IT Geeks, please advise me on my job/career.

Discussion in 'education & employment' started by sim667, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    So short intro, some of you will know I used to be a lecturer and technician in photography/art/media with some IT aspects to my job (supporting macs predominantly).

    But after 3 rounds of redundancy I got an out of the blue job offer from a mate, to go work for him, slightly better money than I'd been making in my previous roles, but it was still a trainee salary. I took it, I'd have enough of education, the college had absolutely shafted my teaching qualification by taking away all my teaching hours, I hadn't had a pay rise in 7 years, and to be frank I was just pissed off with the whole thing.

    So I went into this trainee role, specialising in a couple of IBM products, although my remit has really been administering linux, websphere (middleware), an ECM product, db2 (databases) and some other bits and pieces like open dj..... Now I understand these probably aren't the most in demand types of software, and I'm still certainly not a linux god...... but I've been a trainee and on a trainee salary for nearly 4 years now, and I'm certainly more proficient than a trainee...... I can build environments from scratch ready for work.

    So I'm starting to look around, not desperately, but I'd like to have a better idea of what salary I could be on, and what type of job roles I could be doing, whether working from home is a potential route I could go down (I'd like to do a bit of working from home and working whilst travelling). So has anyone got suggestions of what type of roles I could be looking at for my background and experience level?
  2. MickiQ

    MickiQ Well-Known Member

    If you have Linux skills then Cloud is currently much in demand, Amazon offer a year's free access to their Cloud offering AWS and the chance to learn it (they have loads of downloadable docs)
    EC2 Amazon's own linux is basically Centos with the serial numbers filed off (Centos is free Redhat) so shouldn't be too much of a hill for you to climb.
    When you're applying for new jobs you might need to get 'creative' about how much you used it in your current job or maybe you can use it in your current job, given that Amazon seem to get everywhere.
    dervish likes this.
  3. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    I actually already administer cent os 7 boxes day to day.

    I will definitely have a look at the AWS suggestion, thanks very much.
    MickiQ likes this.
  4. souljacker

    souljacker A bit of skullduggery

    You could do the AWS training courses that are all free. It's a great environment to learn in because you can lab it up from home for minimum cost.

    Have you got any certs? What are these IBM products you work with? Being an expert on a lesser known bit of a kit can often get you decent contracting gigs.
  5. cybershot

    cybershot Well-Known Member

    You can get really well paid for what you’re doing. The problem is getting in the door somewhere. Especially without certification.

    Try universities. With your background in education (something I had) before going and working at the uni I work at now (I did 10 years corporate in between and don’t get me wrong I enjoyed it but they do work you to death) and it certainly played well in getting me in the door. I have no IT qualifications. I’ve since moved up a grade within 2 years and my current area manager has suggested if I keep taking on more things like I am within his team he’s going to have try and get me re graded again in the coming 12 months. Which would essentially mean since being at the university I’d have gone up 3 grades within 4 years. Although I’m not counting on that of course. The money needs to become available. Most uni’s will have massive it depts and especially due to research that goes on will have fuck loads of virtual infrastructure and data requirements, databases and application devs etc.

    You’d be looking at salary’s between £25k entry for a specialist area and £40k at the top of a scale that would be below management in our place for someone who knows their shit.
    equationgirl, Riklet and sim667 like this.
  6. alex_

    alex_ Well-Known Member

    The other thing to do with cloud is figure it out on the free courses and then try to find a way to use it at work - so you get production experience.

    sim667 likes this.
  7. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    I like the idea of working back at a uni, but it means commuting and really I'm trying to avoid a commute. Ideally I want to be remote working. On the days I remote work in my current job I'm so much more productive than sitting in an office 8 hours a day.

    There are one or two near me though, so I'll see what they've got going on, good heads up. ta.
  8. cybershot

    cybershot Well-Known Member

    You'll probably find you can work from home. My setup allows me to comfortably work in the office or from home with remote access.
    sim667 likes this.
  9. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    So I never really decided what to do, but I'm seriously thinking about having another proper look, me and my girlfriend also really want to move to the coast and the obvious choice for us would be brighton. I was going to start a thread asking for advice, then remember I'd started one so really bumping this so I can remind myself :)
  10. Boudicca

    Boudicca Seaside Queen

    If you want beach, consider Bournemouth too. There's a lot of tech & digital media companies here. Also a couple of universities.
    Tomsdad and sim667 like this.
  11. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    We've already got a big network of freinds in Brighton. I do in London too, but I'm done with London.

