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Old 3rd October 2018, 09:00   #181
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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Originally Posted by maddy42 View Post

Am currently figuring out my options while i try to pack up a decade of living in the states in two weeks time with a lot of regrets.
I was never crazy for the US and so never went after jobs that would post me abroad, so I don't know the nitti gritties of these rules.

But one option could have been to move to a friendlier country such as Au or NZ maybe, get passports there and then enter the US as non-Indian nationals.
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Old 3rd October 2018, 09:22   #182
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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I am not from the IT sector, but i was wondering aloud - pls. ignore if it sounds too theoretical - given the nature of many BHPians and their commitment to excellence combined with unbiased professionalism with the added benefit of a great platform to get together; Can many of the IT folks here not come together and start something of value?
@Miyata, you have actually touched upon the answer yourself. How many people there do you think, are actually like what you have said ? You have to work with them to see the levels of understanding, involvement, commitment, maturity. Even people with +/- 20 years of experience can show a lack of these to surprising extents. What you ask needs entrepreneurial qualities. Many are far from it. They are like sheep - go to work, come back. They have have to chased for even small routine things. And dont care to understand even basic stuff.

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Am currently figuring out my options while i try to pack up a decade of living in the states in two weeks time with a lot of regrets.
Well, can understand this. Was in a similar situation many years back, though it was not that abrupt. Wishing you the best. May be come home, and then look for other places like AU or NZ ?
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Old 3rd October 2018, 09:40   #183
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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Tech Mahindra’s retirement age lowered to 55
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/a...w/66036267.cms
I am a strong advocate of lowering the retirement age, but also strongly oppose if it is done without having sufficint data for justification. I have always found myself in the role of a use and throw kind of person from 15 years, can really understand the mental sufferings of a person when he is asked to quit just because he is old. I am right now stuck in a role where my superiors lack industry knowledge but are not ready to accept the truth. I am definitely sure that a more matured retirement policy will evolve in India.
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Old 3rd October 2018, 09:59   #184
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

I can relate to a this plight from a different angle.

As a search professional, the number of requests that we are receiving from Mid-Senior folks in the IT industry has increased exponentially.
Some are after us literally begging due to loss of jobs at critical juncture of their life with large EMIs to be repaid.

On the US front, things doesn't look rosy. It is another battle out there.
We do hire for our clients in US market and the situation is quite bad. Premium processing of H1B transfer has been freezed since last month until next Feb.
Even if the company has to hire a H1B candidate, there is no guarantee of them getting the transfer.

An advice to IT professionals.
Learn the new age tech, be agile and nimble with your tech skills.

It is no wonder that my brother spends atleast a lakh or more every other year doing certifications to keep himself relevant in the market.
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Old 3rd October 2018, 12:20   #185
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

My notes

The bad side
  • In your late 30s you are tired ( of multiple responsibilities - child care, elder care, traffic, repetitive situations at work ) etc. You bring far less freshness and dynamism at work. You are like "meh, I have heard this before, so not excited".
  • High chances are that there are other people that are younger, smarter and not tired. They can do the same thing as you but are paid a fraction of what you are. Their presence is felt on the floor. They spread positivity.
  • Somewhere you are guilty that you didn't do what you could have done or achieved as younger self and is probably too late to rewind life and career. ( I still think I should have written a public services exam or been a geologist ) - you realize what you like/enjoy much later.
  • You have worked for the firm selflessly but you suddenly realize that what the industry needs and by induction, what your firm needs is different from what you have. Remember, you love your car, you have great memories of going so many places with it - but you will be the first to kiss the car goodbye if starts developing problems or becomes high cost maintenance. You know how much we are attached to our cars, but still....
  • You doubt if you are doing justice to your pay.

