Do any of you guys work in I.T.?

Drago6

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I'll keep this as concise as possible since no one likes a novel 😴

-Just turned 30, bulk of my working experience has been in the oilfield, but 80-100 hour weeks in the middle of the desert does not line up with trying to start a family, health, etc
-A few folks have recommended I.T. since in their words it's fairly stable, decent pay, ability to work remote, and doesn't involve back breaking labor
-I have a B.S. degree, recently got the Net+ and Sec+ certs, pretty decent understanding of fundamentals, have been playing around with Wireshark and know I'll need to dive in to Python. Excellent interpersonal/team skills too, IDK if that's of any value in I.T.

However I'm having concerns about continuing to put in all the effort self teaching this stuff and grind out a million applications because I have no idea what the field is actually like. My only conception of it is from reading stuff on anonymous internet forums and two guys I know IRL, one is a project manager and one does call center helpdesk (f*ck that, he is ready to jump off a bridge)

Does a 30 year old guy with no formal I.T. experience even stand a chance of breaking into it these days?
Are the internet grumblings about plummeting wages and offshoring real/going to get worse?


Appreciate any insight you guys might have
 

Gatorshark

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I.T. and "work" are unrelated. But there are some here who dabble in IT cubicles.
 

theLBC

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hmm, hard to say "these days", but good project managers are always hard to find, especially ones that understand the technology around the projects.
i would probably say that if you don't like your current situation, be willing to start low and work your way up.
i changed careers to IT about 20 years ago after getting my MCSE, but i was willing to start at a support position.
luckily i was quickly promoted to a system engineer after somebody realized i never escalated anything to the 2nd level support.
you might try starting out as a business analyst, and hope to get a PM gig if you are good at working with different teams and people.
the hours are going to be more predictable, although expect some nights and weekends for big projects that require downtime for core systems.

keep in mind that IT is not all gravy. supporting infrastructure can also mean long hours. i am on call 24/7, but salary exempt.
 

SilentStalkr

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Been there done that. Let me save you some time, most jobs have the some bullshit, just not entirely the same type of bullshit, but no matter what you do you will have to put up with/handle bullshit. No matter what career path you take this will be an issue. In short, you just have to find out what kind of bullshit you are willing to put up with and how much.

Did IT for a bit, benefits weren’t bad, pay wasn’t bad, but the bullshit and hours were terrible. I hated it. If you want it as gravy as you can get it, then get on with a big company that isn’t in telecommunications or something similar. Think like IT director for a law firm. That’s about as gravy as IT is going to get. If you are working IT for big corps or telecommunications then you are going to have lots of bullshit to handle lol. Some of it is rather stupid and mundane, just depends on what you are willing to put up with. Things like getting Walmart’s payment system back online when it shuts down in 2/3’s of the country at 230 am is no fun and that’s the kind of bullshit you can expect. Ask me how I know lol especially when their corporate IT guts are clueless. And of course they will not care how many hours you have worked, what your plans are etc. it’s costing Walmart mega money while it’s downAnd that a big client, etc.

Servers need constant baby sitting so expect to be on call a lot. Not a lot of times if you got a gravy job, babysitting a server ain’t no thang because most of the time nothing happens but when it does it can be a buckle up and hold on kind of deal lol.
 

Yasherka

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I'll keep this as concise as possible since no one likes a novel 😴

-Just turned 30, bulk of my working experience has been in the oilfield, but 80-100 hour weeks in the middle of the desert does not line up with trying to start a family, health, etc
-A few folks have recommended I.T. since in their words it's fairly stable, decent pay, ability to work remote, and doesn't involve back breaking labor
-I have a B.S. degree, recently got the Net+ and Sec+ certs, pretty decent understanding of fundamentals, have been playing around with Wireshark and know I'll need to dive in to Python. Excellent interpersonal/team skills too, IDK if that's of any value in I.T.

However I'm having concerns about continuing to put in all the effort self teaching this stuff and grind out a million applications because I have no idea what the field is actually like. My only conception of it is from reading stuff on anonymous internet forums and two guys I know IRL, one is a project manager and one does call center helpdesk (f*ck that, he is ready to jump off a bridge)

Does a 30 year old guy with no formal I.T. experience even stand a chance of breaking into it these days?
Are the internet grumblings about plummeting wages and offshoring real/going to get worse?


