IT Career - Stuck in a rut!

IT Career - Stuck in a rut!

Author
Discussion

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Hi All,

I’m after some career advice/guidance. I’m early 30’s, currently an IT Project Manager (Infrastructure/cloud focused) and have been for around 7 years. The last few years I’ve lost all enthusiasm for the job and really feel like I want to do something else.

Before I was a PM I worked in 2nd line/field support which I always enjoyed but moved into a PM role because I wanted a ‘step up’ and of course more money. I’ve considered going back into a technical role but, where I’ve not done a hands on role for a while it would mean going back into a 1st line role, which would be a significant pay drop, so I’m not sure it’s feasible (mortgage, saving to move house etc)

I’ve considered trying to move into an IT Service Relationship/Delivery Manager role or an IT Account management role as these all require similar skillsets to project management; stakeholder management, understanding technical concepts, problem solving etc etc but these roles seem to be low on the ground at the moment, probably due to the current situation I guess.

My current contract finishes next week and at the moment I’ve not a clue what I want to do!, Any career advice/guidance would be massively appreciated...

In the meantime I’m going to look at picking up a driving job to keep me occupied.

Cheers

Moominho

863 posts

106 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Cloud focused? AWS/Azure?

Loads of demand for Cloud Ops or even DevOps if you have any dev ability. Cloud Product Owner? I'd probably get some vendor specific certs and go down that route...

Freakuk

1,593 posts

117 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Sounds a lot like me, although I'm much older!!

Been in IT from my teens, started as a component level engineer looking at circuit diagrams and fixing stuff, then into 2nd/3rd line support, architecture and then project/programme management which I've been doing for the last 15 or so years, contracting for 23 years.

I've delivered (and I am currently delivering) multiple cyber projects and programmes and have a good knowledge of security principles and standards to the point where I've been asked by a previous colleague to come in as a security guy rather than a project guy, but landed another project role at around the same time.

I find cyber interesting, but possibly a hard nut to crack without any real experience but I'd certainly like to move that way if I wanted to stay in the tech space, otherwise it would be a complete change of job/career path with probably huge salary implications, but probably more enjoyment.

It sounds like you've just done that much of the same stuff it's just boring, same politics, same blockers regardless of company and people that only a complete change could address?

rog007

5,573 posts

190 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Would need to know many more insights to your personal situation for a more meaningful response.

Notwithstanding that; teaching/higher education sector?

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Moominho said:
Cloud focused? AWS/Azure?

Loads of demand for Cloud Ops or even DevOps if you have any dev ability. Cloud Product Owner? I'd probably get some vendor specific certs and go down that route...
Just Azure. No development experience/ability unfortunately. Product owner roles look interesting, I’ve no idea what skills/experience would be required though?

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Sounds a lot like me, although I'm much older!!

Been in IT from my teens, started as a component level engineer looking at circuit diagrams and fixing stuff, then into 2nd/3rd line support, architecture and then project/programme management which I've been doing for the last 15 or so years, contracting for 23 years.

I've delivered (and I am currently delivering) multiple cyber projects and programmes and have a good knowledge of security principles and standards to the point where I've been asked by a previous colleague to come in as a security guy rather than a project guy, but landed another project role at around the same time.

I find cyber interesting, but possibly a hard nut to crack without any real experience but I'd certainly like to move that way if I wanted to stay in the tech space, otherwise it would be a complete change of job/career path with probably huge salary implications, but probably more enjoyment.

Freakuk said:
It sounds like you've just done that much of the same stuff it's just boring, same politics, same blockers regardless of company and people that only a complete change could address?
Yep - you’ve hit the nail on the head there, I’ve spent most of the last 4/5 years on long, tough programmes, lots of stress and actually not a lot of variety in the work, really grinds you down!

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
rog007 said:
Would need to know many more insights to your personal situation for a more meaningful response.

Notwithstanding that; teaching/higher education sector?
Thanks for the reply - what else would you like to know?

Most of my experience is in Insurance/Financial services.

rog007

5,573 posts

190 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
It’s more about the personal stuff: minimum wage acceptable; able to relocate; longest commute acceptable; perm/contract; could/would you retrain; what would you enjoy doing most?

