Re: and since long before 2013
You have a couple of factors:
1) Bean Counters... all people are the same cogs, so find the cheapest cogs and make as high a margin as possible, regardless of the quality of the output.
2) Staff Culling... Cull the bottom 10% because it will motivate the other 90% and allow for fresh blood.
It doesn't matter if you're a 1 performer but suddenly hit a snag while the rest of your team are all 1 performers.
3) Rig the system. Only allow top grades for a small margin. So if your entire team hits the target and exceeds the target... you still cull from the bottom 10% so you still cut a high performer.
4) Shift the back office work to lower cost centers. So if you need a contract approved, it goes to a drone where English isn't the first language and there is a time delay. What used to take 12 hours now takes 72.
But you saved money... so you come out ahead.
5) Ignore the customer.
IBM is expensive and when they reduce skills but charge more than their competitors, they lose competitive advantage and business.
6) Promote those who have brown necks. (It used to be brown lips, but that's no longer enough)
There's more but you get the idea.