Unemployed Microsoft SQL guy at traffic lights

Dirtdiver

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2016
Messages
462
#21
So glad I'm.making moves to get out of IT..... I feel I had enough of it. And you cant go up in Durbs. U just want to be a user now.
 

homeboy

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 10, 2009
Messages
671
#23
IT is a fickle industry.. age and experience count against you if you are not working on the latest greatest thing and then most places expect people worry about their career development on their own time which often means people fall into a trap where they are 'stuck'.

Personally I think IT is a young persons profession in SA.. not because young people have an advantage to offer nor better ability but simply resource cost is cheaper. It's weird..I'd say you need to transition into a non-technical role by the time you 40 or suffer the indignity of technical assessments and rejection mails galore (if you lucky enough to get a response). With the younger generation SA is gonna suffer.

There is a reason why i am working hard at transitioning to something else.. to bad for our customers but that is life. It's weird how i can't find an adequate replacement for myself yet i can't find a job in SA either.. lmfao.
I was contemplating the same issue. I will have to acquire a new skill to get proficient by the time I hit 50 ( 4 years left).
 

Polymathic

Honorary Master
Joined
Mar 22, 2010
Messages
12,398
#24
TBH, many over 50's are filtered out these days in IT,
your just considered too old to be anything in IT, many young bloods to use and abuse , so recruiters target those guys.

if you show up after 50, your considered too old, goes for other engineering professions as well,
electronic,mechanical,chemical ect ect..
new crisis we are about to face, when many of the current generation get to there 50's and get drop kicked out of their comfy corporate jobs, for new fresh meat for the grinder.


if he got PDP, Id suggest a uber, or bolt as there isnt any age limit on that.
otherwise, difficult life for many of those people,

bit extreme to be standing at a robot begging for work.
Usually companies take on over 50s as independent contractors if they are any good.
 

Aqua_lung

Honorary Master
Joined
Jul 16, 2004
Messages
16,926
#25
It's weird how i can't find an adequate replacement for myself yet i can't find a job in SA either.. lmfao.
As a UX designer with front-end experience, I too am struggling to get a cushy job now. Plenty of young talent. If you are over a certain age you're expected to start your own thing I suppose. I was hoping to start my own thing in my 50's not in my late 30's.
 
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[XC] Oj101

Expert Member
Joined
Jun 4, 2010
Messages
3,428
#26
It’s not just IT. My SO works for a company which is currently closing down. The staff have known about it since Q3 last year and have been trying to find work, mostly successfully. The older ones (52 and above) and still unable to find anything, and it’s less than a month before the doors shut.
 

RedViking

Nord of the South
Joined
Feb 23, 2012
Messages
17,728
#27
While driving in Pretoria East I noticed an guy at the traffic holding a cardboard sign that reads he is looking for an IT Job.

I stopped and had a talk with him and got his name and contact details. He is a native English speaker. His skills are Microsoft SQL Server, Data warehousing, Reporting, Power BI. He mentioned he worked at some of the biggest companies in South Africa. He is looking for a contract or permanent job in the Johannesburg or Pretoria area. He mentioned that companies don't hire older men. My understanding was he was 50 years old.he said he worked on contracts for banks and the JSE previously. He said he knows lots of IT people like him who are also unemployed.

If you want his contact details you can PM me.

Disclaimer: I don't know him. I just stopped and talked to him as I found it unusual for a guy that has a sign asking for an IT Job.
Before you get disappointed, do the wise thing he will need to go for a drug test and alcohol test for a couple of days. There is a 99.99% he is there because of an alcohol or drug addiction. It is possible that difficult circumstances drove him to the point that he chose the addiction above his family and the will to provide.
 

tridev

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
197
#29
IT is a fickle industry.. age and experience count against you if you are not working on the latest greatest thing and then most places expect people worry about their career development on their own time which often means people fall into a trap where they are 'stuck'.

