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hepcat

Struggling to find a new job

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Charlotte has like really low unemployment for IT.    Even with your skills you can probably get jobs making over 12 easily.   You may have to work for IT staffing places (Robert Half, Teksystems, etc) but there are jobs.   Not as cool as Austin but, if it gets to that ya know.  

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10 minutes ago, Zaximus said:

Charlotte has like really low unemployment for IT.    Even with your skills you can probably get jobs making over 12 easily.   You may have to work for IT staffing places (Robert Half, Teksystems, etc) but there are jobs.   Not as cool as Austin but, if it gets to that ya know.  

Oh man, $12/ho is ridiculously low for me right now. I started at $12.50 an hour 6 years ago and I'm at over $40k a year now. I can't go back to that low now. I know Charlotte and also Raleigh have decent IT opportunities but I'm not sure I want to end up back in NC yet. 

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Though about getting into the public sector- working for a municipality in their IT department? Most of them don't have the money to invest in cloud servers and still have rooms full of hardware. Seems to me a lot of people in your business are always looking for the high-paying private sector gig without giving much thought to job security, municipal/county/state retirement system, health care, etc. that the public sector may offer. 

The pay may not be as much, but the benefits and retirement system for most cities/states is pretty darn good and could offset the pay cut you may take. 

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1 minute ago, Anybodyhome said:

Though about getting into the public sector- working for a municipality in their IT department? Most of them don't have the money to invest in cloud servers and still have rooms full of hardware. Seems to me a lot of people in your business are always looking for the high-paying private sector gig without giving much thought to job security, municipal/county/state retirement system, health care, etc. that the public sector may offer. 

The pay may not be as much, but the benefits and retirement system for most cities/states is pretty darn good and could offset the pay cut you may take. 

Yea I've applied for a few state jobs, and one with the city of Round Rock. Haven't heard back from any yet. I think I need to get these certs in the bank first. I'm kinda in the middle of a public sector job and a private sector job because I'm a state contractor but my paychecks come from a private company. All the job security with none of the benefits

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Good luck to anyone trying to find a decent job if they are over the age of 50, unless you are some sort of corporate big shot.  You young folks better be some place stable by the time you hit 40.

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31 minutes ago, Anybodyhome said:

Though about getting into the public sector- working for a municipality in their IT department? Most of them don't have the money to invest in cloud servers and still have rooms full of hardware. Seems to me a lot of people in your business are always looking for the high-paying private sector gig without giving much thought to job security, municipal/county/state retirement system, health care, etc. that the public sector may offer. 

The pay may not be as much, but the benefits and retirement system for most cities/states is pretty darn good and could offset the pay cut you may take. 

Listen to this man.  If I were to have a employment do over I would go to work for the govt. and retire by 60.  I had a very good teaching job at a community college in the mid 90 s but decided I wanted my own business.  What a mistake that turned out to be.

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As someone who has hired and fired IT resources for almost 20 years my .02 is this:

At 6 years in you're in a tough spot. If I was looking at your resume I would have expected you to move up by now.  In the absence of that, I would expect you to have multiple certs, attended night classes, or something that shows me you're invested and investing in a career in IT. 

Get some certs. Go to a bootcamp. Do something on your own to show perspective employers that you are serious about your career and time served in a past job doesn't show that.

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1 hour ago, Inimicus said:

As someone who has hired and fired IT resources for almost 20 years my .02 is this:

At 6 years in you're in a tough spot. If I was looking at your resume I would have expected you to move up by now.  In the absence of that, I would expect you to have multiple certs, attended night classes, or something that shows me you're invested and investing in a career in IT. 

Get some certs. Go to a bootcamp. Do something on your own to show perspective employers that you are serious about your career and time served in a past job doesn't show that.

I've always thought this might be the case. Working a state job didn't really offer me much chance to move up. I am definitely working on getting certs. Do you think it might be wise to say I've only worked at my job for 2 years or something? Say I was a freelance musician/audio engineer before that and got this job to have something stable? I've thought about that.

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6 minutes ago, hepcat said:

I've always thought this might be the case. Working a state job didn't really offer me much chance to move up. I am definitely working on getting certs. Do you think it might be wise to say I've only worked at my job for 2 years or something? Say I was a freelance musician/audio engineer before that and got this job to have something stable? I've thought about that.

This also depends on your location.   In Charlotte, with a couple years of experience doing support (with no certs, nothing) you can probably get a gig making at least $20 an hour through a staffing firm or even direct hire.   This is because there's a lot of jobs right now available.  

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On 5/23/2017 at 1:41 PM, Paa Langfart said:

Good luck to anyone trying to find a decent job if they are over the age of 50, unless you are some sort of corporate big shot.  You young folks better be some place stable by the time you hit 40.

I retired from the Navy in '93 at the ripe old age of 38.

I retired from Lowe's when I was 56. 

I was approached about a job less than 3 months later with a Washington DC consulting company who had a Virginia office. I worked there for 2 years until my wife took a position in NC and we moved. 

Within 6 months I was back at work for a municipality in a management position. 