Appreciate any insight you guys might have
PM me. I've been doing it professionally for 11 years and as a hobby since 1985
 

kenny1773

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IT is a large field, what exactly are you looking to do?

I agree call center / help desk stuff these days is enough to make you want to kill yourself
and yes lots of IT positions are being outsourced to India based support organizations
there is absolutely evening and weekend and on call emergency work, but sometimes you can control or limit it

The problem these days is few want to spend the money to properly fund an IT department.
 
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Desert Raven

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If you don't mind travel, get into presales for a software company. As a presales engineer/solutions consultant, you always enjoy good pay ($100K and up base, then usually between $120K-140K OTE, when you get your quota), travel the country on your company's dime, and you're not worked to death. This role is a mix of technical knowledge and solving business problems. It's not for everyone, but I LOVE it. Feel free to PM me if you like.
 
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Bolo

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IT is a huge field, and yeah, 60% of the jobs will make you want to quit and flip burgers for a living within a year.
You will never want for a job or see minimum wage in Cybersecurity.
Honestly, I really wouldn't get too concerned with the lack of formal schooling or certs. I never expected my new hires to know anything more than the basics (Can you spell TCP/IP?)- because 90% of what formal education teaches you about Cyber is useless bullshit anyway.

As long as you have an analytical mind, sound logic, the willingness to go and find the answer, and above all- have the passion to do it, you'll be successful. Age doesn't matter.

Fuck learning Python, you don't wanna be a coder. You'll pick it up as you go along, it's useful from time to time. PM me if you want some good training materials and you can gauge your interest.
 

Bolo

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Oh and BTW, some of my best employees were music majors in college. One guy fresh out of the Army Band, FFS. It was an attention to detail thing along with no bad habits to unlearn.
 

Dta1

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I'll keep this as concise as possible since no one likes a novel 😴

-Just turned 30, bulk of my working experience has been in the oilfield, but 80-100 hour weeks in the middle of the desert does not line up with trying to start a family, health, etc
-A few folks have recommended I.T. since in their words it's fairly stable, decent pay, ability to work remote, and doesn't involve back breaking labor
-I have a B.S. degree, recently got the Net+ and Sec+ certs, pretty decent understanding of fundamentals, have been playing around with Wireshark and know I'll need to dive in to Python. Excellent interpersonal/team skills too, IDK if that's of any value in I.T.

However I'm having concerns about continuing to put in all the effort self teaching this stuff and grind out a million applications because I have no idea what the field is actually like. My only conception of it is from reading stuff on anonymous internet forums and two guys I know IRL, one is a project manager and one does call center helpdesk (f*ck that, he is ready to jump off a bridge)

Does a 30 year old guy with no formal I.T. experience even stand a chance of breaking into it these days?
Are the internet grumblings about plummeting wages and offshoring real/going to get worse?


Appreciate any insight you guys might have
I'll keep this as concise as possible since no one likes a novel 😴

-Just turned 30, bulk of my working experience has been in the oilfield, but 80-100 hour weeks in the middle of the desert does not line up with trying to start a family, health, etc
-A few folks have recommended I.T. since in their words it's fairly stable, decent pay, ability to work remote, and doesn't involve back breaking labor
-I have a B.S. degree, recently got the Net+ and Sec+ certs, pretty decent understanding of fundamentals, have been playing around with Wireshark and know I'll need to dive in to Python. Excellent interpersonal/team skills too, IDK if that's of any value in I.T.

However I'm having concerns about continuing to put in all the effort self teaching this stuff and grind out a million applications because I have no idea what the field is actually like. My only conception of it is from reading stuff on anonymous internet forums and two guys I know IRL, one is a project manager and one does call center helpdesk (f*ck that, he is ready to jump off a bridge)

Does a 30 year old guy with no formal I.T. experience even stand a chance of breaking into it these days?
Are the internet grumblings about plummeting wages and offshoring real/going to get worse?


Appreciate any insight you guys might have
message me— I have direct experience with your situation. Oil and all
 

Drago6

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Thanks a ton guys, i appreciate the detailed replies. Security is definitely the primary interest.
 