Pieman68

3,348 posts

200 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Similar story here but more on the sales side of IT. Worked in the hardware/software side of things for nearly 20 years and was just feeling uneasiness from the current situation that the decrease in tin sales would accelerate and cloud would grow. Tin and comms are the areas of the business that I wouldn't fancy being in over the next few years based on possible office shrinkage or closures

Was approached by an old boss to move to them - to work in a role that is purely Microsoft. The company has 12 Gold competencies and is growing massively at the minute (lots of new staff over the last 12 months) and the culture is phenomenal. They're also at the other end of the country but have fully embraced the culture change and are employing nationwide

Are AWS skills transferable into Azure? Surely the concepts are the same if not the application. PM me if you want a company name and see if there's anything that fits as I know for a fact that we're recruiting across the business

fourstardan

1,050 posts

110 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
I think you need to learn Agile methods.

Product owner is quite an interesting role in sAFE agile that is a bit of shaping/scope negotiation/stakeholder management and less planning (self organising team does that).

Training on sAFE maybe a good start?

PM Waterfall/Prince type roles for Cloud delivery are going to become far and few between in future, technology wise for the last 5 years now organisations are moving to PaaS/SaaS solutions and into DevOps focused delivery models.

The Service Manager or Delivery Manager role will exist for large scale stuff and resourcing across projects.

deebs

360 posts

26 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
Rev Limit said:
Hi All,

I’m after some career advice/guidance. I’m early 30’s, currently an IT Project Manager (Infrastructure/cloud focused) and have been for around 7 years. The last few years I’ve lost all enthusiasm for the job and really feel like I want to do something else.

Before I was a PM I worked in 2nd line/field support which I always enjoyed but moved into a PM role because I wanted a ‘step up’ and of course more money. I’ve considered going back into a technical role but, where I’ve not done a hands on role for a while it would mean going back into a 1st line role, which would be a significant pay drop, so I’m not sure it’s feasible (mortgage, saving to move house etc)

I’ve considered trying to move into an IT Service Relationship/Delivery Manager role or an IT Account management role as these all require similar skillsets to project management; stakeholder management, understanding technical concepts, problem solving etc etc but these roles seem to be low on the ground at the moment, probably due to the current situation I guess.

My current contract finishes next week and at the moment I’ve not a clue what I want to do!, Any career advice/guidance would be massively appreciated...

In the meantime I’m going to look at picking up a driving job to keep me occupied.

Cheers
What kind of IT PM are you? Do you have a static team of people who get work in and turn it round or do you float from project to project doing end to end delivery? In my view the latter is more interesting.

I know this sounds daft but what about switching across to business change? Im a "originally" a business change PM although I do IT/technical delivery as well these days, depends on what roles are going (contract). It's all the same skills but with different types of challenges. Working on developing a new operations target operating model for a transformation on one project; leading a business readiness workstream on a big finance programme on the next; implementing the desired business and culture change for field engineers in a service company afterwards. I find the diversity of the projects on the change side keeps me interested.

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Friday 19th February
quotequote all
deebs said:
What kind of IT PM are you? Do you have a static team of people who get work in and turn it round or do you float from project to project doing end to end delivery? In my view the latter is more interesting.

I know this sounds daft but what about switching across to business change? Im a "originally" a business change PM although I do IT/technical delivery as well these days, depends on what roles are going (contract). It's all the same skills but with different types of challenges. Working on developing a new operations target operating model for a transformation on one project; leading a business readiness workstream on a big finance programme on the next; implementing the desired business and culture change for field engineers in a service company afterwards. I find the diversity of the projects on the change side keeps me interested.
Mainly internal project delivery, complete project lifecycle, from requirements gathering, design etc through to delivery and closure.

