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  • #2273765

    Choosing a New Career Path

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    by deusbelli ·

    Let’s face it. The IT sector has a pretty bleak future. Why? There are just not going to be enough IT jobs to go around; the market is already flooded with skilled people drawn in by the over-hyped tech companies of the late 90’s. Now with the high demand for IT people a fading memory, we are left fighting tooth and nail for a help desk position. Will a healthier economy be the answer to our prayers? If the economy ever returns to ‘normal’ (though Americans are used to it, an economy sucking in and generating wealth at unprecedented rates is not ‘normal’) then there will be a more reasonable and (hopefully) sustainable demand for IT professionals, not a way over inflated, unsatble demand like that of the late 90’s. By the way, did I mention that a few of the jobs might end up over seas?

    So, what to do with all this IT knowledge? I have decided for myself that relying purely on technology skills for a career is too risky. I must find a new career path where my IT skills can put me at the greatest advantage. That’s why I’m here; looking for suggestions. My background is summed up: BBA in MIS, ASP, VB, VBA, TCP/IP, Access, SQL, MySQL, HTML, Web Developer for 1 1/2 years, consulting (PC maintenance and custom Access programing) for about a year.

    I am considering accounting or finance, yet I don’t really like either field so I am looking for suggestions. In what career field could someone with my skills really excel?

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    • #2700795

      Perhaps you should write a book

      by maxwell edison ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      .
      “The Pessimist’s Guide to Impending Doom and Gloom”

      Chapter 1. What’s Wrong With Everything.

      Chapter 2. Nothing’s Right, Everything’s Wrong.

      Chapter 3. Playing the Blame Game.

      Chapter 4. Oh Whoa Is Me.

      Chapter 5. Avoiding the Unlimited Possibilities.

      Chapter 6. Focusing on the Limitations.

      Chapter 7. The Art of Wallowing in Self-Pity.

      Chapter 8. Making Everything Worse.

      Chapter 9. Making the Wrong Mental Choices.

      Chapter 10. The Power of Negative Thinking.

      .
      .
      .
      .
      .
      .
      ……………………. Or not.

      • #2700781

        Geez Max!!! Who pissed in your porridge??? This isn’t like you

        by sleepin’dawg ·

        In reply to Perhaps you should write a book

        Geez you are normally the cool reasoned one, what set you off??? It’s the weekend. Chill!!! Take a look at “I’m done with IT” from drago 762. Similar problem, more mellow replies.

        • #2700777

          Depends on how you look at it

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to Geez Max!!! Who pissed in your porridge??? This isn’t like you

          .
          Whether you look to find what’s right or what’s wrong, you’ll find it.

          I knew it could (and would) be taken either way. But I also thought it was a good way to make a point.

          Take the “pessimism” out of your reading (or whatever), and you’ll probably take something different from the message (or whatever)……………or not.

        • #2700759

          As a pessimist you will never be disappointed ……..

          by sleepin’dawg ·

          In reply to Depends on how you look at it

          and you are undoubtedly going to be prepared for them. When things work out or go well then you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

        • #2700695

          Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to As a pessimist you will never be disappointed ……..

          .
          I believe that a true pessimist is indeed disappointed with good news. Moreover, I believe that the Democrat party, in general, is the party of pessimists. Have you ever heard a main-stream Democrat articulate what’s right about society and the world? It’s always this problem and that problem, and it’s always them who blame others for all the misery in everyone’s lives. The Democrat party, in my view, epitomizes pessimism. That’s why it’s so hard for me to relate to them.

          That underlying principle is so contrary to how I want to live my life – and how I think others should live theirs. Who was the last Democrat who suggested that a person reach within him or her self, take personal responsibility, and take advantage of the opportunities available to them? President Kennedy is the last one I can think of. And that was over forty years ago. But I digress with yet another “political” tangent.

          For me to hear a person bitch and complain about everything under the sun; to hear people blame others for all their woes; to see people focus on the bad news, never the good news; to hear all the class envy; to hear all the “blame big business” rhetoric; and on and on and on, is contrary to everything I believe. Moreover, it’s contrary to doing the things necessary to take personal responsibility for one’s own life.

          Why is it so prevalent? Because it’s easier to be a pessimist. Taking optimistic personal responsibility is hard; it’s very hard. And people are just afraid to do it.

        • #3310805

          WOW

          by ddissent ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          Yes – yes – yes

          and a big hearty AMEN to THAT

        • #3308320

          pessimist…

          by maxedout ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          it is hard to mentally process the optimistic side when all you hear is the pessimist side on a continuous basis. It is also the way jobs positions are lost. If you always look on the negative side, is that company going to want to keep you onboard with their vision? I know i wouldnt. Could this be your problem?

        • #3308171

          Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

          by the admiral ·

          In reply to pessimist…

          There is a simple solution.

          Don’t listen to the TV, Radio, or any other news agency.

          Then vote what you thing is right.

        • #3308128

          Who’s the pessimist?

          by partley ·

          In reply to pessimist…

          I find it oddly funny that your response is so negative given your feelings. Rather than respond with negativity why wouldn’t you respond with positivity in order to lead by example. This is something that is overlooked even in Television these days. It’s possible to affect one’s environment with a positive outlook.

          I disagree that the Democratic party is filled with pessimists. I think that it’s pervasive in the US right now for a lot of different reasons (but i will spare you my rhetoric on this.) The solution to the problem is to be positive. To recognize yourself being negative, and correct it. By being negative yourself, you are contributing to the overall negativity and perpetuating the negative trend.

          I thought your post was very clever, but i’m having trouble finding an answer to the original question. Should this person be concerned about losing his/her job to someone more qualified because there will be less IT jobs in the near future? I don’t think so. I do believe that IT will continue to change with the computer industry, and the industries that it supports. As long as you keep up with the changes, there will always be people who don’t want to or can’t support their workstations.

        • #3308299

          Do you live in the US?

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          Do you live in the same country I do? You keep saying that we should “focus on the good news”. What good news? Could you let me in on it. The fact is that it is big business and their political influence that is ruining/has ruined this country and to believe otherwise is just burying your head in the sand.

        • #3308274

          I live in the US that has lead the world for the last century!

          by dta5811 ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          I live in the US that the world envies.

          Big business isn’t our biggest problem. The spreading of socialism and making people who have worked hard to get where they are feel guilty for having what they have is a bigger problem.

          Our country has survived many dying industries. Look at what automobiles did to the horse trading industry, or the current changes in the steel industry. You have to be able to adapt to stay competitive in the market. Instead the unions fight progress and protect poor performers… all costing the company huge amounts of money and making it hard for the company to compete against foreign competitors. Then the unions give all your dues money to the Democrats who tax the hell out of the company until they have to close their doors.

          But it’s all the evil corporations fault!

          The good news is the American spirit and the entrepreneurs keep this county moving. Opportunities are nearly endless if you have the will to work hard enough to achieve your goal.

        • #3308259

          Yes I Live in the US

          by slog ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          I live in the US and I love my job and my country. What’s ruined? Please be specific. If you are determined and willing to work hard can you not still make a great life for yourself in America?? I can and I have. I have no college education and I make enough money to comfortably support my wife and three kids. My wife does not have to work and my son goes to a private school. What’s ruined. What’s so bad. Why is everyone so hard on BIG business. I happen to work hard for a BIG company as Senior Systems Engineer and they pay me a BIG salary that takes care of my family. Please post some specific issues with related facts when you say our country is ruined.

        • #3308170

          Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

          by the admiral ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          “Do you live in the US?
          Do you live in the same country I do? You keep saying that we should “focus on the good news”. What good news? Could you let me in on it. The fact is that it is big business and their political influence that is ruining/has ruined this country and to believe otherwise is just burying your head in the sand.”

          Are the comments of a person who is attached to the TV watching Dan Rather with opinion, and not news.

        • #3308163

          To Admiral

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          Could your comments be those of a big business owner or executive that likes being able to buy politicians so that the business climate is always favorable for the upper managent/executives and unfavorable for the common worker?

        • #3308149

          You must be kidding

          by vanlandingham ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          What is so bad with this country? Where is all the ruin? You must have extra money to afford this Internet connection you are using, or better yet, you must have a job and be using your boss’s (big business) Internet connection.

          We have 6% unemployment in this country. That is not so bad is it?

        • #3308142

          to vanlandingham@valassis.com

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to Do you live in the US?

          Are YOU kidding? The fact that I can afford an internet connection proves that there is nothing wrong in this country? I think what you are inferring is that as long as the common worker can exist (albeit a bare existence) it’s OK that owners and managers of big businesses live in the lap of luxury. Forgive me, but I find a lot wrong with that picture.

        • #3308282

          blame the blaming democrats

          by tick ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          You’re absolutely right. The problems with the world today stem from the fact that the democrats are continually seeing a situation and trying to make it better. Why can’t they just leave well enough alone? I mean, who cares about the poor, the ederly, the ravaged countries, the helpless, the abused, the undereducated, the people without opportunities, and on and on. As long as big business and the upper-handed have all the things they need and a clear path to getting more, why should anyone else care?

          I don’t blame anyone for my woes that I have a direct correlation. However, we have a government that should be taking care of the things I can’t personally do on my own. Education cannot be funded directly by me alone. I cannot build the classroom, I cannot provide the teacher with all of the materials he/she needs to teach my children, therefore I blame those that can when pertinent things are not provided.

          I could go on and on about things I did not make the choice but it still takes its toll on my life directly. There are things that can be done to make situations better and pretending everything is rosey will only lead to bigger problems. Remember that the current administration in the US ignored all warnings that terrorists would attack. The previous administration told the current that al Qaeda would be the biggest threat, and a homeland security department should be created to protect the people. The current administration completely ignored all those warnings and pretended everything was rosey. Look how that turned out.

          You have to accept that there are negative things that have to be addressed. This is called reality. To think otherwise is only an invitation for disaster. We all look at the bright side, but that doesn’t mean you turn your back on the other that will inevitably bite you in the ass.

          How did this turn into a political rant, anyway?

        • #3308272

          What did Clinton do to protect us?

          by dta5811 ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          In 1998 Clinton had hard evidence of Osama Bin Laden’s location and decided not to bomb the building. He knew Bin Laden was responsible for the 1993 World Trade Center Bombing!

          He was too busy running our highest office through the mud because he couldn’t keep it in his pants.

        • #3308255

          Actually, dta5811 was really right on the mark!

          by dasc0917 ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          dta5811 was right and the best and most resent example is on he may have overlooked.

          Okay, the democrats want to make things better and protect us, even from ourselves. All the while using more and more of our own incomes and resources to do it.

          Many of us were just told that, once again, we couldn’t get a flu shot because of a shortage. A contaminated batch in England. But what is supply so short that one contaminated batch is an issue? Why is the vaccine no longer made in the U.S.?

          In the late ’90’s Clinton signed a bill that was pushed originally by a non elected person, Hilary. The bill was said to be for the protection of “the children and seniors” and would guarantee that they would, among other things, always have a flu shot. It capped how much the companies could charge (not how much they could earn) and left greater openings for law suits. The pharms couldn’t afford it anymore so they had to turn over all manufacturing to non U.S. affiliates which can’t handle the volume because they were already making vaccine for their own countries.

          Now you know how the democrats want to make things better for everyone.

          electprog

        • #3308209

          Blame NAFTA

          by gnx ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          I don’t now how this became political but,
          you can blame NAFTA. We do not manufacture most of our goods. Big companies will look at the bottom line. If it is cheaper to make something overseas they will do it. China and India both have growing economies. They will be using alot more natural resources (oil for one). As for the previous administration warning the present one about terrorists, we could have had bin laden handed to us back in 98 but Clinton said no. Instead he chose to bomb a pill factory and some abandoned camp.

          As for your new career DEUSBELLI, why don’t try becoming a chef? That’s my next career move.

          SSgt GNX
          US Army (ret)
          160th SOAR

        • #3308146

          Cry me a freakin’ river

          by vanlandingham ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          How many dilapidated big cities are run by Republicans? The Democrats have been running them since FDR days and have only increased poverty in all of them. Nice job. Let’s keep voting for them; they are doing such a good job. They give a guy $50 more in his welfare check instead of giving him the education and the will to succeed. Most of the poor people would opt for the $50, so the Democrats win their vote.

          Many of them don’t to pick the guy that says work harder when they can pick a guy that says work less and make more babies and here is a $50 raise. Think about it.

        • #3307904

          More ranting

          by tick ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          Clinton reduced the number of people living in poverty, lowered the unemployment, eliminated the deficit, reduced the number of people on welfare, managed to get more minorities into home ownership (the current all time high W is shouting from the rooftops is entirely due to Clinton’s work in the 90s), the only presidents that had higher growth in private sector jobs in the last 70 years were Roosevelt, Truman, Johnson, and Carter, all democrats, he saved social security, and I could go on and on (as I’m sure his detractors could against him).

          I’m not really sure where vanlandingham has his head, but Clinton lowered poverty rates, Bush has increased the number by 1.3 million. The number of children in poverty is at its highest level in ten years. How can you say democrats increase poverty???

          From the things I’ve heard in reponse to my own and other liberal responses, I gather that you republicans think it’s okay to trample the little guy to get on top. It’s perfectly acceptable that millions of people within our boarders can’t afford three meals a day, just as long as it doesn’t affect you personally. How dare someone suggest the wealthy should pay their share. Those poor people choose to be poor. They could fight their way to the top if they wanted to, they just don’t want to. Well, if you’ve never been in the situation, then you’ll never understand it, I guess. Some of us can look beyond our tiny little box.

          As far as Clinton not getting bin Laden when he could, well you can thank your republican dogs for attacking Clinton so harshly during that time. At the point Clinton could have done something about it, he was busy answering questions about his personal life. You act like Newt Gingrich himself wasn’t sleeping with his own staff at exactly the same time. Keep it in his pants, indeed. Clinton was just being questioned about it because is was the only thing they could pin on him. This administration knows the definition of mudding up the oval office, Clinton merely stained a dress.

          Oh and one last thing. Thanks dasc0917 for taking me to school. You’ve enlightened me and I’m forever grateful. Now I know how the democrats want to make things better. Yes, your insight has been so helpful. *roll eyes* Puhlease, I don’t think your last authoritative line sums up how right you are.

          You all listen to Bush, Rush, Hannity and OReilly when you should be listening to a more objective source like NPR, PBS, or heck, Jon Stewart.

        • #3307832

          Are you Al Gore ?

          by gnx ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          You forgot to mention global warming.
          Clinton reduced the military. Second of all I was not hired by Clinton or Bush at my current job. I also work a second job to accelerate paying off my house. If I can work 2 jobs then some of these layabouts should be able to get one job. Your current hero John “Liveshot” Kerry has never met a tax hike he didn’t like. If he gets elected then your taxes will go up. (He is one of my senators). He wants healthcare for everyone in the country. He wants you and I to pay for it. Oh yeah PBS and NPR are government funded. I am niether Dem or Rep. The surplus / deficit looks good on paper if it actually exists. Enough of this I have to get back to work now.

        • #3308624

          A nice political debate, but…..

          by wpwalsh8 ·

          In reply to blame the blaming democrats

          The whole problem here is that everyone is forgetting that while slick willy was playing games, other than political in the oval office, he did allow big business to take over our economy and fill their wallets with cash, nice parachute packages when things went wrong, and over inflate the value of their business for their own gain.

          The current administration, as is usually the case after a democratic climax, is to clean up the mess. Unfortunately, in order to clean up the mess, it involves a long term in making things right, which costs money.

          In either case, both Clinton and Bush have cost this country a great deal in a great many areas. I am not, however, going to all of a sudden jump on the Kerry banwagon because things are a little tough right now. What’s he done? The only thing I have heard him talk about is this grand plan that he hasn’t backed up yet.

          Again, this is getting off the point of the original question. deusbelli@yahoo.com, depending upon which part of the world you live in, I would talk speak to recruiters and HR people in the companies that you are interested in working to see where your skills could fit. If additional training is required, ask what type of training for the job that interests you and pursue it. The main thing today is that you need to get updated training or skills that will help you sort out the career issue. More importantly, you need to know what you are after. If you are unhappy in your present line of work, then you will definitely need to go back to school for training in whatever you do want for a career.

          Good luck,

          wpwalsh8@optonline.net

        • #3308150

          It’s raining

          by rharper ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          You may have a point about the Democrats; however, the Rupublicans keep pissing on me and telling me it’s raining. We need a party that is going to tell it straight and try to do something about it. Not lie and cover up the pain.

        • #3308104

          You have to be kidding!

          by theoldguy ·

          In reply to It’s raining

          You want to talk about the Republicans lying when Clinton lied not only to the people, but also UNDER OATH about his relationships? I think you have the wrong people in mind about the lying. GW has said what he was going to do, and done it consistently from the beginning of his current term. How much is Kerry hiding and not willing to divulge? GW has opened all his records for public scrutiny, while Kerry refuses to open his.

        • #3308094

          Pessimision aside

          by adamcadd02 ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          I’m an Australian (for your USA people it pronounced ozzie, not Ossy), so US politics don’t interest me.
          Some words of wisdom.
          Ask the people at the top how they got their, a small portion will say luck, the rest will say “I work my self to the bone”, and of these they may say they were always looking to move ahead to the next stage. Never letting the thought of failure move in. Here in Australia and other parts of the world, the Ultra wealthy (wealthy meaning don’t have to work, but money works for them) let their children start up companies and teach them some basics, i’f te company fails, then a lesson was learn’t, no thought of them being a complete failure.
          Instead of letting the industry lead you, become an industry leader!!
          I believe Robert Kiyosaki’s books and literature are a great example of career and financial strategy. Give them a go.
          In finishing remember this, the only person who lost is the onee who gave up and stopped

        • #3308079

          Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

          by mykmlr9 ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          “…Have you ever heard a main-stream Democrat articulate what’s right about society and the world? …”

          Constantly. When Democrats talk about giving to the people who WORK for a living, instead of feeding off the work of others (Earned income instead of UNearned income) Democrats are talking about what is right in the world.

          When Democrats talk about protecting AMERICANS from unfair monopolists, they are talking about everything good in America.

          When REpublicans talk, all they say is “kill” and “Safety” and “revenge” and “Hate Liberals” (See Annthrax new best seller for example, or the Swift boat lies).

          To admit that the massive outsourcing of work to nations which did not have their people working 100 hour weeks in order to create the IT, Hardware and Software industries is unjust and contrary to our national interest is not to be pessimistic, simply being realistic.

          But to acknowlege the truth seems to rankle the rightwingers terribly.

        • #3310458

          Your a Fuckin’ dumbass

          by aljett ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          And you call Republicans the optimists? She is right- IT is going south- I have been in it for many years, and common sense tells me this, that or when they call you from fucking India for even you Guitar Center bill let alone your Dell bill or tech support. The party system in general is null, void, unimportant, and unoriginal- not to mention NOT in power. Pick a better anology.

        • #3310373

          That should be. . . . .

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to Your a Fuckin’ dumbass

          .
          …………”You’re a ******’ dumbass”

          You should have said you’re, not your.

          You’re welcome.

        • #3310257

          Too funny

          by buschman_007 ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          You make a negative post blaming the Dems for everything that is wrong in your life, and yet you are a positive person? You bashed the Dems and said not one single solitary positive remark about repubs(or anything for that matter). This was a totally non political question before you interjected your negative opinion about how all these IT problems can be blamed on the Democrats who aren’t in the White house right now. And you see yourself as the optimist in this line of logic?