The grey side
  • That makes people get to a point where you feel all is lost. Life is bleak, carrer options are bleak - far from that.
  • Some people continue to think that they are indispensable and like the frog in the pan, (figuratively) die one day.
  • Some on the other hand start to keep backup plans ready ( alternative firms, alternative jobs through mutual contacts which are easy etc )

The good side
  • There are lot of people that are very senior and still very technical / good at their subject matter ( technical or otherwise ) even at a very senior level. These are very valued and very highly paid.
  • The simple point is to rejuvenate everyday ( as a youngster a night's sleep did you good, a few years later - the weekend did you good; a few years later a vacation did you good; a few years later - a long vacation did you good; a few years later - a job change did you good; a few years later - a sabbatical did you good. now nothing rejuvenates you ) through things you like - exercise, walk in the park, a good tea, suryanamaskar, waking up early, whatever does you good/ makes you feel fresh.
  • Approach work everyday like it's your first day at your first job. Surround yourself with people with more energy ( fresh grads etc - this was an advice given by a fellow tbhpian )
  • You stop growing old when you decide to learn something new everyday. Not take a high horse by saying - I know that and I have been there.
  • Assess the markets all the time. Someone I know does interviews through the year at different times. Not for a job change, but just to see where he stands in the industry. Interviewing other candidates also helps to assess what's in the market
  • And, work for yourself. Be selfish. Lobby for that good project where you can make good impact and improve your skills - it's OK.
  • Invest your monies well.
  • Set aside a few hours every week to learn new things relevant for your job. It's part of your job - don't spend a weekend to do this.
  • Call it quits if you don't it in you anymore. You can always be back if you are good. A friend of mine quit his job for a couple of years, did farming, backpacking etc for a couple of years. Yet, he landed a plum technical position at a top tech firm in the valley.
  • Always have one good skill that is in demand and be kickass at it. You change it once in 10 years or so. For me, that skill is being a good programmer and designer - nuts, bolts and all. They will hold if you have a broad enough approach to everything.
  • Don't give in to hype. A majority of the people that do big data or ML don't have the necessary basics or a thorough understanding of the problem on hand. One guy at a seminar was discussing a bigdata platform for data that will be no more than 50GB many years into the future. Don't fall for FOMO. There are people that are paid to invent new terms or sell them to the FOMO-stricken.

Be open to learning everyday. The industry lacks good executionists at the large scale. There is no dearth of jobs for good people.

Last edited by ampere : 3rd October 2018 at 15:51. Reason: Added itemization
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Old 10th October 2018, 11:33   #186
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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In an interview to The Economic Times in August, Raj Mehta, President at Cognizant, had said,"We are trying to clean up the higher end of the pyramid and allow our associates to grow."
Source - https://economictimes.indiatimes.com...w/66143114.cms
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Old 10th October 2018, 11:42   #187
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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In essence what he is saying is that they do not have any growth plans or options for those at higher levels. So we will remove that layer and descale the work. What is the future in a few years for those at the next level; the same statement and treatment? Wow!

Why build those higher levels if you did not/ do not have anything planned for them? Business is shrinking so to maintain margins it becomes imperative to cut the flab. It is now par for the course in this industry to get underpaid resources to overwork in order to replace experienced personnel.
High time to build other skills and an exit plan.

Last edited by selfdrive : 10th October 2018 at 11:46.
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Old 10th October 2018, 17:00   #188
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

This article on ET just rewinds and dwells upon what most know about the current state of the IT industry.

What Cognizant did is just cut out the dead wood people they say whose skills were not aligned with customers' requirements and were unwilling or could not adapt to the new environment.

Motto - be prepared to adapt and change, or perish. That goes for companies and techies alike.
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Old 10th October 2018, 17:21   #189
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Why build those higher levels if you did not/ do not have anything planned for them?
2 reasons: 1. Employees themselves keep looking for 'growth' even if they don't really understand what that means. In most cases they mean 'I need to become a manager in x years, or I'll keep looking for a company that will make me one.' Irrespective of whether they have the skills or not. 2. Clueless management/HR that keeps chanting mantras like 'think outside the box', 'always think about the next big thing'. Irrespective of whether or not the basic customer requirements themselves are even being met.
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Old 10th October 2018, 17:30   #190
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

I see a lot of colleagues moving into entrepreneurship (small cafes/ food takeaways/ bakeries etc). But I am sure it should be possible for others to dust off their gloves, get down and dirty to build/ resurrect their careers again.

