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Author Topic: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature  (Read 2312 times)

pxsant

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Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2018, 10:19:04 am »
I am thinking of conducting an experiment about my post on older workers.   In my earlier post I mentioned several technologies older people could get into.

I have specialized in project management and business analysis the past some years.   It has kept me employed for a long time even though I would have been considered old/unemployable 30 years ago.  Right now I am 3 months into a likely 2-year gig so there is no time like now to reinvent myself.

I am going to pick something to get back into the technical area.   Data sciences using R comes to mind at the moment although I might pick one of the others I mentioned.   I might shoot for something which has some remote work possibilities.

It will likely take 3 months or so to get into condition to start applying for jobs in whatever I pick.   I am going to take a shot at this just to prove older people can still be marketable.  I will keep the board here or wherever it is posted on progress and results periodically.

I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2018, 11:09:53 am »
I am thinking of conducting an experiment about my post on older workers.   In my earlier post I mentioned several technologies older people could get into.

I have specialized in project management and business analysis the past some years.   It has kept me employed for a long time even though I would have been considered old/unemployable 30 years ago.  Right now I am 3 months into a likely 2-year gig so there is no time like now to reinvent myself.

I am going to pick something to get back into the technical area.   Data sciences using R comes to mind at the moment although I might pick one of the others I mentioned.   I might shoot for something which has some remote work possibilities.

It will likely take 3 months or so to get into condition to start applying for jobs in whatever I pick.   I am going to take a shot at this just to prove older people can still be marketable.  I will keep the board here or wherever it is posted on progress and results periodically.
I have no doubt some older people can be marketable.  My 70-something next door neighbor is an enterprise Java software engineer. My 67 year old college buddy is happily modifying messages for some sort of DoD project.

But what you want to do is going to be interesting, to say the least.  If you are coming from a management consulting background and can get a data sciences gig using R (is that bioinformatics-oriented?) I'm going to be HIGHLY IMPRESSED.  You could write a book about it.
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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2018, 01:21:21 pm »
I am going to pick something to get back into the technical area.   Data sciences using R comes to mind at the moment although I might pick one of the others I mentioned.   I might shoot for something which has some remote work possibilities.

It will likely take 3 months or so to get into condition to start applying for jobs in whatever I pick.   I am going to take a shot at this just to prove older people can still be marketable.  I will keep the board here or wherever it is posted on progress and results periodically.

That is a FANTASTIC idea, Pxsant. You'll be the BrundleFly of IT retooling.  >:D :D

I like what you wrote but overall it's just not for me. I lived like that for 10+ years and I despised it. It's a hard work life. It would beat homelessness if it came down to it, though.

My own tack going forward is increased intensity of marketing what I already have skill set wise which is a lot. Not learning new nuts and bolts but marketing the nuts and bolts I already own.
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The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2018, 01:27:20 pm »
But what you want to do is going to be interesting, to say the least.  If you are coming from a management consulting background and can get a data sciences gig using R (is that bioinformatics-oriented?) I'm going to be HIGHLY IMPRESSED.  You could write a book about it.

I think Pxsant may have an interest in that subject, but my opinion informed by own experience is that you'd better pick something that you know you personally can actually sell effectively.

And that's the rub, the deeper problem with pre-selecting a technical domain and going after it. You're just guessing about a ton of things:

- Whether it will be in demand at jobs you can plausibly apply for after you are tooled up.
- Whether your own experience mix plus "R" or whatever will be accepted by any employers.
- In summary whether you can effectively sell the new tech skill for new work consistently.

That's exactly why I stopped marketing my "software copywriting" services. It's a bag of shit. I'm a competent writer. But it turns out that everyone WANTS the service but NONE of the cheap bastards running tech businesses wants to actually pay for the skill.

The billable work I could find was astoundingly low quality - pennies per hour, pretty much. Yet you'll run into tons of blog articles and Youtube videos about how copywriting is a gold rush.

