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Competitive IT positions

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  • Aug 26th, 2020 7:17 pm
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Nov 4, 2012
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Competitive IT positions

The IT market is really competitive nowadays, especially for senior positions. Do I have a better chance to get a job/contract if I lower my rate/salary?
31 replies
Deal Guru
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Mar 23, 2008
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craigslist123 wrote: The IT market is really competitive nowadays, especially for senior positions. Do I have a better chance to get a job/contract if I lower my rate/salary?
Are you getting job offers, and just not able to close the deal to get the job? Or is your job hunt failing earlier in the process? If it's failing earlier, then it's not your salary expectations that's causing the problem. IMHO.

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Jul 13, 2009
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It's a temporary slump, a lot of companies are cutting back budgets or re-evaluating. Some will want to accelerate plans to improve work from home and BCP capabilities.

Lowering rate does not do anything to change demand. Improving your skill set does.
Sr. Member
Dec 11, 2013
654 posts
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I've been lucky enough to retain my position for now at least, I'm still taking different programming and analytics courses on the weekends.

What would be the worst area they could drills down on in your interview? Start with that and branch out, average proficiency is a moving target. It's not just the skill itself, but learning might give you a better prospective on an issue that you would need as a decision maker.
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Mar 7, 2007
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We are getting our behind kicked in IT.

Every contractor that is still working can consider themselves lucky.

Last recession EVERY contractor reduced their rates... well, maybe this is an exaggeration, but let's say 90% of contractors had to reduce their rates to be competitive.

Starting a contract now could be considered a nice victory...

Good luck!
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Nov 2, 2013
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Doubt it is a salary issue. You can almost write a little book with the list of typical qualifications for a typical job opening. Many would reckon that with the amount of time and money it'd take to get all of them, one might as well go into something else. This unless you're already in the industry with the extensive list of credentials and specific experience they want. It's almost an industry left for the poor suckers with nowhere else to go.

I've in the past (prior to COVID) didn't have trouble finding $7,000-10,000/month jobs, but to even get a $60,000 help desk job, seemed like they wanted you to know rocket science. It didn't matter whether you had experience in the role/field - if you didn't hit all the checkboxes some HR lady wanted to see, you were out of luck.

Outsourcing and the explosion in popularity of cloud computing has killed off a lot of local gigs as well. For things like web or app development, they reckon they can find some cheap Indian or Chinese labour on the other side of the world to do your work for the fraction of the price. Also what used to be in house is increasingly being passed onto some other external IT firm. Even networks are being managed remotely nowadays. In the past, there were times I was brought in to set up a new server or some sort of remote employee access with customized permissions varying upon employee, only to find that you couldn't even change a wi-fi password without calling some IT firm on the other side of the country that was supposingly remotely managing the whole network.
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Feb 29, 2008
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Post above is right on the money. IT is getting so saturated that companies can sit back and list 30 requirements for entry level help desk and not have to pay for it. This was how it was before the pandemic I can only imagine it’s much worse. I don’t think help desk jobs have gone up much if at all in pay, but the requirements seem much higher.
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Jun 27, 2006
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JayLove06 wrote: Post above is right on the money. IT is getting so saturated that companies can sit back and list 30 requirements for entry level help desk and not have to pay for it. This was how it was before the pandemic I can only imagine it’s much worse. I don’t think help desk jobs have gone up much if at all in pay, but the requirements seem much higher.
It's getting crazy and if they can't find the person here they can go and bring someone if from outside the country at a lower rate.

Saw a posting on Linkedin the other day, the developer of a platform referenced a job ad that required 4 years experience with the application and said, guess I won't qualify since I only have 1.5 years.....things like this aren't new but makes you wonder who is driving.
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Jun 27, 2006
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bhrm wrote: It's a temporary slump, a lot of companies are cutting back budgets or re-evaluating. Some will want to accelerate plans to improve work from home and BCP capabilities.

Lowering rate does not do anything to change demand. Improving your skill set does.
Am hearing that it things are starting to pick up but there is some pressure on rates. Not all that surprised as in general, this is all part of the business cycle and it just happens that COVID was the cause of a downturn this time. Things will get better.

+ 1 to improving skills. There is always something that we can pick up or improve upon.
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Feb 29, 2008
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maple1 wrote: It's getting crazy and if they can't find the person here they can go and bring someone if from outside the country at a lower rate.