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BigBen09

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I just did this at 29. I left the automotive field after getting my associates degree. The timing of everything was perfect for me as our company started working from home shortly after my onboarding training was done. I work for an international company that allows you to find out what you do and don't like. Message me if you want to learn more.
 

hunter1959

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I'll keep this as concise as possible since no one likes a novel 😴

-Just turned 30, bulk of my working experience has been in the oilfield, but 80-100 hour weeks in the middle of the desert does not line up with trying to start a family, health, etc
-A few folks have recommended I.T. since in their words it's fairly stable, decent pay, ability to work remote, and doesn't involve back breaking labor
-I have a B.S. degree, recently got the Net+ and Sec+ certs, pretty decent understanding of fundamentals, have been playing around with Wireshark and know I'll need to dive in to Python. Excellent interpersonal/team skills too, IDK if that's of any value in I.T.

However I'm having concerns about continuing to put in all the effort self teaching this stuff and grind out a million applications because I have no idea what the field is actually like. My only conception of it is from reading stuff on anonymous internet forums and two guys I know IRL, one is a project manager and one does call center helpdesk (f*ck that, he is ready to jump off a bridge)

Does a 30 year old guy with no formal I.T. experience even stand a chance of breaking into it these days?
Are the internet grumblings about plummeting wages and offshoring real/going to get worse?


Appreciate any insight you guys might have
I hate to dissuade you from your effort.. But once I was out of the Navy I was recruited by IBM into a mainframe sales role, that was in the mid 70's... I have seen huge transitions in the technology platforms as time went along... in so far as that has been concerned, and as it applies to IT jobs, much has changed... where once the field was wide open from coding, to systems administration and data base management, internet design and programming to the point now where artificial intelligence is doing an ever increasing amount of the technical work...

While costs of actual computation have gone down, most IT budgets now that the expensive mainframe tech has been relegated to the back room in what is called the batch process, and pc networks and LAN's have taken over the online burden, the most expensive part of computing is the personnel costs... the pressure is always there to reduce not enlarge technical staff... where people in IT were once considered geniuses by the general public, now with every phone being a computer and notion of IT is mainstreamed it has become a technical trade with a diminishing personnel future..

In fact the majority of major users have begun moving away from their own onsite centers and networks in favor of outsourced Cloud based contracts from the likes of Amazon, Google, MicroSoft, etc. There may be growing positions at those locations, but I can tell you that the competition for those jobs is astronomical... there are college graduates with IT specific degrees who are competing for those positions and there are more of them than work available. Another thing one of the guys here mentioned is consulting.. yes, there are consulting positions, but again the companies such as KPMG, IBM, etc. who are the major employers are looking for people with not only the degrees (IT with MBA's), but also years of experience in specific vertical business specialties.. those are even more competitive to locate... and they tend to be swinging doors... there is always an employment churn going on within them...

I would tell you that it might not be a terrific move to consider... unless you are willing to put in the years of personal development it will take
 
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respiegel

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Also look to support defense contractors, most of their IT work can't be outsourced and there are plenty of medium players who have enough infrastructure to need multiple people. That's how I paid for college, had to go in every Saturday and run the backup tapes and patch the systems, but rarely was there any drama.
 

Drago6

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I hate to dissuade you from your effort.. But once I was out of the Navy I was recruited by IBM into a mainframe sales role, that was in the mid 70's... I have seen huge transitions in the technology platforms as time went along... in so far as that has been concerned, and as it applies to IT jobs, much has changed... where once the field was wide open from coding, to systems administration and data base management, internet design and programming to the point now where artificial intelligence is doing an ever increasing amount of the technical work...

While costs of actual computation have gone down, most IT budgets now that the expensive mainframe tech has been relegated to the back room in what is called the batch process, and pc networks and LAN's have taken over the online burden, the most expensive part of computing is the personnel costs... the pressure is always there to reduce not enlarge technical staff... where people in IT were once considered geniuses by the general public, now with every phone being a computer and notion of IT is mainstreamed it has become a technical trade with a diminishing personnel future..

In fact the majority of major users have begun moving away from their own onsite centers and networks in favor of outsourced Cloud based contracts from the likes of Amazon, Google, MicroSoft, etc. There may be growing positions at those locations, but I can tell you that the competition for those jobs is astronomical... there are college graduates with IT specific degrees who are competing for those positions and there are more of them than work available. Another thing one of the guys here mentioned is consulting.. yes, there are consulting positions, but again the companies such as KPMG, IBM, etc. who are the major employers are looking for people with not only the degrees (IT with MBA's), but also years of experience in specific vertical business specialties.. those are even more competitive to locate... and they tend to be swinging doors... there is always an employment churn going on within them...