          Let me give you the positive scoop about Dems. We care about things that might not be of personal gain to us. We put our countries best interest before that of our own pay checks, our own guns, and our own taxes. I love to work on cars, yet I’m willing to deal with EPA restrictions cause I know the environment is more important than my love for tinkering. I care about the poor even though I’m not poor myself and don’t use any public assitance. I support the right to bare arms, even though I don’t own a gun. I support a woman’s right to choose even though I am pro life for myself. I support giving tax breaks to the working class that made this country as great as it is, not to the top 1%. These are a few of the items that Dems support. So try thinking outside of what Rush tells you to think. You might find the Dems are fighting for your best interests. Unless you’re filthy rich and only care about money. In that case, W in 04! :p

          Mike

        • #3310210

          Were you replying to MY message?

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to Too funny

          .
          If you were, where did that come from?

          You said that I’m blaming the Democrats for everything that’s wrong in my life? Where did I say that? Now I will admit that I blame the Democrats for a lot of things, but not for my own life’s outcome. I take things as they are, I accept the cards I’ve been dealt, and I move on.

          Actually, my life’s happiness relies on neither the Democrats or Republicans; and regardless of who’s in power, my happiness, as well as my future outcome, falls into only one pair of hands – my own.

          I don’t blame a company if I lose my job; and yes, it’s happened.

          I don’t blame the industry for the inevitable changes or business cycles they experience.

          I don’t blame my parents for not rearing me in the best manner.

          I don’t blame the government, regardless of the political party in power, for my problems or the particular situation in which I might find myself.

          I don’t blame the “rich” (whoever they are) for being greedy and not sharing with me.

          I don’t blame a person of another color for holding me back.

          I don’t even blame “bad luck”.

          I don’t blame anyone or anything for whatever I might experience, except one person – myself.

          I always try to see the silver lining in the bad things that might fall my way – and there’s always been a silver lining.

          I lost my job a couple of times in my life, and I always managed to get up better and stronger than before. I’ve had to change industries, and/or I’ve had to be creative. I lost a job in my chosen field once, and it was 12 months before I found another one (yes, in the same field). But I shunned the “unemployment” route, I passed on the “whoa-is-me” attitude, and I managed to earn around $3,000 a month while I was looking for a real job.

          Life is what YOU make of it, not some politician, not some boss, not some company, and not some industry. Some people choose to cry in their beer over what happens to them, but I choose to look for the path that will lead me to that glass of Champaign. It’s a much better use of my time and energy, and the results are always better.

        • #3294468

          Naked Kings

          by daniel_meister ·

          In reply to Actually a pessimist is disappointed with good news

          The time will come when you’re face down on the ground with a boot on your neck and repeating “I will take responsibility for this” is meaningless.

          As Jack Welch said: “There is no room in an organization for those ‘eternal optimists’ who never confront reality and keep hoping quietly that the team will make an impossible deadline.”

          Sometimes that small child is needed to cut through the bull and say “You know…the emperor…he doesn’t have any clothes on.”

        • #3308231

          Ah sleepin dawg… you are always a pessimist….

          by elkfeva ·

          In reply to As a pessimist you will never be disappointed ……..

          Sleepin Dawg… you votin for kerry?

        • #3310263

          Maxwell Response

          by snippywidget ·

          In reply to Depends on how you look at it

          I agree 100% with the original poster. The IT field is going downhill drastically from a standpoint of career development (at least from my perspective). My company overall (3000+ employees worldwide) have 4 certified Microsoft MCSEs. 1 of those 4 is stuck at a PC Technician position (who also has his CCNA). Myself and two others support approximately 80 servers. Hardware, software, builds, technical issues, repairs, Manage a Citrix farm of 16 servers, and do project work to boot.In the last almost 5 years of doing my job well I have had an increase of apprximately $4,000 total! I don’t even make the industry average in my area of the country (Baltimore). What does this say for me leaving and going elsewhere you ask? The same thing. Every job offer, every potential employer wants you to make the same or less to do the same amount of work or more. The industry as a whole stinks and I am venturing out on my own to stake a claim.

          You may be lucky enough to be sitting in a pleasant atmosphere, making good money, and maybe doing very little but don’t sit there and berate a fellow IT professional for his disgust with his situation. Especially, when 9 times out of 10 it is not hsi fault that he is in the position that he is in. That is plain rude and inconsiderate.

        • #3310244

          Baltimore?

          by buschman_007 ·

          In reply to Maxwell Response

          Hey Snippy where do you work? I work over in Gaithersburg, MD. Interesting to hear I’m not alone in wondering when things will get better. I love my job but see the massive growth in other fields, like real estate, and have to wonder if I’ve been spinning my wheels in IT. perhaps other areas aren’t experiencing the same problems, or perhaps some people are just getting lucky.

          Instead of hijacking this thread, e-mail me at buschman_007@hotmail.com.

          Mike

        • #3308296

          possible reason?

          by lwilliam ·

          In reply to Geez Max!!! Who pissed in your porridge??? This isn’t like you

          maybe he’s one of the thousands of disgruntled redsox fans who are seeing their once promising lineup turn into mush AGAIN…..
          p.s. don’t yell at me, i’ve been a bosox fan since ’75, after a while its hard not to be cynical……

        • #3307852

          And the Red Sox Won the Pennant!

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to possible reason?

          .
          Four down, four to go.

          Maybe we’re on to something here.

      • #2700767

        Career Path Suggestions

        by deusbelli ·

        In reply to Perhaps you should write a book

        I didn’t mean for the message to come accross as negative, just trying to be realistic about a future in IT. I’ve seen a lot of my freinds go through bankruptcy, had lost a string of jobs and oportunities due business downturns and have lost everything I owned.

        Anyway, what I really want to do here is brain storm on other possible career paths. I love working with databases and automating processes.

        Any ideas?

        • #2700760

          Only you can answer that

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          .
          Please forgive me if my initial message came across as mean-spirited. It wasn’t intended as such. To the contrary, it was intended to be more thought-provoking, so to speak. (I have a thing about doom-and-gloomers and negative thinkers. Why do they self-destruct in such a way?)

          I’ve had an absolutely outstanding week, one to even make me think about what I’m doing. Life is much too short to worry about things over which we have no control, something all too many people do. Moreover, too many people do indeed look at what’s wrong and focus on that negative, instead of what’s right, focusing instead on the positive. In your other message, for example, you’ll notice that my focus was on the 95 to 98 percent of the people who ARE employed; and one could certainly surmise that most of us who participate in these threads are probably in the top 95 percent in our chosen fields – heck, even in our unchosen fields. Move foreword accordingly, and that positive frame-of-mind will spill over into everything you do.

          As far as a career path for you, no one could possibly answer that except you, yourself. However, I would answer it this way. If you could wake up tomorrow and do anything you wanted to do, regardless of training and/or any other “obstacles” that might be in the way, what would it be? Therein lies your answer. And success and happiness will be found following it. (Okay, Maxwell, listen to your own advice.)

        • #3308312

          sometimes it is hard to be positive

          by robertemcclellan ·

          In reply to Only you can answer that

          I have been in the same situation before. It is hard to be positive when your company is purchased and you are laid off. It happened to me in the 1990-1991 recession and jobs were hard to come by. I started my own business, because there was nowhere else to go. Sometimes you have to do risky things to get out of the doldrums. That business didn’t survive past 1992, but I did find a good job thru my business contacts. That job was exciting and lasted 11 years until that company was bought. The guys who bought it, burned up 100 million dollars and the company went into bankruptcy and this time I made it out to work for another good company. I believe the point of all of this is, you must be looking for opportunities at all times, not to just job-hop, but keep in mind where your next job might be if your current situation turns ugly. All of my jobs in 30 years of IT have come from people I knew, not necessarily what I knew. IT is a great field for people that always want to learn new things. If you decide to stop learning then go to a different profession.

        • #2699884

          Business Analyst

          by jamesrl ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          During a recent period of unemployment, I worked in a non-IT group as a business analyst – I mapped out and broke down processes. If you really enjoy that kind of thing, take a look at Six sigma.

          James

        • #3308233

          Good Match

          by mcomps ·

          In reply to Business Analyst

          With your programming experinece I think this would be a good match for someone with your skill sets.

          Questions you should be asking yourself is why your boss/manager wanted you to make the changes to the application.

          The entire job market is looking for people with experience, and can apply their experience to help the company grow, cut expenses, and successfully implement changes.

          Becoming an expert in one area would probably help to focus your talents rather being a someone with a lot of knowledge but not able to proceed to the next level and easily replaceable.

        • #3310291

          Transition to Business Analyst

          by realgoldn ·

          In reply to Business Analyst

          How would someone who was a programmer/developer qualify for a position as a Business Anaylst?

        • #3307349

          If things don’t improve … I may ask you to fire me.

          by rogbirk ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          A title of a book by Richard K. Irish. Mostly about management, I found there is lots of good reading. When I pulled it off the shelf to double check the title there was a newspaper clipping from 1988 about company loyalty inside. So maybe there is a small manufacturing company that needs to have their material on hand accounts computerized! Know anything about nuts & bolts? Wigits and gigits? French fries or sugar beats? Iron and welding rods?

        • #3307340

          Always keep something in your backpocket

          by ccaldwel ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I know that if my position was ever “eliminated” or I was laid off that I could not get another job in my geographical area making the same money I do now. nowadays it seems that the few IT jobs most of them are focused in a very specific area needing very specific training. The rest of the jobs it seems that employers expect more certifications and degrees while providing less pay and benefits. For me I’m starting to get into Realestate on the side… I still like working in IT but Real Estate is a “just in case” I have bought two houses in the last year and am renting them out. I hope to continue this pace until the rental income equals what I make in IT… then it won’t matter. Sometimes you just don’t know when the ax is coming down and if It was me tomorrow I would probably be one of those guys going through bankruptcy right now…

        • #3307682

          There is always opportunity

          by rclinto2 ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I am in the process of getting out of the IT industry myself. I was fortunate enough to cultivate a relationship with someone who could offer me a career working with him in a new field.

          Look at what you enjoy doing and try to find a way to make a living at it. If this fails, look for key “gateways” within large companies where your technical skills are needed. I have been successful working as liason between the User community and the IT staff supporting them. Also, there are companies now creating internal consulting practices to support their operation.

          I would recommend training in Business/Finance/Accounting. There is no point in having a computer system in a company if it doesn’t meet the User’s needs and support the creation of revenue.

          Give this some thought. I’m 52 years old and switching careers, so it’s never too late. Best of luck!

        • #3308268

          A change can be the best thing

          by colingbradley ·

          In reply to There is always opportunity

          I arrived back in the UK after 21 years in Australia at the age of 50. Nobody is going to employ you at that age much anymore so the option was working for myself.
          15 years later I have had a really good income from finding (in IT) what people did not want to do themselves and being the best at it. I took on a new Accounting and Business system, sold it, installed it and supported it for 6 years and then took on another and did the same. I am now at retirement age and having sold off my clients just do contract work for a daily rate that is prettty good. My advice, work for yourself and be the best.

        • #3308262

          The Self Employment Option

          by tekonsult ·

          In reply to There is always opportunity

          There will always be work available for those who have real skills and are willing to work. For practical reasons, it is always good to have a job, no matter how basic it may be and a business. The job will take care of your day to day expenses while your business – something you love to do and are extremely qualified for (because you love to do it)will take care of your future. Jim Rohn was correct in saying you work full time for your living and part time for your fortune until such a time that your part time work makes more than your full time work…
          personally, i would work for a place that would provide the education I need for the kind of work i would love to do – even if the pay is low. i will learn it well, get promoted and maintain good relationships. when i move on to a new organization or my own business, the former job will become a consultancy base or client. Invest in learning and relationships. Many opportunities come from referals…

        • #3310804

          consider a masters degree in library and information science

          by leeburchfield ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          Academic, public, and private libraries might be a good area for you to look into. With your certs and an MS in Library Science you’d have some really marketable skills that are in high demand. Libraries are already technology intensive and getting more so. While you are already qualified for the IT support jobs, the MLS and some library experience would make you marketable for the library i.t. management areas. There are also some specialized sales jobs in the library field, and they often like their sales people to have the masters degree and experience. You might take a look at the LITA website http://www.lita.org.

        • #3308333

          Thank you

          by salamander ·

          In reply to consider a masters degree in library and information science

          I have been researching this avenue for myself, and am curious about the market for this. Thanks for posting the website!

        • #3310801

          What about Education

          by khalid ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I do have the same concern. I am personally thinking of education. There are needs for IT skilled people in the education sector.

          Although the pay won’t be as good as the IT sector, it has one important thing for me “Satisfaction”. I feel I give some thing that will stay there for a long time. It is a feeling I got when I teach people new things, or solve their technical problem especially when those people have a disability of some sort.

        • #3308147

          I like the education angle

          by m_harden ·

          In reply to What about Education

          I too am an IT pro. I am in my late 30’s with 10 years experience and looking to a future of declining jobs and age descrimination. I am currently taking a class and deciding whether I want to go back to school to become a degreed and certified teacher. I.T. is a young man’s game, and I will be 40 next year. I know that in 10 years time I will find myself out of work and un employable because of my age. Whatever you decide to get into, remember that not many people are retiring from IT these days, they are downsized and out sourced!

        • #3310341

          DISAGREE I am 52 and still going in IT!!!!

          by dsunny ·

          In reply to I like the education angle

          That comment would be age discrimination! while some what true . You have an unrealistic view of age. I entered IT at the age of 40! Whaile changeing careers now is a worthwhile idea at your age. You have more longevity than you give yourself credit for. You need a longer range plan

        • #3310800

          Check out the health care industry

          by wcomer ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          Health care is rapidly becoming more and more heavily dependent upon information technology. A community college degree in a health fieldcan usually be achieved with night and weekend classes, and that combined with your IT background could make you a prize for a medical group.

        • #3308062

          Community college degree not a necessity

          by rickwaffetc ·

          In reply to Check out the health care industry

          I worked in a very large hospital for over 14 years, seven of them as a departmental IT manager. Most hospitals are struggling with the same issues of most enterprise networks. The major issues seem to be automated patient care management, billing issues, patient privacy/security of their records, constantly having to accomodate new technology on the network (i.e. computed radiograpy – CR), and wireless devices for direct patient care.

          Not to oversimplify, nor to insult the health care IT professionals, but most of the IT issues and their possible solutions can be solved by someone with a solid IT background and a willingness to work with a variety of differing interests among the health care specialties.

          A hospital is a GREAT place to work in the IT profession. Health care folks are constantly looking for better and more efficient ways to deliver quality health care to their patients. That makes for an excellent atmosphere for an open minded IT professional.

          Check it out!

        • #3308331

          You could run for President

          by timeros ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I have also been in computers since 1987. I odn’t have any degrees . . just go to school to keep up to date. My thought is the industry is growing at a rapid pace and becoming more important. You could be anything you want, but if there’s a job that I know could use some IT influence, it’s Commander and Cheif.

          Personally, I enjoy the IT profession with a full time job and my own thing on the side. After all, it is the American Way. 22% payroll taxes with a tax deduction on business expenses.

        • #3308301

          Make IT skills count in Real World

          by jaytmoon ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          As an IT professional who has experienced 3 layoffs in 5 years from Large and Small companies alike, I am now applying my skills and experience in the Health Insurance industry. I can’t get into specifics but the job requirements are varied and dynamic. You can be assured of being challanged to innovate and streamline operations. Make use of (your obvious) skills in database and networking and teach co-workers to help themselves or become more self sufficiant.
          This field has only to grow since there will be more demand for health care (and insurance processing) than any other domestic industry.

          Give it a look see. You may find a nitch there.
          Good hunting.

        • #3308277

          deusbelli, you’re a realist

          by w_jacque ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I just wanted to applaud you for your realism. I know of IT people more experienced than I, with all sorts of certifications, who have been unemployed for longer than a year. Yet, if they remain the specialists they are, they will either have to take temporary jobs, or starve.

          As for myself, I have a BSIT(Web), five years experience in DBM. But I also have ten years as a bookkeeper. I currently have my own business as a portfolio manager, and am in graduate school, MBA. The fellow who wrote “Future Shock” once said in a radio interview that the most valued person in the future will be one who majors in business but minors in IT, a goal I am relentlessly pursuing.

          In order to survive, you need to diversify, not specialize. You need to have other skills, so that you can sell yourself as one who has skills in X, but also has an IT background. The authors of “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” state the same thing, that those who specialize will lose.

          Yes, I’m an IT person, a “geek,” but I chose to do what will keep me from starving. Right now, I am making money hand over fist, and I am able to buy the things I need, for cash, and sock away enough for an emergency.

          How are the rest of you doing?

        • #3308257

          A realistic approach.

          by hmtattrie ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          What I see in deusbelli’s comments are someone who seems to be taking a realistic approach to the current state of affairs.

          In the late 50’s-eaily 60’s everybody wanted to be a teacher, because there were not enough. In the 70’s and 80’s there was such a glut of teachers you could’nt find work as a substitute!

          In the 80’s and 90’s, being a programmer was the big thing. We are now suffering from the glut of them. Now-a-days, the big thing is nursing and health-care workers. Next decade or two – you’ll see a whole slug of them looking for work. This is a normal cycle that happens from time-to-time.

          Depending on the career-o-the-week to provide you a lifetime of employment is simply stupid. There’s nothing wrong with parlaying your skill set into other areas. It makes sense and allows a person the flexibility to be constantly learning skills and accumulating more diverse skills. This seems to me like being an employment “mutual fund” rather than being a single investment – it’s just the smart way to go.

        • #3308224

          Suggestion

          by raintree ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I don’t know if anyone has come back to you with any valid suggestions. I don’t have time to wade through all this. After spending half an hour I have seen nothing. I guess it’s easier to wax philosophical than to give any suggetions. Hope all these philosophers aren’t caught with their pants down. I have give some thought to the issue also. I have been a consultant in the past and enjoyed it. I have noticed there are a lot of small businesses that need help. They don’t know much about security, anitvirus, etc. It seems like one might be able to make a decent living servicing small businesses. No need to change carreer fields but it takes a lot of research to take care of all the red tape involved in starting your own small business.

          Hope this is of some small help.

          G

        • #3310252

          Do what you’d love to do.

          by buschman_007 ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I mean the market is shaky right now, but that can be true of any market. If you love IT then you will enjoy the job even if you’re making less money at it. If you love the aspects of the job then you will tend to stay on top of things and be ahead of the competition.

          it’s funny i see these commercials on around for these training schools making all these bogus claims about how great the It market is and there is a despirate need for talented individuals. To an extent it’s troubling cause these kids come out thinking they’re gonna make dot com bucks, and find the hours are longer and harder than a lot of other jobs making similar bucks. I just think it won’t bother you if you’re truly interested in the field. If not, dig deep and figure out what you won’t mind doing for free. (rockin out madden on Playstation, doesn’t count 😉 Do some soul searching and figure out where your love is. Then try and find a marketable way to incorporate that talent into a paycheck and I think you’ll be happier. Money isn’t everything, but usually those with money are doing something they have talent and/or love for.

          If there are aspects of the job that you find difficult or a road block, let us know, maybe someone can help.

          Good luck,
          Mike

        • #3310123

          I Concur!

          by rick ·

          In reply to Do what you’d love to do.

          Hang in there. You see it with a clear eye.

          rhfarris@rhfarris.com 678-642-4361 24/7

        • #3310122

          I Concur!

          by rick ·

          In reply to Do what you’d love to do.