Saw a posting on Linkedin the other day, the developer of a platform referenced a job ad that required 4 years experience with the application and said, guess I won't qualify since I only have 1.5 years.....things like this aren't new but makes you wonder who is driving.
Yea....was reading a story about an employer asking for 10 years in experience for a technology that was 6 years old. That's the kind of nonsense employers are doing. They CAN though because there are so many candidates and so few jobs...so companies can afford to ask for cyborg candidates that don't exist. IT is tough right now because you can find cheap talent to do the job....can't say that about too many other industries. lso have to keep learning or get left behind. There's no cruise control unless you're Exec level.
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Sep 27, 2003
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JayLove06 wrote: Yea....was reading a story about an employer asking for 10 years in experience for a technology that was 6 years old. That's the kind of nonsense employers are doing. They CAN though because there are so many candidates and so few jobs...so companies can afford to ask for cyborg candidates that don't exist. IT is tough right now because you can find cheap talent to do the job....can't say that about too many other industries. lso have to keep learning or get left behind. There's no cruise control unless you're Exec level.
Yes I believe you are refering to IBM Job Ad Calls For a Minimum 12 Years' Experience With Kubernetes -- Which is Six Years Old

What a joke, it just shows how unserious they are with these job postings.

In this situation, the candidate should advertise they have

- 20 years of advanced experience with kubernetes

- 40 years of unprecedented experience with Azure Cloud

- 60 years of future experience with Microsoft Windows
Deal Expert
Feb 29, 2008
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416_guy wrote: Yes I believe you are refering to IBM Job Ad Calls For a Minimum 12 Years' Experience With Kubernetes -- Which is Six Years Old

What a joke, it just shows how unserious they are with these job postings.

In this situation, the candidate should advertise they have

- 20 years of advanced experience with kubernetes

- 40 years of unprecedented experience with Azure Cloud

- 60 years of future experience with Microsoft Windows
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Sep 11, 2017
517 posts
378 upvotes
416_guy wrote: Yes I believe you are refering to IBM Job Ad Calls For a Minimum 12 Years' Experience With Kubernetes -- Which is Six Years Old

What a joke, it just shows how unserious they are with these job postings.

In this situation, the candidate should advertise they have

- 20 years of advanced experience with kubernetes

- 40 years of unprecedented experience with Azure Cloud

- 60 years of future experience with Microsoft Windows
All while being under 40 years old...
Deal Expert
Feb 29, 2008
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FedExpress wrote: All while being under 40 years old...
Gotta accept entry level salary too.
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Jun 27, 2006
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Most of us are in the workforce and will stay/land on our feet, some way, some how. Where it will be really messed up is for the kids in school today. Management who are only concerned with short term results or their own pay packet while ignoring the longer term social impacts of their decisions, are really just paper pushers rather than leaders. This applies to business and the public sector as well. But I guess everyone just wants a seat when the music stops. Ignoring that their own kids may also be impacted by some trends of these decisions. Anyway, rant over. Just gotta keep on plugging and hope for the best.
Member
Jan 18, 2014
209 posts
14 upvotes
416_guy wrote: Yes I believe you are refering to IBM Job Ad Calls For a Minimum 12 Years' Experience With Kubernetes -- Which is Six Years Old

What a joke, it just shows how unserious they are with these job postings.

In this situation, the candidate should advertise they have

- 20 years of advanced experience with kubernetes

- 40 years of unprecedented experience with Azure Cloud

- 60 years of future experience with Microsoft Windows
- Two centuries of experience with Unix (from Dilbert many years ago, where it was "one century")
Deal Fanatic
Mar 15, 2005
5723 posts
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My team used to be primarily staffed by consultants the past few years (about 75% of my team).

New mandate is to find cheap FTEs to backfill now, especially some younger grads with 1-2 years experience.
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Oct 5, 2019
237 posts
237 upvotes
Ziggy007 wrote: My team used to be primarily staffed by consultants the past few years (about 75% of my team).

New mandate is to find cheap FTEs to backfill now, especially some younger grads with 1-2 years experience.
This is what happens when it’s seen as a cost center. Becomes all about cost rather than value, and correspondingly ways to save cost rather than looking for ways to increase value.

Highly recommend folks look for positions where what they do is seen as adding value, especially to the company’s bottom line. e.g. software dev at an software company, rather than internal IT at a non tech company.
Sr. Member
Sep 29, 2008
965 posts
200 upvotes
Mississauga
As bad as IT is, it is still less competitive than most other good paying industries (medicine, law, business, marketing, finance, accounting, nursing etc) where men have to compete with women for the same jobs. IT is still overwhelmingly male despite various efforts to get women to enter.
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Mar 7, 2007
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motime wrote: As bad as IT is, it is still less competitive than most other good paying industries (medicine, law, business, marketing, finance, accounting, nursing etc) where men have to compete with women for the same jobs. IT is still overwhelmingly male despite various efforts to get women to enter.
I don't think this is a factor in IT today in Canada... men or women doesn't matter, we already have too many candidates for any open position.

As the OP posted, even more so for senior positions.... everybody is applying.

Or maybe you meant to say that it's going to get worse in the future... which is possible....
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