I would tell you that it might not be a terrific move to consider... unless you are willing to put in the years of personal development it will take
I was talking with a guy who works at an MSP, he said that it's race to the bottom for the mid/entry level positions, and then all the decent upper level jobs were external hires or consultants rather than having the mid level guys work up to it/internal hires. Seems to mesh with what you're saying about cutting costs, etc. 😑

Also look to support defense contractors, most of their IT work can't be outsourced and there are plenty of medium players who have enough infrastructure to need multiple people. That's how I paid for college, had to go in every Saturday and run the backup tapes and patch the systems, but rarely was there any drama.
I'm currently in RI and there are some defense/naval contractors in Newport, I'll look into them
 

Bolo

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I'm currently in RI and there are some defense/naval contractors in Newport, I'll look into them
Electric Boat is in full-on diversity hire mode. If you're white, male and hetero, it's gonna be a tough climb. Outside of IT, though, they're still hiring like mad... gotta build those boomers.
Look into Carousel (Exeter) and Presidio (Newport and Providence) in about a month or so. Early next year, CoreBTS and Aspire should be opening RI offices. There are always system architect openings in our CT partners (most of the work is remote anyway).
 

hunter1959

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Electric Boat is in full-on diversity hire mode. If you're white, male and hetero, it's gonna be a tough climb. Outside of IT, though, they're still hiring like mad... gotta build those boomers.
Look into Carousel (Exeter) and Presidio (Newport and Providence) in about a month or so. Early next year, CoreBTS and Aspire should be opening RI offices. There are always system architect openings in our CT partners (most of the work is remote anyway).
CoreBTS and Presidio are both good outfits, from my own experience as part of the Sales Managing structure at Cisco... he is giving you good advice with regard to those two.. not sure about the other two...
 

TangoSierra916

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I work in "IT" and I will say there are many more roles in that world than just programming. Since you have worked in the oil industry I would think (assume) you know a bit about the business side and what types of issues there may be in certain processes.

The thing I think some may miss/not know about is the business side to "IT". There are many roles like sales/system training/business architects/business analysts, program mgr/testers that all work on IT projects along with the developers. From the companies I work with the business side talent is severely lacking and there is huge $ to be made there. Most of IT, true IT coding and design (in my experience) is being outsourced to India/Indian contractors but there are not many that can speak business and system together. If you can speak business and have the certs you have you have a very marketable skillset IMO.

to summarize if you like 0s and 1s and learning different programming languages then the DEV route is not a bad one, but I do think you face heavy competition from India as it seems the whole country goes to school for IT, but got to do what makes you happy. Any questions let me know.
 
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Adam B

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I have a Bachelors in CIS and I can tell you first hand nothing I learned in college 20 years ago has ever applied to my any of my past roles. Everything I know that is relevant and useful I taught myself. I have worked on everything from the desktop to the data center, worked in security and have since moved on to sales, which is where you make the real money and no longer have to work ;). Find something that you are interested in, engulf yourself in it as well as join some local groups, networking is your friend.
 

Lunchbox27

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I work in IT. Been doing it for 20 years. If you can google, you can work on computers. Yeah, I fucking said it!

Security is where it's at. Whatever you do, don't focus solely on Windows shit. If you know your way around a console (linux flavor OS) and can write a few scripts in bash, you're already on your way. Just get your foot in the door and go from there.

Is it what I saw myself doing 30 years ago? Nope! But, it provides.
 

