I need to change jobs/careers(rant inside...feel free to add)

vi edit

Elite Member
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Oct 28, 1999
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Sigh :( I need to find something else. I'm just sick of the backstabbing, finger pointing, screwing, twisting, and spinning that goes on in businesses and corporate environments.

I've worked in a couple 25,000+ employee corporations, and one or two smaller office environments, and I just can't stand what goes on in them. I get hired on to help out and to offer suggestions. But, it seems that the almighty dollar seems to prevail over any gains in time or efficiency of process. Sure, solution X might be $300 cheaper a month, but, since it's hosted off site, if anything happens to it, we have to wait for somebody to answer a page/email/ect if something as simple as a modem has to be reset. Not to mention that the hosting site is only avail 9-5 M-F, even though we have (ab)users on the system 8-8 M-S.

I don't know if I just need to find "the right place" to work, or if I need to find a different career. At the age of 22 I'm already sick of working with IT. I'm sure that I'm not alone.

Sorry for the rant, but a lot of things have been happing at work lately, all of which were implemented before I came on board. Many of the problems that I'm facing were because they were chosen as the cheapest solution, not necesarrily the "best" solution.

I've also got problems with an accounting software package that we use in office. We've found about 7 very serious bugs that were included in the new version. We've lost data and several days of work because of them. Instead of the software company coming out and saying that it's a problem, they let it slide and allow us to find it. I call the software distributer and he tells me that it has been found before and that there's a fix for it. We have to apply a patch. I ask him if this is something that has been posted to a bug board or is publicly accessable. He says no, that this information is only available to resellers. That's nice to know AFTER you've charged me $180 for the support call for something that shouldn't have happened in the first place. This has happened, not once, not twice, not even three times, but four times in the last month now. I've been charged for poor coding on the software companies behalf.

Other than self employment(which isn't an option at this time), will I find any IT based jobs that don't drop me in a political minefield? I just need to get out of this cage...err cube and out of an office.

I may be a whiny little wuss, but at least I'm a moraled/ethical whiny little wuss :)

 

vi edit

Elite Member
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Oct 28, 1999
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Company that I work for right now only has 15 of us in the office.

We run about 20 arbys and 4 Krispy Kremes, and the 15 people are mainly accountants and financial advisors...I'm the lone IT guy.
 

toph99

Diamond Member
Aug 25, 2000
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i'll gladly trade you jobs ;) want to have your hands in a freezer for 5 hours at a hockey game? :p
 

denali

Golden Member
Oct 10, 1999
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Sucks being you, I'm one of those mean programmers that put those bug, features, in the software. Have you tried to talk to the company that actually writes the software as opposed to the distributor, this could make your life much easier. You are correct most companies don't want to send the money for the proper solution, they look at IT as a money pit. Granted alot of money is wasted in IT but mostly because people are not willing to do it right the first time.
 

vi edit

Elite Member
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Oct 28, 1999
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denali, I've thought about calling the software company, but it's sort of a catch 22.

If I call the software company, and the issue at hand is their problem, it is free.
If I call the software company, and the problem is system/configuration/user related then they charge me $350 an hour.

If I call the software distributer, then it's $180 an hour reguardless as to who's to blame.

Now, this is all fine and dandy if the software company would provide a bulletin board or a bug report, or something along those lines that I could look at, determine whether or not it's a bug/software issue, and then figure out who to call.

As it stands right now, I have no place to check to see if it is an existing problem, or if it is something that is screwed up on our end. It's just a question of do I want to chance it and try for free, but run the risk of paying $350, or, do I play it safe and go for the $180.

I haven't had enough exposure to the software (4 months) to determine whether or not it's software or "other" related.
 

kranky

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Oct 9, 1999
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If the people who make the decisions are accountants, then you have to make your case in terms they understand.

For example, "return on investment" is something they can relate to, so you want to present your ideas based on that. Does the software company offer a maintenance contract option, so you can pay a fixed fee for bug fixes (and perhaps upgrades)? You could show that the cost of the contract is less than the cost of ($180 x 4 calls/month) + (cost of upgrades if included) + (cost of lost production due delays in getting bug fixes)?