That is a key instance of possessing a skill in a supposed marketable area and you still can't find acceptable work in it.

For instance, I received this a few weeks ago through my copywriting website:

Quote
Message Body:
Hi,
My name is Yury, and I am the marketing director for VironIT company.  I found your profile via google.
We would like to create an article "How to hire app developer?"
Here is the example we like. https://thinkmobiles.com/blog/how-much-cost-to-hire-app-developer/
Could you create a similar article but with some improvement? (unique pictures, video etc.)
Could you please provide me with the price for 1000 words?

Doesn't he fucking KNOW what he's willing to pay? YES, but it's a game and he won't say because he's fishing.

G***damned games. These places are all alike. He probably has a budget like $150 which would be rock bottom pay scale, but he's fishing to see if he can get it done for $75, I bet. Because that's been exactly the pattern with every one of these requests.

I just replied with one word: "No". I was tempted to write "f*ck off."

It just gets into your head.

And that's the larger challenge with the "Pxsant method" of retooling: staying motivated and sticking with the plan. Because, trust me, it will be EXTREMELY hard to get any respect when you start out on such a path.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2018, 01:38:32 pm by The Gorn »
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I D Shukhov

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2018, 05:35:44 pm »
Just received this email from an old (in both senses) friend:

Hi X,

I still have my job that I started back in May 2014. My boss let me cut my hours to 32/week, which gives me time to take Y to her doctor’s appointments.
My advice is to find a government contractor that can bill you as a senior software engineer. That way the company does not need to worry about your salary. Next you need to find a manager who likes you and feels senior software engineers are better than junior software engineers.

And remember if you don’t know the application they are using just brush it off by saying you are a quick learner and have not had the pleasure of using the application they are using.

Right now I’m writing a User’s Guide and before this I had to write the System Requirements Specification. This requires that I know how to use Microsoft Word.

Take care,
Z

The message here for us older folks is to avoid HR and find a sympathetic (older?) hiring manager.  Nothing that hasn't been preached for 40 years in What Color is Your Parachute.
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The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2018, 06:02:03 pm »
I D, if you want to get back to work, you should really be working your local contacts. You have 100x the potential I do to mine existing contacts and you're in a huge metro area.

While I look forward to pxsant's test of his approach, I honestly don't think it's the best option for you. I see his approach as a long shot for someone who doesn't have any recent ( < 5 years) marketable technical skills and who has absolutely no network or any other options.

You worked in a cleared government contract job. That's a distinct business niche. It seems like perhaps your last employer's treatment of you got into your head but it doesn't reflect the market. You're most likely highly marketable with the right resume spin in exactly the same stuff in your immediate area.
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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #21 on: March 05, 2018, 02:22:50 am »
I D, if you want to get back to work, you should really be working your local contacts. You have 100x the potential I do to mine existing contacts and you're in a huge metro area.

While I look forward to pxsant's test of his approach, I honestly don't think it's the best option for you. I see his approach as a long shot for someone who doesn't have any recent ( < 5 years) marketable technical skills and who has absolutely no network or any other options.

You worked in a cleared government contract job. That's a distinct business niche. It seems like perhaps your last employer's treatment of you got into your head but it doesn't reflect the market. You're most likely highly marketable with the right resume spin in exactly the same stuff in your immediate area.
Thanks Gorn.  Very astute advice.
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unix

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #22 on: March 05, 2018, 04:05:27 pm »


I hate to say but DeeCee has the best job market in the country right now. It's not "just" a huge metro area but a bubble isolated from reality.

Brawndo. It's got what plants crave.

The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2018, 05:40:15 pm »
I D, if you want to get back to work, you should really be working your local contacts. You have 100x the potential I do to mine existing contacts and you're in a huge metro area. ...
Thanks Gorn.  Very astute advice.

It's blatantly obvious, actually.  If you're an engineer and you can't find work in DC in the defense sector and you have recent defense contractor experience, you honestly can't find work.

