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Thread: IT's Your Career

  1. Registered TeamPlayer Warprosper's Avatar
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    PSN ID: Warprosper Steam ID: Nukewarprosper Warprosper's Originid: Warprosper
    #1

    IT's Your Career

    My name is Anthony, I served 7 years in the United States Air Force as an Information Security Analyst. Getting out of the military was a hard task, it is not something that you can just do. There are lists upon lists of things you must do in order to prepare yourself for the "Civilian world". You have been conditioned, you do not understand how the outside world works you are essentially back to square one.

    You are good with computers you know your stuff. You understand packet flow, traffic analysis, cryptography, etc etc....... You are known to your co-workers as the "Computer Guy". You just left a life where everything was provided to you, you must now work on your own. It is a scary world out there, and above all else, you are confused.

    Close your eyes, picture yourself in the center of one of the world’s largest cities. In this city, the businesses don’t have signs, there are no advertisements, the street signs are non-existent, the houses don’t have addresses, and most importantly, the people speak a different language than you. Looking at the above example we get a not-so-graceful understanding of what it’s like to be introduced to an environment that is both unorganized and unfamiliar. Now take that same picture and apply some labels to the previously un-labeled. Add some captions to your businesses, some street signs, a route of familiarity. You now understand the language in which these people speak. Are you as lost as you were before?

    Companies throughout the world, more so in the past 5 years, have turned to Contractual IT companies. Why? The cost of outsourcing IT is cheaper than it is to hire directly. Company X charges 75$ an hour for an individual to come on-site and perform tasks. These tasks are ranged anywhere from trivial, "Hey IT guy, my mouse is broken", to challenging, "Hey IT guy, my RDO connection is no longer functioning". The contracting company takes on all the benefit, compensation, disability, and tax responsibility. 75$ doesn’t sound so bad now does it? The average Network Administrator salary is ranged between $45,000 and $65,000. Looking at the later we can calculate, based on hourly rate; that employee costs the company $31.5/hr. Notice that this does not include the company’s expenses such as: benefits, disability, payroll tax, travel costs, and the like. The downside you may ask. Contractual IT companies have the largest turnover rate, so large that it can be comparable to big chain retail.

    Continuity can be defined as: uninterrupted duration or continuation especially without essential change. What does this mean in regards to the above paragraph? With such a high turnover rate how can any company begin to justify an organized IT backbone? The answer is obvious.

    Imagine yourself as the contractor thrown into an IT position. Your first day consists of information gathering, network mapping, and basic user troubleshooting. As a few months go by you start to get a better understanding of the network that surrounds you, the organization you work for. You start to become the go to guy for everything technical. The organization becomes happy with the work you are doing, the improvements the users see across the network. They like the changes you have made. There is one issue though, you are a contractor. You do not work for the company you are improving. The company starts throwing positive responses to your boss and next thing you know, the contract is up, and the company went with the lower bidder. You as the IT guy know this has happened, you know you are going to be relocated. The company brings in a competitor, bad news for them though; the competitor was a lot cheaper for a reason. Their IT staff is sloppy, they don’t care about documentation, they don’t care about problem resolution, and most importantly, they don’t care about the Company. The network starts to fail. All the hard work you have done becomes lost. Lost in a world where continuity cannot exist.

    Today’s Companies have learned this, at least the smart ones. Information Technology is the wave of the future, and without a dedicated IT staff, a company in today’s world, will fail.

    You just started a new job, you are the Network Engineer for a mid-sized company, congratulations, you are no longer a contractor. Your first day consists of information gathering, network mapping, and basic user troubleshooting. As a few months go by you start to get a better understanding of the network that surrounds you, the organization you work for. You start to become the go to guy for everything technical. The organization becomes happy with the work you are doing, the improvements the users see across the network. They like the changes you have made. Sounds familiar doesn’t it.