Franko

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Lots of good things have already been said above but I want to put in my two cents from my perspective of being an Information Governance consultant (HIPAA, State Privacy, and Information Security Operations). I interact with everyone from the help desk to the CEO.
  1. Decide if you want to be a doer or a manager. Doers will focus on technical skills and specialized knowledge and managers are all about soft skills (communication, handling employees, and swimming through oceans of political bullshit).
  2. If you can stomach being a manager do it; you will make more money, work better hours, and have far more career options.
  3. If you decide to be doer you will spend the rest of your working life and a good deal of your private time learning new skills to help you hold onto your job. You also will be forced to specialize, which limits where you can work and leaves you vulnerable to shifts in the industry (e.g. the move to hosted services).
  4. Older technical guys (doers) face significant age discrimination. Older managers, not as much.
  5. The cost cutting drive in enterprise is relentless. Always be aware of this when deciding what you want to do and what skills you want to learn. If your employer can replace your skillset with a kid fresh out of school, H1B coolie labor, or offshoring, they will.
  6. Security is red-hot at the moment and I don't see it cooling down anytime soon. Getting a CISSP certification is a ticket to ride the gravy train.
  7. The public sector doesn't pay nearly as well as the private sector but can provide you with a better quality of life and a pretty good pension.
Good luck and feel free to ask me any questions.
 

hic28

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I’m in IT security also. Network Security is where the growth is. It’s boring as all fucking hell if you’re an adrenaline junkie. It pays the bills so I can shoot and fly.
 

echotango

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If you don't mind travel, get into presales for a software company. As a presales engineer/solutions consultant, you always enjoy good pay ($100K and up base, then usually between $120K-140K OTE, when you get your quota), travel the country on your company's dime, and you're not worked to death. This role is a mix of technical knowledge and solving business problems. It's not for everyone, but I LOVE it. Feel free to PM me if you like.
I work for a software company and started in pre-sales and am now in our professional services group. Its a good gig if you can get it, but right now with COVID, no one is travelling. All of our work is done remotely and this whole COVID experience will have a changing effect on companies like mine do business. That said, depending on the company, you could travel a lot (I earned platinum on Delta last year), so keep that in mind, although sales trips are usually short ones.

You mentioned Python and someone told you to forget that. If you go the "IT" route in a Windows environment, learn Windows Powershell. It can be your friend.
 

Redmanss

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I was heading to infosec following my military time and overseas security contracting, and worked my way into my junior year in college for it. Then I realized I’d commit serious workplace violence if required to sit in front of a computer screen for a living, so I hired onto the railroad. Couldn’t be happier and the first job I’ve had that I want to do into retirement.

My hard-hat’s off to those who can.
 

MarinePMI

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IME, IT is a "butts & seats" business model these days. It is an Avenue to other things though (IT Sec, Engineering, Business Analyst/Mission Engineer, etc). A lot start in IT, but most end up somewhere else.

Like Redmanss says though, if you like outdoor work, it's rare. Admittedly, Defense has quite a few outdoor IT type roles. Gotta trip in the next few weeks that'll be spent outside for a couple weeks, dorking around, testing an aircraft data link. The best kind of IT/Engineering work in my mind...even if it will be over 100 degrees by 9am. Cool toys, loud booms, and cold beer at the end of the day. And not a soul around for miles...
 

theLBC

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I was heading to infosec following my military time and overseas security contracting, and worked my way into my junior year in college for it. Then I realized I’d commit serious workplace violence if required to sit in front of a computer screen for a living, so I hired onto the railroad. Couldn’t be happier and the first job I’ve had that I want to do into retirement.

My hard-hat’s off to those who can.
good point. thanks, sir. :p
 
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hic28

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IME, IT is a "butts & seats" business model these days. It is an Avenue to other things though (IT Sec, Engineering, Business Analyst/Mission Engineer, etc). A lot start in IT, but most end up somewhere else.

Like Redmanss says though, if you like outdoor work, it's rare. Admittedly, Defense has quite a few outdoor IT type roles. Gotta trip in the next few weeks that'll be spent outside for a couple weeks, dorking around, testing an aircraft data link. The best kind of IT/Engineering work in my mind...even if it will be over 100 degrees by 9am. Cool toys, loud booms, and cold beer at the end of the day. And not a soul around for miles...
And no invite? What a dick.
 

Vodoun daVinci

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If yer not working 80+ hour weeks and sweating at yer back breaking labor and begging for more OT then you don't deserve to eat, have health care, retire, or have any safety net.

Work bitches. Work till you die and leave your savings to people who matter. Like the muti millionaires that own the company. Bitches. Get back to fucking work...you have time to hang at Snipers Hide? If you have time to lean, you got time to clean, Get back to work.

Bitches.

VooDoo
 
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BullGear

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If yer not working 80+ hour weeks and sweating at yer back breaking labor and begging for more OT then you don't deserve to eat, have health care, retire, or have any safety net.

