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6 Surprising Reasons Why IBM Is SO Prestigious

There’s no doubt about it – IBM is seen as a leader in technology and innovation. But why is that? Why is IBM so prestigious (for professionals, industries, and of course potential employees.)

I have spent nearly a decade in the consulting industry and found that IBM is prestigious mainly because of its impressive presence, long list of accomplishments in IT services, and providing its employees with a diverse environment.

And there’s more…another thing that adds to the reputation of IBM is its development programs. They create a vast talent pool and make leaders out of them.

In this post, I’ll take a deep dive into exactly:

  • The 6 biggest reasons why IBM is so prestigious
  • And just how it has been working hard (behind the scenes) to maintain this status for so long
The server room at IBM headquarters

1. Impressive Worldwide Presence

Let’s take a super quick look at an overview of IBM…

IBM, (which you probably know is an international consulting company), is running its operations in more than 170 countries. It has a workforce of around 435,000 professionals.

It currently ranks as the 4 largest company by market capitalization and comes at number 19 by revenue. (Source) 

One of the reasons for IBM’s prestigious reputation is its extensive global reach. This plays a huge part in influencing its clientele in many sectors to hire its services.

Top tip – that might be why it is the 9th most profitable technology consulting company in the world. (Source) 

The broad presence of IBM helps the firm to promote innovation. It helps them to meet the ever-demanding needs of the globalized world. 

2. Innovation Pioneers

IBM offers its consulting services in many technological fields, such as: 

  • Cognitive Computing
  • Blockchain
  • Internet of Things
  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • Watson platform
  • Quantum Computing


IBM is never shy about embracing technology.

You might have noticed that they firmly believe that adopting cutting-edge technologies can help people reshape their perceptions of computing. 

For years, IBM has been the brand ambassador for developing technologies.

Just a few of these are:

  • the hard disk drive
  • floppy disc
  • relational database
  • magnetic stripe card

These are just a few of their ground-breaking innovations!

These technologies have profoundly changed the world! They have made IBM prestigious in the eyes of many (for good reason).

3. Diversity, Inclusiveness & Support Networks

IBM’s vision for diversity, equality, and inclusion is to encourage a sense of belonging to its workforce. The company does not discriminate when it comes to any of the following:

  • gender
  • race
  • age
  • disability
  • sexual orientation
  • and more

IBM is also taking steps to include people with disabilities in the mix. Also, they are working more with veterans.

The company’s efforts are not going unnoticed!

They have received many awards from credible organizations. This all feeds into their level of prestige.(Source)

The table below provides a thorough summary of IBM’s work representation composition. I have highlighted the representation of workers from several different backgrounds:

African American18%


IBM has also formed many employee resource groups from different backgrounds. They want these employees to let them ‘fill in their emotions’.

IBM wants them to be loud about their perspectives. (Source) 

Not only that, the firm is actively promoting opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses.

IBM Office buildings seen from the ground with wispy cloud and a blue sky behind

4. Longevity and History

IBM play the long game. They have survived, no prospered, for more than a century!

That is major evidence of their longevity in the field of information technology. And I think it’s fair to say that it is astonishing the way IBM has transformed itself.

A brief history – IBM was established as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company (CTR) in 1911. Initially, its primary objective was to provide punch card equipment for data processing. (Source) 

Since then, IBM has undergone massive evolution. As the industry landscape changed, it expanded its client base.

They started to become a prestigious name in the IT consulting industry.

I would say that IBM’s longevity may be attributed to three key factors:

  • Flexibility
  •  Scalability
  • Large investments in R&D and patents 

IBM’s research expenditures (over $6 billion) are equaled only by three massive firms:

  • Microsoft
  • Intel
  • And Oracle.

IBM often have 5000+ record-breaking patents each year. Their peak came in 2011 – with 6000! (Source) 

5. Leadership and Talent Pool 

The leaders of IBM like to promote that they are playing a vital part in transforming our lives.

This process of course makes the company prestigious in the eyes of regular people. 

In December 2015, IBM introduced the IBM Leadership Academy. This is their central hub for all leadership development programs. (Source)  

At IBM, a significant majority of positions traditionally require higher credentials. In the United States, where 65% of adults lack a bachelor’s degree, 80% of Black adults fall into this category.

During Rometty’s leadership, IBM welcomed 150,000 individuals who did not possess four-year degrees.

Instead, they were looking for both qualifications and potential to make substantial contributions to the company’s success. (Source) 

IBM recognized the necessity of investing in the skills of its workforce to stay competitive. They knew they needed to innovate to deliver value to the client. It was imperative to empower teams with the collaborative support needed for independent operation.

A current employee at IBM working as a customer services representative stated on Indeed, “Great company, great pay! Enjoyed working with company bonus were good! Gave staff nice prizes such as electronics. Appreciated the hour lunch break.” 


6. Work Flexibility and Pay Equity

But what makes IBM prestigious for its employees?

One thing is that IBM is big on promoting a healthy work-life balance.

Employees have choices! They can either follow a hybrid model or be hired as 100% remote employees. These remote employees can work from anywhere as posted freelancers. (Source)

In addition, IBM has been very transparent about its equal pay policy. They make sure their employees get the pay they deserve regardless of their backgrounds and gender. (Source)

Summing Up!

In this article, I have unveiled 6 reasons why IBM is a prestigious company for many aspiring candidates and its clients.

There are a lot of things in the melting pot, but particularly:

  • Their inclusive culture
  • historical longevity
  • pioneering inventions
  • outstanding leadership
  • and worldwide presence making it a leader in the technology industry
  • its workforce’s willingness to push the limits to let the company maintain its prestigious state


  • Will Bennett

    Will Bennett is a Cambridge graduate. He worked as a Consultant and Senior Consultant at Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in London. Will is the Founder of The Cambridge Consultant.