I see alot of people that are frustrated about getting a job on this board, so I wanted to start a thread where we can all discuss why it is so hard getting a job, the syptoms that caused this, and possible solutions to help people find jobs. Please respond with ideas and suggestions, as all my belows ideas are thoughts on what I have seen myself in the 4 years I have been doing IT.
First, let's look at some reasons why people are having trouble looking finding a job:
1. The internet boom of the middle 90's
This market was a barely developed market when the internet explosion of the 90's hit. When this trend first started hundreds of over night companies popped up out of no where doing startup IPO's on the stock market which was another reason of the huge stock market rush of the late 90's. With this on slaught of companies pouring into the market these people needed qualified computer and telecom adminstrators to come in right away and keep things up and running. Due to this field not being a large field there were few qualified people out there to handle the jobs so the prices being offered for positions were ridiculous. People seen these prices and flocked into the field instantly grabbing up any certification or degree they could to hop on the bandwagon. This caused thousands of new job to be made in less than 3 months, and the field was looking terrific. What most people did not expect was that the bottom fell out on most internet based companies and all those jobs fell through in less than 2 years. This caused the field to be instantly flooded with thousands of available workers.
2. The flood of people in this field
This is in relation to #1 in alot of ways, the collapse of the internet sector caused this. Not much else to say here, there is just alot of people that are in this field, but even though is true there are still alot of jobs available.
3. Companies are picky now
Many companies are now very picky on who they choose and what qualifications you need. 5 years ago a CCNA certification landed you a 50k job with no experience, no it lands you a 25k job.
4. Experience is a must
Most companies require about 3-5 years minimum experience....well, how can you get experience if all jobs require it???
5. Alot of IT jobs need to be filled so quick you never know they were available
Alot of IT jobs now needed to be filled so quick that when they do come available they are really never advertised. This leads to alot of people never knowing a particular job was ever open.
6. Outsourcing (read this one, cause ima get flamed here
Ok....this is the #1 complaint I hear now, but in all actuality I believe this is the least important of all the above. Why, well let's look at outsourcing and what is mainly being outsorced. The primary job being outsorced right now is callcenters. Well, I don't consider IT to be a tech taking a call, I consider IT to be the 2-4 people working at the callcenter over all the actual data equipment in the callcenter. This means that if a callcenter of 1000 people shutdowns then only 2-5 people at the most are losing their job from IT. The people losing most of their jobs are lower or middle class people working for the callcenters. My company has 1 Network/Telecom (me) and 1-2 systems administrators per 750 seat callcenter. That is about the average for a callcenter, so if see 25,000 jobs moving overseas only about 100 of them are IT specific or less than 1%. Any this will also cause a few more IT jobs to be available here as most calls have to be routed overseas so someone has to be local at the datacenter to be hands on with all the equipment responsible for all the call routing. So no, I am going to disagree with everyone and say outsourcing isn't the true problem.
I believe the primary issue with this field was caused by the internet boom in the 90's. The reason is this caused a great misconception on how jobs in this field should be filled and pay. Pay back then was so over grossed it wasn't even funny. The real jobs in this field aren't with large scale companies like everyone thinks, the real jobs are with your smaller companies. Your local law offices, hosptials, courts, etc. this is where the jobs are. All these places are the ones just now catching up to what alot of the larger companies are doing, and in doing so they are offering jobs now. Most of these jobs are specialized to what they need, so you need to find a niche in the market and capitalize on it.
So after all of the above, let's look at some ways you can help better your job searching:
1. RESUME RESUME RESUME RESUME RESUME RESUME in case I didn't say it RESUME
This is the #2 most important way to find a job (#education is #1 but this needs to be stressed more as we know education is #1). I don't care what anyone says, ALOT of companies look at the way you write your resume and can judge what type of person you are by the style of it. If it's sloppy they will think you are unorganized. I actually suggest our adminstrator here starts a resume post with guidelines (such as posting your resume but removing your name and address material and you reference name material). This forum is for helping people, we need to help each other build a proper resume so we all have a better chance at a job.
2. Your education
This the the most important thing we all need for any field. Get as much as you can. Any degree or certification is one step closer. (I missed a job about 6 months ago because I didn't have my CCNA yet doing VPN Tunneling for doctors offices to this company doing medical billing, I would of got a $15k increase in pay for driving an extra 20 minutes a day)
3. Send your resume everywhere
Go down the phone book, most places have an email address in the phone book now, and send your resume with a little note as to why you are sending it. Go visit companies in your town, law offices, hospitals, everywhere. Most jobs won't be open when you apply but if you wait awhile it's a good chance you will get a call.
4. Technical school training is suppose to be listed as experience
If you went to a technical school for say your CCNA certification and you did labs for a year, this is a years worth of experience working with CCNA equipment. List the routers you worked on and what you did. This counts for any certification or degree you did labs on.
5. Apply for anything IT related
If it's in your paper or listed in monster.com for your area apply for it no matter what even if you aren't quailified. Why, alot of companies will take under qualified people if no one meets their criteria, plus alot of companies will just put your resume in their database for any other jobs that come up.
6. Put an ad in your local paper to work on computers
If you have a degree or have a certification don't be afraid to put a local add in the paper about working on computer, especially if you live in a small town like I do. Word of mouth will do wonders for you if you do a good job trust me.
7. Be open to relocation possiblilities
If you are able be willing to relocate. I have already discussed this with my wife and if the price is right we are moving. If you do relocate be sure to look at the cost of living and make sure it's worth it, plus if your spouse works make sure she can find a job also. (my wife is a nurse so she has a job where ever we go). Ask the company if they offer a relocation package, most companies do but won't advertise it unless you ask.
8. Don't give up
Honestly, I think any job that pays well and requires more mental abilities than physical will require had work to acquire than your average job does. If you arent in the medical field then it will take some work to find a job. You just need to stick with it and stay confident. I believe that this field like most requires the person working in it to have a certain love of the trade to truely succeed in it, and if you truely enjoy the work you will get your chance.
My hope is that this thread can be a help to other people to learn what to do to help themselves get a job. To do this you need to understand both why jobs are hard to come by and how to get one. I would like to see many suggestions and ideas that all the newcomers to this forum can use to help themselves in this field come out of this thread. Let's keep the negativity from a "This field sucks and jobs suck" perspective out of it. If you are having a problem finding a job share how you have been going about finding one and maybe we can give some advice to help you. (sorry for any spelling errors to lazy to go back and re read