Switching from IT support?

PantherPanther Member Posts: 118 ■■■□□□□□□□
During the dot-com bubble, I learned Perl programming language on my own, and got an IT job. That bubble popped, and I went into IT support. I've been doing 1st and 2nd level support ever since. I'm trying to get into 3rd level support (System Admin, DevOps, etc.)

I'm also thinking of switching from IT support, to things like software development, analyst, etc, something more "chill". Has anyone done that switch? At an older age?

It's also possible I may just be burnt out, and thinking the grass is greener on the other side.


  • JDMurrayJDMurray Certification Invigilator Surf City, USAAdmin Posts: 11,580 Admin
    Well, that "bubble" popped in 2000, so you've been at IT support a long time! I would suggest that if programming were your thing you would already be doing it as a hobby out of pure interest and have eventually made it your career path by now.

    At this point, I'd say that you should seriously look at taking some programming classes to help you decide if software development is what your "older brain" really wants to do. I'll say right now, software development is very complex, has far more decision points to consider than IT support, and can be very demanding on your time and brain-power.

    In the workplace, you may find yourself working with a lot of "young kids" with very fast minds who don't care to socialize with people their parent's age. Also, working on a software project that you don't find interesting, or for people that you don't like, can really suck too.

    I actually got out of developing software (for other people) in my early 40's and changed my career path to information security. The hands-on networking and software development experience I have really helps me understand the information systems that I am still trying to protect to this day. It also greatly helped me to jump where I am today--in InfoSec team management.
  • mikey88mikey88 CISSP, CySA+, Security+, Network+ and others Member Posts: 491 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Do you see advancement opportunities at your current workplace? I would start there, especially if you are an employee with seniority. Personally, I wouldn't do any drastic career moves unless I was financially stable at that age. 
    Certs: CISSP, CySA+, Security+, Network+ and others | 2019 Goals: Cloud Sec/Scripting/Linux

  • AvgITGeekAvgITGeek 70-410, 70-411 Member Posts: 341 ■■■■□□□□□□
    edited July 2019
    The grass is  always greener on the other side mentality can be an issue. Even though it looks great, there may still be little things that you haven't thought of. Shift worker, hourly, salary. I recently moved and these things have come up.

    Now that you have the experience, what current certs do you have?

    @mikey88 mentioned, be sure to have relevant experience/certs locked in before making any moves.

    BTW I'm pushing 47. I went from desktop support to DBA to networking and finally back to being a DBA over the past 20 years.

    Always keep your options open and keep up with the technology. I love databases and servers and networking. Kept me well rounded.
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Security +, ITIL Foundation, MPT, EPO, ACAS, HTL behind youMod Posts: 2,750 Mod
    I am pushing 60 and in my new position, now doing some software development work/but still have a hand with servers (monitoring). I have cut a wide swath in my career and have learned different aspects to IT ranging from help desk, database management to systems admin. Like everyone has mentioned, keep your mind and your options open! :-)
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • PantherPanther Member Posts: 118 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thanks for your inputs. I was rejected for an internal 2nd-level role; a bit bummed; and thus brainstorming. I've been at the company around a year. I was qualified, but others have more seniority, yada yada. My years of work experience seemed irrelevant.

    I enjoy programming, even on my own. I use it in support roles, and will continue to do so, but too late to make a career of it (again, grass is greener).

    My other thought is, working towards 3rd level support (certs, jr roles, volunteer, etc). I read a tech exam thread, where some people never did 1st/2nd level support.

    I'm staying with support, but keeping my mind and options open here.
  • thomas_thomas_ CompTIA N+/S+/L+; CCNA R&S; CCNP R&S Member Posts: 938 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Maybe start figuring out how to do parts of your job with PowerShell?  Are there any manual redundant tasks that you can automate?  Also, I believe python is pretty popular right now, but I don't know if it would be feasible to leverage it in your day to day activities.
  • PantherPanther Member Posts: 118 ■■■□□□□□□□
    edited August 2019
    I actually have a side project, I had noticed a task which could be done better and brought it up to my boss if I could automate/script, in addition to my primary job duties. But, it didn't help my favor for the internal job. I was actually told to seek project(s) during my rejection interview, mind blown.
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