But you cite two examples of financial moves - off-site hosting and paying for bug fixes - but your first line said "backstabbing, finger-pointing, screwing, twisting, and spinning". If the co-workers and overall atmosphere is the real problem, you might try another company. Each one has a culture and maybe you aren't a good match where you are.

 

vi edit

Elite Member
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Oct 28, 1999
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Bober, $350/hr is what OSAS charges for support calls.
The issue that I PM'd you about was for SolutionWare, a totally different beast/package/company.

Kranky, we are on a maintance contract, and it does include updates and fixes along the way, but we only get them when the software company releases them. Some things, like missing batches, and a payroll system that deducts the wrong state deductions, can't wait a month or two for a patch to be released. It just bothers me that we have to pay for something, and then pay even more to make it work the way that its supposed to.

Also, to make matters complicated, the Arby's are on one Accounting package, and the Krispy Kremes on on another from a completely different software provider. The Arbys uses the in house package, and the KK use the off site one.

Bober has been helping me out with an annoying issue that is on the Krispy Kreme software. Here's a brief, and vague idea of how the Accounts Receivable software for the KK stores work:

1) A PC in the Cedar Rapids, Krispy Kreme pulls data off of a register at 2:00 AM. This data is the daily sales, employee punch in/outs, and a couple other things.

2) At 10:00 AM, an AS 400 system in Omaha, NE dials onto the machine in Cedar Rapids, IA and pulls the data across.

3) At a little after 10:00 AM, a software company in Oklahoma City, OK, dials into the Omaha, NE AS/400, verifies that all files have been pulled, and then pulls the data over to Oklahoma City, OK.

4) After pulling the data over, the company in OK, manipulates, converts, formats, ect. the data and then sends it back over to the AS/400 in Omaha, NE.

5) After 11:00 AM, the accountant in my office in Cedar Rapids, dials over to the AS/400 in Omaha, NE to do her AR stuff...all long distance of course.

Talk about 3 steps too many. I've been working trying to get an AS/400 system here in house in Cedar Rapids. As it is, our phone bills are running about $400 a month in long distance fees to dial into Omaha. And the worse of it is, out of a 40 hour work week, we are only able to connect maybe 20 hours of it. The rest of the time, we have line problems, dropped connections, busy signals...ect, ect, ect. This doesn't even include problems with the software itself :(

Now...instead of getting an AS/400 in house, the President is looking at getting some AR software from KK Corporate to replace the AR that we have existing. What he fails to realize is that even if the software is cheaper, there are hours, and hours, and hours of manual rekeying of data and re-construction of companies since the existing software isn't compatible with the one he is looking at.

As far as the finger pointing, screwing, twisting and spinning, I just haven't had a very favorable impression of a couple of the companies that I have worked for, both of which were very large corporations. It could just be that I'm a bleeding heart and I hate to see employees and customers get screwed over by companies. In my very short professional life, I've seen a lot of good people laid off, and a lot of worthless people kept on board. I guess that so far, I don't have a very fond outlook on business practices. But, then again, how many "nice guys" in the business world finish first? Probably not too many :frown:
 

Optimus

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Aug 23, 2000
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vi_edit:
Sounds like you are stuck in "Peripheral IT" - IT folk at non-IT companies. Often these companies regard IT as an expense - a bill to complain about and try to save on. It shows in how they treat the IT workers and regard investing in technology.

I did IT in the Insurance industry and it was hell. You sound like I did a few months ago!

Maybe you should consider trying to get a foot in the door at an IT company, such as a software company? You will find that more co-workers and managment are like you, and working with new and cutting edge technology instead of making old crap work is such a wonderful difference! You don't really need to be a programmer - if you called the software company right now to report this problem, there is someone there in thier software support. That might be more your speed... or maybe QA? Advanced product support?

Just a thought! :)
 

vi edit

Elite Member
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Oct 28, 1999
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Optimus, I agree. I really think that I'm just the wrong sort of person for the job. I'm the youngest fulltime person there by about 12 years. I think they have trouble believing a 22 year old hotshot, and they don't have the greatest faith in computers.

You should have seen me trying to explain to them what a VPN was, and how it would save us time...yikes!

