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Who are CIOs Planning to Hire Next? 163

Ed Baker writes "Do you have the skills CIOs are looking for? just posted their latest research, in which they asked more than 400 top IT executives about the hiring outlook for 18 different IT positions, and finds that the demand for new systems and infrastructure is leading to more hiring for IT professionals who can build them. The result: Project managers and programmers/systems developers top the list of IT professionals CIOs are looking to hire."
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Who are CIOs Planning to Hire Next?

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  • How much do you have to pay to get advertising like this?
    • Remember how annoying other n-page articles have been, with their loads of ads and the never-disappearing "Next Page" links? Kudos to this magazine for boiling their article down to one summary page, and for pushing all clutter to the edges. Hopefully other sites are watching and will take notice!
    • I got it for free at one job, but only read it a couple of times as it was always full of self-serving crap.

      You know, like when you agree to answer a survey and realize it's your bank when they ask questions like: "Please rate how much you like Washington Mutual. One, love it. Two, think it's awesome. Three, would marry my teller. Four, wish they would adopt me."

      Wait! I do love her! Come back!
  • by winkydink ( 650484 ) * <> on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:01PM (#15923339) Homepage Journal
    I've harped on this for almost two decades. Technical skills keep you employed. Business skills get you promoted.

    [OK, nit pickers, I'm waiting for you to point out the corner cases where this isn't true]
    • minor addition (Score:5, Insightful)

      by geekoid ( 135745 ) <dadinportland@[ ] ['yah' in gap]> on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:13PM (#15923395) Homepage Journal
      "Technical skills keep you employed. Business skills get you promoted."
      I say:
      Technical skills get you the job, social skills keep you employed. Business skills get you promoted."
      • no no no no no (Score:5, Interesting)

        by oyenstikker ( 536040 ) <slashdot@sbyr[ ]org ['ne.' in gap]> on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @08:25PM (#15923702) Homepage Journal
        Social skills and [false] confidence get you the job, not completely sucking* keeps you employed, and kissing above and kicking below (aka business skills) gets you promoted. Techical skills get stuff done.

        * Nobody wants to fess up to hiring sub-par people, so they pretend they're okay and keep them around.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by bobcote ( 304341 )
          That's why there are so many headhunters calling with these "wonderful" contract - to- perm job offers.

          Hiring managers are protected from their own incompetence by auditioning employees for two to six months before making a commitment. Also if the person is too good they can keep them around without the danger of them becoming your boss. You can also not renew the contract and take full credit for the work.

      • When was the last time you saw anybody being hired on the basis of an evaluation of their technical skills?

        Sales skills (== lying) get you the job. They hire the person who lies the best about what they can do. I've never seen anybody hired on the basis of demonstrated ability - only claimed ability (and those claims usually turn out to be, at best, exaggerated).
        • Try interviewing for somewhere like Amazon for an SDE position. It is almost 100% technical.
        • Re:minor addition (Score:5, Insightful)

          by segfaultcoredump ( 226031 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @09:55PM (#15924108)
          I've been involved with dozens of interviews. They all tend to go like this:

          me: I see that you claimed to have skils in XYZ. How comfortable are you with implementing an XYZ system?

          candidate: I'm an expert with XYZ

          me: Oh, how did you solve the /Bogus XYZ/ issue?
          me: What were some of the design issues you faced in implementing XYZ? (make sure it is not something that is covered in chapter 1 of the XYZ cram guide)

          candidate: Oh, simple.... /5 minutes of bs/

          If the candidate gives us a look of 'wtf are you talking about', then we smile and move on, drilling into real issues with XYZ (to determine just how much they know about XYZ).

          The general idea is this: give them some bait, see if they take it.