Personally I think IT is a young persons profession in SA.. not because young people have an advantage to offer nor better ability but simply resource cost is cheaper. It's weird..I'd say you need to transition into a non-technical role by the time you 40 or suffer the indignity of technical assessments and rejection mails galore (if you lucky enough to get a response). With the younger generation SA is gonna suffer.

There is a reason why i am working hard at transitioning to something else.. to bad for our customers but that is life. It's weird how i can't find an adequate replacement for myself yet i can't find a job in SA either. lmfao.

I am in the same boat, in my 40s and personally have tried transitioning but it's hard for someone to hire to find decent company or projects that have career growth and allow you to build your skillset. I have worked and got certified in ERP products but those products were discontinued when the companies were bought over so my certifications and years spent in it was a big investment to lose.
Programming languages get updated so often that it's hard to keep your CV up to date with the latest buzz word as in today's market knowing a language or a platform is not good enough. It's like the IT industry is constantly cannibalizing itself.

Transitioning is hard. I have looked at options but it is not like someone will give you the option to become a business analyst or give you a job if you get certified in a specific product or cloud platform service.
 
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tridev

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
197
#31
Before you get disappointed, do the wise thing he will need to go for a drug test and alcohol test for a couple of days. There is a 99.99% he is there because of an alcohol or drug addiction. It is possible that difficult circumstances drove him to the point that he chose the addiction above his family and the will to provide.
Always a possibility. I think worse than addiction is standing in the sun all day. Mentally it must screw you up and you can easily develop a victim mentality where as in IT you want someone who is proactive.

I made sure to ask him if he had a criminal record and he said no.
 
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RedViking

Nord of the South
Joined
Feb 23, 2012
Messages
17,728
#33
Always a possibility. I think worse than addiction is standing in the sun all day. Mentally it must screw you up and you can easily develop a victim mentality where as in IT you want someone who is proactive.

I made sure to ask him if he had a criminal record and he said no.
I have had the opportunity to work with homeless or on the street guys. Every single one of them had family or a home to go to. Even the worst of the worst. But unfortunately they choose their addictions above everything else and responsibility. They hold signs that they are looking for work, but it is so that people will feel more compassion and give easier. Unfortunately if you are an addict you can't hold a job, because your body needs drugs every couple of hours or it goes into withdrawal. Drugs can be anything from R400 to in the thousands a day. No job will pay enough for that. If someone like this needs help it will need to be much more than just a job, and it is hard work.
 

tridev

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
197
#34
I have had the opportunity to work with homeless or on the street guys. Every single one of them had family or a home to go to. Even the worst of the worst. But unfortunately they choose their addictions above everything else and responsibility. They hold signs that they are looking for work, but it is so that people will feel more compassion and give easier. Unfortunately if you are an addict you can't hold a job, because your body needs drugs every couple of hours or it goes into withdrawal. Drugs can be anything from R400 to in the thousands a day. No job will pay enough for that. If someone like this needs help it will need to be much more than just a job, and it is hard work.
I agree sometimes you can tell from their sign they aren't looking for a job. They just add it to the list of I need money, food or job. This guy was very specific. He sign was please help with Any I.T. job. he could have asked for any job but he didn't. His sign was unusual. He was specific. That is was struck me and cause me to go talk to him. After speaking to him it is obvious he wants to leverage the skills he has gotten experience in his whole career. He has a 17 year old son to take care of which also makes me think he is not a drug addict. I agree with you that most beggars are addicted to alcohol, drugs or glue and have impulsive behavior where they can't sit still in a desk and work and arrive on time daily. But not everyone is a drug or alcohol addict. Retrenchment, divorce, a car accident, nervous breakdown, trauma. There are many bad things thing can cause a person to lose their job.

If someone is very specific in what they ask for on their cardboard sign and it's not money I think the least a person can do is listen.
 