 

Optimus

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Aug 23, 2000
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That's exactly it! Go where co-workers are telling YOU about new technology! Go where you can spend an entire lunch debating AMD vs Intel!

Honestly, it can almost be like working in the OT forums at times! :D

Seriously, though - only you know what is best for you, but you sound so much like me this summer before I made the jump to a software company. They aren't all goo, but where I am is night and day better than where I was.

My older brother just went from working 3 jobs in 2 years (he is a programmer) for various companies that did this or made that. Finally he is happy at a software company because of the atmosphere.

Work with people like you - it can make all the difference! :)

Good Luck!
 

kranky

Elite Member
Oct 9, 1999
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You may be right that they don't trust your judgement since you're much younger. And being the only IT person there, there's no one else to back you up.

I'm very surprised that with a contract you still have to pay for s/w support calls. I don't have any contracts that work that way. But of course you are right, you can't wait with problems like that. Any chance there are different levels of support available, and you can move up to one that covers those calls? If they don't like paying for the calls, ask them if you can look into taking steps to avoid it. If they don't mind, then just shrug your shoulders and let it go. It's their decision, and all you can do is to point out areas where things can/should be improved.

Maybe their view of your job doesn't include suggesting better/cheaper ways to do things - they see it as just keep the stuff running, period. Maybe the last person in the job had a bunch of ideas that flopped and they don't want to take any more chances.

One thing I should have mentioned before is not to change. I'd like to think that nice guys can succeed, and it is infinitely better to stick to your principles. Yes, sometimes good people get canned and the deadwood stays, but that happens anywhere. In most cases those decisions are not made by the people who know the most about the situation. Yes, sometimes a bull$hitter is able to con the bosses, at the expense of innocent bystanders, but eventually they tend to be found out. Nice guys may not always finish first, but in the business world "first" isn't always a good place to be. You only end up dealing with more @sses.

 

seewhy

Senior member
Jan 22, 2000
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Seems to me that your company doesn't see IT as an important part of operation. A lot of company pretty much see IT as necessary evil and just get the cheapest thing when ever something is needed. Decision maker don't know that much about IT and how it can help the business. Trust me, there are many company that are like that.

If I were you, I would find some company that really see IT as an integral part of the business. Many company operate around IT, like e-trade, Dell, Amazon...etc that really sees information as life and blood. Don't just jump on whatever you are offered, choose company carefully, and you will have much better life. But of course, that depends if you wanna move or if the place you live now have any good company. But when you interview, look at decision makers and see if they see IT as an important part of operations or not.

 

Michael

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Nov 19, 1999
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Accounting and Finance are always the natural allies of IT. They use and rely on computers more than anyone else. Visicalc was the main driver in the early days of PC's, the first "killer" app.

You're always going to find politics, no matter where you go. Companies that are IT driven have all the same problems. The benefit is there being IT management jobs to rise into, but most large companies have the same opportunity.

Michael
 

DaveJ

Platinum Member
Oct 9, 1999
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Boy am I glad I'm not in the same situation. :) I got extremely lucky because I ended up doing server administration and client support for the university I still haven't graduated from... :) Let me tell you, the atmosphere here is totally different than out in the corporate world. We get to play with some cutting edge cool stuff, and administration realizes that IT plays a large part in how the uni is perceived in the outside world. Not having to constantly make a profit helps too... :)

Plus, there's the longevity. I know four or five guys in our department who have been there 20 years or more... I've been here four, and would have a hard time adjusting to the corporate world. The pay isn't awesome, but it's decent, and the fringe benefits are amazing... what other company would let you take off a month for medical reasons, but deduct two weeks of actual vacation from your balance? :)

If you don't mind maybe making less than you are now, maybe you should look at higher educational institutions...

Dave
 

qpham11

Member
Dec 29, 2000
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vi_edit,

I work for AT&T Global Network Services in the Network Monitoring group. We have to work with customers and vendors and other groups. It's a pain in the ASS. The information in our databases are always wrong and we spend more time looking for a number to contact the customer then working a particular problem. I just wanted you know that I feel your pain.

PS You can route traffic to your AS 400 over IP. Thus having a dedicated line.