          As an average, I'd say that half of the candidates that get to my stage of the process are overstating their abilities. They dont get any further. I have yet to regret hiring somebody. (If they are faking it, I have a tendancy to keep drilling on the topic so that it soon becomes painfully obvious that even they realize that they are faking it and we all know it. Its a great way to make sure that the guy does not expect to actually get the job)

          In general, lying will only get you a job at a place run by idiots. If that is the type of job you want, go for it. It can pay well, but the turnover can be a real pain. When layoffs come (and they will. Remember, you are working for idiots), dont expect them to keep "the best" people, just the ones that they _think_ are the best. i.e., the ones with the best golf scores. :-)

          • Re:minor addition (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward
            In general, lying will only get you a job at a place run by idiots.
            Fortunately, this covers 98% of large employers.
            • All moderate to large employers have issues. Even within the company I work for (1000 employees), that are groups run by idiots and groups run by great people (even... gasp... managers...)

              The trick is to find the right group who has at least 1 or 2 good levels of insulation (aka management) above you. Every large company has these groups. The trick is to find them. Its not easy, but if you manage to find one, you'll be much happier.
    • I've harped on this for almost two decades. Technical skills keep you employed. Business skills get you promoted.

      And the bestest employee would have great tech skills and great business skills. Everyone wants to hire the superman. That's a given.

      Now, on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 low, 10 high) how far down can your tech skills go to bring up your business skills?
      (5 being average for that sector, not for the public)

      If you stay employed because your tech skills are an "8", but you want to be promoted and your busi

      • Re:Ubermensch (Score:5, Insightful)

        by geekoid ( 135745 ) <dadinportland@[ ] ['yah' in gap]> on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:20PM (#15923430) Homepage Journal
        you are not balancing a character sheet here.

        You can maitain your '8' in tech AND raise you business skills.
        • you are not balancing a character sheet here.

          You can maitain your '8' in tech AND raise you business skills.
          No, you cannot. There are only so many hours in the day, so many days in the week, etc.

          Like I said, everyone would love to hire the guy who is great at everything.

          The reality is, those people don't exist. Which is why Dilbert cartoons are so popular.
          • I keep my technical skills up to date, and I am increasing my business skills.

            When at work, home many area do you need to keep your technical skills up to date?

            Now, am I keeping technical skills I do not use or need up to date? no. But I can't fancy why I would need to keep ontp of the latest FORTRAN development, or C++ skills when my job does not, and will not require them.

            OTOH, my database skills are up to date(really not to difficult if you understand the underlying mechinisms).

            You just lack motivation.
          • by Cyno ( 85911 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:59PM (#15923583) Journal
            Depends on the goal. If your company's goal is to create a solid, stable, efficient, maintainable, scalable infrastructure then you can forget about the business skills and focus on the job. If their goal is just to make money at all cost, then forget about the tech skills (you already got the job) and focus on the business skills, such as how to smile and lie to someone's face and turn around to stab them in the back in your next meeting with their superior, and how to cover your ass proactively to avoid taking the fall for disasters that will result from the obvious lack of competence, since nobody cared about competence, its not the goal, etc, etc, etc.. :)
            • by Corbets ( 169101 )
              For the record, creating a stable infrastructure and making money are not mutually exclusive goals. However, the reason a business has an infrastructure is to make money, and that's the part most IT types miss. You need to analyze everything you do in a cost-vs-rewards light - *that's* the business skills that CIOs want their tech people to have.
              • by Cyno ( 85911 )
                Nope. Technology is not business, its science. In order to provide the stable solution I mentioned I would have to spend my time evaluating teh technology in a production environment. Lots of things look nice on paper in the business world, but us techs cannot rely on theory to get our jobs done.

                In theory Windows XP is the most secure and stable OS ever. See the problem now? Its not as simple as CIOs fantasize it should be. We don't have the time to do both our job and theirs and expect that our job g
            • If your company's goal is to create a solid, stable, efficient, maintainable, scalable infrastructure which improves the business processes of the company and/or satisfies the needs of the customers (and thus helps the company make more money) ...

              A technically perfect system which does not help (either directly or indirectly) a company make more money is totally worthless from the point of view of a company (even if it's very interesting from a technical point of view).

              Good technical skills together with so
          • In other words there's a reason we have managers and individual contributors. Managers should be of more intelligence than their individual contributors and able to look beyond their unhappy frown to understand why the daily stress their job dumps on them might somehow make them unhappy. The alternative is the individual contributor finds a new job, possible as a manager, simply to avoid stress.
          • by jafac ( 1449 )
            The real challenge to upgrading one's business skills, is to not get bogged down in meetings. Once you start down that road, it's very difficult to also perform marathon coding sessions - or especially, provide good support to your "customers" (external or internal).

