by: Kochan, Thomas A.
Cisco Systems, specializing in network systems that link computers and provide Internet communications, was founded in 1990. Employee compensation is closely tied to company and individual performance through stock ownership and profit-sharing, and performance is focused on customer satisfaction. Cisco has grown mainly by acquisition, always trying to stay ahead of the next best technological developments. It places great emphasis on careful recruitment of people who will share the company's vision and energy. In order to provide security to regular employees, the company out-sources much of its work through temporary work agencies and sub-contractors. But tax laws and other developments have recently made it difficult to maintain this distinction, placing pressures on Cisco to turn contract workers into regular employees. (This case is one of seven that are examined in the article, 'Rebuilding the Social Contract at Work: Lessons from Leading Cases,' by Thomas Kochan (1999). The article can be found in References on this site. The article contains footnotes and references not included in this version of the case.)
Publication Date: 1999-01-01