programming career == bad choice?

Discussion in 'Programming & Software Development' started by MotorAce, Jan 11, 2003.

  1. Jive Honky

    Jive Honky Member

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    Hmm, PM me her details. ;)
     
  2. almghty

    almghty Member

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    Sad to say it but it is true.

    IT has slowed down.

    I told every taxi driver the same thing below (why you might ask because every friggin taxi driver I talked seemed to be doing some tafe course or unit at uni related to IT).

    Which is -

    "A plumber/electrician/locksmith comes to your house fixes something that takes 30 minutes on average. You had over $60 in CASH and they are gone."

    So on a good day if they do 2 jobs an hour thats $120.

    Not many permanent IT people are getting that.

    I dont know about contractors, they might get something similar but those positions are far and few inbetween.

    $35-40k is average for a graduate ..sometimes less. After all what did you expect? you came out of uni, who's to say you can even program at all?

    Marks mean jack. I dont know about the rest but for all my positions I have had to sit a test. Which is indicative of the industry which has been stung by dickheads graduating hoping for a quick bucks whilst knowing nothing at all.
     
  3. BC%

    BC% Member

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    Along the lines of what has already been said, some of you may be interested as to a job ad recently posted on SEEK....

    (ad no longer exists so I've posted it on my blog)

    http://oo0.org/index.php?p=8&more=1#more8
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2003
  4. mark|

    mark| Member

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    That's a good thing though. If you've got a clue (in terms of programming etc) then probably 3/4 of your competition for that job has been eliminated.
     
  5. darthpikachu

    darthpikachu Member

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    i wouldn't mind programming tests as part of job application rather than uni marks, it's pretty true uni marks don't mean much, alot of ppl just copy(leech) straight off others and then 1 week before the exam memorises the entire book and gets a high mark. 2 days later, they don't know anything again.
    i've known ppl who have D averages who still code like a newbie.
     
  6. wokket

    wokket Member

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    My thoughts, personal opinion only

    I did 3Yrs at QUT (Software Engineering/Data Comms), walked out with a GPA just under 5.5, but had 3 yrs, 1 day a week experince techying at teh local school.

    That experience (And knowing people who knew people who...) Got me a job doing helpdesk work. Help desk sucks, I never wanted to do it, and shudder to even think of it, but it payed 36k, and WAS A JOB!.

    I lasted 8mths in that before a position came up as a developer internally, It wasn't widely advertised, and I basically walked straight into it @ 40k.

    Things I've learnt:
    1. At uni, LEARN THE THEORY: Languages/Technolgies etc come and go, the basic theory of computers hasn't changed in over 30 years...In an interview situation, any algorithm test etc will predominantly be pseudo code based, not language based.

    2. Talk to People, make contacts: As said repeatedly, IT is about who you know....If the guys at uni know you can program, and they get a job, you have a leg up over someone who walks in off the street.

    3. Don't expect to get your ultimate lifelong dream job first up: If you nail it (As some people do), you're set for life, great...if not, it leads to months/years of rejection letters and disapointment (I know many people who have been through this, I live with someone going through it, and I know several people who almost certainly will go through it)....Some jobs suck, doco sucks, tech support sucks, testing sucks (IMHO), but once your in a job, you start getting (real!!)experience, anmd have much more freedom in deciding where you want to go from there.

    4. Enjoy it: If your not having fun, not looking forward to learning new things every day, not gonna look back after a bad day and think "It's better than cleaning dunnys", don't bother, it's too competitve an industry.

    </rant>
     
  7. morta11

    morta11 Member

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    you are silly to change your degree just to chase money.
    do what you enjoy and if you have some talent then the money will naturally follow.

    chem eng may pull reasonable $ but stuff working in Roxby Downs for a joke.
     
  8. LoRdo

    LoRdo Member

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    As the fact of the matter is that the IT industry is slowing down you should see the HSC requirements of this years universities. Once 75-80 UAI required IT related subjects have now been boosted to a requirement of 90 in most Unis.

    Alot of people who have just finished their HSC will be sadly dissapointed as their UAI will not be good enough for their desired course.

    As already said it would be alot better if their was more practical testing...
     