            A freind of mine recently started down that path - and yesterday, complained that he had 12 hours of meetings on his schedule.

            The "support" role is kind of a nice one, because you have a great opportunity to sharpen social skills, and because p
          • by borgboy ( 218060 )
            It's so much easier to compete against someone who has already decided his limits.
        • Unfortunately, some people simply don't have business acumen in them, just like some people just don't have tech skills in them. (possibly like me, wtf knows) Where this survey comes in interesting - of course, it's also bloody obvious - is where it says, "IF you are good at understanding business, big companies are more likely to hire you. If you are good at understanding technology, small companies will be more likely to hire you." Which would you rather work for?
          • right now? bif business. BUt thats becasue I went through several small business that either died from lack of funding, mismanagment, or missing a market window. In one case they went 'out of business' but then a month later the owners sold the technology for a lot of money.

            Of course, since we didn't work there, they didn't need to pay out the 30% that the promised to divide up among the team(4 people)

            rat bastards, I hope their new yaught sinks and takes them with it.

            • Re:Ubermensch (Score:4, Insightful)

              by protohiro1 ( 590732 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @10:23PM (#15924263) Homepage Journal
              Small companies sound good on paper. They suck in practice. They have no cash at all, so they can't pay you, can't buy you the softs you need and they put the servers in the basement and cross their fingers. You can't get promoted, so you have to leave to advance. I would give up the "fun" atmosphere and "non-corporate" environment for a more paid vacation and quarterly salary reviews.
    • Can we define business skills here?
      • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:53PM (#15923567)
        Schmoozing, bullshitting, backstabbing your peers, politicking, empire building, etc.

        It's weird; the American culture values business skills more than any other (except maybe acting skills and legal skills), but these skills aren't even mentioned in public school.
        • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @08:14PM (#15923655)
          I forgot to mention one very important skill if you want to rise to the very top of the most powerful corporations: throwing chairs.
        • It's weird; the American culture values business skills more than any other (except maybe acting skills and legal skills), but these skills aren't even mentioned in public school.

          That's just the law of supply and demand. With demand outstrips supply, prices rise. When supply outstrips demand, prices plummet.

          Since the US educational system has ensured that those with effective business and leadership skills are in short supply, their salaries are higher.

          I think you'd do very well to be a technology-savvy bus
        • They are related, but not the same thing
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Shajenko42 ( 627901 )
          What, you think the elites, the richest people in the world want competition?

          Compulsory education was designed to create factory workers, not leaders.
        • by Corbets ( 169101 )
          Business skills may not have been mentioned in your school, but they are still learned there. Learning to deal with your peers, being in high-stress situations (e.g. the book report that you put off till the last minute) and adapting to it, learning to see what opportunities exist and choosing the right ones (i.e. selecting your classes in high school or college)... it's all there somewhere.

          That being said, in my public university [], I earned a degree in Telecommunications and Networking that strongly focuse
        • There is more to business skills than the stuff you find in The Prince []

          Too bad that the current crop of high-flying CEOs seems heavy on machiavellian tactics ...
          • by sgtrock ( 191182 )
            You know, every time someone brings up _The_Prince_ I wonder if I read the same book everyone else did. While the book was designed by Machiavelli as an extended resume (he wrote it in hopes of getting a job from some recently promoted prince or another), his preference for a republican form of government show through almost every chapter. Maybe I got that out of the book because my copy of _The_Prince_ included the circumstances under which he had come to write it?
        • Schmoozing, bullshitting, backstabbing your peers, politicking, empire building, etc.

          I saw students learning these skills at my public junior high school. If you wanted to be part of the popular crowd, if you wanted to rise to the top of the pack of Jennys, you had to master all those. And now I wonder why there aren't more successful prominent businesswomen out there.
      • - Sufficient social skills to be likable - and to give praise to both others and yourself.
        - Know your Machiavelli and know when to use it and when not to use it.
        - Be professional in how you communicate and deal with people and organizations.