          Hang in there. You see it with a clear eye.

          rhfarris@rhfarris.com 678-642-4361 24/7

        • #3310000

          Ideas

          by my2pennies ·

          In reply to Career Path Suggestions

          I’m in the same boat… as hard as I try, my career in IT has been stunted time and time again. Outsourcing has compiled the job problem, not only in IT, but in so many other industries as well. We live in a country where the sky is the limit to make what you will of your life, and yet the reality is also that we still have limitations based on gender, skin color, etc. The areas where the most jobs are needed, and where there is probably more job security, also pay squat, the hours you need to work are less than ideal, and benefits are few. I don’t want to play the blame game like so many others that have responded here, but the fact is we have lost high-paying jobs in this administration, and those that are being created can barely keep anyone above poverty level, especially if you add trying to raise children into the mix. This is based on personal experience, not what I’ve heard. In any case, I’ve been watching things closely over the last few years, and I don’t see the IT market picking up again any time soon. In my company, as in many others, we are told at least we have a job. We also have one paycheck, but these days one job consists of doing the work of 2 or more people, the quality is down, the demands are up, the pay is down, and the cost of benefits are up. I’m finally taking that as a kick in the butt to go in another direction, and at least find something that may not be financially fulfilling, but at least gives me a good feeling at the end of my work day. But, the hard part is trying to decide where to go from here. There is always the great book, “What Color is Your Parachute?” (2004 edition), and others to help you along. There may be positions out there you’ve never heard of, let alone thought of, and this book and other resources may give you some areas that interest you, and that you may be able to use your existing skills in. Your love of working with databases and process automation could stem from a love of orderliness, analyzing and solving problems, a desire to make things easier for others. Try to figure out WHY you like the things you do, and you may find a better fit and more enjoyment in something else. If you truly enjoy doing what you do, then it may be worth it to you to stick it out, and hope for the best. Keep networking, and talking to others in the field — it seems the best jobs lately are found by who you know, not what you know.

          Good luck!

      • #3308223

        Haven’t Checked the Job Market, lately, have you?

        by jrowe ·

        In reply to Perhaps you should write a book

        I have been thinking of the same thing. I am a technical support analyst and there aren’t too many positions out there to choose from. What newspaper have you been looking at?

        • #3310273

          I quit IT field

          by lmission ·

          In reply to Haven’t Checked the Job Market, lately, have you?

          I got out of IT. There is no significant future for this industry in the United States anymore. I believe that the expected pay for system admin/tech support/network admin jobs will hover around 30 to 60 percent less than what one would expect in the late 1990’s when I entered the field.

          I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and the trend for hiring is the expectation that workers will go for these new lower rates. This trend will stop sometime in the near future, but I can’t wait any longer. I’m absolutely broke and have had to borrow from relatives to survive.

          I decided to enter a master degree program at the local university and by the end of next year (2005) will have a degree in a field somewhat related to IT but with a different career path in mind — project management and supervision. But as far as doing the day to day A+/MCSE/UNIX system admin/network admin/ engineer work goes, it’s not something I want to do anymore for the current expected pay rates around here.

        • #3310121

          uh hum, but ,,

          by rick ·

          In reply to I quit IT field

          Schooling is THE direction to take. But, don’t leave our industry. Something tells me you have expertise in a needed area. Hang in Sir! Very good projects are coming.

          rhfarris@rhfarris.com
          678-642-4361 24/7

        • #3310120

          uh hum, but ,,

          by rick ·

          In reply to I quit IT field

          Schooling is THE direction to take. But, don’t leave our industry. Something tells me you have expertise in a needed area. Hang in Sir! Very good projects are coming.

          rhfarris@rhfarris.com
          678-642-4361 24/7

      • #3308210

        Pessimist, Optimist,, Realist

        by kblack1a ·

        In reply to Perhaps you should write a book

        I started off as an optimist. It’s easy to do when your young and every thing is right with the world. Yes it can be challenging, but what the hey, every thing is working. I was laid off so go back to school, IT based this time, Wow it worked I got a better job. Again every thing is good and people are stupid to be pessimistic. Then I got laid off the next good job because of situations out of my control, a little more IT school fixed it, but this time it took awhile to get a new job. Now I’m back looking, again I had good job performance but the company just couldn?t make it, this time more school isn’t an option. To get more will not change the fact that there are a qazillion people with Masters and 6-7 certifications and 10 years experience looking too. When I apply I’m told that 170 others have applied. I don’t want to be classified as a pessimist, and have gone beyond the level of optimist.
        There is one other level, which is that of a realist. Keep trying, do your best, realize that things are tight, but keep an open mind. Maybe try a hobby your good at. It might not make the big bucks, but it is possible to maybe make more. The only way of getting that job is to keep selling your self to everyone including yourself.
        The accounting profession does have IT based functions. If your not into accounting try and find a service based function that has a lot of data based needs, purchasing has a some IT type functions, or more important maybe some small shop is still going it without computers. If you?re like me I’m not wild about convincing people to buy some widget, but sales can be a good outlet for a tech type with the right widget. Good Luck

    • #2700694

      A possible IT job opportunity for you

      by maxwell edison ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      .
      The Department of Homeland Security is looking for just about anyone with any IT experience at all. Their needs run the gamut from one extreme to the other – from simple PC support, to networking, to programming, to security. If you can pass a drug test, and if you can pass a security check, a job is waiting for you.

      I recently turned down an offer for a job interview with one of their regional directors. He was searching high and low for good people, and he can’t find them fast enough. (My sense of patriotism almost made me consider the job. But my life’s priorities made me decide otherwise.)

      • #2700690

        where?

        by tigers7612 ·

        In reply to A possible IT job opportunity for you

        where can i get in on that? I love the IT field and want to be desk support. i would love to do that job!!!!!

        • #2699680

          If I do your “leg-work” for you. . . .

          by maxwell edison ·

          In reply to where?

          .
          ……I might have to charge you a “head-hunter” fee (being the greedy capitalist that I am).

          However, if you do a Web search for “Homeland Security Jobs”, you’ll get lots of hits, some of which will surely provide many addresses and phone numbers from regions all over the country.

          Good luck.

        • #3307353

          equipping is necessary nowadays

          by juzro ·

          In reply to If I do your “leg-work” for you. . . .

          competition is surely adding pressure to everyone, not to mention the continuing improvements on the learning institution to produce quality “learned job hunters”.

          nonetheless, it is but necessary for all of us to continually equip ourselves, either mastering your career or trying to develop new ones – which of course, must be closely complementing your skills you have now,— say, project management???

        • #3308291

          Don’t count on it

          by pmpsicle ·

          In reply to equipping is necessary nowadays

          Do a search on any of the job boards. What you’ll find is that there are very few PM jobs out there — at least in IT. And unfortunately, most hiring managers recognize PM as a position/level in the technical stream (IT, Construction, Marketing, etc.) rather than a discipline in its own right. (IOW — an IT PM can only work on IT stuff, he/she couldn’t possibly run a marketing project …duh).

          If you’re having problems finding work as a developer then you’ll have even more problems as a PM.

          Glen Ford, PMP
          Can Da Software
          IS Project Management
          Business Systems & Process Improvement

      • #2699720

        Plently of IT security openings…

        by pgm554 ·

        In reply to A possible IT job opportunity for you

        They use M$.

        Good old Tom Ridge insisted on using M$ products, even though the IT advisors in government advised him not to do so.(He did the same thing when he was governor of PA)I was there for the M$ “initiative”.

        So there should be plenty of patchin’ and fixen’ to go around.

      • #3310808

        how can i apply

        by moshe_rosenbreg ·

        In reply to A possible IT job opportunity for you

        how can i apply for The Department of Homeland Security

        • #3310802

          Apply to Dept. Homeland Security

          by levitaj ·

          In reply to how can i apply

          Gov’t applications used to specialized, but now only a resume is needed. Be specific about your experience and be complete. Each agency has a website. Be aware that the application process can take months and you’ll be in a bureaocrocy. However, benefits are good and it’s steady employment.
          Good Luck, Jeff

      • #3308189

        At least you are on the right track

        by bulls2 ·

        In reply to A possible IT job opportunity for you

        As an IT pro for 33 years in differnt capacities, I encorage you to look for a different profession as a primary career. IT as we know it is dead. In the near future, anyone who graduates from college regardless of the profession must have IT skills to write programs and manage hardware. IT as a specialty is no longer economically viable so get ready to see the user take a more active role to satisfy his/her own needs. For those jobs requiring special skills, labor is aplenty overseas and managing an Oracle DB for a fraction of the cost from Bengladore is now feasble. Sure there will still be some need for specialized IT but the landscape will be entirely different.
        Take a clue from the enrollments in universities where some of them are only 60% of capacity in IT.
        Congratulations for taking the first step and recognizing what needs to be done.
        BTW those who call you pessimistic do so only because they have a job.
        Good luck!
        lcw

      • #3307876

        Homeland Security

        by burdman ·

        In reply to A possible IT job opportunity for you

        How do oyu apply to Homeland security? I looked at their website and there were no openings. Perhaps I’m not looking in the right place. Please advise. Thanks.

    • #2699705

      I would beg to differ – with a caveat…

      by matthew moran ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      As a career technologist, one who earns more now than in the boom – I have been doing this since 1987 – I’ll offer a slightly different perspective.

      Back in 1992 I wrote a piece titled “Welcome to the Information Age” where I responded to several articles touting the “computer age.” I placed the emphasis squarely back on information (its access, analysis, and automation) not on the box. In 1999 and then again in 2001, I wrote “Why Technologist Must Learn To Speak Business.”

      Owning a consulting company (not a systems integration, programming, or web development company – although we often did all those things) I found technologists in general to be highly focused on technology for technology’s sake. This was largely corroborated by a study that KPMG & Computerworld put out where they asked Executive Management how they felt their I.T. dollars were being spent.

      The majority of respondents indicated the following:
      * IT practitioners, staff or consulting, do little to speak to business the way business speaks about business
      * IT spends too much time focused on internal functions and not on business model automation
      * Many expressed a distrust in their IT professionals ? indicating that they suspected they padded budgets and timeframes to pursue their own pet interest.

      While I bring this up to technologists, the first reaction I get is this ?not me, not me!? But this is about understanding the industry and how to fix it. I spoke to one executive who asked me why he shouldn?t send his IT work overseas when he received little understanding here in the U.S. His feeling is that if I am going to deal with a language and culture barrier, why not do so at a third the cost.

      Remember the Saturday Night Live parody of the computer guy, Nick Burns? He was arrogant, did not communicate well, and looked down on his customers ? the computer user. And yet, I still here users spoken of as though they are a nuisance and just mess up the network. While funny, parody is usually truth born of frustration. Even if it is not you, your objective is to dispel that perspective. If you do that, your career has a much more dynamic life.

      I write a career development blog for IT Toolbox (it is not a paid gig) and am writing a book which has now been picked up by Cisco Press (release to occur in January of 2005).

      You can pick up the blog by going to:
      http://blogs.ittoolbox.com/pm/career/

      Let me know whether you agree, disagree, or want a specific topic covered..

      • #3308278

        What’s good for the goose is good for the gander

        by netman1958 ·

        In reply to I would beg to differ – with a caveat…

        I’ve heard this argument over and over before. Here’s the problem with it. If I have to learn to “speak to business the way business speaks about business” then I will know both buisness and IT. Now why do we need the guy who only knows business? I could replace him and be a better overall value for the dollar (but I know that will never happen because those business types take care of their own). Why shouldn’t the business people learn a little IT so they can understand what the IT people are saying? And as for the Saturday Night Live parody, the hell of it is, it’s all true. The average user doesn’t want to learn anything he isn’t absolutely required to, it might cut into his beer drinking time. The funny things is, almost always when I tell a user that it would benefit them to learn a little about computers/IT, the canned response is “but I don’t have time”. Yet at breaks and lunch I see these same people reading Cosmopolitan or the sports page or some romance novel.

        • #3308250

          And this is why I wouldn’t hire you

          by ndynamics ·

          In reply to What’s good for the goose is good for the gander

          I am an IT employer. I’ve interview over 1000 people this year and only about 10 of them had any clue about business. If you said the things you said in this post in a job interview you would be out the door before the next question. Period.

        • #3308230

          I agree, pure IT knowledge is not a strength

          by dadavis5th ·

          In reply to And this is why I wouldn’t hire you

          I believe the best IT people are those who think process flow, including business, work flow and code structure. Many failures of IT projects are due to loss of keeping the business goal in focus at the high level as changes at the granular level are made.
          Alston Davis

        • #3308218

          What part of my post got to you?

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to And this is why I wouldn’t hire you

          Is not everything I said true? Why is it that upper management and executives are always right (whether they really are or not)? I think the reason you wouldn’t hire me, is because I’m on to the fact that you executive types really have no skills or special knowledge, (after all do you really have to go to Whartons for 4 years to know that laying off labor employees or cutting their pay will increase the bottom line?). The knowledgeable exutive is one that will come up with an idea (maybe even an original idea) that will increase profits without laying off labor or cutting ther pay/benefits. One way to do this is to fire some of the executives and get the remaining executives off the golf course and out of useless meetings and make them actually do some work. And of course you could cut the executives pay (oops, I forogot, executives are untouchable). Anyway, I’d hate to see an executive have to give up one of his Beemers or one of his vacation homes to save a few jobs.

        • #3307903

          Nothing “got” to me

          by ndynamics ·

          In reply to What part of my post got to you?

          I didn’t take offense at anything you said. Heck, I actually agree with most of it. But, since it is close to reality, the question I ask myself is: What can I personally do to make it better?

          Employers are looking for technical people who have the ability to separate the technical component of their job description from all the really important things. Being technically competant is at the BOTTOM of my job assessment list when I’m looking at a candidate. The problem is, most IT people continue to think it is the most important aspect of what they do. WRONG.

          How you treat customers, the ability to sit in a meeting and see why a project (or lack of a project) is important from a business perspective, focus on the company’s bottom line, manners, appearance, attitude, and many other non-technical things play a much more important role in an interview than technical skills. The most important thing is people skills, which a large percentage of IT people greatly lack. When I interview, I don’t even ask any technical questions unless I’m satisfied that all of these other qualitities are both apparant and REAL in the person I am interviewing. It is usually very easy to see through someone who is trying to snow you in an interview.

          The things you said in both your original post and your follow up post would tell me in an interview that 1) you are not a team player and 2) you have a lack of respect for management or any non-technical person. An employer would see these as huge red flags, even if you were the most technically competant on the planet. I have to think you are smart enough not to say these things in a job interview, but I have to tell you, the attitude makes it’s way to the surface even if the words are not spoken. I’m making these comments to help you, not to put you down. If you get into situations where you aren’t called back for that second interview, maybe this could be a reason.

          And to bring this topic around to the original thread, these important issues are going to apply to ANYTHING you choose for a career, not just IT. I think bad attitudes are more prevalent in IT because of the arrogance one can develop having such power and control over operational issues in a company. Doctors and lawyers have similar issues. What makes a good doctor or lawyer is not what they know, but their ability to deal with and influence people. IT employees need to realize that is what separates the stars from the non-hires. Changing careers isn’t going to change an attitude.

        • #3308212

          You don’t have to learn business…

          by matthew moran ·

          In reply to What’s good for the goose is good for the gander

          I only advocate the “learning to speak business” for the person who wants to have a dynamic and growing career. It might be nice if more users had better technical training but I am only trying to speak to and assist the IT professional get ahead. We can talk all we want about what should be but I prefer to work with what is.

          I also think you are missing the point of the Saturday Night Live parody. It wasn’t to point out that users are clueless but that the “computer guy” was clueless, arrogant, and ineffective. You are right that in many cases, it is “true.”

          I wrote, The IT Career Builder’s Toolkit and it was picked up by Cisco Press (due for release in January 2005) after taking part and offering a lot of information on discussion forums and in articles.

          It was the biggest problem in IT in the late ’90s and is still the biggest challenge. Check out the articles on EWeek (Bridging the Gap) and on ComputerWorld (Save us From Genius).

          I don’t advocate a “learn business and let your tech skills slip.” It isn’t an either/or. You should strive for both/and – technical skills, business acumen, communication skills, etc.

          I still work in the IT trenches (in fact, I am writing a series of automation databases from a coffee house for one of my clients) and earn more now than in the ’90s. I work part-time and consult for a few niche companies. Opportunities exist, but not if your claim to career fame is a degree is MIS and a litany of certs.

          Solutions are the commodity of the technology professional – not the tools you use or even your mastery of those tools.

          That is my take. Everyone should certainly form your own opinion but if you have been struggling to find or create opportunities, you may want to go a slightly different direction.

          Matt

        • #3308181

          You missed my point also

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to You don’t have to learn business…

          The point I was trying to make is: If there is a communication gap between IT and management why should the onus be on the IT guy? If one of the 2 has to learn new skills why shouldn’t management at least have to meet the IT people half-way? And if you think I’m saying this because I don’t like to learn new things or am lazy or stupid, that’s not the case (in my humble opinion). IT is my 3rd career and I just turned 46 years old. I had excellent grades in high school but skipped college for a career in auto mechanics. Six years into that I got hooked on flying and decided to become a pilot. I couldn’t get into military aviation without a college degree so I did it all on my own and eventually made it to American Airlines. While flying for American I got interested in computers and went back to school (when I could) to learn computer science. When American (unwisely) decided to close their Nashville hub (another brilliant decision by those Wharton guys) I ended up in New York. At the time, the future didn’t look to bright for a 7 year captain at American and looked much better at ValuJet in Atlanta. I was hired by ValuJet and 2 days before my last day at American, ValuJet had the infamous crash in the everglades. At first they said it wouldn’t cause any problems and they would only postpone my starting date, but as we all know, they ultimately ceased operations completely. This left me unemployed. I went back to school full time for a while (until money got short) and then went to work at an entry level helpdesk position. Since then I have worked my way up to a pretty good job as a Network Admin.

          The point to all that is that I have the ability to learn new things and adapt, but what I don’t understand is why management is always off limits, never put any burden or blame on them. It seems that if they are so far above the rest of us, learning something new should be no problem for them.

          Also, if I’m going to go back to school to learn business, why would I want to stay in IT? The management types drive Beemers, Lexus, Mercedes, etc. and live in $500,000.00 homes and have vacation property. I live in an apartment and drive a Ford Ranger. So if I’m going to learn business, I’d be a fool not to go all the way and become management.

          As to the SNL parody, MY point was, why is it the IT guy’s fault? I’m not a doctor, never planned to be and never will be, but I know what an anastomosis is. I wasn’t required to learn that and it doesn’t help me in my job, but the way I see it is that there’s no penalty for having learned it.

          I hope this helps explain my position.

        • #3308180

          You missed my point also

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to You don’t have to learn business…

          The point I was trying to make is: If there is a communication gap between IT and management why should the onus be on the IT guy? If one of the 2 has to learn new skills why shouldn’t management at least have to meet the IT people half-way? And if you think I’m saying this because I don’t like to learn new things or am lazy or stupid, that’s not the case (in my humble opinion). IT is my 3rd career and I just turned 46 years old. I had excellent grades in high school but skipped college for a career in auto mechanics. Six years into that I got hooked on flying and decided to become a pilot. I couldn’t get into military aviation without a college degree so I did it all on my own and eventually made it to American Airlines. While flying for American I got interested in computers and went back to school (when I could) to learn computer science. When American (unwisely) decided to close their Nashville hub (another brilliant decision by those Wharton guys) I ended up in New York. At the time, the future didn’t look to bright for a 7 year captain at American and looked much better at ValuJet in Atlanta. I was hired by ValuJet and 2 days before my last day at American, ValuJet had the infamous crash in the everglades. At first they said it wouldn’t cause any problems and they would only postpone my starting date, but as we all know, they ultimately ceased operations completely. This left me unemployed. I went back to school full time for a while (until money got short) and then went to work at an entry level helpdesk position. Since then I have worked my way up to a pretty good job as a Network Admin.

