Who's working (and who's not)

Posted 19 Nov 2002 at 00:31 UTC by garym Share This

David Isenberg's latest SMART letter includes a rather disturbing set of two emails, one from a YAUE (yet another unemployed engineer) and one from inside AT&T where apparently there aren't enough qualified people left on staff to actually roll out the backlogs orders. David speculates, "Imagine the unleashed progress if the existing telecom workforce were working up to its potential without being (a) laid off or (b) impeded by organizations that are desperately trying to defend their obsolete businesses!" and that causes me to speculate, of the people regularly online here on Advogato, how many of us fall into one or both of those categories?

This falls on the heels of a posting on the Accordion Guy about a job-interview from hell that required a 12 page supposition and a one-hour presentation just to be considered for some obviously ill-managed project. I understand buyers markets, but hoops like that are absurd. Joey's weblog is all the more poignant when almost every IT engineer I know, from wireless and optical network people right down to embedded C programmers, all of them are either "between gigs", gone into teaching, or moved on to some other more lucrative occupation (like running a hardware store).

I'd like to propose a roll-call, a roster of comments from of all those who read this who are both qualified and experienced and yet cannot find any suitable employment. Don't post just to gloat about being employed or to drop job hunt tips, just post a one-liner, not to gripe or moan, but just to say what you do (did) for how long, and how long you've been unable to find anyone to pay you to do it. I curious to see the total un-tapped capability of a random sample like advogato ...

I'll start:

web-portal/info-architect XML/rdf/java/perl/php/rdbms unix guy, 22 years experience, out on the pavement (with occasional bits and pieces) for 7 months.

10 months and counting., posted 19 Nov 2002 at 07:58 UTC by klevin » (Journeyer)

network driver/linux kernel/configuration management/bug-tracking software/network software in C/Perl/C++/Korn guy, 4 years experience (counting co-op work). Laid off in mid-January, not a bit since. Did a second interview w/ a smallish company today. Still a few things I'm not clear on, but it went well. We'll see. This is the first company I've even managed to get an interview with since I got laid off.

Doesn't help that I'm located in Wichita, KS (not much in the way of tech industry) w/o enough savings to just up and move unless I've got work waiting at the other end.

Employed, but in a bind, posted 19 Nov 2002 at 15:38 UTC by omarius » (Journeyer)

I am a LAN/WAN/MAN/Cisco/Linux/IP guy mainly, employed at the same company for 5 years with 7 years experience and a MS in Technical and Scientific Communication. However, I am getting married in July and my fiance lives & works in Norfolk, VA, where I would like to move. I have been seeking employment for 6 months to no avail. This Sunday's Newport News paper (the _Daily Press_) had five computer jobs in it -- one that required applicants to be fluent in Hebrew, and the other four paid ~$25k or less.

limited time job, posted 21 Nov 2002 at 10:03 UTC by hub » (Master)

People who have read my diary problem have read my rants about recruiting here in France. I got layed-off by the end of May just like they dispose garbage. Since October 21, I found some 2 month job (good job). So after that I'll return to unemployement as I was before. I'm a fully qualified UNIX system engineer and software engineer with muliple-platform experience (UNIX and MacOS mostly, for the alive systems). Obligatory resume. I'm located in Lille, France, but willing to commuting to Paris if needed.

Note that most of the interviews I have had show that most recruiters are clueless of Open Source software and that they don't give any attention to real skills. Most used reply: we'll call you when we have a job. But what ? I replied to a job offer, and they don't have any ?

Re: Who's working (and who's not), posted 22 Nov 2002 at 07:30 UTC by logic » (Journeyer)

Okay, my turn. 8 years of heavy Linux/Solaris/network administration, with extensive multi-platform (just about every UNIX variant you can shake a stick at) experience over the last few years, managing development environments, high-transaction/high-"visibility" hosting centers, and internal systems, network, security, and architecture work. Fluent in quite a few programming languages and development environments/methodologies/religions. Mentorship/management and startup ownership experience. Laid off almost exactly one year ago (with occasional consulting work in the interim). Only one serious interview so far (currently crossing fingers).

My resume is online, along with being submitted to every imaginable online posting service. I've cold-emailed every recruiting house in the greater Chicagoland area (and filled out the accompanying dozens of individual web forms to get in their databases) with very little to show for it (it almost seems as though my consulting work over the last year has hurt me in that respect). Pay rates are exceedingly low compared to just two years ago, and off-hours requirements seem to be staggering due to either mismanagement or the politics of getting things fixed.

On the upside, I've been getting an unimaginable amount of amusement out of the advertisements for a few local schools on TV and the radio asking, "Do you know what the hottest, most in-demand jobs are?" and mentioning how you can get that great career in computer networking or website design "in just three years!" It leaves me speechless or laughing uncontrollably, depending on my mood at the time.

While I'm looking for short-term employment, my long-term career interests have changed dramatically over the last few years; returning to school and pursuing a teaching position afterwards is looking better and better. I never thought I'd ever consider following in my father's footsteps, but I think he may have had it right all along; the pay might not be as good, but there's more to life (and a "life's work") than a paycheck.

(So much for keeping it to one-liners...;-)

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