        And - you keep an eye on the budget when prioritizing.
    • And from that survey the bigger your company the more important business skills are. I work for a 330,000 employee company and there is no doubt that business skills are the most heavily weighted skills when it comes to promotions. Of the VPs I know here only one is pure tech and he's a worldwide guru in RF stuff. '
    • I've worked in IT over 25 years.

      From what I have seen, over and over, hiring, retention, and promotions, are almost arbitrary. Such decions are almost never based on sound logic. Many times I've seen people promoted to management who have neither business, or technical, skills.

      If so called "social skills" means playing politics, then I suppose that is important.
    • After I was laid off at general dynamics, I was offered some free training from unemployment. They rejected all of my training ideas, and kept pushing project management, so I took that.

      I inverviewed at raytheon for a job that I seemed to fit perfectly, especially since my top secret clearance was still active. The interviewer was very concerned about my project managemnet training. He kept saying: "this is just an admin job, it involves no project management." No matter what I said, his concern was very ap
  • I know it's basically advertising, but the piece doesn't take the Age Factor into account. When they say they're looking for programmers/developers, they mean they're looking for "programmers/developers under the age of 32 (or thereabouts)". I know lots of guys nearing the 40 threshold. As they do so, if they're not already in management, they're layoff fodder. This is for guys with solid, up-to-date technical skills. They just get paid more than the entry level worker bees (especially from offshore firms),
    • That's not true at the company I work at. At least half of the new hires this year are 40+ with a handful being 50+.
  • by twitter ( 104583 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:14PM (#15923404) Homepage Journal

    Translation: Big dumb companies value propaganda more than function and don't value their employees. Notice that training is close to the bottom of the list. Technical competence and familiarity with fundamentals of the field should be the thing they look for in new hires. Business school is something a company should pay for it's own employees if it wants to promote them to upper management. For a new employee it's a place where they can forget what they need to know. Looking for detailed business knowledge outside of the company is an admission that you are not willing to train and have not trained your own people adequately in a long time. Prediction: Big dumb companies are going to get dumber and people working there will continue to be forced to waste their overworked lives on mind numbing nonsense instead of getting things done right. You will be worn out and discarded like a rubber gasket.

    True familiarity with the way a company works can only come from working in the company and keeping up with your competitor's actions. Business school case studies, while interesting, generally don't apply outside the specific case except for obvious general principles. Sure, some business schools are very good at understanding industry but I'm not convinced that's going to be useful to some guy who's there to make a better network or information sharing tool for the company. Someone who's been at the company long enough is going to know who needs what information from who an how best to get it there. If they have had the time to keep up with the field, they are a company's best resource.

    Yes, I've worked for a fortune 100 company. It got nothing but worse and this survey shows that the trend continues. Notice how the smaller companies valued skill more than propaganda?

    • by BVis ( 267028 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:56PM (#15923573)
      Yes, I've worked for a fortune 100 company. It got nothing but worse and this survey shows that the trend continues. Notice how the smaller companies valued skill more than propaganda?
      I've worked for more than one Fortune 500 company (I'm honestly not sure if they're 100 or not) where it was very clear that there was *no chance whatsoever* that you would ever advance beyond your current job description. It seems to be SOP these days for Big Biz to cultivate the environment in such a way that it's very clear to everyone involved that if you want a raise (past the pittance that you get each year that doesn't even keep up with the cost of living) or a promotion, you must leave the company.

      The attitude seems to be that you must leave a company with no more skills than you walked in with, EVER. Frequently employees who get training on their own are seen as being "disloyal" by trying to improve their skill set. Why? Because if you're making yourself more marketable, clearly it means you're not interested in staying in the position you have that doesn't require those skills, and are dissatisfied with the opportunities that you've been granted at your current company. (The fact that those opportunities are frequently described as "no fucking way" never enters into the thought process.)