  9. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    I've been working full time in IT for over 3 years now (I had to work 2.5 years before I got the position I was chasing - sys admin). I had done a TAFE course first then got a full time job....

    the plan was to do an IT degree part time but I've been putting it off for the last 3 years...

    just recently I've changed my mind I'm going to do a business degree and major in management... :D
     
  10. LoRdo

    LoRdo Member

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    I was wondering how promising a TAFE course was...
    They offer a 6months Cert IV for programming, then a years course for a Programming Diploma(requires cert IV or experience).

    Obviously a TAFE diploma doesnt have much on a 3 yr UNI course but it would be interesting to see what job you could get with those credentials...
     
  11. da_moat

    da_moat Member

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    i've had the chance to work with one foot in the it door and one in the management door for my last couple of jobs and one thing i know people i've worked with are looking for when theyre looking for people internally to fill positions (and if you want your rise up the sallary pole to be a smooth one, advancing within a company for a while between moving about is the way to go) is to be willing to pitch in a hand with anything. i've seen many an it premodina get overlooked for a cool job which is then given to the mabe not so savvy but always ready to lend a hand guy. i know it sounds like a pretty basic thing but so many poeple don't do it. i've done my fair share of time on helldesks and i got my break on an internal job that i got over a graduate because he was so bent on focusing on it as he'd spent so many years getting his degree in whatever he'd bitch about doing any of the menial day to day stuff as it was a 'waste of his valuable time'. i've had a chance to give other people a break for similar reasons.

    i've been lucky to settle into a secure if not flashy job, had a shit of a time finding something 12 months ago, the the people who hired me also had a shit of a time finding someone to do the job. they'd hired 3 other people before me and sacked them shortly after. the pay wasn't great when i started, but as soon as i proved capable of actually doing the job they sorted it out. there is an upside to all this in that there is -alot- of useless dotcom fallout and clueless graduate that barely passed types who you'll be working with, and if you've got a nack for what ever it is you do people will generally recognise it.
     
  12. Redefine

    Redefine Member

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    I've just completed a 2 year course at swinburne TAFE called, Computer Science(Instrumentation, Software Development, Multimedia). I am now using a pathway to get into uni to do Science(computing) at Swinburne, and do an 18 months (18 months credit due to TAFE). Along with the uni course comes IBL(Industry Based Learning) where the university assists you in obtaining a job at companies they have links with, HP, Panasonic and many others.

    Im hoping that my 2 certificates (when I finish) plus the experience from 6 months or 1 year IBL, should put me in some kind of reasonable job.

    /me crosses fingers
     
  13. PappaSmurf

    PappaSmurf Member

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    My brother just finished a (4 year??) Chem Eng degree and got a job at ANSTO.
    He is getting about $35-40k a year (thats not counting tax to be taken off though).. so it's not that well paying.
    He was *VERY* lucky to get a job, there aren't many Chem Eng jobs in Australia at all from what he told me.
     
  14. yoink

    yoink Member

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    I had a helpdesk job for 3 years, which I got straight out of uni. This was for a large Australian firm (4500+ employees), I started on $28k, and ended on more than twice that, after 2 1/2 years. I'm moving into programming, (start on monday), for another company I knew from working in the large company. I guess what I'm trying to say is:-

    1. If you start in a large company, on a shit wage, with patience you may well end up ok. (Worked for me)

    2. You will quickly learn various "tricks of the trade", through actual job experience, which is FAR more important than knowing all the theory in your field. Eg: why spend 3 months writing a customised customer database, when you can buy ACT!2000 for around $300 per user.

    3. I know it's a cliche, but it's Who you know, not What you know. As long as you know enough to get you by, surely you can learn the rest as you go along, also, always remember people, not just the bosses, but everyone in your workplace, you never know, they may come in handy one day, and you might even make a friend or two.

    From my general experience, with other people, if you know your stuff, an IT degree matters squat, but if you're going for a "graduate position", generally having a degree is an advantage ;)
    Other thing is, I know plenty of college drop-outs, that are earning way more than they really should, (they have a natural talent referred to as "ambition").
    Maybe you should consider talking to some employers now, to see where you stand, maybe you can get a part-time job, and finish your degree in the mean time, that way you will have both experience and a degree :D
     
  15. Ulric Soulreave

    Ulric Soulreave Member

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    I have a friend who doesn't even HAVE a full degree, he did the computer power training institute thingee a number of years back. Worked 60+ hours a week for a couple of years then went into contracting to the government in Canberra. Earns around the $100k mark now and drives an alfa. He did have to sell his soul to microsoft for it and move to Canberra but it works for him.....