          The point to all that is that I have the ability to learn new things and adapt, but what I don’t understand is why management is always off limits, never put any burden or blame on them. It seems that if they are so far above the rest of us, learning something new should be no problem for them.

          Also, if I’m going to go back to school to learn business, why would I want to stay in IT? The management types drive Beemers, Lexus, Mercedes, etc. and live in $500,000.00 homes and have vacation property. I live in an apartment and drive a Ford Ranger. So if I’m going to learn business, I’d be a fool not to go all the way and become management.

          As to the SNL parody, MY point was, why is it the IT guy’s fault? I’m not a doctor, never planned to be and never will be, but I know what an anastomosis is. I wasn’t required to learn that and it doesn’t help me in my job, but the way I see it is that there’s no penalty for having learned it.

          I hope this helps explain my position.

        • #3308057

          There is a simple answer to this..

          by matthew moran ·

          In reply to You missed my point also

          I believe I understood your point exactly!

          The onus is absolutely on the IT professional, not the management. IT is is nothing more than a support function of the organization as a whole. It is clerical unless it is strategic. The only way it becomes strategic is when the IT professional can see the vision of the company and management and turn technology into an enabler – rather than simply a cog in the wheel. The CEO and executive management is charged with the leadership and vision of the organization as a whole.

          Please take a moment to read my article – published in 2001 by the Power Media Group – Why Technologists Must Learn To Speak Business.
          http://www.cbtoolkit.com/consult/whytechnspeakbusiness.htm

          It addresses the reasons, impact, and corrective measure – directed at the technology professional. And I am fair in this. Management has a whole different set of remedial steps to make their position and role stronger – to make themselves more effective. But this website is aimed at giving the technology professional the tools he or she needs for career success.

          As an anology:
          When I bring my car to a mechanic, I want it to run properly. I don’t want to hear about vacuum hoses, transmission fluid, relays, or any other functional part of the engine. However, should I ask about those things, I would expect my mechanic to reduce to analogies that I can understand – without becoming a junior mechanic.

          The reason it is the IT guy’s fault in the Saturday Night Live skit is not because the user’s could stand some training – believe me I provide a lot of training and advocate a lot of training for the companies I consult – it is his attitude and method of dealing with them. That is clearly his fault.

          Could the CEO/CFO/Etc. learn more about IT? Sure, or they could learn more about marketing, or they could learn more about manufacturing, or they could learn more about, some other area. Or they could learn some about many areas – and most do.

          Also, I’ve never found management to be off-limits to the learning process. I believe they spend a fair amount of time learning and adopting many new things. Some of it is technology – but often that is not as productive as other things they could learn.

          Why should a CEO understand IP routing, Cisco security, or any other similar high-tech information? There is little compelling business reason for them to do so. Their time is better spent on business building initiatives.

          One of the biggest challenges in the technology world – and really for many employees – is this Us. versus Them mentality. You indicate this a little when you write things like, “It seems that if they are so far above the rest of us..”

          By the way, I am not indicating that you do, in fact, view management with an Us. versus Them window. I don’t know you well enough to determine that.

          I’ve never viewed management in that light and have been on both sides of that fence. I found that when I viewed my role as a partnership with management that I became more productive and was better at anticipating the broader impact of my role and work in the organization.

          Also, oft-quoted horror stories aside, most managers get to their positions because they performed well in some capacity at their job and showed some aptitude toward leadership. Most want to see their employees succeed and find it frustrating when employees underperform, particularly due to attitude problems.

          One of the most prevalent is the “when I have the position I’ll start doing that work.” or put more simply, “That’s not my job.” / “That is not in my job description.”

          My information is not geared toward every technology professional. Believe me. It is reserved solely for those who want to experience more rapid career growth, work on the most exciting projects, and be viewed by management as someone who “get’s it” and produces.

          Of course, that is a bit tongue-in-cheek – but the fact remains, the business-case for technology, the ability to understand and communicate on business terms – making the tranlation to technical in silence, and the technical savvy to make it happen, that is a valuable individual.

          That person stands to do very well in technology. That is the person I would rather be.

          Just a thought.

        • #3310307

          Partnership huh?

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to There is a simple answer to this..

          <>
          If it’s a partnership then why, when profits are down, do only non-management employees get laid off or get asked for concessions? Why don?t they shit-can some of the management and the rest (from the CEO on down) take pay cuts also?

          <>
          As an ex-mechanic, this is near and dear to my heart. Some things can only be simplified so much. Mechanics generally work on commission and only get paid for the time that a ?jobber time manual? says is the average time for that repair, rather they complete the repairs within that time or not. They DON?T get paid for the time they spend trying to convince a customer that they didn?t ?rip him off?. Perhaps, since the dealership or garage owner receives more than 60% of the labor charges and 100% of the profit from the parts, they should provide a liaison to explain things to customers? (of course this is a bad idea as it would cut into the dealership?s/owner?s profits and he might not be able to buy an additional vacation home)

          <>
          I still think there are 2 legitimate sides to this. Here?s the thing: I am a network admin. That does not imply that I know everything about every piece of hardware ever made nor does it mean that I know everything about every piece of software ever written. The typical scenario is that an end user calls me and asks me how to do some esoteric function in Microsoft Word or Outlook. I have no idea because as long as I?ve been using those programs I?ve never needed or wanted to do this particular function. So what do I do? I open that program, click on help, type in a keyword, click on search. I read the solutions returned and find their answer and then go to their desk and show them how to do it. Now I know that end users aren?t IT people (if they were, the company wouldn?t need me) but they CAN read can?t they? The truth is that they are lazy and it?s a lot easier to just ask me.

          <>
          From my observations, about all the majority of them ever learn is how to improve their golf score or use one of the company?s airplanes for a personal trip and make it look like a business trip (did I mention that before I made it to the airlines, I used to be a corporate pilot? I know what of I speak and I know a high percentage of the trips were not business related. And from conversations with other corporate pilots, this was the norm and not the exception)

          <>
          I don?t know about the learning process, but what they ARE off-limits to is any lay offs or compensation reductions (after all the board of directors for their company consists of all their cronies that are CEO?s of other companies).

          <>
          Could you define business building initiatives? What do these guys really do all day (when they aren?t on the golf course)?
          <>
          Doesn?t that work both ways? It seems that when the chips are down, management adopts an ?Us vs. Them? attitude, because they want employees to give up things (pay, benefits, etc.) but they (management) never volunteer to give up anything.

          <>
          Well, I guess everyone?s experiences are different and maybe it has worked that way in companies you?ve worked for, but in my experience most managers get their positions based on how ?brown? their noses are.

          <>
          Oh, I get it OK. I can see through all the smoke and mirrors that all these under-worked, overcompensated, and incompetent executives regurgitate.

        • #3310287

          Last post – until a new discussion…

          by matthew moran ·

          In reply to Partnership huh?

          Well, I guess we have slightly different perspectives. Having known executive managers who have been laid-off and who have worked diligently to keep their employees working, I’ll maintain my perspective.

          It could be that I am just lucky. I have consulted for many, many, many, many companies over the past 12 years. I notice that partners, owners, and management log the longest hours – come in during holidays, and routinely are the people I see at the office on the weekend.

          Are there bad one’s? Sure, without a doubt. But they idea that business owners & executive management are on a free-ride, gravy train, is a myth. Most business owners & executives work long hours for years and incur incredible risk to develop a profitable business.

          Having been one to play all of those roles during my career (employee, owner, executive) I can tell you – without any doubt – the employee role is easier. At least in terms of risk, stress, and difficulty.

          In terms of potential and personal fulfillment, employee, for me, is less desirable. You make decisions every day that determine which of those roles you wish to play.

          In any case, it has been an interesting discussion. I wish you well. I don’t receive any notification on these discussion and check them infrequently so I may or may not see any more replies unless someone specifically brings them to my attention.

          Thanks.

        • #3310253

          RE: Last post

          by netman1958 ·

          In reply to Partnership huh?

          cbtoolkit, I hope you see this. Thanks for joining in this discussion and sharing your 2 cents worth. You seem like a pretty cool guy and I think I’d like to meet you. I just had to add this to the discussion.

          I do realize there are good owners/managers out there because I am working for one now. So I believe what your saying when you talk about the good ones you’ve known. However I have found this to mostly be true in the smaller, privately held companies where the owner/owners DO have a lot at risk (usually everything they have ever owned and hope to own). These type owners seem to realize though that they do need their employees (all of them) and that the best way to keep good employees is to treat them fairly.

          Now, on the other hand, I wonder if you have ever worked for or been involved with a company such as American Airlines (actually AMR Inc.)? I don’t know if you are familiar with their history of adversarial type management, but I am and I can, without reservation or hesitation assure you that “the idea that business owners & executive management are on a free-ride, gravy train”, is not a myth at many companies. What do CEO’s/executives at publicly held companies stand to lose that their company didn’t give them? They don’t put up any money or buy a stake in the business when they come on board. In fact, they are mere employees like the rest of us (but treated very differently). I know you’re going to say their reputations and any future positions they may seek, but the reality is, at least with the airlines, is that if a CEO can manage to bankrupt and otherwise totally ruin one airline – for some strange reason, all the other airlines start trying to recruit him! I never understood that one.

          Finally, here is a question that I’ve never gotten a satisfactory answer to:
          You say “Having been one to play all of those roles during my career (employee, owner, executive) I can tell you – without any doubt – the employee role is easier. At least in terms of risk, stress, and difficulty.”
          I’ve heard this from just about every manager or owner I have ever talked to, including my own brother. So my question is, why do these people never go back to being just an employee ever again, once they’ve been a manager or owner? I’ve never met one yet that did.

          Cheers,
          Scott

      • #3308273

        Grateful for the past, looking forward to the new future

        by youraveragemanager ·

        In reply to I would beg to differ – with a caveat…

        From my perspective and location, there are far fewer opportunities in IT. Maybe it?s just me, but when the industry moved from Information Systems to Information Technology. It feels like we went from knowledge brokers to mechanics switching out parts. Hence the commodity perceptions occurring even in the face of creative projects using very talented people. Perhaps it is true that we are victims of our own success, improving to the point where only marginal gains are obtained.

        When looking at new technology, I see new marketing and terminology, repackaging and a new coat of paint, but needed to dig for a while to arrive at that conclusion. More frequently the item under consideration is better, but rarely revolutionary, worthy of a little appreciation, not necessarily creating any significant business demand to switch or upgrade.

        The above only confirms aspects of our problem and does little in the way of helping when choosing a future path.

        Diversification is good for business and our retirement portfolios. Perhaps taking your present knowledge and experiences and examining those for your specific interests that fall outside of IT will prove helpful. There is such a wide group of specialties and experiences within TechRepublic. It is not possible to discuss anything specific, so everything is becomes arguable.

        After working in IS/IT for many years, I see plenty of reasons for entrepreneurial business efforts and little room to compete. Few gaps in the market, as corporations are doing a great job of protecting their market positions. Still, after investing the time, I found two maybe three good opportunities along my entrepreneurial path. But, those opportunities reflect my dreams, goals, and experiences. I need to find within myself a little more of the cheerleader type to champion those initiatives, and a little less of the realist researching the unknowable risks when identifying the opportunities for failure.

        It is clear that I will need to develop or hone Sales, Leadership, Recruiting, and Training skills for any entrepreneurial effort. Any career steps that develop those skills or attributes will only add to the potential for success at your planned point of transition. For those individuals that are searching due to immediate employment needs, perhaps keeping an entrepreneurial eye to the future will help you in your employment pursuits outside of IT.

        On a different topic found within this discussion. For those claiming financial ruin in anticipation of a future job loss, please contact a personal financial planner soon. You have identified a problem, now try taking the next steps to find solutions that you can build upon. Do the free financial planning research first. Invest a little time in this area for yourself, you will find loads of good advice that is similar across sources.

        Remember that when downsized or terminated, what is removed by being unemployed is your business reason for making contact with other potential employers. Get out of your comfort zone and find out what is happening in the wider world, outside of the organization that employs you. While employed, providing advice for present technical problems within the realm of professional networking is different than asking for a job. When you see anything interesting that others have done that motivates you, give then a call. Once unemployed you are asking for an opportunity to prove your value. Networking while employed allows you to learn and demonstrate your value at the lowest perception of risk for any of the participants. This also means getting out of your comfort zone and meeting people face to face.

        Best Regards,
        Ex-IT-Manager-Director, in transition, in Central Ohio

    • #3307364

      Something totaly different

      by leks.tijsse.klasen ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Hi there (sorry I do not know your name yet)

      I am currently working as an IT Consultant in the Netherlands. Beside that a am a practitioning Philosopher. Maybe I can give you some new idea’s.

      I was technically skilled well some years ago, but noticed people having big trouble working together, respecting eachother, even seeing eachother as a human being.

      World wide projects have started to enclose a ‘warm’ side into the rather cold IT Sector. I use my skill as a philosopher (think and talk) to get people understand and respect eachother. I that manner projects work much better and faster and people feel much better too.

      I can tell a lot more, just let me know if you are interested.

      kind regards

      Leks

    • #3307362

      All depends on Attittude.

      by kent14 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Since I reconfigered ‘my own attitude’ about IT, I haven’t looked back!

      My mission is now:
      ‘To empower users to best use the tools given to them’.

      Now I am knocking back work!

      Cheers,
      Kenn

    • #3307361

      Start consulting …

      by alainq ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Perhaps start consulting IT pro’s on what they should do in the future with their skills.

    • #3307360

      Beyond IT

      by michaeljoseph31 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Yes – IT is heavily populated with an influx of staff, courtesy of the Internet and more accessible IT Training in schools, colleges etc. For staff thinking about leaving IT – before doing so consideration should be given to taking one’s talents off to some far flung reaches that are activley nibbling away at the West’s IT job market. Just from a language viewpoint you would hit the ground running…. you don’t necessarily have to up root to another country as some companies hire in country…remember if you can’t beat em – join em!
      Beyond working in IT – go self employed and search the market for areas where IT is lacking or needs to be enhanced. There are still an abundance of entrepreneurial ideas out there begging. Such as small corner shops without no automated way of doing order management of stock.
      Or on a bigger scale – when the sorting office sorts letters, parcels etc – at which point they are sorting for individual city / town / road / house delivery – what if this was linked to a universal / generic mail system and notifies the recepient that they have a physical delivery scheduled.
      My point is – IT is where it is at….

    • #3307356

      Something IT dependent

      by pbiss ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You could consider an “IT-dependent” option where doing the thing runs on an IT platform (your own).

      For instance, I am in translation, which is 100% Internet/IT dependent and install and maintain my own system and network. Not a specially lucrative activity, but you could possibly think up something better.

      Basically, do X plus IT in such a way that the IT gives you a unique competitive edge.

      • #3307350

        I understand

        by mac0813 ·

        In reply to Something IT dependent

        I have often considered the same thing even going back to my old job where I never had to worrie about being laid off or office polictal crap.

        I have to say being in IT for the last 5 years I would think it would get better with knowledge and skills and experance but it has not.

        I woud have to tell you to keep your options open I have been laid off before and had to realy on my old ocupation to get me through.

        Good luck in your delima.

    • #3307351

      Dont Leave your Core Field

      by nurpak ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You may think of making career in Marketing IT Products & Services. This could be your own Business. Further you can upgrade your education to MBA in any appropriate field Marketing or Finance.

      Wishing you good luck in your career.

    • #3307347

      Choosing a New Career Path

      by usagi ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’m 56 and after 30 yrs in the work force in manufacturing and having 2 long term jobs be exported, I turned to the IT field for a “future”. I went back to school, earned a degree and joined the IT field just as the job market turned sour.
      After 2 years of schooling and two years working in IT, I’m still not making near the money I was ‘earning’ on UNEMPLOYMENT, let alone what I earned in manufacturing.
      The really bad news about changing careers is that there are precious few to turn to.
      There’s WalMart and the ” Do you want fries with that?” jobs. Or some other part time, low pay no benefits ‘career path;.

      • #3308281

        OK, this really confuses me…

        by ericcs ·

        In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

        Last time I was laid off, the unemployment benefits were a laughable joke. I don’t understand how any job at all could pay less than enemployment.

        Is my memory going sour, or is Illinois just a really bad unemployment state, or…

        • #3308080

          Here’s an example…

          by ecooper12 ·

          In reply to OK, this really confuses me…

          Let’s say you were making $50K/yr and, in Ohio, depending on how many dependents you have & other factors, unemployment pays half that, or $25k/yr. Unemployment ends after 26 weeks and you have to work at McWendy’s for $7/hr. That equates to $14k/yr, or less than what you were making on unemployment.

        • #3310357

          Benefits in different states…

          by ericcs ·

          In reply to Here’s an example…

          According to http://swz.salary.com/salarywizard/layouthtmls/swzl_unemployment_IL.html, “The value of unemployment benefits in Illinois differs from that of other states because each state unemployment office applies its own formulas and limits when calculating the level of unemployment compensation.”
          Not encouraging.

          Using a table that compares all states (found at http://atlas.doleta.gov/unemploy/sigprojul2003.asp) I see that the maximum possible in Illinois, no matter what your prior income or how many dependents, tops out at $438/week = $22,776 per year.

          So, McWendy’s at $7/hr. is definately less than unemployment. You’d need to make $11.39/hr to equal unemployment.

          The question im my mind then, is this: Can an unemployed professional count on finding at least a “filler” or temp position somewhere that provides full time $11.39/hr. or better? I’m not being a smart-ass, I am truely curious what the word is from those who’ve been-there-and-done-that.

    • #3307344

      Go where you are best fit!

      by mgtucker ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Only one out of seven people are hired to a job the individual is best fit for. The other six are either relatively good fits, average employees, or underachievers.

      Just because you have a resume in a particular industry does not mean you are best fit for the jobs on your resume.

      You would be best served by KNOWING what YOU are best fit for and DEMANDING one of those jobs bringing the proof, your enthusiasm, and your occupational interest. You can KNOW exactly what, and how many, jobs you are best fit for by completing an employment assessment. NOT A PERSONALITY test or an interest inventory, but a VALID assessment that considers your cognitive skills, behaviors, attitudes, and occupational interests. There are some you can take for free, some for less than $100, and MANY that are useless or a “crap shoot” at best.

      I was “cast adrift” into unemployment two years ago (October 2002). Hundreds of IT job leads later with thousands of IT professionals still out of work in my area, I am entering a new career in healthcare administration where my IT skills will be an added benefit. I must complete a nine month training program, national and state exams but my assessment says I am better fit for this than my 23 years in IT. I was fairly well fit for IT.

      The 90’s are GONE. Game over. Thousands of individuals have resumes that look real good and many are willing to remake their resume into exactly what is being asked. How will mine be picked? Only by the grace of God. And if one does not believe in a powerful God? How can one go on for months? Years?

      God has led me safe thus far when I did not know how we could make it through six months of unemployment. It has taken me two years to get to the point where I am READY to change careers in THIS way, and all the other things that needed to be ready for me are arranged. If my interview with the state board goes well in two days, I begin my training Nov. 1.

      Godspeed to you, Deusbelli, and everyone else who is looking and considering a new career.

      • #3308162

        My God…

        by tmgood ·

        In reply to Go where you are best fit!

        … I want to slit my wrists after reading all this.

        🙂

        Passion. Find your passion. Become the best. Learn to articulate thought. Learn to write well. Study grammar and spelling. Be reasonably adept at relating to your fellow man (or at least inhibiting the desire to physically harm him). Don’t have more children than you can comfortably support (this may mean curbing your sexual desires – I know – I ask a lot). These are the keys to success.