      Why Big Biz seems to be so incredibly phobic of encouraging the professional growth of its employees is a mystery to me. It's so incredibly pervasive that many companies have stopped hiring IT staff *altogether*. Instead they hire "contractors" (read: "temps" or "slaves" or "disposable humans") to do the jobs that need to be done for the continued functioning of the company. The contractor gathers experience about the computing environment over the months (or, more likely, years) that they're there, which is rendered completely useless to both the contractor and the company when one of the following happens: 1) Some beancounter arbitrarily decides that payroll is too high and forces someone to lay off contractors regardless of the importance of their role, 2) the contractor is fired (oh, excuse me, "has their contract terminated") because of some incredibly minor infraction of the rules, their failure to take abuse from a permanent employee, or just because, or 3) the contractor realizes there is no place to go from where they are, and decides to leave. The company has to go hire and train another "contractor", during which time the (usually critical) work the contractor was doing goes undone, to the detriment of the entire organization.

      This isn't restricted to IT by a long shot. A close friend of mine had been in the same job for 4 years. Her supervisor left to take another job, leaving the position open. This friend of mine had more seniority and experience than others in her group (not to mention being the only one in the group that actually did any work, the rest spent most of their time talking about Pro Wrestling and NASCAR.) Her supervisor wrote a letter recommending her for the position once she had left. A golden opportunity to reward a valued employee for hard work.

      Rather than promote her (even in title, maybe not with a raise), they decided to eliminate the position. That's how much they didn't want to promote her (or anyone else). Big Biz has raised the concept of "penny wise, pound foolish" to an art form.
      • I was getting pissed of at the fact that if you want raise/promotion you gotta find new job and be hired at desired level instead of being promoted. I was hinted by upper management that the mains reason companies do not do that is to not cause jealousy (you are promoted and your colleagues are not ,that will cause political troubles and cat fights)

        After reflecting on that I find that a very valid point . So getting new job every 2-3 years is a reality now if you want career growth. If you are lucky
      • by athorshak ( 652273 ) on Thursday August 17, 2006 @07:47AM (#15925755)
        Gee, not that you're over generalizing or anything...

        I'm four years out of college, and I've worked for a Fortune 50 company for the past two years and had great experiences. My management has actively encouraged me to take more training, even cross training with other parts of the company in case I want to go a different direction in my career. They know that I'm going to learn and grow, but they want to do everything they can to keep my knowledge and talent in the company.

        I was just given a 15% mid-year raise (I have less experience than all of my co-workers, but perform at the same level, so they wanted to "catch me up"). I've also been told (more or less), that I'll be promoted come year end, and I trust my manager enough to know this will happen.

        My management seems to genuinely care about me as a person. I'm allowed to work around my personal schedule, coming and going as I see fit. If I work late one day to get something done, I don't need to ask if I can take off early the next day to make up for it.

        In short, I'm respected by the people I work for.

        I'm sure there are a lot of hellish working environments in large companies, probably even within my own, given how culture can vary accross one large company. Just don't assume that a large comany will automatically be a terrible place to work.
        • by BVis ( 267028 )

          In short, I'm respected by the people I work for. I'm sure there are a lot of hellish working environments in large companies, probably even within my own, given how culture can vary accross one large company. Just don't assume that a large comany will automatically be a terrible place to work.

          I'm speaking from my own experience, as well as the experiences people I know have shared with me. Of course there are always going to be exceptions, and it sounds like you've found one. (Congratulations. Just do

        • by vinn01 ( 178295 ) on Thursday August 17, 2006 @12:38PM (#15927503)
          Yeah, I was spoiled by having good bosses for the first few years of my working life too.

          Things change. Bosses come and go. Reorganizations are hell.

          If you ever work for a bad boss, all of the positive things you just said will disappear in a flash. I now work for a good boss again. I appreciate that much more than when I didn't know any better.
          • I completely agree, and should have addressed that in my post. Ultimatly, I don't think it really matters whether the company is large or small, it matters who your boss is. A crappy boss can make you life hell in large or small companies.
      • by walterbyrd ( 182728 ) on Thursday August 17, 2006 @08:41AM (#15925913)
        The simple reason is: why rock the boat.

        For example: let's say you are hired to work for slave wages at the helpdesk. After two months, you have proven your worth by doing a great job.