    He's also mentioned that they did lay off a lot of people about 6 to 12 months ago (well, didn't renew contracts) but the good ones got to stay.

    So in short, if you are dedicated and have good business (and programming) skills then you will still make a lot, but then if you are dedicated and have good business skills you will make a lot in any field.

    Ulric

    Mmm, bourbon......
     
  16. FlameHead

    FlameHead Member

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    Hell yer. If you ain't hunting for experience while doing your degree(s) you are a fool. If you aren't qualified to get experience, hit more books and write up examples and get those marks up.

    I just finished a small volountary project and I'm going to be getting a very good reference from the chairman of a multi national company, and because I did an excellent job, I get a free mobile phone and sick MP3 player in the shape of a cassette (yes it will play MP3s on tape players).

    I actually plan to review that MP3 player because it isn't available in Australia yet. It has an sd flash slot, lithium ion battery, 64mb built in and as I said, it's exactly like a cassette (yes it has a headphone jack).
     
  17. Long Haired Git

    Long Haired Git Member

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    morta11 hit the nail on the head. Do what you love, do what you are good at, and the money will follow.

    Don't know what you're good at? Don't really like anything? Get out there and LIVE a little!

    I started out drawing charts and slides for a management consulting company. It sucked, and I earnt a grand sum of $10 an hour.
    While there I taught myself WP51, and by reading the docs I stuck pictures in, I got a promotion to do editing of documents. It was a dilbert promotion - no change in pay, no responsibilities - just more work.
    But from that I taught myself macros to make my job quicker. It was fun, I liked programming.

    From that job I got a job editing test specifications for a software house. From that I moved internally to testing the code using the specifications I edited. Whilst here, I taught myself another macro-ing language, and got into learning "C" and other such stuff. I loved programming - such fun! I was now on the awesome sum of $12.50 a year.

    From there I did integration and learnt SDLC, languages, best practices. At this job I used to do 18 hour days, charged about 12, and read EVERYTHING I could. I was a COROPORATE SLUT. I would do anything for anyone. Didn't care. Didn't demand pay rises or ever say "not in my job description". I worked at that company for 5 years, and met so many people, including the person who head hunted me to where I am now.

    I do not have any degree. Only education is High School.

    Now I do project/programme management for a darn hooting big corporation. I just landed another dilbert promotion as an architect - more work, same pay - but now I am an architect.

    I am no longer on $12.50 per hour.
    I have never had a resume nor done a job interview - always head hunted - since after I got that first charting job.

    I STILL PROGRAM.
    Yep - on the train to work today I whipped open my laptop, and went back to work on my java waterblock simulator. No pay, just for fun, coz I love programming.

    Find what you love, what you are good at. Work at it, enjoy it, INVEST in it. Whether you're making money or not then doesn't matter that much.

    And just like girl/boyfriends (or sex in general), it always comes when you're not chasing it....
     
  18. Cheebs

    Cheebs Member

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    I think it is the whole market bottoming out. I just finished a combined Accounting/Info Sys degree with a GPA of 6.5 and from all the applications I put in I was lucky to get my job. Some of the companies that I wanted to apply for weren't even recruiting this year. Talked to a few people in the field and they said that no one's looking for grads, in fact some of the big consultants downsized their departments - so there's a glut of expereienced people out there that will win hands down against grads.

    And lots of people I know that graduated this year in IT had some scarey moments about not finding a job and some are still having them.
     
  19. Santa

    Santa Member

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    I'm not in uni yet, still in high school, yr11 this year. Anyway, you shouldn't really be all that fussy about getting your dream job straight away, just take whatever comes your way and get the experience. You've graduated, got the qualifications, so just go rack up the experience, then you'll have the greatest chance of getting the job you want.

    Oh and you say the IT industry isnt at its top at the moment, i'm planning to do some elextrical engineering, if I can get it in uni. What about the hardware side of things, the programming is not that good, what about the actually production of hardware, and technology stuff?
     
  20. joe_sixpack

    joe_sixpack Member

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    A friend of mine finished his 4yr Software Eng degree last year and is still unemployeed.

    I spoke to him on msn tonight and he was excited to tell me that he just got a part time data entry job working from 5pm to 10.30pm mon-fri.

    beleive me, he is no dumbass either.... :(
     

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