Alright perhaps not overlords… It has been suspected for sometime that Cognos (my employer) would be acquired by a larger company. The even bets were on IBM, Microsoft, and Oracle. To be honest I didn’t really have an opinion one way or another as to whether this would be a good thing or a bad thing. For the record I still don’t.

I did feel that IBM was going to be the best fit for Cognos at least technologically. Microsoft is not an Java shop, and with their current position they never will be. With the current trend at Cognos that just didn’t seem like it would be good fit. From that perspective I welcome IBM. As with all of this M&A stuff there are bound to be some pains, but I am quite confident that I will come out the other end free and clear. And that is what really counts isn’t it?

As for the prospect -in about 3-4 months once the deal closes- of being a Big Blue employee. It seems good. A quick perusal of the IBM Canada benefits. It looks like the working hours are more flexible. I do like the idea of working 4 days a week -and spending 3 days a week skiing during the winter. As well in my travels I found a blog in regards to some guys work experience at IBM. It sounded positive for the most part with the exception of him getting low-balled salary wise on entry.

Step No. 3
Learn from my own mistake… Do not accept a job with IBM unless your starting salary is appropriate for your education and skill set. Check with your professional organizations to make sure the IBM salary offer is what the industry pays. IBM benefits are no longer the industry’s best, but simply industry standard, and salary is the only negotiation you control at the beginning.

All in all it sounds like a pretty good place to work. Perhaps not Google good, but what can you do this side of working for Google. As for what this means for Cognos as a company? Well I’m not a business guy but I do think that it will allow Cognos to be more competitive with larger organizations, but that isn’t my forte and if you really want evaluation on the IBM purchase there are hundreds of articles to the effect.