doing the job very well. Successful outsourcing requires very good communication channels. Due to geographical difference and esp. if there is time zone difference (like USA - India) communication must be perfect. This is very hard to achieve. That would require trained people in USA to write good specs, to know how to handle tasks and everything. For a beginning, just to know what they want as a product. In practice, that would mean that good managers will do some good work and bad managers will do some bad work, just as if there was no outsourcing. Outsourcing will just make existing communication problems bigger.

In our particular case, since we work in extremely regulated industry, things are even harder. Everything in the process has to be double-checked, documented and so on. In theory, this makes things more easy to outsource, but in practice, as major job has to be done in USA, outsourcing does not seem too beneficial. In our case, only thing you can outsource are junior jobs. But they have problems figuring this, and they try over and over to send us any tasks they find "labor intensive". This won't work. Outsourcing company is not a cavalry you call when you are in trouble. If you want to treat it like a cheap labor for boring tasks, you'll be in a huge problem.

As a complete surprise to a geniuses who believe that outsourcing is a solution for poor business practices, people that work in outsourcing companies are human, too. When treated as junk, they treat their employers as junk, so they tend to leave for small increases in salaries, since their job satisfaction is low and salary in only measure. Even more surprisingly, if treated as humans, outsources tend to behave just every normal employee. They learn about their jobs, they are ready to spend some time there when salaries are not the highest in the city and so on.

It's a bit different story when large company, like HP decides to outsource entire department. I don't see how this could be efficient. It's not a problem to replace junior John Doe with Asok in Delhi, but if you need to replace every trained team-leader, every mid-manager with the Indian counter-part, it seems to me like a recipe for disaster.

Re:Some tips from the "other side" (1)

shadowofwind (1209890) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114903)

Interesting info. This fits with how it looks from this end also.

I think the dynamic you describe is also pretty typical for interactions between departments and branches within the US. There are divisions or headquarters which have power, within which there are a lot of politics and scrambling for position. Then there are divisions or satellite offices where people are relatively powerless and the work is boring, since everything is organized to benefit those who are in control.

I expect that companies which manage to function in a more civilized manner can probably kick ass in their markets, because the feudal way is pretty inefficient.

When a company outsources it's IT (3, Insightful)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114587)

It starts the downward spiral in efficiency since there will be a lot more overhead in the process of doing IT support.

An IT person that's roaming the corridors and works inhouse can always stop by and fix things on the fly while an outsourced IT person always has to get the issue through the issue tracking system in order to motivate the salary. This means that it can add hours upon hours of delay before an issue is resolved.

therapy (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114589)

"I moved into my current position fresh out of university"

"I enjoy my work and the opportunities that go with it, "

in other words, you never had to deal with
reality? you seem to think somehow you will be guaranteed a job in 'the new company', as if you have a choice to stay or go.

the point of outsourcing is supposedly to reduce headcount and get rid of labor costs... ie, you. dust off your 'cv' no matter what. its like your lifeboat, think 'titanic'.

and go read dilbert books.

Depends on if you are the buyer or buyee (2, Informative)

Royale_With_Cheese (1322505) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114595)

If your company is being bought you should generally leave, or at least prepare to. I'm yet to see happy developers that stayed with a company that got bought out. If your company is the one buying the other then you get to raid the other company's resources (people, servers, software, etc) keeping what you want and getting rid of the rest. Much better to be on this end than the other.

He got outsourced (1)

CopaceticOpus (965603) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114613)

Tag this story "dpwned".

Opportunity knocks (2, Informative)

ShannaraFan (533326) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114649)

Opportunities are born out of times like this - ride it out, keep a positive attitude and an open mind, look for new people to hook up with, expand your network to include people in the "new" company. You very likely will find yourself presented with a chance to do something new, without having to leave the company.

Been there, done that (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114657)

I was in that exact position with HP and a large canadian financial institution about 5 years ago. It went pretty smoothly for some (including me) but not for everyone. The shift to HP's culture was a hit and there was many waves of layoff's.

Stick it out and see what happens. At the very least you can put "HP" (for whatever that is worth to you) on your resume.

Take some time (1)

ladquin (1177763) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114687)

If I assume you live and work in USA, so you will be under the same worker laws, I guess you should not worry about being outsourced, specially if we speak about HP. I live in Argentina and work at a HP facility, but I'm NOT a HP employee, I'm an outsourced problem analyst, and there is a big difference. I don't just speak about salary, it's about worker's internal rights and responsabilities: if something goes wrong with something I'm working on, It's all my fault; but if it turns out to be a good job, my (HP) manager will take the credit for it (anyway, here everyone knows it happens without even being outsourced..). Of course, he will not forget to congratulate me by e-mail. Now, if I have something to complain or ask about, it's not HP I have to deal with, it's my outsourcing company... I still think you shouldn't leave (yet), just take your time to evaluate all the implications, but specially how you really want your job to be like. Good luck.