Work bitches. Work till you die and leave your savings to people who matter. Like the muti millionaires that own the company. Bitches. Get back to fucking work...you have time to hang at Snipers Hide? If you have time to lean, you got time to clean, Get back to work.

Bitches.

VooDoo
I watched my dad work just like you described and I promised myself I work smart, not harder. I retired at 55 and am loving life.
 

PolarisBreach

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I do consulting work for various parts of the government. I specialize in networking primarily, however security goes hand-in-hand these days. Even if you don't want to be a coder, you need to learn python or some other type of scripting language (or platform, such as Ansible). It's taught in school now and it's made it's way into the major certifications; unless/until you're shit-hot in another area, as general support personnel, the expectation is that you have some familiarity with scripting. Automation is the name of the game these days. I will say the verbage hasn't really made it's way into most government contracts yet, but it's coming. I say this as someone that went into networking/security specifically because I didn't want to write code for a living.

I also want to point out that jobs in austere environments don't pay what they used to, but you're almost guaranteed to be doing important work. Sec+ will meet the security baseline for most entry-level roles, but they might also require you to have a "computing environment" certification, too (i.e. CCNA if you went into networking).
 

Drago6

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Thanks again for the continued info. Seems to be some hope left in the industry, i'll keep moving forward with the self teaching and start putting out some applications. If i make a thread in 6 months asking "how do i become a plumber?" you'll know how the search turned out 😝
 

SkyScrapin

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Sales guy here, chiming in from the golf course (naturally). IT is quite lucrative, but I would 5 billion times over never get into the development side of the business. Align yourself with a pre-sales role as soon and as quick as possible. Sounds like you might even be best tailored to a sellers role.

Where are you located? Be good to know what business surround you.
 
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MarinePMI

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Nah, entry level devops is six figgers most places.

Oh Lord, the next big overblown buzzword compliant catch phrase ("DevOps"). While I won't argue that it commands a high salary, I would say that it (like "AI/ML", "Cloud Enabled", "Service Oriented Architecture" and "Netcentric") is another over loaded term that has a billion different meanings, depending on who you talk to about it. :D

CPC v2.0 ("Catch Phrase Compliant")...
 

Drago6

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Sales guy here, chiming in from the golf course (naturally). IT is quite lucrative, but I would 5 billion times over never get into the development side of the business. Align yourself with a pre-sales role as soon and as quick as possible. Sounds like you might even be best tailored to a sellers role.

Where are you located? Be good to know what business surround you.
My first job out of college was medical device sales, interacting with the prospects and clients was the fun part, dealing with my boss and the awful CRM software was hell haha. I havent touched sales since, but i doubt they'll be putting H1B's in sales/etc type roles so that could be a major plus to getting back into it.

I'm currently in Rhode Island, would love to move to NH if i could find a job there.
 

MarinePMI

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My first job out of college was medical device sales, interacting with the prospects and clients was the fun part, dealing with my boss and the awful CRM software was hell haha. I havent touched sales since, but i doubt they'll be putting H1B's in sales/etc type roles so that could be a major plus to getting back into it.

I'm currently in Rhode Island, would love to move to NH if i could find a job there.
I think half of southern NH works for BAE Systems; might want to check their openings there...
 

Desert Raven

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Oh Lord, the next big overblown buzzword compliant catch phrase ("DevOps"). While I won't argue that it commands a high salary, I would say that it (like "AI/ML", "Cloud Enabled", "Service Oriented Architecture" and "Netcentric") is another over loaded term that has a billion different meanings, depending on who you talk to about it. :D

CPC v2.0 ("Catch Phrase Compliant")...
So true. Our former CEO was this British-Buzzword-BS, cyborg-type that always, every f@cking meeting would invariable say, (at some point in the meeting)....... "AI and Machine Learning, in our cloud enabled architecture, will be a force multiplier". Me and a few of my buddies would text each other the beer mug every time he said that.
 

Greg Langelius *

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I spent a career in DP, (now IT), starting in Mainframe operations(1970), to mainframe site operations manager, to telecomm specialist, to applications programmer, to systems analyst, to systems security specialist, to corporate national I/T help desk professional (1990), and finally; to self employed I/T programming analyst/consultant.