    In an ideal world remote working would be the one
    Artaxerxes likes this.
  12. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    WIth your background, you could move across into DevOps. Lots of people have moved from sysadmin type stuff into the more application supporting stuff (disclaimer: devops is a philosophy/process, not really a job title, but you'll see loads of stuff advertised as DevOps Engineer. The stuff people have advised above about learning AWS is solid, and if you look at how to deploy Python, Ruby or JS apps on top of the AWS kit you'll be sorted. We took on a 'junior' devops guy last year, basically straight out of Uni on about £35k. I contract doing it now having career changed about 5 years ago. Lots of remote work, but you need to have experience to get remote jobs, ime. (I'm now 95% remote, go into the office one or two days a month.) Keywords if you're searching stuff - DevOps, Kubernetes, Docker, Containers. It's all virtual machines of one kind or another, so might be fairly familiar.
    tommers and ShiftyBagLady like this.
  13. grit

    grit an ugly force for good

    Another vote for AWS and something like chef or puppet. There is a fashion to provide abstraction over "cloud" providers, so you can switch between Azure and other alternatives.
    sim667 likes this.
  14. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    sim667 likes this.
  15. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    I currently run kubernetes clusters on CentOS vm's and I've used docker before, didn't really get on with it as I found it a bit frustrating, but thanks for the hints.

    The problem I've always struggled with on AWS stuff is they give everything stupid names.
    iamwithnail likes this.
  16. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    Oh, you're probably pretty good if that's the direction you decide to go in, then! :D
    sim667 likes this.
  17. Chz

    Chz Stark Raving Sane

    I've been in the unix biz for 20 years, and I struggle to get my head around Kubernetes. It's one of those things that makes no sense until your problem hits a certain size, and then you have to have been planning on that all along to be able to integrate Kube into it. So powerful, such a massive PITA.

    Just make sure you enjoy yourself. After 20 years, I seriously question whether I should be doing this stuff at all. But it pays too well to give it up entirely.

    Learn Ansible. It's the perfect tool for managing all those AWS instances. You can just automate the shit out of a lot of the little details. I've only got my own backyard experience with AWS, but at my level that doesn't count for shit. :(
  18. Artaxerxes

    Artaxerxes Well-Known Member

    Linux is undergoing a bit of a resurgence these days so emphasise that.

    You'll want to look into Powershell and the AWS/Azure options for cloud services as well.
    sim667 likes this.
  19. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    I've been playing with AWS today, spun up an ec2 instance.....

    before I really get to faffing with it, whilst we use CentOS 7 at work, am I right in thinking most businesses would use redhat?
  20. Chz

    Chz Stark Raving Sane

    RH if they want support, CentOS otherwise. I mean, there are SuSE and Debian places out there but the vast majority are either RedHat or CentOS and using the vast RH support library out there. Though I have seen places that use RH for Live and CentOS for Staging, but I can hardly see the point - you don't have to buy an RHN support contract.

    CentOS is RedHat, FWIW. Same way that Fedora is basically RH/CentOS Beta. Everything that works on RH 6.10 works on CentOS 6.10 and vice-versa. Only exception is the RH paid YUM repos.
  21. sim667

    sim667 Licking windows on the 303 bus.

    Yeah I know CentOs is RHEL but there's always quirks, hence I thought I'd ask.
  22. alex_

    alex_ Well-Known Member

    From the perspective of a cv, they are the same.

    sim667 likes this.
  23. iamwithnail

    iamwithnail Well-Known Member

    Most businesses ime use Debian/Ubuntu, or Alpine/CoreOs if they're running containers, Alpine being lovely and small for building docker images on. This is fairly startup/tech company focused, though, so ymmv depending the sector and stage of company you go into. (Current job uses a lot of Websphere stuff that we're trying to run Kube on and it's an enormous PITA. I may have questions for you sim667, never mind the other way round.) Amazon Linux is based off redhat though. The only difference *really* if you're looking at cloud stuff is what package manager you plug into Chef/Ansible/Puppet. Tbh, knowing the differences and quirks, as you clearly are already aware of, will go an enormous way!

    Eta: Happy to answer Kube questions to any and all, either here or elsewhere. :) It's about 90% of my day job atm. It's less about the scale of it (although it makes that 95% simpler), and more about the multi-service capability and the interface with cloud providers to provision stuff that makes it so shiny.
    sim667 likes this.

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