surviving the corepirate nazi holycost (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114691)

better days ahead. see you there?
the lights are coming up all over now. conspiracy theorists are being vindicated. some might choose a tin umbrella to go with their hats. the fairytail is winding down now. let your conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

http://news.google.com/?ncl=1216734813&hl=en&topic=n
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/29/world/29amnesty.html?hp
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/06/02/nasa.global.warming.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/05/severe.weather.ap/index.html
http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/weather/06/02/honore.preparedness/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/01/opinion/01dowd.html?em&ex=1212638400&en=744b7cebc86723e5&ei=5087%0A
http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/06/05/senate.iraq/index.html
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/17/washington/17contractor.html?hp
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/03/world/middleeast/03kurdistan.html?_r=1&hp&oref=slogin
http://biz.yahoo.com/ap/080708/cheney_climate.html

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=weather+manipulation&btnG=Search
http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece

money is not the whole story (1)

Tzinger (550448) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114733)

Reducing costs is part of the story for outsourcing, but it is not always the entire story. It consumes capital and intellectual capital to manage as much as 15% of your business. Maybe the company is better off to invest elsewhere.

Many companies do not manage their own payroll. It is not immediately apparent they do this to reduce costs. However, relieving staff of figuring out how to garnish wages, pay all the separate taxing bodies, .... We might spend too much time on something that is not essential to the business process.

For outsourcing IT, you should look at the application space. If all the services provided are accounting and payroll, then you can run for the door. These things can always be outsourced and costs are the primary factor.

If the applications work really enables the business to serve its customers, then the company may be experiencing many problems with the manner in which development is performed and is throwing in the towel.

Whatever, if you decide to follow HP, you should look at its reputation. Look in Fortune Magazine and look at HP's track record on both its business and its ranking as a place to work. If you would buy HP's stock and you believe it serves its employees well, I would fight for a job at HP. In any case, dust off the CV. The new company is going to interview you regardless.

Backup Plan (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114755)

Whatever you decide to do, have a backup plan. Don't be one of those worried whimpering dudes who fear change, and don't be one of those guys who suddenly find themselves plummeting without a net.

Plan ahead. Always.

HP sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114763)

HP used to be a great place to work. It isn't that way any more, and it continues to get worse. HP is now run by bean counters, whose core competency is cutting costs. You probably won't enjoy working for HP. See all the negative comments on Glassdoor.com [glassdoor.com] .

Do both. (1)

pla (258480) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114787)

Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?"

You should do both - Start looking for a new job ASAP, but don't burn any bridges. In six months to a year, when they come to greatly regret the decision to outsource, as someone who already knows your job, you'll find yourself in a position to demand just about anything to come back.

NEVER EVER ride a sinking ship! NEVER! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114791)

On average I am laid off every 2 years due to outsourcing, layoffs, downsizing, buyouts, you name it, and I have barely been in the "real world" for a decade. DO NOT EVER ride a sinking ship. It does nothing but crush your morale, and in the end, you get screwed no matter what. I have learned that it does not matter what you know, but who you know.

Get your resume up to date, and always keep it up to date every few months. Surf monster.com routinely at work if you have to, and keep your resume bumped up to the top. Most headhunters are usually a waste of time and resources, but occasionally you find a good one. Also consider moving. I learned the hard way early on that Ohio is nothing but an IT black hole, and will move when I find the right offer, never to look back.

In a nutshell, company loyalty is a relic from decades ago, and has not existed in my lifetime. Only be as loyal to a company as it is to you, which is pretty much non-existent these days.

Give me a break.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24114885)

Okay, if I understand correctly you are working for a company that was hired by DPWN to "outsource" some of their positions and now HP is taking over that outsourced portion of DPWN's work? DPWN is just switching contracts then right?

Why are you so upset? You were the one that displaced someone elses job at DPWN when they first outsourced those positions. Seems to me if you live by the sword you should die by the sword...

If the same people are sticking around and doing the work, then you are really just an IT whore and you had your pimp changed. Get used to it...

Use it as an opportunity (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114953)

You will have the right to apply for other jobs within your new employer.

Obviously it depends on what the regulations are in your particular country, but here you become a fully fledged employee of the new company. That gives you the seniority you transferred from your old job (status, number of years employed, rights etc.) and it also gives you the right to apply for internal vacancies with the same status as anyone else within the new parent company.

Don't feel therefore that you have to continue doing your old job - look around in the bigger organisation for something you may prefer and go for it.

None of the above (2, Interesting)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114965)

Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?

I don't like either of those options. Back in my day job days this kind of thing would go on all the time. Outsource rumors and buy outs in private industry, contract changes in military contracting. Either way you're still an employee subject to the whims and petty rules of your employer.

Another option is thinking about banking some cash and starting your own gig. It's harder work and pays less but ultimately you'll be happier. You have to learn about things like quarterly taxes and professional liability insurance, business licenses and what advertising works and what doesn't. The nice thing about tech is you don't need expensive offices or a lot of overhead to get going. You will need enough cash to survive until you have money coming in, which takes longer than you think.