It’s not so much the subject matter of the projects, I just don’t enjoy the role at all anymore! Time for a change

Roaringopenfire

132 posts

67 months

Sunday 21st February
quotequote all
The word 'contract' stuck out. Of the couple of IT services companies I know they have stopped using contractors. But if you are you looking for full time PAYE and have Azure experience I doubt you'll have any problems to get into any of the roles you want, given your PM background. Update your LinkedIn with all the right keywords and join LinkedIn Premium and then proactively tout yourself around while responding to all the researchers who will find you.

Edited by Roaringopenfire on Sunday 21st February 22:53


Edited by Roaringopenfire on Sunday 21st February 22:54

theboss

5,531 posts

185 months

Monday 22nd February
quotequote all
Roaringopenfire said:
The word 'contract' stuck out. Of the couple of IT services companies I know they have stopped using contractors.
They all say that, and it goes out the window when they can't find the skills they're looking for to start next week. There's loads of cloud oriented contracts out there at the moment.

OP feel free to send me a PM. I'm doing some work (as a contractor) for a rapidly expanding Azure MSP and they are hiring for PM and SDM types. Perm and contract considered. Happy to bung your CV in.


MisterBigglesworth

66 posts

14 months

Monday 22nd February
quotequote all
IT can be a bit of a trap, the money keeps you in but regardless of role it can end up a bit of a grind. I went all the way from junior dev via Solution Architect up to CTO and every job eventually became stale to the point I went back into contract full stack development while I figured it out.

Currently working on my own startup side hustle whilst day rate contracting - building out a platform in the supercar / classic car finance space, was a good cross-over skill as I was able to build the tech in my own time whilst learning a lot about asset finance. Once we scale i’ll move over into either sales & marketing or underwriting.

I worked on a few different ideas in the Fintech space but I learned that you need to choose a space you have a passion for to keep feeling rewarded and engaged.

The thing i’ll say about doing your own startup is every day is a challenge where you have to learn something new, and the risk of failure keeps on your toes, with the amount of startup incubators like founders factory there is a lot of support if you can spot a good niche to exploit.

The main thing that keeps me motivated in my day job now is knowing my contract income is funding my exit strategy and only a short term thing while I get off the ground, so it no longer feels a dead end but a route to something more exciting.

Going into pre-sales at a consultancy can be a good call - it is a good route mix IT into business and sales skills. Solution Architects are always in demand, especially for cloud.

vaud

40,642 posts

121 months

Monday 22nd February
quotequote all
If you are a good PM then getting into bid management for larger contracts is a gentle entry to sales.

Good PM skills, risk/issue management, grow contract negotiation skills, etc. If you can write as well...

Money is generally OK, smaller bonus than sales but rarely carries a target. A good bid manager is a bit of an allrounder and can migrate to sales or account management.

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Monday 22nd February
quotequote all
theboss said:
They all say that, and it goes out the window when they can't find the skills they're looking for to start next week. There's loads of cloud oriented contracts out there at the moment.

OP feel free to send me a PM. I'm doing some work (as a contractor) for a rapidly expanding Azure MSP and they are hiring for PM and SDM types. Perm and contract considered. Happy to bung your CV in.
PM’d you - thanks

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Saturday 27th February
quotequote all
vaud said:
If you are a good PM then getting into bid management for larger contracts is a gentle entry to sales.

Good PM skills, risk/issue management, grow contract negotiation skills, etc. If you can write as well...

Money is generally OK, smaller bonus than sales but rarely carries a target. A good bid manager is a bit of an allrounder and can migrate to sales or account management.
Thanks, not an area I’d ever thought to look at really. I’m sure there are loads of roles where the skills I’ve gained as a PM over the years would be transferable, it’s just knowing which roles they are!

I’ve had a couple of conversations over the last week about Account Management roles at MSPs but they seem to be very business development/sales heavy with very little relationship management which was not what I was expecting.

Edited by Rev Limit on Saturday 27th February 22:12


Edited by Rev Limit on Saturday 27th February 22:12


Edited by Rev Limit on Saturday 27th February 22:14

siovey

1,317 posts

104 months

Sunday 28th February
quotequote all
Post deleted

Edited by siovey on Sunday 28th February 08:50

Rev Limit

Original Poster:

234 posts

120 months

Sunday 28th February
quotequote all
Better to start a new topic mate