Disclaimer: Probably not healthy to read if you are prone to depression….
From the slashdot article:
1. Your company decides to send the work you’re doing overseas.
2. You get over 40.
3. Your company decides that it is switching technology and is unwilling to train you.
4. Your company decides that it needs new college graduates because they are the ones that are up to date with current technology.
5. You burn out after having to work 60 hours a week for several years straight. Not necessarily because you have to, but because the bosses equate time in the office with amount of work and the fact that they always give unreasonable deadlines.
You will change your tune.
Other than that, I agree with you. Competing in the Global economy, especially in IT, is extremely difficult and competitive. I don’t care what you do or how good you are, one day, you will lose out to cheaper folks overseas – exception: defence work. It is inevitable.
The question that begs is how to re-skill or re-focus within the IT industry to survive the never-ending spiral of offshoring and commoditisation of all things IT.
A very depressing article published on The Register last month highlighted the real problem. Since globalisation is a fact of life in all industries but the world financial systems are still in economic melt-down, companies will seek ANY means (fair or foul) to reduce costs in an effort to survive. As Sun recently demonstrated by culling entire divisions from VP down to pleb, nobody is immune to the effects.
So we come back to the real question. No position in a company is forever (not even CEO or MD). To survive in IT in Western countries over the next few years will require a change of approach. Entering as a graduate developer and staying until you retire or *want* to move on is not an option. Developing skills across a range of fields spreads most peoples’ capabilities too thin to not end up being the classic “Jack of all trades, master of none”. Become incompetent in the West and you will be shown the door fast. So what to do ?
Become an IT chameleon.
Keep your skills up to date. Learn and adapt as technologies move. Don’t get sucked in too deeply into “flavour of the month” technologies (but you will still need to know something about them). And above all, don’t become complacent.
“How Do You Document Technical Procedures” — Slashdot
“2009 – Thomas the Tank’s journey to IT Hell” — The Register
The moral is don’t get angry, depressed or worried. Evolve.