    • #3307341

      Look at project management

      by leev ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Because of so much outsourcing the demand for IT savy project managers had boomed (just check out your favorite job site). A great majority of these openings require the same type of analytical skills and a knowledge of software and and the software development process.

    • #3307338

      IT not just knowledge anymore

      by ashastadaisy ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Yes you are correct, relying purely on technology skills is risky. I have interviewed 20 SQL DBA’s over the past two weeks and not one of them was the kind of person I could put in front of the client. Gone are the days where you can sit behind a monitor and just program. You need to have sales skills, tact, be strategic, etc. You have to be both a back room person and a front room person. It’s a well known fact that the interviewer knows whether or not they are going to hire you within the first two minutes of the meeting. The rest of the interview is spent qualifying your skills etc. Are you the kind of person who elicits confidence and competence? That is what is separating the wheat from the chaf for us. Someone who is willing to take an active role in our business. So yes, if you’re looking to passively camp in a back room program all day and collect a paycheck,that’ll be a problem.

    • #3307683

      Heard this tune before

      by carl.porch ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve been hearing the same thing since the early 80’s — that there’s a glut of IT folks in the marketplace. It wasn’t true then, and it’s not true now. Granted, jobs might not be as easy to come by as the spike during the .COM boom of 1996-2000, but one only has to look at the Dept. of Labor Occupational Outlook projections (to the year 2012) to see that software-related occupations are still at the top of the list.

    • #3307681

      I agree with Deusbelli

      by abdul_1qaz ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      My advise is for D to go for Accounting. My wife (has ACCA)works as an accountant for the Pru in the UK & earns almost double my salary as a network admin. I am planning to become a Lawyer and have two more exams to complete the switch over, in the hope that I’ll be able to use my IT skills in that profession. I can tell D that accountants(with prof accreditations – CIMA, ACA, ACCA) are in high demand and he’ll never regret it. He could be a SAP accountant, for instance. D, you will excel provided you’re focused & determined to make a go of it. I don’t see a rosy future for IT, except in areas like SAP. Time will tell.

      • #3308249

        Funny that…

        by mwarman ·

        In reply to I agree with Deusbelli

        I found myself in a simaler situation about four or five months ago – fed up with the industry so I left. I’m now seriously considering returning. If I can find a job that is. Otherwise, its off ot do some freelance album cover design or something!

    • #3307679

      Change of Career Path

      by rwilburn ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Suggest that basic IT capabilities are a crying need in the fields of major construction and engineering. Most of these companies need to be brought up to date with today’s (aand tomorrow’s technology. The major thrust should be in project and construction management/scheduling/communication with the field forces.

    • #3307678

      Don’t do something you don’t like

      by mollenhourb9 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Work is miserable if you don’t like it. Life become miserable since so much of it is defined by your work. If your technical skills aren’t carrying you far enough, work on your management skills (NOT being the best techie around, but being the best at communicating and dealing with people; propper speling helps two). Get a general degree if you need to beef up your resume ( a liberal arts bachelor degree or an MBA). Find a management position that is loosely related to IT. After all, IT is what you like.

      From there, you’ve just opened many other doors. I graduated with a degree in finance, then started my career as an accountant. From there I became a software consultant, then a consulting manager. Now I work as a business analyst in a completely different field. I’ve gone from manufacturing, to software, to the public sector. Your imagination and motivation are your only limiting factors.

      • #3307665

        Yes, please do something you do like

        by netropolisii ·

        In reply to Don’t do something you don’t like

        It’s imperative that you do.

        I have started to sour on IT. This after having been in this field from the early 80’s. The “dot-bomb” boom of the ’90’s is what did it. I don’t want another IT job, and I really don’t like dealing with the egotisical “nano-personality” types that consistantly flock to this field. But IT is the only skill that I have. So as a painful and expen$ive result, I have returned to school to obtain a degree in Interior Design and Residential Restorations. This is something that I enjoy, but have no formal training in. I also have no formal training in CAD, but it has kept me employed for the past 20 years or so. So combining these two skills, I plan to make the transition from IT, to a non-IT firm where my IT skills will not be my first responsibility.

        Just make sure that whatever you do, you can maintain your IT skills (it is a shame to lose them), and perhaps combine them with another job in another field or discipline.

        Good Luck

    • #3307677

      RE: what career

      by mill3502 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Go for a BA in MIS, Management Information Systems. It takes advantage of your IT skills gives your a nice cross over path to almost any business management postion and always keeps you in the field you orginally choose.

    • #3307674

      Get out of IT

      by gmatoka ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I had over 22 years of IT experience, a CS degree, and 11 years as an engineering manager. But after 2 layoffs in a 3 year span, and given the massive exporting of IT jobs offshore, I decided it was time to move on. Unless IT workers in the US are willing to work for around $10/hour, there’s no way they’re going to compete against India. As to what field to go into? I guess that depends on how much time and money you have available for re-training. The medical field, for those specialities that require 1:1 presence, i.e. they can’t be outsourced, is a good choice. I would be cautious about Accounting because that’s another back office type job that’s being outsourced. In fact, anything that can be performed alone with a computer is a questionable choice because of its outsourcing potential. Also, you might need to give up on the expectation of receiving an equivalent salary in your new profession, whatever it may be. Be prepared to accept less, and in some cases, far less.

    • #3307673

      IT… like the Sky, an infinite canvas…

      by kenjava ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I am one of the few that see IT from a poetic point of view as “an infinite canvas ” where you can continue painting until you stop being creative.

      First, I see IT not as an end but a means to an end, i.e IT is a means through which businesses could be enhanced and done more efficiently and optimally.
      In short IT is a TOOL in the hands of businesses and as long as businesses require a competitive edge, the IT sector must remain relevant, hence you will still have a job.

      Are you a creative IT person who is always searching for newer ways of solving current and ever-evolving problems of businesses or you are an IT professional who is content with routine?

      if you are the later, then you will get bored easily and will be bothered about the so-called “bleak IT future”.

      If you are the former then you will definitely stay ahead and will remain relevant even when the forcast is so bad.

      Staying ahead means acquiring newer/contemporary problem-solving skills as well as identifying business needs to be met even with your current skill base.

      If the forcast is bleak for IT in Europe and the US or the West as a whole as you seem bothered, Question is, is it same in Asia, Africa and the rest of the world?

      I am an IT consultant and Systems Integrator for the Telecoms,Banking, Oil & Gas in Africa, and I tell you something, maybe new; long term multi-million IT projects and Networks are being built here.
      It definitely will take some donkey years for IT professionals here to start getting bothered of a bleak in the industry. Infact this regions of the world are now a “mecca” of some sorts to IT pro’s from the West.

      Like the average “lagosian” will say in pidgen enlish, “Shine your eye well well…”

    • #3307664

      The Re-Invention of IT?

      by renman ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      While there are so many different views on this topic, the bottom line is that everyone from tech support all the way up to the IT executive level needs to at least pay attention to this un official threat. While many of you will debunk the credibility of a lot of those individuals that are now flooding the market, (i.e. the late 90?s issue of ?paper CNA?s and MCSE?s?). The fact remains that they (we?) are still here, and its causing a few minor problems. The lure of going to school for less than 2 years and coming out making 50K+ is the new American dream. While quality and legitimacy isn?t even apparently the issue, face it the market is flooded. Job security for some is the false sense that tenure and certification means everything. But how many of you are tired of constantly re certifying yourselves every year just to keep your position? How many new areas of IT have been invented in the last few years that are really old positions with an IT moniker placed on them? How many of you are tired of doing piece work only to fear that every so many months you will be looking for a new job again? Please don?t take this post as pessimistic stance. Economy, budgets, and management (mis-?) seem to determine the future roles of IT professionals. My suggestion to anyone that has thought twice about his or her career security is that a ?back up? career or application of current skills would be a wise investment.

    • #3307656

      I have the answer

      by run down tech ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I am a DSL Tech. working at a college for well under the median. I am now looking at going into managemnet. I am going back to my roots, that was sales for me. I enjoyed it then and still do. For you, you might look into Human Resourses. You can offer a solution for how the company hires the tech people. You can still use your skills only you will be the one saying who gets the job. Good Luck to you.

      Stacy
      Oh by the way don’t over sale the tech. talk. The company will be wanting someone who can explain the why’s to them in plain english.

    • #3310811

      Re: Choosing a New Career Path

      by dougdoyle ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Hi. I have to agree with you. I was made redundant recently when my company was taken over. I applied for about 100 jobs and only got calls on a few. These pretty much panned out in just a few days. I was lucky – a job I went for and could have got easily was not paying enough, so I knocked it back. The owner of the company called a few days later, and because of industry and IT knowledge I am now his Client Relationship Manager. To be fair I have been a customer service manager a few years ago. Many companies like to have IT skilled people in that sort of ro,e. Good luck.

    • #3310810

      Get A Pro To Help

      by tracyf ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Get with a career counselor- someone who does this sort of thing for a living? Sort of like the ones you go through in high school & college entry- but, of course, much more tuned to your current circumstances.

      Nothing wrong with wanting to “branch out” & add some extra knowledge to your resume. It could be that the tech down-turn is temporary & that at the time it snaps back, what you’ve learned in the meantime will help secure a job, as well.

      Good luck!

      Tracy ;^)

    • #3310799

      You are the problem

      by ddissent ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      The problem is not the IT market – The problem is YOU my friend. If you really have all the qualifications you listed above:

      “BBA in MIS, ASP, VB, VBA, TCP/IP, Access, SQL, MySQL, HTML, Web Developer for 1 1/2 years, consulting (PC maintenance and custom Access programing) for about a year’

      and you can’t see a future in IT?

      Then I don’t think any suggestions in a Tech forum is going to help you. You have to WANT to work in the IT field and you have to WANT to see a future. All I have is military experience in communications and I have self taught myself the past 10 years. Now I am a Network Administrator and I run my own computer company on the side. I don’t have a certificate or degree in anything. What I do have is the desire to learn and succeed and the willingness to make that happen.

      Sounds to me like you you want an easy path. Accounting sounds like a good choice.

      • #3308330

        Whoa

        by sauerb01 ·

        In reply to You are the problem

        Not everybody is lucky enough to be in an area that will hire IT people or be young enough to be able to work cheap. Age and present salary play a big role in wether you are even considered for a position in IT. Just because you have been fortunate enough to land a good position is the exception not the rule. I was layed off recently due to outsourcing and was told the same things over and over, “You don’t have the qualifications we are looking for.” I have several Microsoft certifications, A+, Net+ and several certs from invdividual companies on their sytems including Hp, IBM, and Cisco and a ton of practical experience. The problem came down to my age and the perception that I wanted too much money. I was never even granted a single interview out of a possible 132 positions. The follow-up by the head-hunting firm I used was that all positions were filled by candidates half my age and at an average of one-third less then my asking salary of $40,000. By the way the positions were all advertised with a starting salary for experienced/qualified persons of 40K-60K. Most companies out there especially on the East Coast are just looking to save money. They will not hire experienced, high priced local help. Most are looking to outsource most of their high-end work to low priced overseas firms.

        I had to fall back on some courses I took in technical documentation to land a tech writers job. Not what I want to do but it pays the bills for now. Unfortunately Tech writers are layed off before techies.

    • #3308345

      Same Old Question

      by kensmi ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      This is the same question I asked myself in the early 90’s. It is probably the same question that veterans from the 70’s asked themselves when the 80’s came along. It may even be the same thing that Eckert and Mauchley said 10 years after they started this mess in the 50’s. Our industry is constantly changing and we need to find ways to change with it… like I did in the 90’s… like those other guys did in the 80’s… and like you are finding you need to do now. It’s not easy because you just don’t know how the industry is going to change. Doing allot of research helps. Look at trends in the industry. Look at what is important to IT users, and watch how IT companies adjust themselves to meet those needs, then adjust your skills to meet those requirements. 20 years ago while I was setting up MICR and OCR readers in Burroughs check sorters I never thought that I would be a communications expert, but here I am taking apart TCP/IP packets and chasing spanning tree loops. So, to answer your question: Be ready to adjust your career to the changing landscape, but don’t walk away from it all just yet. Cheers!

      • #3083751

        Russian Roulette

        by lumbergh77 ·

        In reply to Same Old Question

        I’ll pass. If I want to play Russian Roulette, I’ll go to Vegas. 🙂

    • #3308344

      Apply your skills

      by toucan ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      If you mean just messing around with computers, you are probably correct. Businesses are interested inmore value from IT, really true Information Technology that supports and forwards business goals. Have interest or skill in security, take an industry Security Cert, combines with some accounting/financial skill – look for jobs in business process management, security/systems auditing.

      Skilled in storage and databases? Look towards Health Informatics, hospitals need technologists that are ready to understand the healthcare business not just throw technology at things.

    • #3308343

      Dang!!! I’m not alone.

      by thelurch ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      After 9/11 I was let go from my previous position with a regional ISP in Technical Support. I was working for myself (if you call it that. Actually, I was barely etching out a living) until May of this year when I was the victim of a nasty car accident (had me laid up for 2 1/2 months)I lost all my clients as they wanted someone they could depend on during that period of time (well, business is business…) and so I am now going to have to file bankruptcy.

      I’ve been looking into other career options that would use my technical skills in some capacity, either sales, or real estate and even trying to use my technical knowledge in music.

      Good luck. I’ll let you know what comes of it.

    • #3308340

      I agree..

      by bilal_mahmood ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I have been in the IT industry for around 10 years. I hold BBA, MBA, MCP, A+,Network+, CCSA, MCSA 2000, MCSA2003, and MCSE2000.
      With all the skills and experience, I can’t land on a job that pays more then $55k in GA,I’ve never gotten an interview, all i have always heard back is: “Over Qualified” or your skills don’t match bla bla..
      While working for a software development company, I’m starting my own electronics/computer accessories selling business, Currently I sell in the flea markets, computer shows, ebay ( i hate it, too many sneaky buyers buy the product, swap the parts and try to send back for refund), but soon I’ll be putting my own website and sell through pricewatch/pricegrabber/froogle and all other available search engines.
      Bottom Line:
      Job: Live pay check to pay check.
      Your own business: Work twice as hard, but win the Freedom.

      I’m sorry if my comments hurt anybody’s feelings, this is only my perspective on the issue.

    • #3308338

      Look into K-12 Education

      by fulton ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve been at my current school for 10 years now (virtually unheard of in the IT industry!) and I don’t plan on going anywhere. You may have to take a pay cut, but you have job security and usually great benefits. Plus my contract is 226 days per year. Christmas and Spring Break are great, especially when my other IT buddies are working during that time! However, you MUST have people skills when working in education. You cannot sit behind a computer monitor in a server room all day. In fact, you are usually expected to train teachers as well. And that does involve people skills!

      • #3310346

        K – 12 Education What are your job responsibilities

        by dsunny ·

        In reply to Look into K-12 Education

        I am interested in your reponse to K- 12 education as I have considered this myself. I have an education background that I have not used in forever. Do you support the network and applications and for how many schools?

    • #3308337

      You’re Kidding Right?

      by jascc1 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      IT market saturated – NOT A CHANCE. However it does depend on what you do in the IT field. Master a general area of IT along with specific niche and you should be fine. Just always have aspirations for improving your career in some form or fashion – That’s a must for everyone depsite the industry they are in.

      • #3308246

        No saturation here

        by ndynamics ·

        In reply to You’re Kidding Right?

        As an employer, the issue I’m running into is that the people in the market are not QUALIFIED. Far too many people started their IT careers as a janitor for a .com in 1999 and then got promoted to Director of Software Development within 4 months – no training, no education, nada. My own brother in law was a sales clerk for a sporting goods store before he picked up a gig as Director of QA in ’99.

        Yes, the market is saturated with unqualified people. I have to wade through 300 resumes to find two or three that actually bothered to read the job description before they sent in the resume. I interview those two or three, and then determine I wouldn’t put any of them in front of a customer. Two haven’t taken a bath in six months and the other one says that they would “prefer not to work with end users”. Sheesh.

        Give me some QUALIFIED IT people and I will hire them!

    • #3308336

      So teach!

      by jjlov ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You obviously have skills, and experience. Those are things that, if you have communication skills, make for great teachers – in any field. The one good thing about teaching is the satisfaction in seeing a job well done. And we certainly need teachers — Though the pay is pretty terrible for the first few years (not unlike our current business). But there is no shortage of need.

    • #3308334

      fast food?

      by clankford ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      The high growth fields today are nursing and fast food. You mention accounting, those jobs are also pouring off shore. Any well paid professions are now targets. You could get into sales of off shore services, that will work for about 4-5 years.
      We have trade agreements for steel and airplanes but no one knows how to protect us from unrestricted import of services. Further companies lobby congress to protect themselves from cheap imports of steel, airplanes, etc. but they also lobby to protect their ability to import cheap professional services. I’m looking for ideas too.

    • #3308332

      CISCO is taught in high school

      by burned_out ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I think pessimism is the wrong word. Its not like he is complaining about having no chance at winning a beauty contest. He is accepting the face of IT as we know it today.

      Anyone that buys a wireless router at Best Buy now is a network admin. It’s just the facts.

      You have to know when your skills are no longer required in existing markets. Its not pessimism. Its reality. If there is a glut in your field then maybe it is time to move on to something else.

      If you can stand it I recommend something in the health care related field.

    • #3308329

      Healthcare IT

      by kfredrickson ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’m not sure what business sector you are currently using your IT skills to support, but healthcare is starting to go through a serious technology revolution. Soon the way hospitals and doctors get paid will be tied directly to how much they use IT to make their operations more efficient.

      Everyone knows that the U.S. healthcare industry uses state of the art technology for the treatment of patients. However, medication despensing, patient charts, and billing are still paper based throughout most of the industry. Providers are looking for skilled IT workers to help transform operations to help reduce costs and provide improved patient safety. Healthcare IT consulting companies often have openings with your skill set posted on their websites.

      The only downside to healthcare IT is that we get paid a little less on average than most other IT workers. Why? Most hospitals are not-for-profit facilities that get most of their revenue from government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. However, once you get into the healthcare IT niche your career is a lot more secure than most other IT workers. Privacy laws make most providers weary of outsourcing to overseas companies.

      If you like travel your best bet is a consulting company that specializes in healthcare. If you want a steady but rewarding “long term gig” find a hospital that is moving toward an Electronic Medical Record (EMR) where you can really make use of your talents.

      I work in a small community hospital that serves a rural area of North East Texas. The work I do helps improve the health and well being of thousands of people every year. The people I help are my neighbors and my family. I never expected to be in healthcare IT, but it’s been more challenging and rewarding than anything else I’ve ever done.

    • #3308327

      Should IT pros start looking for non-IT careers – Hell yeah!

      by tired_of_mcses ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      The future is bleak, but not because there are too few jobs and a market flooded with skilled techs. It’s a market flooded with worthless techs.

      These clowns lie about their abilities, worry only about how much they make (which is never enough for them and way too much in reality) but never concern themselves with increasing their knowledge and to top it off: provide *CRAP* customer service. You’d think it would be a no brainer, but nobody wants to be the bad guy and voice their complaints, so their managers are none the wiser. If another IT guy complains, well, he/she is a troublemaker and therefore must be killed. (Our admin wont even clean the filthy servers that were rained on when our roof leaked (looks like mud), even after being told multiple times that it is corrosive to electronic components….4 weeks and counting….and he still has a job? Eph that!

      As a 12 year network and security admin…I’m looking elsewhere.

      • #3308313

        Opportunities are endless…

        by pierson glyn-williams ·

        In reply to Should IT pros start looking for non-IT careers – Hell yeah!