        Hey, they have a great helpdesk tech who works for slave wages. Why should they ever promote the tech? If they promote the tech, then they'll have to get a new tech, and train him/her. Of course the tech will just quite, but companies are seldomly that far sighted. After the tech quits, the company will bitch about how techs are job hoppers.

        Companies don't want to train because they are afraid of training people for the next job. Besides, it doesn't fit into the budget.
  • but I think this is useful information. I wouldn't have thought that business skills/knowlege would be more attractive than technical prowess for an IT guy. It's especially useful to know that the higher the budget/larger the fish, the more so this is true.
    • Take this information with a grain of salt. Except for small companies, upper management doesn't make hiring decisions for technical staff. The project manager and the senior programming staff do the hiring at every place I've worked. And we look very hard at technical skills. You need one or two people who can talk to customers and upper management, but most people on a programming project develop software.
  • by Money for Nothin' ( 754763 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @07:43PM (#15923539)
    CIOs (in Fortune 500 companies, at least) are so far removed from the proles at the bottom of the corporate pyramid -- the admins/engineers, developers, etc. -- that they frankly don't have a damn clue as to what they need. It is not their job to know *specifically* what they need that far down the corporate ladder; that is the job of one or more layers of middle-management they have separating the CIO from the people with actual technical skills (unlike the CIO), i.e. the rest of us unwashed masses (and in IT, this is sometimes a literal phrase...).

    The CIO's job is to manage management en-masse (to "throw IQ points" at problems, as Bill Gates' approach tends to be), and to have "Big Ideas", or at least read the same business-tech magazines their lowly technical people do (eWeek, InformationWeek, etc.) which present big ideas -- and then tell the techies what to do, even if it's technically the wrong thing to do. Your typical CIO does not have a technical background...
  • by mpaque ( 655244 ) on Wednesday August 16, 2006 @08:55PM (#15923859)
    1. Nod your head continuously any time your boss is addressing your team. This conveys that you agree with everything he says and that you only wish you could have articulated it as brilliantly as he is doing. If his ego is insatiable, his eyes will constantly gravitate in your direction for affirmation. In other words, embrace your inner bobblehead.

    2. Disagree with everything the boss says. Go out of your way to contradict her every statement. This shows that you're an independent thinker and way smarter than the rest of the peons you've been thrown in with.

    3. Use the same buzzwords as the boss. Make sure what you say is an actionable, user-centric, directionally correct turnkey solution with touchpoints. As you can see, it doesn't even have to make sense if you say it fast enough. For extra points, speak entirely in acronyms.

    4. Ask questions during company meetings that have no purpose other than to showcase your tremendous intellect. If the CIO is talking about reorganizing the help desk, don't be afraid to raise your hand and ask what effect the current business strategy will have on the next quarter's profit margin. For an added bonus, ask this question at the end of a meeting. (See next point.)

    5. Don't make any major presentations during the course of a regular meeting. Wait until the meeting organizer is wrapping up and makes the perfunctory "does anyone have anything else?" request. Then you launch into your spiel, assuring that everyone has to pay attention to what you say. Sure, they may hate you for making the meeting run long, but you'll have made an impression.

    6. Laugh hard at your boss's jokes. The higher placed the boss, the greater your laughter should be. If it's the CIO, feign uncontrollable mirth by intermittently wiping tears from your eyes.

    7. Be at work 23 hours per day. Be there when your boss gets in and when she leaves. Even if your workload only constitutes about 3 1/2 hours, stretch it out with coffee breaks, four-hour lunches, non-work-related web browsing, and general co-worker chit chat. After all, productivity is measured by your physical presence not actual turnaround.

    8. Pay close attention to whatever phone/PDA/gadget the boss uses. Do a great deal of research on it, then casually let the boss know that you're looking for a new phone/PDA/gadget with particular features--namely the exact ones that his model is known for. The boss will instantly recommend his own gadget, so that when you buy it yourself, he thinks you took his advice, rather than merely copied his purchase.