Most people have ideas about what it takes to start a business and those ideas are almost universally wrong. You may not get fabulously wealthy but with hard work and miserly habits you can make ends meet. I was doing okay and it eventually led to a job that is, essentially, layoff proof. And I get an equity position if the company gets bought out. Plus I'm in the envious position of being the person with the whims who makes up the petty rules. Life is a lot better being on that side of the equation.

Having your own gig gives you the leverage to take a pass on the crapass, dead end, corporate cubicle jobs. You'll be happier in the long run. What seems strange to me are people who will argue for the financial security of a day job. Talk about a false sense of security. You can work in the same place 20 years and get fired the next day and won't get squat.

The World is Flat (1, Interesting)

fr175 (999487) | more than 6 years ago | (#24114985)

I would suggest reading The World is Flat [wikipedia.org] by Thomas L. Friedman.

Friedman goes through great effort to explain how and why jobs are being outsourced, and also provides some guidance on what we can do to survive in a "flat" world. I would call this book required reading for anyone working in any level of IT.

If you're not the reading type, there's a video of Friedman at MIT [mit.edu] where he coveres much of the first three chapters.

Do Both (1)

Frightened_Turtle (592418) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115001)

"Should I 'ride the wave' and join the new company and culture, or dust off the old CV/resume?"

Do Both. There's a chance to get into HP as an employee, but buyouts rarely go well for the employees of the purchased business. I hate sounding like a pessimist, but I like being prepared for all possibilities.

Looking at the ugliest scenario, consider that HP already has considerable IT resources. Are you bringing skills and talents to the table that would be of extra value to HP? Or would your skill set be redundant? If you are the GoTo guy in your organization — the guy folks go to when they need issues solved or just want to shoot the breeze — then you can assume that you'll be reasonably safe. Otherwise, you may want to brush up on your people skills.

On the other side of the spectrum, you've already noticed that this could be a real opportunity! Try and find out what your new employers really need and make sure your resume and skills reflect that. Go to HP's web site and look up employment opportunities within HP, and see if your skill set matches anything that they are looking for. Even if your business unit is slated for disassembly or restructuring, you could stand a good chance to get transferred to where you are needed instead of being laid off.

When your new overlords- er, uh, I mean "employers" — arrive to take control, make sure you make a clear effort to learn how they want things done. Don't be a kiss-up. Make a real effort to adapt.

Good luck with it. This could be a great opportunity for you, regardless of whether it goes positively or negatively. If they like you, but your position still has to be cut, you will run a better chance of either scoring a transfer or getting a decent recommendation/lead on a new job with another company.

It will suck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#24115017)

Get the hell out of there.

DHL does it to save money
HP does it to make money

The employees in the middle get screwed over as its actually impossible to do both, something has to give, and it will be your pay and benefits.

I work for a bank that has some IT outsourced and some in-sourced. I work for the bank. Getting anything done is a nightmare and actually costs the bank far more than i really would if they did it themselves.

But, it doesn't actually look at way to the person who got a bonus for signing with the outsourcing company and reporting to the board.

Do what is best for you (1)

slashname3 (739398) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115153)

Like many have recommended you should keep all options open. Maintain an updated resume. You never know when someone will mention they are looking to hire. And don't get drawn into the company line about people being their number one asset or any such bullshit. People are one of the first things a company will jettison if they think it will help the bottom line. The days of cradle to grave at a company are long gone. Employment is pretty much at will everywhere.

The one thing to keep in mind is that if/when you decide to make the move, just make the move. Don't look back and don't dwell on what could have been. It won't do you or anyone any good. Don't burn any bridges but don't hold fret about the old job. If the new one sucks (which most of them do) then work it until you find something else.

Depends on the Deal (1)

Relden (1030180) | more than 6 years ago | (#24115165)

A lot of it depends on your exact job and the deal between HP and DHL. If you job involves systems that are unique to DHL, then you should be safe for a while. If it is a job like looking after a Windows server or Oracle DBA, I might start looking. If HP is going to start taking possession of DHL's servers and systems and moving them to their own server farms, then I'd start looking right away. If not, you'll find that much of your time in the future is spent training others how to do your job. That's what happened in my last job. Keep in mind that HP is buying EDS and there is going to be some rationalizing there. Even without the merger, these companies are looking for the cheapest IT labour possible, which means they are going overseas. So I would not count on any future in HP. Also oursourcers love to outsource. You job might not even be done by HP: it might be somebody they've contracted to do it. I once had a problem that involved five separate companies, five levels of outsourcing. It felt like I was working for the government or something. If you hang in through the transition, be prepared for the effect this will have on your relationship with your non-IT colleagues at DHL. I found this really stressful when it happened to me. I could not talk to anyone in our company unless they went through the outsourcer first. Then the outsourcer might not assign the task to me. I used to be the only computer guy for one of our sites. When somebody needed a new program installed on his computer, he called the help desk. They assigned it to a company they outsourced desktop maintenance too. I then had to show the person who came in from 100km away how to install the software on this person's computer. After a while this changes your colleagues relationship with you: you become more and more of an outsider. Soon they start to check to see if you might have a better office than they do.
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