        There are a ton of opportunities in every sector, but you MUST enjoy what you do, otherwise you will continue to look for something else.

        If you are no longer interesed in what you do, there are other avenues for IT pro’s, one that is most exciting and leveraging from the current shifts to offshore outsourcing.

        If you look at http://www.cio.com/offshoremap (explore their map) and you will see how the different countries measure up to their outsourcing abilities. The great news about all of this is you can still be apart of this rush. — One example is becoming a Project Manager on Elance.com – you can provide the same services as a full service IT firm, while re-contracting the work to the lower-bid talent. You just have to make an arrangement with a solid offshore firm to feed them work and get a priority return on the work you are providing them. Anyone of these firms will work with you as a parnter who acts on behalf of them as a referral\project manager because they want business from the US.

        Someone who is in the US can act as an ambassador to these firms which works quite well because there is still a small barrier between US and these offshore companies as you will be able to see in the Offshore Outsourcing assesment provided by CIO above. Just find an area that is lacking and capitilize on it.

        The amount of money that goes through Elance and the other talent procurement marketplaces online are phenomenal.

        This way you can have all the benefits of working online (24×7 biz – global – home – on your own time). And the beauty of it is, if you are dealing with clients in the States and you have talent working on your projects in other countries, like India – you can wake up and review the work that was done while you were sleeping and submit changes in a normal 9-5 work day and have your changes re-submitted on your next business day. – -These firms are fantastic, organized and in most cases utilize some of the best of breed contact\project management online share portals.

        Something to think about if you are looking for a change.

        • #3308243

          What about this niche?

          by jkennedy ·

          In reply to Opportunities are endless…

          I’ve been reading this thread with much interest, and what I’ve been tossing around is the idea of specializing in web/data for non-profits and/or those agencies who serve I’ve been reading this thread with much interest, and what I’ve been tossing around in the past few months is the idea of specializing in web/data for non-profits and/or those agencies who directly serve others. Hospitals were mentioned quite a few times here, and recently I’ve “inherited” a niece and nephew that are in need of childrens social services. Some of those websites leave a lot to be desired. I’ve also developed web and database solutions serving the animal shelter and animal rescue industry, as well as for my church.

          I currently work full time for a travel health insurance company and what I do is help my CEO make money. While I’m greatful to be employed, this is not an inspiring goal. I find I’m much more motivated to serve organizations with goals to directly impact and improve people’s (and animal’s) lives. How to make a living at that seems a little tricky, as it seems that it takes convincing administrators that they need improvement on how their data is handled, or why their website content needs to be refreshed every so often.

          I have done much volunteer web/database programming for the homeless pet industry and my church. I continually receive compliments on the solutions I build. (guess I could build a customer quote page)

          I would appreciate other’s comments on specializing in non-profit areas.

          Thanks!

          Jennifer
          http://www.PapillonStudio.com

      • #3309971

        Try the engineering/manufacturing sector

        by tnastek ·

        In reply to Should IT pros start looking for non-IT careers – Hell yeah!

        A lot of IS techs could easily make the shift into the engineering community with a strong manufacturing company. There are limitless opportunities for a good techy in research and development in such companies, especially if you have a specialized background in say communications, systems, sensor measurements, quality, etc, etc. The marketplace is flooded with people with subpar techy skills who have been degrading the IS world and driving down the salary structure. If you have skills, move to the engineering world. Otherwise, you may find your competing with ex-drivethru employees. 🙂

        RND

      • #3309804

        Yup!

        by hkohl ·

        In reply to Should IT pros start looking for non-IT careers – Hell yeah!

        I retired from Unisys Corp after 37 years ….. Had a chance to do some network consulting ….. After a couple of weeks got a job driving a hi-lo in a plant. Great job – don’t give a rat’s a** if the router is down. if some desk jockey’s pc won’t logon. if the server got sasser or code red.
        No stress, just move big boxes of parts.
        Something to be said for that!
        Oh yeah, no dumber than a box of rocks “uh, I jus past that there MCSE” MCSE’s!
        /* INCLUDE STD DISCLAIMER
        there are a lot of good MCSE’s out there, but there are a fair sized group that don’t know their RAM from a hole in the ground!

    • #3308326

      Pessimist or not….

      by Anonymous ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Whether you are a pessimist or not is irrelevant. Those who can’t do, teach!

    • #3308311

      Opportunities are endless…

      by pierson glyn-williams ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      There are a ton of opportunities in every sector, but you MUST enjoy what you do, otherwise you will continue to look for something else.

      If you are no longer interesed in what you do, there are other avenues for IT pro’s, one that is most exciting and leveraging from the current shifts to offshore outsourcing.

      If you look at http://www.cio.com/offshoremap (explore their map) and you will see how the different countries measure up to their outsourcing abilities. The great news about all of this is you can still be apart of this rush. — One example is becoming a Project Manager on Elance.com – you can provide the same services as a full service IT firm, while re-contracting the work to the lower-bid talent. You just have to make an arrangement with a solid offshore firm to feed them work and get a priority return on the work you are providing them. Anyone of these firms will work with you as a parnter who acts on behalf of them as a referral\project manager because they want business from the US.

      Someone who is in the US can act as an ambassador to these firms which works quite well because there is still a small barrier between US and these offshore companies as you will be able to see in the Offshore Outsourcing assesment provided by CIO above. Just find an area that is lacking and capitilize on it.

      The amount of money that goes through Elance and the other talent procurement marketplaces online are phenomenal.

      This way you can have all the benefits of working online (24×7 biz – global – home – on your own time). And the beauty of it is, if you are dealing with clients in the States and you have talent working on your projects in other countries, like India – you can wake up and review the work that was done while you were sleeping and submit changes in a normal 9-5 work day and have your changes re-submitted on your next business day. – -These firms are fantastic, organized and in most cases utilize some of the best of breed contact\project management online share portals.

      Something to think about if you are looking for a change.

    • #3308309

      Questioning IT Career Path

      by len.vest ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Many IT professionals like yourself are questioning their career path choice. A lot depends on your motives for being in IT. If the driving force was financially based, then I can see how the recent state of IT would have you concerned. If the reason you are in IT is because you love the challenge and personal satisfaction of solving a problem for users through technology, then I believe you should think twice before changing paths. The benefit of loving what you do escapes many people within the workforce and often outweighs the financial side of the equation.
      There will always be a demand for good IT professionals. If you decide to stay in IT because you love it, I suggest you continue your education in order to stay abreast of the latest technologies, in your case possibly .NET. You may want to also look at improving any weaknesses in communication skills, which improves an IT professional’s value.
      No matter what career path, there are always opportunities for those that work hard and demonstrate that they love what they do.
      Good Luck, whatever your decision.

    • #3308308

      What Do You Want?

      by coachrick ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I agree with something rclinto2 said, do something you really enjoy.

      Create an inventory of the skill sets you have and prioritize them by how much you enjoy doing that thing. Then compare and contrast your list with skill sets and the job market.

      You might also consider taking some aplitude tests that can show you into which job areas/classifications/categories you have a match. This can be a real eye opener, especially if you answer the questions on the surveys with an authentic presence of yourself rather than how you’d like to be or what might give you the ‘right’ results.

      I also suggest you consider hiring a personal coach. This is someone that will assist you in seeing what possibilities will work best for you and do so with complete neutrality; that is they will work with you from your agenda and not bring in their own. (At least a certified, quality coach will.)

      If you’d like more information about personal coaching, drop me a personal email and I will share my experience with you in deeper details.

    • #3308307

      Not So-good service engineers are highly desired

      by rswanson ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Greetings fellow Technicians,

      I am the owner of a small business in Charleston, South Carolina. I have been in business since 1998 and have seen many technicians come and go.

      The grass is not always greener on the other side of the fence. I think that highly skilled service engineers are still in great demand. We are turning work away because we have a shortage of skilled engineers that can and are willing to do the work required to resolve complex site issues.

      The problem is that there are a lot of engineers that have had cushy jobs at the big fancy buildings and have forgot what a real hard (but rewarding $) days work consists of. There are no quick jumps to the senior engineer position. It takes lots of hard work and the stuff you learn at 3am means more than any instructor, exam, college or university can teach you.

      I am constantly looking for good feild engineers so if anyone is trying to find work please come visit our beautiful town and talk with me to get started.

      Roger Swanson – CTO & President
      Computer Network Enterprises, Inc.
      Charleston, SC
      843-8210-4356
      http://www.cnentrp.com
      rswanson@cnentrp.com (for comments)

    • #3308298

      Success is the sweetest form of revenge

      by mkishbaugh ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I deeply share your frustration.

      I’ve made several “in-your-face” comments to CIOs over the past year regarding the Outsourcing of IT. After a very successful 14 years of Senior Oracle DBA / Architect experience with Peoplesoft and Oracle Financials and a great resume — I found myself out of work! After looking for work for the better part of 2 years I’ve learned that the politicians really are wrong! Unemployment rate falls when either A) the worker finds work!! or B) the worker exhausts their unemployment benefits. The actual unemployment rate is usually 2 -3 x the ‘reported’. Anyway – I digress.

      I found a few solutions:
      A) Sarbanes Oxley Act has created a huge unfilled void for people who know how to document business and IT processes and controls. The pay is usually pretty to very good. For me the real perk was being able to go home at night and NOT have a pager. I can really have a life!!!

      B) Think of your career as a long string. Technology is on one end – Business operations on the other. The closer you/I/We are to ‘technology’ — the more disposable we become. (CIOs are not the sharpest tool in the box). Yes that includes “development”. Advice: Move your knowledge and skills closer to center. Business Analysts, Database Analysts are two skills that will be slow to see outsourcing. (they need people who can verbally engage the client)

      C) consider taking your existing skills and create a true eCommerce website. A buddy of mine just started his in January. Working smart and hard he’s now grossing well over $80K/month (yes it IS verifiable). My wife and I are now in pursuit of similar success. We’ll be going live before year end.

      Bottom line?
      – Education won’t fix your woes.
      – Better economy– won’t
      – Different President — REALLY won’t (pardon my…)
      – Inspiration and hard work — will

      You have the ‘smarts’. Look at your skills! Personally – I’d opt for option C above.

      Just some neighborly thoughts. Let me know if I can be of further help.

      Mark Kishbaugh

    • #3308293

      epiphanies & lessons learned

      by drmemory ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      deusbelli,
      Career planning is a continuous process. Since the average ‘job’ lasts three years or less, you must continually look to who/what/where you WANT TO BE NEXT! Finding an opportunity where you are valued is work. Fantasizing about being ‘discovered’ is a waste time, and hence your talent as well.

      I have survived and fallen victim to corporate ‘staffing strategies’. My advice to all is simple:
      1. Continually update a comprehensive resume with accomplishments and skills inventory. Try to segregate industry and technically specific items that have limited transfer value.
      2. Research to find companies (all sizes) that you would like to work for. Consider everything except job opportunities in your analysis. Most important, develop a point-of-contact if they look interesting.
      3. Perform the same analysis using the company where you work today.
      4. Craft a letter and brief resume to the companies that interest you. Use the POC from step 2 as a gateway.
      5. Now that you ‘own’ your career, start acting like the position that you have is the best deal available today!

      Here are the results that I have witnessed:
      The fear of being ‘right sized’ goes away because you are doing everything you can, both internally and externally, to further your career.
      You will find a position that interests you at a company you have confidence in (promotion or whatever).
      Your day-to-day work life will improve because you are continuously assessing the value of what you are doing (not relying on your boss to do it for you).

      By the way, your chances of being ‘discovered are greatly enhanced by the preceding.

    • #3308292

      Alternative Careers to IT

      by hanekhw ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I came out of Commercial Banking to IT so I can understand the how and why of career changes. I’m concentrating now on a move to Heathcare either as an extension of my IT skills (application programming or sysadmin) or as a technician (XRay, CAT, Blood, etc.).

      Do some research and you’ll find Healthcare is one of the only growing career fields.

    • #3308287

      Have you tried Public Health??

      by dohnotgood ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Like a lot of people, I picked up my IT skills on the side. My formal education is in Health Education and Epidemiology. While working I started to attend night classes and eventually left my chosen profession to pursue the field of LMS development. For a while I was doing work in the insurance industry with on-line training development.

      I finally decided to come back to Public Health and now I work at a State Agency where I have been hired to provide research in the way that we can utilize all the data that is collected surrounding Communicable Disease Control.

      One problem was that I had to move. I still am in the same state but I needed to relocate to where the job was. Luckily my wife was willing to change everything for me.

      So I guess what I am saying is that you should look at what you are really interested in, which in my case was the use of informatics in
      Public Health and just start looking realizing that your dream job will require some effort on your part.

      I have gone from writing code every day to more of a program manager.

      I see that you have a degree that includes some training in BA. Are there other areas of business admin that you are interested in besides finance?

      Additionally, there are a lot of jobs starting to open up in public health arena. I am not sure where you are located but look at your local jurisdictional health department.

      Since coming back into Public Health I have been involved with the IT infrastructure surrounding Maternal and child health issues, SARS, Avian flu, as well as a whole host of other topics.

      But you do need a plan and start on it sooner than later. It took me over a year to get hired on in the position that I currently have but it was worth the wait.

    • #3308286

      Career solutions of Technical people

      by bobfranks57 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’m sure there are many options for people in the IT industry who are technically inclined to move into other industries to use their skills. In the early 90’s I was a Senior Systems Analyst and felt that I needed to get out of IT. After doing a couple of years in internal Audit I realized that I enjoyed helping solve problems with technology and people. I chose to move in the direction of PRoject Management and since then have managed project raning from multimillion dollar revovations to business process and downsizing projects while continuing to implement software solutions. From what I can see the IT industry is in need of people who can get people to solve problems collectively and those with a strong inclination to the tech side of the business can contribute significantly in this venue…

    • #3308276

      Crossing Over to another career….

      by geeen ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Well you have to ask yourself – is it the career or the lack of facing the next level – I disagree that the Tech Sector is lacking as you state – there are many other aspects of the “Tech” Sector – which part are you in? With all of the emerging technologies out there, something has to peak your fancy. Alot of stuff is old to some, new to others, but there is not a lack of jobs – just a lack of people that want to work in those areas. For instance – Nanotechnologies is starting to really build and take off. But is that something for you, look around more before taking on something that doesn’t make you happy.

    • #3308270

      Career Path

      by ggabagat ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You have listed only your technical skills. Do consider also your soft skills and pick what you enjoy doing or spending most of your time. Why go into a field you are not excited about to begin with? Do things you enjoy and do it well. With a little bit of luck, money will come in later.

    • #3308261

      Reflection, Reality, Re-Evaluation, Reformation

      by oregonlighthouse ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I too underwent a huge drop from an IT Manager to the ranks of the unemployed. Despite certain slanted posts from rabid Democrat-haters, I don’t blame any particular administration or policy on this… in retrospect, it was bound to happen.

      To pander to the charge of “pessimism” some have made towards the original poster, I also agree with that “the times, they are a-changin’…”: More and more jobs are going overseas; IT pros are in vast overabundance; pay scales are nowhere near where they were just 4-5 years ago; the technology changes so fast nowadays that even a few months out of direct contact with the field makes you essentially “unemployable” unless you keep up with schools and new certs; and of course after the dot-com crash there are a lot fewer employers out there.

      However, on the positive side, and despite anemic job and economic growth, there ARE jobs out there, even in IT. Sometimes it requires a willingness to relocate, or take a huge pay cut, or retraining in some related field to “fit” into an inexact match, but they’re there.

      In one of my previous incarnations, I was a career advisor. The advice I gave (in the late 1980’s/early 1990’s, one of our bigger recessions and job-loss periods prior to 2000) still applies today:

      1) Reflection: Take a good, hard look at yourself. Not only your broad list of skills and experience, but perhaps most importantly your likes and dislikes, desires and dreams. It may sound silly, but it’s really far more important to be doing something you’re in love with than something you’re trained to do. Are you HAPPY in IT? Do you wake up every day excited (or at least moderately pleased ) to get to work and do what you do there? If not, it’s time to reflect on what your ideal line of work would be, within reason (although it may be nice to dream of making macrame laundry baskets all day long, will it pay the mortgage?).

      2) Reality: Take a good look at your job, the job market, the industry, and this country’s and the world economy. Do some research. Then face reality… is your job in danger, or is the outlook bleak for a long-term career doing what you’re doing? If not, God bless you… you’re among the lucky few. If so, you’re actually amongst the majority. Current statistics show that the average person will change their CAREER (not just their job) at least FIVE TIMES in their lifetime. If your research shows that your job may be in peril, either immediately or long-term, then it’s time to start considering a new path.

      3) Re-Evaluation: a) Even if you find that the general trend in your career path is OK, it may be that re-training or at least a broadening of your skill-base would be in order to make your job prospects more aggressively marketable in the future. Consider completing that Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree, or certification that you’ve been putting off. Even more, consider getting skills and education in a totally different area which complements your existing training, either by going back to school for that second degree or by asking for work or projects at your current job either in another department or otherwise outside your current “position description”.

      b) The other side of re-evaluation is on the home front. Make sure your current living style, family life, and economic condition are as lean and “portable” as possible. What this means is that despite having what may be a nice salary NOW, don’t live like it. Rent, don’t buy. Drive the old car. The washer and dryer still work, keep ’em. Eat out less. Save money. What all this prepares you for is the possibility of having to relocate (often with little notice), to take a lower-paying position without hardship, or possibly to reconstruct your entire career around a whole new paradygm… such as getting out of IT altogether.

      4) Reformation: Finally, as the philosopher Ernest Holmes said, “Change your thinking and you’lll change your life”. We IT people have come to believe (thanks to the hype of the 1990’s) that we were indestructable, unassailable, and indespensible. Sadly, despite at least four years of evidence to the contrary, many of us still retain this shocking lack of humility. The truth is everything changes. There is no life without change… the alternative is death. What is true of our bodies is just as true of our careers… we must change to survive. This doesn’t mean just learning new tricks and technical skills… sometimes it requires real change, including reforming our career paths (and lives) into a more flexible, attractive package for potential employers. This involves opening ourselves up to new opportunities, new paradygms of our personal lives, and new future-looking outlooks for our careers.

      I worked in IT for nearly 20 years, off and on. I left my last IT job in 2002 to start up my own company, which didn’t fly once I found out that two of my partners bailed with their funding (and trust me, I’ve learned from THAT little episode… like getting everything in writing ). I spent eight months basically unemployed, taking little IT contracts here and there to keep my car payments up. Finally, I followed my own advice and started the Four R’s… to find, after facing the “reality” portion, that I don’t really want to pursue an IT career anymore, not as my PRIMARY job anyway. I will always use my IT skills… but now I am going back to school to finish up a new Bachelor’s degree in Sociology, which I plan to use in counseling and research. I also finished up my studies towards becoming an ordained minister, and have taken a full-time job as an Executive Assistant (with some Web duties) to get me through the schooling.

      I am tranforming my life around a new paradygm, and I am happy. Perhaps the best advice I can give is simply this: Do what makes you happy, and don’t look back. Every path we take in life is the right one, because every path teaches us something new, and learning is why we are here on this Earth.

      Thanks for letting me contribute. I hope this helps someone in some way.

      John Cline

    • #3308260

      You need to look at your skills differently

      by necoil ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Everything you have described as a skill has in some way to do with information/data management and access. There are a number of fields beyond accounting and finance that have to deal with overwhelming amounts of data. Many companies in a number of service industry sectors — engineering, health care to name a few, have not made the complete shift from paper to electronic. They may know that they need to be more sophisticated with their data management, but they don’t have any concrete idea as to what the end product looks like or even how to get there. And the idea about how their employees would use and access the data isn’t even thought out. Someone with your background could be a tremendous help. The trick is to actually know enough about how the business works and competes in the market and how people use the data and why. This are the things that techs are weak on so they come up with a clean programming solution that does not in any way reflect the individual user’s real world work i.e. not intuative. A programmer who knows the business can often solve the technical problem and improve the work process. That’s why I think you should figure out an industry sector you would like to be in and then find out what what they do with their data and how it can be better.