    You've been working for this organization for a year now, and you’re in the position to start making some changes. You realize that the way this organization does business is a little dated. There are archives that span across more square footage than you can imagine. You decide to throw a dedicated archive system in place. You move onto a paperless system consisting of scanning all originals and storing them on a file server. You come up with a retention plan, an archive retrieval plan, and most importantly, you develop continuity. Documenting all that you have done you are ensuring success not only to the company but to those who will follow in your footsteps.

    Proper planning and implementation is the most important thing you can do when developing a continuous workflow. You must look at the organization as a whole. You must find a common ground between the different departments, the positions.

    You have brought back centralized management. Your organization becomes successful. The organizations workflow has become more streamlined than ever. Your understudy is ready to take on the responsibility. You should be proud, knowing that you prepared the organization for something that Contractual companies couldn’t do. You have prepared the organization for the future, for success.

    You have outgrown your position, congratulations; you landed a more demanding job, a better salary. The process starts over. Your first day consists of information gathering, network mapping………….

    You have now been in the IT field for over 10 years, and the most important thing you've learned is; without continuity, proper documentation, and extensive planning an organization will fail. While i'm not saying that IT departments world wide can fill this void and accomplish this task on their own,it is, without a doubt, your responsibility to understand and assist the organization throughout a successful future.

    Remember, YOU are the backbone of your organizations not the equipment you service.
    Last edited by Walkerxes; 03-08-11 at 11:29 AM.

  2. Registered TeamPlayer Walkerxes's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Article Submission

    Toss a couple images on it and it looks like an article to me


  3. Registered TeamPlayer Warprosper's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Article Submission

    Anyone read without pictures anymore?

    Let me see if i could dig some statistical images up... Ill look a little later. Gotta go play some pool tonight...

  4. Registered TeamPlayer Walkerxes's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Article Submission

    It helps break up the text some and gives it more visual appeal


  5. Registered TeamPlayer Warprosper's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Article Submission

    Nahh, decided that i dont want to use any images. Let me know if it is good as is, otherwise ill post it as a blog or something..

  6. Registered TeamPlayer Walkerxes's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Article Submission

    Won't be the first time we've used an article with no images, i guess. I'd still prefer it have them.


  7. Registered TeamPlayer Warprosper's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Article Submission

    Alright let me see what i can dig up

  8. Registered TeamPlayer Imisnew2's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Article Submission

    First off, I think this is extremely well written.
    However, if you're looking for criticism, the ending seems weak; there's no conclusion.
    Also, there are about 2-3 parts I would have worded slightly differently, such as the last portion of your first paragraph to be more in-line with how you previously addressed a list.
    Close your eyes, picture yourself in the center of one of the world’s largest cities. In this city, the businesses don’t have signs, there are no advertisements, the street signs are non-existent, the houses don’t have addresses, and most importantly, the people speak a different language than you. Looking at the above example we get a not-so-graceful understanding of what it’s like to be introduced to an environment that is both unorganized and unfamiliar. Now take that same picture and apply some labels to the previously un-labeled. You now know the language in which these people speak. Are you as lost as you were before?

  9. Registered TeamPlayer DancingCorpse's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Article Submission

    Quote Originally Posted by Imisnew2 View Post
    First off, I think this is extremely well written.
    However, if you're looking for criticism, the ending seems weak; there's no conclusion.
    Also, there are about 2-3 parts I would have worded slightly differently, such as the last portion of your first paragraph to be more in-line with how you previously addressed a list.

    Same as imis, very excellent writing skills there, Proser. Just had one left out word that I had to put in for you that ya missed. I would just like to feel a tiny bit stronger ending.

  10. Registered TeamPlayer Warprosper's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Article Submission

    Thanks for the compliments corpse, imis.... I was majoring in technical writing for a while... also have a few novel scripts written up...

    Anyways, I posted some changes to the article, and added some pics per Walker's advice...

    Let me know of any other changes..

    I have no idea what to title it... any thoughts??

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