RedViking

Nord of the South
Joined
Feb 23, 2012
Messages
17,728
#36
I agree sometimes you can tell from their sign they aren't looking for a job. They just add it to the list of I need money, food or job. This guy was very specific. He sign was please help with Any I.T. job. he could have asked for any job but he didn't. His sign was unusual. He was specific. That is was struck me and cause me to go talk to him. After speaking to him it is obvious he wants to leverage the skills he has gotten experience in his whole career. He has a 17 year old son to take care of which also makes me think he is not a drug addict. I agree with you that most beggars are addicted to alcohol, drugs or glue and have impulsive behavior where they can't sit still in a desk and work and arrive on time daily. But not everyone is a drug or alcohol addict. Retrenchment, divorce, a car accident, nervous breakdown, trauma. There are many bad things thing can cause a person to lose their job.

If someone is very specific in what they ask for on their cardboard sign and it's not money I think the least a person can do is listen.
I definitely agree. The thing is not many people care. You have obviously taken the first step by posting here, and I hope there is an opportunity. In the mean time to get back on his feet he might not immediately land an "IT" job, so he might have to settle for something more general. Maybe start with helping him getting his CV properly in order. That will be the first requirement for a job and proof of his qualifications, work experience etc. Then get in contact with his son. Find out what the home circumstances are like. This will also give more perspective on the situation.
I left home at 16/17 to get a matric, after school I had to work to pay my hostile fees. My father was already working hard and they barely survived. So maybe it is possible for the son to also do some part time work after school to take some of the burden from his father.
 

GhostSixFour

Mafia Addict
Joined
Nov 9, 2009
Messages
12,287
#37
I agree sometimes you can tell from their sign they aren't looking for a job. They just add it to the list of I need money, food or job. This guy was very specific. He sign was please help with Any I.T. job. he could have asked for any job but he didn't. His sign was unusual. He was specific. That is was struck me and cause me to go talk to him. After speaking to him it is obvious he wants to leverage the skills he has gotten experience in his whole career. He has a 17 year old son to take care of which also makes me think he is not a drug addict. I agree with you that most beggars are addicted to alcohol, drugs or glue and have impulsive behavior where they can't sit still in a desk and work and arrive on time daily. But not everyone is a drug or alcohol addict. Retrenchment, divorce, a car accident, nervous breakdown, trauma. There are many bad things thing can cause a person to lose their job.

If someone is very specific in what they ask for on their cardboard sign and it's not money I think the least a person can do is listen.
Go find him again if you can and share the story on linkedin. I'll happily share such a story if it hits my feed.
 

tridev

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
197
#38
Go find him again if you can and share the story on linkedin. I'll happily share such a story if it hits my feed.
He was at a very busy intersection the whole day near Menlyn so he was smart to go to a place with maximum exposure.

I asked if I can take a photo just of his sign and he allowed me too. He asked that I don't post it on social media so I haven't, although I am not sure why as it's just the sign. I thought it best to post here which is more niche rather than reshare it on other places which would get a lots of comments from non IT people.

.
 
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tridev

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
197
#39
Guys also don't forget that some IT guys aren't good at networking. We sit in front of our screens, get assigned tasks by a PM so we don't get opportunity to meet and network with people as we are too busy solving IT projects. We try learn new tech all the time but it's hard if you don't have the opportunity to implement it in new projects. The company owns the client so even if the client loves us but our company pushes us out for younger guys or don't renew our contract we can't just go to the company's client directly and work for them due to restrictive contracts. We can open our own company but other clients don't like working with a company of 1 employee as it is too much of a risk, if for example a bus hits you in the middle of a complex project.

If a company doesn't renew a good salesman they lose all his selling skills and client knowledge. But if an IT guy doen't get a contract renewed, all his projects and source code belong to the company. The company can save money by promoting his junior who shadowed him or hire a new young guy who has experience in the the latest tech on his CV and is willing to earn very little until so he can gain more experience. If you get burnout due to stress and overwork it is just too easy to toss you to the side. There is no incentive to keep you.
 
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