    • #3308256

      Technology Management career possibilities – education for starters

      by viennamicro ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve considered the ramifications of outsourcing, etc. and settled on my need for an additional degree in Technology Management. Several universities across the nation are offering similar programs, most notably the University of MD and Marshall University in the east. One of the few constants in ANY career field is change and someone will have to manage it. I’ve found having a technical background in IT is a very real plus in pursuing a position in this “new” career field.

      Here’s a brief overview of the program:

      The M.S. in Technology Management degree program is designed primarily for working professionals with both technical and non-technical backgrounds who want a better understanding of technological change and its relevance to competitiveness and business strategy. Program course work has a practical emphasis, with real-world projects designed to develop skills that can be put to use on the job immediately.

      Areas of emphasis are:

      M.S. in Technology Management with emphasis in Environmental Management
      M.S. in Technology Management with emphasis in Information Technology
      M.S. in Technology Management with emphasis in Manufacturing Systems
      M.S. in Technology Management with emphasis in Transportation Systems and Technologies

      The primary differences among the degrees are 3-4 courses in the area of emphasis, making the possibility of dual areas of emphasis a real possibility (most of the area of emphasis courses could be used to at least meet the “elective” requirements of another area of emphasis).

      Following is a link to a more detailed listing on the program at Marshall University:

      http://www.marshall.edu/cite/academics/programs/PDescTmGCur.htm

      • #3308242

        Experience

        by mcomps ·

        In reply to Technology Management career possibilities – education for starters

        There are alot of good points made by everyone who has contributed to this discussion. I have already made a small jump from concentrating on IT networking to more of accounting/finance area, and let me tell you the market demand is not that great for people without experience in those areas also.

        I would suggest that you redefine what you have learned from your application of your IT knowledge. For example, why did your boss/manager want you to make changes to the programs, how did that help the organization. Some of the points that a business focused education would expect you to learn.

        If you decide to go back to school (not to teach) definitely choose a program that has a high success rate in placing its candidates with internships or post-graduate careers. The market is flooded with experienced people in all career fields which makes it difficult for new graduates seeking jobs.

        There probably many other factors that you need to consider before you make your choice, but if you have to work for the rest of your life it would be wise to choose something that you like and something that you do well.

        Good Luck!

    • #3308247

      Health care Research

      by eakaroll ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Have you thought of taking your skills to the clinical research arena? There is a demand for SAS programming and database skills. You may need to pick up or update some skill sets but there is a demand in that area.

    • #3308244

      Business systems / Project management

      by alfred e. neuman ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      It looks like you have a solid education. These days it seems the way to get ahead in IT is to be able to
      handle more of what used to be management work and integrate your IT knowledge. There may not be a shortage of PC techs but there does seem to be a shortage of knowledgeable management especially when it comes to planning and implememting technology.

    • #3308238

      The Fault

      by mssmedia ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
      But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”

    • #3308235

      I have my future career mapped out

      by worm farmer ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Great! Sounds like someone is setting low expectations and consistantly exceeding them.

      Here is a bit of career advise for you.
      Go into worm farming…. In fact I’ve thought of doing this myself and incorporating my IT skills and knowledge by passing out aircards at my baitstand… Fantzypantz’ bait and internet cafe… You can go surfin’ when the fish ain’t byte-in…

      P.S. Does anybody know’s a good capital venturist willing to invest?

    • #3308228

      Tough one – but you can do it

      by ed-projects ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I had the same issues 4 years ago and I decided to have a go at IT project management / Project management. After all if you’ve seen every mistake then your half way to being a good project Manger (well that?s the thinking).

      It was a very hard hill to climb especially breaking into new ground where non-IT Project managers do not take kindly to ‘new blood’.

      That said an extraordinary thing happened, I spotted an area of Project management that really needed a modern IT solution to help deliver projects properly, with out my experience I would not have had the chance to see this view.

      3 years later and I am launching my own company from the shell company I used for contracting and glad that I made that jump, so good luck and give it a go!

      Ed

      http://www.ControlledProjects.com

      • #3308072

        RE: Tough one – but you can do it

        by arimaldo ·

        In reply to Tough one – but you can do it

        Just now came across your reply and I basically said the same thing. Just one question, if you don’t mind, when you first started in the project management field, did you do so as a “contractor” or were you actually hired on with a company?

        I’m a UNIX sys admin and am currently enrolled in a Master’s program in CIS (Computer Information Systems). Typically the program has a majority of “management type” courses and one of them was “project management”. That is where my interest peaked regarding this field and so I was wondering exactly how you “got your foot in the door”.

        Thanks for taking the time to read my posting.

    • #3308196

      Diversify ones skills

      by nzjade ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I am a network administrator and love IT though for me it’s not a job or career, I do this for fun. To me technology stuff are toys. Me I’m a baker by trade, with sawmilling skills to call upon though loved working in the education field of special needs and it’s in this area where you become creative in adapting, developing, or devising technology for those with some form of impairment. Think of your skills as mobile, transferable into any field.

    • #3308174

      So much for positive replies….

      by tigertale ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      This gent is of the impression that he is not going to have an opportunity in IT….perhaps he knows something the rest of you don’t….

      Instead of MOST of you asking follow up questions (perhaps he lives in a very competitive area or his resume needs updating), most of you were eager to criticize him and/or be rude.

      After 30 years of IT, my success has been driven by my williness to give people the benefit of the doubt and share my knowledge through guidance to others.

      Criticizing and /or blaming benefit no one and reflects on YOU more than anyone else.

      It seems so many of you lack or missed the book on how to be professional!

      My 3 cents….

    • #3308173

      Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

      by the admiral ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      The idea was not to go out and get every certification there is. What many of people do not understand is that there is a demand for people in IT in the healthcare and Finance industries, but, and here is the but…

      YOU HAVE TO HAVE SOME KNOWLEDGE OR EXPERIENCE IN IT IN ORDER TO BECOME PART OF THAT SEGMENT!

      Many people go out and get MSCE with Internet. That is fab! You can now do Microsoft skillsets that are related to the internet. Tells me nothing more. CCNA? Even better, it means you can do a Cisco product in the networking closet and get the Microsoft Box to connect to it.

      But what are your specialties? You have to have a specialty in order to survive with the rest of them in your mind as well.

      It DOES matter that you are proficient in what you claim to be in. No proficiency just makes you a paper tech. Companies need experience with that tech or don’t bother.

      Paper Techs were yesterday. Experience is back and it is nailing alot of careers to the Tombstone.

    • #3308165

      What’s Really Happening

      by vpepe2 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      The IT industry is suffering, job wise due to the following:
      1. Too many certified people. Dozens will show up for a job all with A+ certificates and a lot with MCSE ones. About 1/3 of them don’t really know what they are doing and have to be shown a lot of things they should areeady know. A number will have bad attitudes. Some will want to be promoted too fast. Some will leave as soon as a job paying more is availalbe.

      2. Servers and workstations are easy to build and setup. Typically a small group of people will build and certify an image for a workstation or server and the installation of that image can be done by a low skilled person.
      3. Outsourcing is becoming more common. There are lots of cusotmer complaints about overseas service but most calls are fixed by simple reboots or server resets.
      4. Some companies are going to ‘lights out’ server farms. That makes it easy to outsource the support or have just a few employees handle them. Of course there needs to be a physical presence for the occassional server that will not reboot but that is minimal.
      5. Middle Managers – many of them need to go where laywers should go… need I say more?

      That is some of the issues affecting the IT job market toady.

      I have been in the business since 1972, have worked at a number of large businesses including a credit union, facilities management firm, hospital and two large banks. I was employed by Seafirst Bank (before B of A) bought them out. I was the first one in the NW paid a salary to specialize in Micro Computers in 1980. Yes, I did know someone who worked on 86DOS before it became MS DOS. So, I’ve seen it all and have lived through the progression of DP to IT. I currently work for the Itty Bitty Machine Company.

      Pleasy reply if you agree or disagree with my assessment.
      Thanks
      Vince Pepe
      Seattle, WA

      • #3344861

        re: What’s Really Happening

        by dude_euro ·

        In reply to What’s Really Happening

        I can’t agree wtih you more. I have been in the industry since 1977 and have been through and seen much of what you speak about. I also see so many out there that think they should be hired and elevated based upon some certification. While I see the validity of the cert’s, I believe that there are too many out there.

        1. Oursourcing will continue to become a reality.
        2. I tend to agree with a lights out or dim view of servers and farms. The cost to hire someone like Level3 or similar to be your hands is cost efficient.
        3. Companies are or will turn to effective and intelligent toolsets that will keep them immediately abreast of failures. A company doesn’t need a person to watch machines hummm.
        4. Middle Managers will become history – how many VP’s does it take to manage an outsourcing contract.

        Major companies in health care as well as others are taking a hard look at the outsourcing and monitoring abilities of companies like Verizon, IBM, Perot, and EDS to name a few based here in the US.

        Just my opinion

    • #3308159

      Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

      by mxwa_2000 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      by one side sounds realistic… cause outside we can really find lots of engineers, but also lots of professionals in other fields… all the markets are saturated. on the other side… why not be the best in something specific (a friend told me that, study and be the number one in something). right now im unemployed, like a LOT of ppl outside… so i guess what we have to do is keep on searching in our field or in other that may interest us. if you still want a change…administration, finance, economics, all related to maths…. electronic, mecanics, civil, all related to math and engineer too. the reality here, in Peru, is like this: everyyear you can see more and more professionals seeking for jobs…. only a few get a job in their fields, all the rest work in whatever except their careers (my last job was in an administrative position… im a system engineer).
      good luck!

    • #3308115

      Do what you love to do

      by firstaborean ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I assume you have some hobbies, things you do just because you love to do them. Don’t dismiss them as not being possible careers. If you feel you don’t know enough in one of these things to make it a career, then you do know enough to start doing it while you hone your skills and improve your knowledge. Pursue your choice(s) among these while still holding your present job, which I do hope you do have. Anything one does for the sheer joy of doing it is something one can do for a living; all you have to do is start seeing your pleasure activity as a way to earn money. Joseph Campbell was right: “Follow your bliss.” In time, you can make it pay enough to quit IT when you like, if that’s your desire.

      Take it from a sixty-year-old: I’m in my third career, and I love it.

      • #3308108

        No jobs = no jobs

        by jwkolman ·

        In reply to Do what you love to do

        I see nothing wrong with pursuing another carreer path and keeping your hand in this at the same time even if it means doing some free lance or contract work. Personally I will be obtaining my real estate license to fill in with the slow times.

        • #3308106

          Happing to IT – and soon the Pharma Industry

          by meyou-and-them ·

          In reply to No jobs = no jobs

          There was an article in the local paper this Sunday on the subject of Jobs and Off Shoring……It basically talked about what has (and is still happening) to the IT industry will ramp up also in the Pharmaceutical industry….The Pharmaceutical industry is not in the early stages of shipping jobs out of the US

          This is reality?..it is a trend….so what do we do ?…

        • #3308064

          5,000 jobs gone here-We’ve been had!!

          by jwkolman ·

          In reply to Happing to IT – and soon the Pharma Industry

          Welcome to Beloit, Wi. I count about 4-5,000 jobs gone in this area of 40,000 people and 15,000 jobs in the Rock River Valley over the last 4 years. It does no good to take political sides. Blow Job Billie, the democrat, signed NAFDA and the China Trade Agreement.Away go the jobs. Bush, the republican, does nothing about it but subsidize the loss with corporate tax breaks and more “free trade” legislation.The politicians in general SOLD US DOWN THE RIVER!!!
          We have to survive this and cover our own butts, so I have have always been an advocate of diversifying your time and talents. I run my own little shop here and can tell you for a fact the business is getting smaller for lots of reasons. Job loss’s, shriviling customer incomes, cheap PC and parts prices offered by the “walmarts” out there to name a few. I will keep doing what I am and will continue to add new customers at a somewhat disappointing pace. I am also in the process of obtaining my real estate license.I have prior experience in the business and can work it in with what I am doing here and hope to fill in the slack time, and hopefully our economy finds some kind of recovery to make both ventures somewhat successful. In the meantime my advise to anyone would be NEVER have all your eggs in 1 basket.If they go rotten you could get into trouble.

        • #3307847

          Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

          by burdman ·

          In reply to Happing to IT – and soon the Pharma Industry

          What do we do? Fight like hell. Call your senators and reprsentatives and tell them if they do not oppose offshoring they will never ever get yout vote in the future. Pound them with emails and phonecalls. Be a pain in their posterior. We have to fight. Offshoring has only just begun and look at the impact. Corporations that offshore should be kicked out of the USA because in the future, when our standard of living is in the toilet, and India and other countries have prospered, many of these companies will pick up and move thier headquarters out of the USA anyway. We are quickly becoming a second rate nation. What gets me is there are always the suck ups who get on TV and radio and agree with the propaganda that offshoring is good for the economy. OK…let’s outsource their job. Hire a contractor from India for one third their salary. Then let’s see how these suck ups feel. The only people who understand what offshoring means are those who are suffering. Everyone else is clueless.

    • #3308100

      Related area with tremendous shortages

      by jmlforde ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Have you considered working in libraries?

      • #3307864

        Please elaborate

        by burdman ·

        In reply to Related area with tremendous shortages

        Please elaborate. Do you mean become a librarian? Seems to me there are not enough libraries to go around. But maybe you have a new slant on things.

    • #3308090

      You could become an Entrepreneur

      by rwoock ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      My experience is that when the Corporate world isn’t looking the greatest, start a small business.

      I left my corporate job in 1998 and haven’t looked back. I currently own and run my own IT consulting business. I service small and medium business’ with just about every IT need they can come up with. And I make over twice as much as I did in my Corporate job. (Net is about 55% more than my corporate job). Not to mention how flexible my time is. Yes, I am on call, but our SLA’s are a 4 hour to next day responce for emergencies.

      If you can talk to clients in normal english, have a good upbeat personallity, and can treat every tech help caller like they are the smartest person you know, you can be a sucessfull independent IT consultant.

    • #3308087

      friends can be enemies

      by alang ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      There is some truth to what you say…I work in a blended field of IT and accounting. I think we are own worst enemies, because there is always another IT person who is willing to do what you can do for less…shortage of jobs depresses wages…Find a job and make yourself irreplaceable, use your IT skills to help the business you own or work for advance itself, find ways you can cut costs or do two jobs at once, this gives you value to a business and can boost your career.

    • #3308086

      Is this a high school newspaper item or what??

      by bootp ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      HEY! Grow up and smell the catnip. What goes around comes around. Do something YOU like, not what is HOT today. …. for as surely as the dusk follows the dawn, what is hot cools off, and tomorrow will bring another “hot item.”

      So, forget the “HOT” items and figure out what YOU like to do. If you don’t enjoy it, you will never be successful.

      62 and still kicking butt

    • #3308074

      Always a good idea to think ahead

      by arimaldo ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      With your wealth of IT knowledge and experience I would think that these skills could be applied somewhere else within the IT world. I’ve been thinking along the same lines as you and I’m not too keen on accounting or finances either. I’m seriously considering something in “management”. For example, how about “project management”? It has its headaches and high stress levels, but working in IT already prepares you for that. Now the question arises, “how to make the career change”. I recommend that you take classes that focus on these themes and then start doing the networking with co-workers, friends, etc. to help with the transistion. But like anything else, expect to start at the bottom. Anyway take a look into this field; maybe it’s right up your alley. Good Luck!!!

    • #3308052

      This has been the most pointless thread I have ever seen on TR…

      by bndplus2 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I was in awe at the initial replies to this post. “Cry yourself a river” type comments, all the way up to the political slants of some of our members… Unbelievable.

      The poster’s dilemna is a valid one – I myself often joke that if I had to do it all over again, I’d shine shoes for a living (as per hour I’d probably make more than I do now! Almost…). I’m tired of shouldering all the responsibility and being held accountable for the (in)actions of others, even when it was something I had no control over.

      I know it’s common, but I’m tired of working on almost every single day off, including vacations. Just because “everyone else does it” doesn’t make it right.

      I’m tired of the 24x7x365 mantra because I’m the only guy with a clue. I’m tired of “merit” raises that amount to less than even the cost of living (and, even though the pool is traditionally 3%, I get anywhere from 4-6 – which STILL has NOTHING to do with merit!). I’m tired of seeing some of those around me get promoted and make more, even when I and their coworkers know how incompetent they are. Amazing what playing golf can do for you…

      I’m tired of working with people who don’t have a tenth my responsiblity, half my knowledge nor a hundredth of my dedication, but somehow seem to skate along just fine.

      I’m tired of being taken advantage of, period.

      The IT market is saturated, and there are WAAAY too many people who call themselves “administrators” of one type or another who couldn’t administer themselves out of a paper bag. I talk to admins that, somehow, have managed to stay in their jobs despite a very obvious lack of even the most basic skills. I find that often they are getting by simply by BS’ing everyone into thinking someone else was at fault. It’s more common than I ever would have thought, and it’s people like that who are taking our jobs, the good jobs. Because of their being INEPT, they are far more willing to take less pay and are diluting the job pool. That, and poorly thought out and written labor laws will now make most of us exempt from overtime. Don’t like 60 hour weeks? Tough. Don’t like it? Quit. I’ll hire the guy who’s been out of work for 6 months and he’ll be HAPPY to do it – and for even less than you!

      If having you work overtime doesn’t cost the employer, then what’s to stop them from taking advantage of you? One word: NOTHING! Employers (I’ll use the term “Big Business” here) are out to make money, not be philantropists. They (generally) don’t give a rat’s ass about you, period. You can be replaced, and at the drop of a hat, at that.

      Our market is diluted by a lot of people, most which probably are proficient. Some don’t know enough to even effectively work AOL support lines, however they manage to hold down jobs as “administrators”. That, coupled with the long hours required for a lot of us, as well as the responsibility, make IT something I’m considering putting in my past.

      I used to be enthusiastic. I used to think that dedication, proficiency and hard work would add up to something. Not here, not now. Not with this employer, at least. And from what I see the opportunities for REAL growth and advancement don’t exist unless you fall into what would be the equivalent of planetary alignment. I know guys – COMPETENT guys! – who work in Los Angeles proper and only make $45K per year. $45,000 a YEAR! IN LOS ANGELES, CA!!

      Anyone wanna ask me about that shoeshine analogy again?

      One wouldn’t know it by this rambling, but I’m one of those guys who always tries to see the silver lining. Administrators have to be somewhat pessemistic by nature, I believe (what if THIS went wrong and THIS went wrong?! You have to anticpate and plan for the unexpected). And maybe some of that has rubbed off to my persona. However, I don’t see that the opportunities that some of you are stating are really THERE. Maybe in your mind, but not in reality. Has ANYONE checked the job boards lately? Are there LOCAL jobs to you that pay what you should rightfully expect? Or has the market made our SKILLS a simple commodity, like buying a loaf of bread?

      WE are some of the people that keep the world running. WE are highly skilled and professional, and shoulder a lot of responsibility. Why should we make less than your average garage mechanic? (Another joke is that my mechanic gets more training than I do… Sad, but true!) Why, I wonder, don’t IT workers have a UNION?! I don’t LIKE unions, but all the uncompensated overtime would come to a screeching halt. I’m tired of getting my dinner and family time interrupted by a page or a phone call. Tonight, for instance, I got a call right after my 7 year old started reading me a book. I missed out on that and made her feel like crap because, once again, I had to drop everything because I had to work.