Only in that last step did I have to provide for my continuing I/T education; assume a 5%-10% of gross expenditures cost, and 2-3 weeks of class work each year. You take two vacations each year and one of them is solely about advancing your education. Failure to do so ages/obsoletes you o/o the compensated workforce in under two years.

I was done and done with a terminal heart attack in 2004 (they pulled me back alive three times over that week), and have been medically retired since. My entire savings and retirement accounts were consumed by my second bout with Lymphoma, a couple of years before the heart attack. You keep on slugging, there's always something coming at you sideways; so be prepared. Took a decade to get back up on my feet. It's always about the long haul. I'll be married 50 years next week, you're never alone.

The early stages of I/T employment are essential for obtaining corporate sponsored education. Seriously consider changing employers and job titles in order to deepen and broaden your knowledge base, and keep the currently offline skills current whatever it may cost you personally. The only correct approach is to adopt a professional mantle from the very start.

Professional meaning no matter how it happens, you assume the blame voluntarily, and fix it right; I have eaten thousand of dollars loss on a single project, and come back for more. You only fail when you refuse to step back up. Regardless; the professional approach will be the best one; and recognize that when disaster strikes, it originates in your personal decision to accept the particular project in the first place, and it ends up being you took a bite too big to chew. Know your limits; you alone bear responsibility; that's the core meaning of professionalism.

Eventually, I opted o/o the direct corporate employment because salaried employment is slavery on the cheap. Returning to the same work context as a self employed consultant is a huge income advancement, but it's also a tightrope, and when the pooch gets screwed, you get to eat the poop.

There is no easy part in being an I/T professional. Never look back, eyes on the prize, long and distant. Those weren't mistakes; they were learning opportunities.

Greg
 
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BLEE

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IT has really changed. When I started 20+ years, ago, it was black magic. Techies were either DB/programmer types, or sysadmin types. Now days you really need to be a jack of all trades and master of a couple. I have an MCSE and lots of experience, so I got on with a local school district, as a Network Analyst, but I don't do much with the network. My world is VMware, Microsoft Servers and Office 365, but not exclusively. If I knew someone who wanted to make a career change, I'd recommend starting as a desktop support tech, somewhere that did not require certifications and immediately begin working on obtaining certifications that would support a path toward the longer term goal, in an IT career. It's a very large and varied field.
 

Greg Langelius *

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Back in my day our epiphany was when we got our Datapoint workstation hubs up and running on PC-Bus PC Arcnet disk servers. Databus was one helluva programming language, too. I was the PCLan Tekkie, and Novell 2 certified. The other people mostly just kissed ass and cashed their paychecks; my candle burned from both ends, workaholic to the bone.

The industry has moved on eons worth, I'd be as obsolete now as a Neanderthal.

But the inside of a PC is a homecoming for me. Back when the industry was upgrading from 286 to 386 I did complete internal rebuilds with new motherboards, hard drives, disk controllers and Videos cards (VGA was the new manna then). I did 200+ machine upgrades, saving M-L hundreds of thou ($2k apiece for new IBM PS2's back then) in workstation replacement costs.

They gave me a letter of commendation and a pink slip, they didn't need me anymore. So they thought; I was back by Christmas as an independent subcontractor, making 2 1/2 times what they were paying before we ran for the pinks; riding the parachute, I never missed a week with pay. They could keep their AVP tag. $80k/yr on a HS diploma in 1992, not chickenfeed. 12yr as an independent contractor before the big one, total and permanent retired at 58.

Corporate culture is sharks on speed.

I just replaced my old Dell (gave it to my Grandson; it originally ran Win7) with a refurb Dell Optiplex 9010. The memory, processor, and SSD/HDD are new. Added a second monitor (for 24/7 Netflix), total outlay under $500.

Even if the motherboard goes belly-oops, I can put in a new one for $75. Have you seen those new micro PC's? Just hang it on the back of you monitor and go.

Greg
 
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mercracing

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I’m actually in a similar boat. I’m looking to get out of the diesel field. I’ve started my first semester in IT at the local college. Was going to go for system admin or network engineer. Now I’m thinking I might go security!
 
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Maxwell

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@Greg Langelius * wow, & here I thought I was the only old timer that was IBM mainframe. I was one of the last one out the door that did CICS/DB2. After I tossed in the towel I read that the systems I worked on all came crashing down. No more calls at all hours of the morning for me.

Maxwell
 
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