Unix said it well in a different way.

Pxsant's advice is for those of us not living near a DC beltway and who have no recent skills to fall back on to beef up.
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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #24 on: March 06, 2018, 04:18:25 am »

It's blatantly obvious, actually.  If you're an engineer and you can't find work in DC in the defense sector and you have recent defense contractor experience, you honestly can't find work.

Well, there's finding work and finding work in an environment where you want to work and doing something you want to do.


Be Prepared.

ilconsiglliere

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #25 on: March 06, 2018, 09:42:44 am »
I am not sure this is the right approach. I got into PM years ago because I could see the writing on the wall with hands on IT work. This was around Y2K. Do I really want to compete with India for work both onshore and offshore? NOPE.

Learning is good, I will never put down anyone who wants to learn. So go forth and expand your brain.

However what I see with job hunting nowadays is companies only want to talk to you if you have done the exact same job they have open. They want a programmer that has done Python v123 but you only did Python v1, sorry we arent interested. Oh you worked in financial services but want to come to telecom, sorry we arent interested.

The idiots in HR wont talk to you nor the recruiters at the body shops. You have to be an exact match.

So where does that leave you? NO WHERE, thats where it leaves you. You have to do what the Indians do on their resumes, exaggerate, tell them whatever you want to hear. Otherwise its not happening.

The other thing is you need a niche that the Indians have not or cannot pour into. Examples: DoD work - unless you are an American citizen they wont talk to you. Jobs that require very good communication skills or niche technical skills they have not yet discovered.

The big buzzwords now are Big Data, Data Analytics, Functional programming - Haskal, etc... If you have this stuff you can pretty much find a job tomorrow.

The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #26 on: March 06, 2018, 09:51:43 am »
I am not sure this is the right approach.

Do you mean Pxsant's crash course/immersion tactic that you are not sure about?

Myself, for his technique, I'm sitting on the fence. He promises to test it out. I want Pxsant to do so with a scrubbed resume that doesn't reflect his current or recent billable work.

In other words, simulate someone going out with e-course knowledge to find work.
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #27 on: March 06, 2018, 09:58:35 am »
I am not sure this is the right approach.
Myself, for his technique, I'm sitting on the fence. He promises to test it out. I want Pxsant to do so with a scrubbed resume that doesn't reflect his current or recent billable work.

In other words, simulate someone going out with e-course knowledge to find work.

Well, that depends.  If I go for Linux Admin I have quite a few years of experience in Linux including VPS's.   I would create a resume to emphasize that experience.

If I go for SQL, again I have years of experience there.   Last year I wrote more than 400 SQL queries for a banking client to test data quality.  Again, I would do a resume to emphasize experience in that area.

If I went for Python, there I would be a rookie so I would not be able to show specific experience there.

The Gorn

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #28 on: March 06, 2018, 01:11:10 pm »
Well, that depends.  If I go for Linux Admin I have quite a few years of experience in Linux including VPS's.   I would create a resume to emphasize that experience.

If I go for SQL, again I have years of experience there.   Last year I wrote more than 400 SQL queries for a banking client to test data quality.  Again, I would do a resume to emphasize experience in that area.

If I went for Python, there I would be a rookie so I would not be able to show specific experience there.

I had the impression that your advice and also your idea of testing the concept was meant for your retooling tactics.

Getting the same kind of gigs that you're already well qualified for doesn't prove anything. I mean it's great and all that you are staying billable but it doesn't help anyone trying to assess whether they should do the immersion training + bludgeon their way through interviews.
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pxsant

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Re: Specific Tactics for Landing Technical Jobs as a Mature
« Reply #29 on: March 06, 2018, 01:15:25 pm »
OK I'll do exactly what you suggest.   I'll pick something I have absolutely no experience in and see what I can do with it.   I'll let everyone know what particular thing I chose.

I'll retool in whatever it is and then attempt to get work using that particular skill.   If I can do it and actually get work, that means anyone can do the same thing.