      Admins, in particular, can’t really be replaced by outsourcing. That’s one of those presences that really need to be there.

      I actually used to LIKE my job – but now, my biggest challenge is trying to find the time to do even a few of my “number one” priorities. Challenges I can accomplish are no problem – bring ’em on. But tidal wave after tidal wave of “important” stuff that “has to” get done “now” is just ridiculous. Why hire an additional person when we can make you stay for nothing?

      It’s all old, and I personally see no future. You’d think that after 10 years of this I’d be somewhere, and have a shot at something higher, but since my org chart is flat, and we “can’t have *THREE* leaders in the department”, I can go nowhere until someone retires in, what, 15 years? For a 5K per year increase. Um, yeah, sure… I’ll wait.

      I too am thinking about my options – I should EASILY be able to handle a management position, possibly overseeing projects. Managers seem to hang around the 100-125K territory, which is about where I think I ought to be (NOW! Not in 20 years…). Why is it that many of us can’t do that now? There are also certainly a lot of incompetent managers, too, that could stand to be replaced (*raises hand* had one…).

      No more “boo-hoo”‘s – does anyone have any REAL suggestions? Think about it: most of us have problem crisis/management/resolution skills, can work in teams (well, some of us), and tend to be flexible. What would be the most transparent move?

      Sorry to drone on, and maybe I’m being a bit negative today, but I’m really tired of living to work instead of the other way around…

      • #3310435

        Wow, man, that fills it up….

        by yanipen ·

        In reply to This has been the most pointless thread I have ever seen on TR…

        Sad but true.

        But, for the sake of the confused guy who posted this question, (I have replied to him already, anyway)…..

        It is ok for that feeling.

        Me, i did not foresake what carreer I really like, and very good at. instead, I’ve grown beyond my expectations.

        I do not know what you guys call this, but, instead of being bored with the present situation, what I did was being productive in another way.

        $45,000? Do you know the equivalent of that from where I am from?

        Peace man.

      • #3307856

        Here’s an idea

        by burdman ·

        In reply to This has been the most pointless thread I have ever seen on TR…

        Here’s an idea…let outsource all the top managment. Look at what the CEO’s make. You could start an entire new company just using their salary. Nobody is as good as the money they make. …and you can bet your seet petoot that they would scream and cry more than the workforce if this were to happen.

    • #3308039

      Switch to a more related Job with your skills

      by hangml ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Hi,

      I would suggest that perhaps you can venture into the field as an IT Auditor or at least IT management or Information Analyst . I am sure all these field will definitly utilize your skills may not to the maximum but at least it’s used. The difference is that your skills might not be used in the developement but can read and use in the paper form.

      It’s only part of the suggestion but I am sure that there’s many field to go as most of the fields require IT staff to maintain or develop the system for them. Alternatively IT auditor also not a bad choice as the job fucntion is to ensure compliances and security.

    • #3310439

      You do not have any passion!

      by yanipen ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Passion for your carreer!

      I do not know if you will be able to read this afterall. But I am replying anyway.

      It is true that there a lot of IT today. Most of then have certifications to back them out. But very few, only a handful really is an IT. Why? Because as you said, it is over-hyped. Oh, I see, you must be one of those so and so IT. With a lot of knowledge and etcetra with very little knowhow on what they are supposed to do, or doing. You must put you heart into it, my man.

      I find your lack of faith disturbing.

      It is true also that additonal carrerr knowledge wont hurt. Especially if it is totally unrelated to IT. Me, for example. I am also my company’s pollution control officer. I did some training on pollution control and I using it right now. Alongside with being an IT. Yeah, its a dual function job, but that is another story. But the feeling is great. And I like it. But I am still an IT.

      My hunch is, you are bored. If you want a carreer turn, fine. But do not foresake what job you really like.

      “In what career field could someone with my skills really excel?” My answer is, measure yourself up first. Like I said, maybe you are just bored yourself.

      • #3310230

        Passion is important

        by ibexscribe ·

        In reply to You do not have any passion!

        I like my IT job and find it fun and have learned so much doing it, but I am not passionate about my work. I am taking a huge leap and am returning to school for a PhD (in History, of all things)- that’s four to five years out of the workforce, likely building up a lot of debt, but it is worth it because I am going into something I am passionate about. I admit that I am scared to do it and that it will be hard work and that it would be easier to find something to which I could move laterally without going back to school. I had to figure out what my passion is and that is what I am pursuing, and if your passion is where you are, stay there!

    • #3310300

      Changing Career Path

      by redbaron_flys ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I have just decided to change my career path a few days ago but I am going to get my RN license in one year becasue of my Bachalors degree. I found that University of Michigan has a “Secondary Career Degree” program for the RN license. What’s hard is finding a field you enjoy and can receive the same salary as your previous field.

      Changing a new career path will also depend on your age and experience. There are so many companies that will not hire someone older.

      I am 50 years old but I don’t believe I will find it hard to get a job as a nurse. I have 12 years experience in the medical field and 18 years in the computer field.

      Just be sure to choose a field that is in dyer need of employees. Otherwise you might not get a job.

    • #3310267

      In the same boat

      by mjd420nova ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Your resume is almost identical to mine, however I left the IT market in 1994 when I could no longer keep up with the younger guys. I learned electronics wneh vacuum tubes were the only devices for electronics. I have since tried retail sales and even a printing press operator.
      My only way to stay cuurent and active in the IT
      arena is thru barter. I trade my skills for the
      things I need. This has resulted in a large cooperative that handles no money. This is not direct however, I may repair one persons computer
      to aquire medical or nursing skill from another.
      Two tears now and I’m still able to support my family. Sometimes I have to work a 4 or 5 way barter deal to get some services but it hasn’t failed me yet.

    • #3310156

      HANG IN THERE

      by rick ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve doing the IT thing for almost 30 years. Hang in there, your skills shall prevail. The wash-out is in progress and those of us with real skills are in demand. The 90’s produced a bunch of ‘resume experts’ that damn near killed our industry. Don’t give up. Get back into school, learn the new stuff, get some certifications, and most importantly, DON’T EVER GIVE UP!

    • #3310155

      HANG IN THERE

      by rick ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve doing the IT thing for almost 30 years. Hang in there, your skills shall prevail. The wash-out is in progress and those of us with real skills are in demand. The 90’s produced a bunch of ‘resume experts’ that damn near killed our industry. Don’t give up. Get back into school, learn the new stuff, get some certifications, and most importantly, DON’T EVER GIVE UP!

    • #3310132

      HANG IN THERE

      by rick ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      I’ve doing the IT thing for almost 30 years. Hang in there, your skills shall prevail. The wash-out is in progress and those of us with real skills are in demand. The 90’s produced a bunch of ‘resume experts’ that damn near killed our industry. Don’t give up. Get back into school, learn the new stuff, get some certifications, and most importantly, DON’T EVER GIVE UP!

    • #3310130

      Change of path is allowed

      by aapjanaya ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Dear Friend:
      If you are young, don’t feel guilty if you have to change the path, but do it without complaining.
      Last September I celebrated my ‘first program’ 35th anniversary, a modest Fortran “Read & Print”, five punched cards in all.
      I wanted to become an Architect but my old man stressed on Chemical Engineering. Since scholarship covered just tuition, complementary funds were negotiated. The last name listed in the College brochure was the winner, something worded like ‘Computer Systems Engineering’.
      Since then, computing became the tie which has lasted the most along my life (even more than marriage).
      I do a modest living, as other of my former classmates do. Most of us hold MSc or PhD degrees. The rich guys built their wealth out of anything but computing stuff.
      My elder son already completed half the credits towards his MSc in Chemistry, my daughter became an Architect, my youngest son hopefully will become an MD, only my nephew choose Computer Science (to save our pride).
      I love my job, as a man of Software my struggle has been permanent. I?m a Soft-WAR-e warrior, and intend to be the same till the grave.
      However, “if I had a chance to do it all again”, my choice would be Theoretical Physics along with the same mother for my children!.
      Best Regards,
      J.Anaya

      • #3310127

        COOL

        by rick ·

        In reply to Change of path is allowed

        Cool Dude,

        I admire your alegience to our industry. You “told my story” with an amazing degree of detail.

        Hang in there, I do. Life in the bit-bucket is good.

        Regards,

        Rick

      • #3310126

        COOL

        by rick ·

        In reply to Change of path is allowed

        Cool Dude,

        I admire your alegience to our industry. You “told my story” with an amazing degree of detail.

        Hang in there, I do. Life in the bit-bucket is good.

        Regards,

        Rick

    • #3310118

      Must be a Data Weenie

      by oti593 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Must be a data Weenie to have that kind of fear.

    • #3310112

      Bioinformatics

      by donweinstein ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      There is a new convergence of knowledge, combining statistics, genetics and IT, called bioinformatics. Top professors teach it primarily at NC State University in Raleigh, NC and it’s a masters degree program.

      This is the way to leverage your IT skills and help mankind in the process. Burgeoning new demand for health care / clinical trials / pharma companies are stumbling over each other, hiring tech based skills with medical, thus adding value to an IT based jobseeker.

      IT alone is truly dead as a career. Those who use IT skills as one tool amongst many will be the difference factor.

    • #3310104

      Yes, all of you should get out, NOW!

      by mccabe_c ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      That oughta raise my salary a bit.

      Thanks,
      Chaz

    • #3310040

      Before making a decision….

      by chaz chance# ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Before making a decision, get advice.

      Yes, I know that this thread was supposed to do that. But, hey, none of us know you, do we? We don’t know what kind of things will make you happy in a job, or what extra skills you may have lurking. So how can we advise you?

      Hire yourself a Life Coach. They will help you find what really makes you happy in a job. They will help you choose an education program, if necessary. They will help you dump the baggage that keeps you from making the change that will bring happiness and security.

      Yeah, you have to pay Life Coaches. But look at the quality of the advice you are getting for free on this thread. Trust me, it’s worth it.

      I was stuck in a rut, poorly paid, got no respect, doing boring programming jobs that a 12 year old could handle. I got a life couch who analysed where I wanted to get to, what was holding me back, and helped me develope a program for my life.

      I set out on a program of education to get the qualifcations and skills that would let me enter the field I REALLY wanted to be in. Soon I moved into a new job that doubled my salary. Now, four years later, my salary has increased another 25%, I have a house and a baby on the way. I have a job where my skills are respected, by colleague, boss and customer. (I now do AI programming for a railway consultancy – who knew I would find my dream job here?)

      It was hard work getting here, but now I can take the time to smell the roses. If you are going to get advice, get it from someone who will take the time to find out what advice you really need.

      There are thousands of Life Coaches out there. Each one does things slightly differently. Shop around and find one that you like. I used one from a company called Wisecaterpillar who was happy to work completely through email. That suited me because I can’t be doing with all those meetings and telephone calls and stuff. I figure that means that however you want to work, there is one out there that will work like that.

      By the way, I don’t mean to belittle the well meaning advice you being given by the contributors. I think that the one that you can learn most from is the one who found that getting a qualification did not automatically get them a job. I also agree with the one who suggested “a job which also involves IT”. There is no pure IT department where I work. We all are expected to solve our own IT problems.

      Whatever.

      Good luck, however you decide.
      Chaz

    • #3309922

      Yo Deus!

      by yosho ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Wow looks like TR dredged up an old post.. Didnt don on me until I saw the email address that I know you! UH ’99!

      Anyhow, I hear ya man.. the IT sector is definately not what it once was. As one of the replies stated, it’s sort of like a washout period where businesses are beginning to be more picky and specialized for what they want in IT. All the good jobs are either taken, or have been eliminated. The pay sucks and jobs are going overseas. Enough of the “bleakitude”, but its kind of the truth.

      Personally, I cannot see myself doing anything other than IT. As much as I would hate to change career paths, if the need was great enough, I guess I would have to.

      The only positive way to look at this is to say stick with it and try to improve yourself. The way I see it, the future for truly good IT people is not in the help desks, programmers, or engineer positions, it’s in the management of these positions or departments. As much as I love IT I dont think I’d stay a “techie” forever and know there will be a time to move up the ladder. With that said, I am trying to “improve myself” with more certs, and going back to school for a Master’s degree. I believe there’s gonna be a time in your career where you need to make the executive launch.

    • #3309905

      Try prayer

      by unomas ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      It doesn’t matter what field your in, all fields (even medical careers), can experience periods of slumps and downturns. First ask yourself if you are committed to staying in the IT field (some soul serching going on here). Once you sell the idea to yourself then it’s easier to go out and sell it someone else. There’s always room for a few good IT professionals. There’s many changes in the industry and helping businesses understand that change and keeping current is where you can make a difference. Remember any company that hires you is making an investment. It’s up to you to convince them that they are making a wise investment and getting their money’s worth out of it. I can always recommend sales in the IT hardware, software, services or networking area since your IT experience will help very much. Myself, I don’t have a degree in IT (or anything) yet I have been able to stay employed in the field since 1981 and I am making more money than ever.

    • #3309801

      I too have been pondering the same quesiton

      by weissbornjobs ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Lots of good and not so good responses.

      Here is what I have come to believe (and this seems to hold true for any area of the US):
      1) You can’t outsource plumbing jobs
      2) People will always need heating/AC
      3) Real Estate is bought and sold everyday
      4) Health care will soon(relatively speaking) be heavily regulated and salaries will be pretty much frozen
      5) The local auto mechanic gets more company-paid training in one year than I have gotten in the last 5
      6) Technical Sales. Somebodies gotta sell all these neat toys to the upper-management types.

      Now previous posters have talked about finding something you love to do and do it. That’s all fine well and good if you are young and newly in or out of school. BUT for us middle-aged, balding, slightly-overweight guys we need to be able to keep the food on the table and the roof over our family’s head. Unfortunately, few, if any, new careers will let us “slide in” at the same pay-scale that we are at now.

      Several previous responders have said that there are jobs outthere. Maybe, but there are a few hurdles to overcome. Automated resume readers, HR people who think that Java is referring to either the latest punk band or the coffee house down the street. Dept managers who are forced to conform job-descriptions to some corporate-lawyer’s politically-correct template. “Bean Counters” who insist that there is someone out there with 15+ years of Unix admin experience who will work for $20/hr.

      I hear the interviews and cries that, “I can’t find any suitable candidates!” To those I say, “BULL”. They are out there but either you or your company has put up so many anti-personnel fences that the good candidate’s resume is probably sitting in the “administrative assistant’s” paper-recycling bin even as you read this.

      Yeah, there are a lot of “paper” people outthere. Folks who have spent hundreds and maybe thousands of dollars on certs and degrees and all the other things that add a bunch of initials behind your name. The folks who talk a good game but fold up after the first 24hrs of no sleep just to get a system up and which is going to require another 36hrs to restore backups and normal operation. I’m willing to bet that there are a lot more of us who don’t have all those letters behind our names who would see the above situation as a “fun” thing.

      Others have suggested that you start your own company. That may be a viable alternative but you’d better have a flexible part-time job to bring in money. You are gonna get a lot of “No”s before you see/hear your first “Yes” and possibly an even longer time before you see the fruits of that “yes”.

      I’ve rambled on long enough. My advice would be to look to a career or job that requires your presence. Accounting, finance, etc., as others have pointed out, are ALL subject to being moved “offshore”.

    • #3309780

      Let me hold the door open for you

      by pioneering ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      My advice:

      Get out of the IT business. Immediately.
      Don’t look back. Find something else to do.

      And that goes for the rest of you, too.
      Get out and stay out!

      (I’m just trying to eliminate the competition.)

    • #3307780

      New Career Path

      by mcharles ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You might want to look at the field of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). This field constantly grows year by year. Jobs are available all over.

    • #3307689

      Stick with it!

      by sharon.blankenship ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Hi. There are a couple of career avenues you could persue with your talents. It’s really not so bleak. IT security is the necessary addition to your resume. And don’t forget about teaching…you have skills that others desire. Good luck in your search. -Sharon

    • #3309384

      Sick of IT

      by jackbcarter ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Some want to bail because they are concerned about career security with so many people flooding into the market and a number of jobs being outsourced elsewhere. Me, I’m just sick of communing with a computer for hours on end re-inventing the same stuff year in, year out. IT just doesn’t give me the satisfaction in a job that it did 10 years ago. Frankly it’s all a bit dull and introverted. And I get fed up with having to always embrace the newest technology whether it is good or not as these things tend to be fashions. Here today gone tomorrow. For me it’s time to review my options and move on. Work more with people and something I that I enjoy. So when I make the transition next year someone else can take my place in IT. That is unless it hasn’t already been earmarked for overseas.

      So my advice is stick to IT and leave the more interesting, real life vocations to those of us who want to break free of the nerdy tyranny of IT.

      • #3293739

        Whiney babies.

        by zampaz ·

        In reply to Sick of IT

        We’re all such a bunch of whiney babies! We let our jobs be outsourced. We were all too professional to join together as a brotherhood/sisterhood and act as the group that could have the greatest impact on the world by simply doing nothing at the right time.
        As a group we control every router, every network infrastruction, every application, every database. We hold the control of our futures but meekly give it away while silently training our overseas brethern.

        I invite every one of you to imagine the impact of a worldwide pause in our services. We gave it all away because we’re too proud or stoopid to network amongst ourselves.

    • #3309359

      I’m thinking hot dog cart

      by too old for it ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You get to yak with a lot of interesting people, pay isn’t bad (if you own the cart) you get to bail by 2:00 PM most days.

      In addition, no stupid users, supervisors half your age or anal bosses either.

      • #3294558

        Whiskey could be on way out too!

        by rapell ·

        In reply to I’m thinking hot dog cart

        depends on where you are and how business factors affect IT, theres crude drink called waragi that most pple turning to but the good bars are not into whiskey AND waragi, they just made the cost of whiskey more affordable and we are still guzzling. bcme cheaper but don’t disappear! cheers!

    • #3294442

      I hear ya

      by jminuni ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      My brother-in-law barely made it past high school. He got into home building about 20 years ago and is a millionaire. I got into computers……

    • #3297127

      Choosing a new career path

      by jjadoon ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Being IT Professional for several years, I already had jumped into the Finance career.

    • #3295772

      crybaby

      by eth0 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      this is what i do
      im a computer guy

    • #3295768

      ..you may Currency Derivative

      by foxfire2010 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Thre is a great demand for writing applications that can anlsysi mark to makret analyssi of aFX derivaitive. The knowledge is required both in banking and corporate environments. Especially udner a new accounting rule of IAS 39 coming to effect in 2005. The msot important thing is to udnerstand Options and futures, How they are calculated and then work out the present or fuutre value. Of cours eyou may wish to diverse altogether. Try gettign ajob with abnak or other financial isntitutions as an Option Trader, they make serious money . My firend takes home 500k per annum (inclusive of bonus) a few years ago he had a bonus of ?1.1m. I am not kidding. Why don’t I do it? sadly, I have not got the brains for it.

    • #3313476

      Look at Gartner Predictions…

      by b.wilen ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      Gartner says the focus of IT will be IT business/management processes in about 4 years as more of IT becomes off-the-shelf and off-shore…plenty of time to learn process engineering, re-engineering, six sigma (become a green-belt…)…all along the initial lines of IT process analysis, change, improvement and control…that’s what I intend to do…

    • #3303865

      Reply To: Choosing a New Career Path

      by brianfree66 ·

      In reply to Choosing a New Career Path

      You might want to try a career as a PACS administrator.

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