I think as long as you take care of yourself, remain healthy and mentally focused, you'll be fine. 

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8 minutes ago, Zaximus said:

This also depends on your location.   In Charlotte, with a couple years of experience doing support (with no certs, nothing) you can probably get a gig making at least $20 an hour through a staffing firm or even direct hire.   This is because there's a lot of jobs right now available. 

Austin - and it's hyper competitive. There are people with Masters degrees working at coffee shops here. The "overeducated millennial working a job beneath them paradigm" is a real thing here.

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1 hour ago, hepcat said:

Austin - and it's hyper competitive. There are people with Masters degrees working at coffee shops here. The "overeducated millennial working a job beneath them paradigm" is a real thing here.

Gotta be honest here man....you need to leave Austin.  I know it's cool, and hip, and every other word....but you need to start considering your life long term.

 

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3 hours ago, hepcat said:

I've always thought this might be the case. Working a state job didn't really offer me much chance to move up. I am definitely working on getting certs. Do you think it might be wise to say I've only worked at my job for 2 years or something? Say I was a freelance musician/audio engineer before that and got this job to have something stable? I've thought about that.

I would never recommend that someone not be completely honest on a resume.  If I found out someone had outright lied on a resume Id walk to their desk and walk them out on the spot without regard for how well they were doing.  Its a complete non-starter for me.

 

Instead you should include a cover letter that touches on the lack of upward mobility in your job and highlight that its a big deal for you to feel like there is room to grow.

More than that, and Im sorry if Im reading you wrong here, you need to look at this as your gig and music as your hobby.  IT is so competitive that if you cant really pour yourself into it 60-70-80 hours a week you'll fall behind.  I'm not talking work hours as much as I am talking about how much time you devote to your job and then self study/side projects outside of the 40-50 you'll put on the clock.  You have to be the guy in the break room talking up some new tech or programming trick (even if you're a systems guy you have to know a couple scripting languages).  Employers have too many options to invest in people who are just looking for a steady gig with benefits.

 

The very first question I ask in any interview is this:

Why are you a _______________ (programmer/network engineer/etc...)?

If the answer is anything that doesn't boil down to "Because I spend most of my free time doing this anyway so I might as well get paid" then the candidate is already in a hole.

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1 hour ago, Inimicus said:

I would never recommend that someone not be completely honest on a resume.  If I found out someone had outright lied on a resume Id walk to their desk and walk them out on the spot without regard for how well they were doing.  Its a complete non-starter for me.

 

Instead you should include a cover letter that touches on the lack of upward mobility in your job and highlight that its a big deal for you to feel like there is room to grow.

More than that, and Im sorry if Im reading you wrong here, you need to look at this as your gig and music as your hobby.  IT is so competitive that if you cant really pour yourself into it 60-70-80 hours a week you'll fall behind.  I'm not talking work hours as much as I am talking about how much time you devote to your job and then self study/side projects outside of the 40-50 you'll put on the clock.  You have to be the guy in the break room talking up some new tech or programming trick (even if you're a systems guy you have to know a couple scripting languages).  Employers have too many options to invest in people who are just looking for a steady gig with benefits.

 

The very first question I ask in any interview is this:

Why are you a _______________ (programmer/network engineer/etc...)?

If the answer is anything that doesn't boil down to "Because I spend most of my free time doing this anyway so I might as well get paid" then the candidate is already in a hole.

I'm not suggesting lying on my resume, rather rearranging how the dates are structured to imply I've moved around more than I actually have. In my time working for the state I've technically had three job titles and worked for three different companies. If I list all of them on my resume it looks like I had three different jobs despite it really being the same job at the same location for 6 years. 

And I agree with everything you're saying. I've thought about it a lot. I agree it's better to whole-ass one thing than to half-ass a bunch of things. You talk about honesty, well the problem for me is I'm honestly not as interested in IT as music. There are people who have devoted just as much time to learning about computers as I have to learning about music. I can play 5 instruments which is like knowing coding languages for programmers. I'm a professional audio engineer and I've written, recorded, mixed, and sold songs to licensing agencies. Problem is those deals are few and far between and don't pay that great.

I'm never going to be as passionate about IT as I am about music. I can't fake interest in something I find to be just acceptable. At the end of my life I know I'd regret saying "I really did a great job with this IT work that no one is going to remember" over "I wrote songs people are still listening to today". I'm really not a slouch, I've been told by many people up and down the industry I'm a great songwriter.

So you can see why I'm frustrated. I can be a musician, be extremely poor, probably be alone because what woman wants to spend her life with someone who is making minimum wage their whole life, and be unhappy because I'm alone, poor, and living in squaller. Or I can work in IT (or various other industries that I feel "meh" about), give up or greatly reduce the amount of time I spend playing music, live in a decent house and have enough to maybe retire one day, but be full of regret because I know I didn't do the things in music I was capable of. And maybe also be alone because of that reason. What woman wants to be with a man who is deeply unhappy doing something they aren't passionate about. Either way I'm unhappy in some way.

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good luck man- how do you like austin 

was thinking about maybe trying to do my residency there 

 

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