The challenge is to do so with dignity; getting fired from a job should not be the end of everything. Unfortunately, some of us are so dependent on the job that it seems there is no way out and we end up blaming ourselves. Whereas it is really a perfect storm brewing outdoors and not a single factor by itself.

Instead of continuing with the plight of those in their 40s, can we start listing what skills can be acquired by them at this stage?
Anything that can keep them in business for the next few years at least?

What can the list look like?

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Originally Posted by am1m View Post
2 reasons: 1. Employees themselves keep looking for 'growth' even if they don't really understand what that means. In most cases they mean 'I need to become a manager in x years, or I'll keep looking for a company that will make me one.' Irrespective of whether they have the skills or not. 2. Clueless management/HR that keeps chanting mantras like 'think outside the box', 'always think about the next big thing'. Irrespective of whether or not the basic customer requirements themselves are even being met.
It is getting difficult for people (me included) to even hold down their existing job role. I can forget about growth (knowledge/ money or otherwise).
Everything worked fine when the industry was booming. But I see a much bigger and more responsible role for HR in the current scenario.
It is essential to afford loyal employees some dignity and if possible maybe some choices in terms of retraining or upgraded training to new technologies.
A pink slip is not only to the employee; there are many other dependencies behind. A lot of aspirations, dreams and perhaps even financial dependents.

Last edited by selfdrive : 10th October 2018 at 17:35.
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Old 10th October 2018, 18:56   #191
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

I agree with @selfdrive, we all know the plight that awaits most of us (and god forbid, if it has befallen some already). The thread has shown the multitude of reasons as to why we are under threat. Could we pivot this thread please, to use as a source of guidance and advice instead? As to what's needed to survive (if not grow)?

If I may suggest a template (starting with myself):
  • Experience :12.5 years
  • Age: 34.5 years
  • Current role: Testing and quality assurance manager in an Indian IT services firm
  • Current domain : telecom OSS BSS
  • Current skills: test planning, test strategy, test management, test process improvements like TMMI, methodology and frameworks knowledge of Prince 2, Agile scrum, SAFE, Lean Six Sigma, etc
  • Areas of improvement in current role (these are those obvious and visible ones without needing too much introspection) : test automation hands on experience. I have theoretical familiarity with HP UFT and selenium but little coding knowledge
  • What am i good at: verification and validation of designs, working with customers who are functionally sound
  • What am i not good at: people leadership. I am often too demanding of people
  • My aspirations : a techno functional role where I can be an individual contributor

I need to reinvent to stay in a job for the next 15 years or more. Where do I go from here?

Last edited by digitalnirvana : 10th October 2018 at 18:58.
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Old 11th October 2018, 08:27   #192
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

Sometimes I think people are being too facetious. The high salaries you get in the early days are to compensate for the short working life. In a short time, either you retrain, or move over to management, or are essentially redundant.
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Old 11th October 2018, 09:21   #193
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

Curiosity is the very basis of learning, be that curious cat..

Now a days reskilling in Automation, machine learning and data science is very much required to be in technical side in IT.
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Old 11th October 2018, 09:55   #194
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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Sometimes I think people are being too facetious. The high salaries you get in the early days are to compensate for the short working life.
This is the way I too think, my father at the time of his retirement saved around Rs.9 lakhs plus a plot in Bangalore. He opted for VRS after working in the government service for 29 years. Today I have the resources to save the same amount every 2 years from my own salary, but I know that it is difficult for me to work for 29 years.
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Old 11th October 2018, 10:31   #195
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Default Re: The plight of IT professionals in their 40s

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This is the way I too think, my father at the time of his retirement saved around Rs.9 lakhs plus a plot in Bangalore. He opted for VRS after working in the government service for 29 years. Today I have the resources to save the same amount every 2 years from my own salary, but I know that it is difficult for me to work for 29 years.
Very true. Once cannot hope to keep drawing high salaries and remaining relevant without any impetus or initiative to proactively upgrade ones skills. The IP sector is overflowing with people, millions flocking to the sector lured by stories of steady salaries and perks. What is sadly unseen is the plight just a decade and a half down the road. Actions such as the one taken by Cognizant is a great wake up call to not take any IT job for granted.
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