    Shamelessly ripped from "The Trivia Geek" at TechRepublic
  • And when CIOs to hire non-management professionals, they very often make bad choices, from my experience. Its rare for a 'CIO' to have the kind of background needed to evaluate real IT professionals. Smart CIOs let people to the evaluating who have the experience to do it well. Other CIOs, well, if one tried to impress me with their cluefullness when 'interviewing' me, I'd might take the job if I really needed it, but I'd keep my resume up to date. And not take stock options.
  • Maybe in small companies. In larger companies, the CIO is often not even in touch with major corporate IT strategy, much less day-to-day subjects like hiring criteria. Heck, director-level people are rarely involved -- that's the type of thing that Managers and team leads do, and they're in the trenches.
  • So you don't have any routers or switches or VoIP systems or servers or printers or workstations or backup storage or --

    Yeah, the project managers and developers can take care of all that stuff in their free time.

    For the nth time, IT is more than programming/development. There's a whole lot of infrastructure that needs installing, repairing, maintaining, and securing, and your development staff and management is either unwilling or unable to deal with it. Which is fine, because there's a whole bunch of pe
  • During recessions the need for "delta workers" greatly drops. Delta workers build new things or make significant changes to things. Infrastructure maintenence-related positions are safer from recessions because they keep the business running day-to-day. Thus, new systems work is more volitile and will go up during good times and drop more during bad times.
    • Good Point. You should add though that volitilty also translates directly to salaries as well... high in the good times, low in the bad.
  • "I want to hire a project manager" is usually a translation for "The last guy in here who tried to implement a project screwed it up, some magical project manager person will of course do it perfectly next time because all my existing staff are muppets"
  • They're going to hire people with good grammar.
  • It seems to me, that most of the jobs listed (that anybody would want)are only available to people who already have those jobs.
  • by chaeron ( 128155 ) on Thursday August 17, 2006 @10:17AM (#15926420) Homepage
    Heaven help us from more Project Managers.

    I have yet to meet one that I consider competent. Though I have heard fairy tales of such mythical beasties actually existing.

    The push towards ever more (incompetent) PM's stems from a lack of leadership in the executive suite and the common misconception (or desire) that people are fungible resources, that can be plugged and played at will. Exec Management in many companies (especially the large ones) have no concept of leadership, and thus they promote a mechanistic approach to management, which manifests in their hiring ever more PMs and delegating responsibility down to them.

    Ever seen a project manager that could be labelled a "project leader"? I haven't. Yet. And I'm not holding my breath.

    PM's, at least the accredited ones, worship the PMBOK (Which would be better acronymized as the PMFOC, IMO). Seen any mention of a PMBOL (Book of Leadership)? That'll be the day.

    Unfortunately, I see no end to this approach. It's only going to get worse, till everything crumbles. Offshoring is just another symptom of higher management's abdication of leadership and the treatment of people as commodity components.

    My 2 cents worth.
    • You don't see any good project LEADERS because most project managers are not good leaders. Good leaders get promotions, and quick, because they LED their projects very successfully. So most good project leaders turn into business leaders. The not-so-good project managers do just that - manage a project right down the toilet, and never have a good reason why they keep failing because they don't know how to lead and stay on top of issues that cause failures in the first place.

      The problem is such a large one b
  • am i the only one on here who could give a flying fvck about trends and hiring statistics? i am a software engineer / oracle dba for a $100 million company who is happy with my job. i never want to become management or the boss or any of that crap. i will program til i die, and i will die a happy man. if this company pisses me off i will walk out the door and get another job in seconds because software doesnt write itself and databases dont manage themselves. you cant fake skill. my code speaks for itself.
    • i don't want a promotion i want a raise and bonus.

      Being that you aren't prepared for more responsibility (promotion), you'll need to actively demonstrate - continuously - that the code you put out tomorrow is somehow worth more than the code you produced yesterday. This is a difficult thing to do, which is why you won't get raises and bonuses like some sort of union gig as often as you would like.
  • IANACIO, so take this tidbit for what it's worth, because its only based on my experience.

    CIOs and other executives appreciate one thing more than anything else from their technical people: know the business.

    That's it really - if they can be confident that you understand the nature of the business they are in, it's quirks and gotchas, in addition to the ability to harness the techy stuff, you will succeed.

    Be careful not to fall into the typical IT trap of assuming everyone above you is an idiot. Sometimes t

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