Climbing the IT Career Ladder

August 29, 2011  9:16 AM

‘Please Listen Carefully, Since Our Menu Options Have Changed’

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
cellular, courtesy, etiquette, long distance, message, phone, telephone, voice mail

Really? I last called you an hour ago. Have they changed since then? How about I hang up, wait 10 minutes, and call you again. Same message! Wow. I’m starting to think a lot of companies have people who do nothing, all day long, but change phone messages. Why don’t they have those people answer the phone, instead? Now ask yourself: when people call you or your company, do you treat them as poorly as the companies whose phone-mazes you hate most? If so, you need to figure out how to make it pleasant, rather than irritating, for clients to call you.
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August 24, 2011  12:58 PM

The 25 Best Consulting Firms to Work For

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
consultant, consulting, keyword, list of 50 employers, resume,

Most of the time, when we talk about “consulting,” we mean going into business for ourselves, working for local businesses — or for businesses, not necessarily local, that need special expertise we’ve acquired. But there are also consulting firms that have strong IT practices, and if your qualifications meet their needs they might be worth considering as employers.
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August 22, 2011  2:31 PM

Finding a Job That Won’t Be Outsourced Next Year

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
budget, clearance, defense, electricians, layoff, mechanic, offshoring, outsource, plumber, reboot, surveyor

Technically, I’m talking about offshoring rather than outsourcing. But, either way, I’m worried about job stability for you. The idea that you might find a job you like this year, only to have that job move to China next year, while leaving you behind, is not pleasant. So what IT jobs are least likely to go overseas?
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August 17, 2011  12:54 PM

Geographic Information Systems: an IT Job Niche Worth Exploring

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
career, certification, college, credentials, Geographic, GIS, GIS Lounge, job market

GIS isn’t a brand-new field. But, like “cloud computing,” most people aren’t sure what it really means. So, assuming you want to become a GIS specialist, what should you study? And what credentials, if any, should you obtain? I’m not even going to try to answer all these question in a short blog post. I will, however, point you to resources that will answer them.
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August 15, 2011  10:52 AM

Is It Time to Become an Android Developer?

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
Amazon, Android, app, Apple, application, developer, Google, iOS, Motorola, smartphone, Windows

Android phones may have overtaken Apple’s iPhones in the marketplace. Then again, maybe they haven’t. And to you, as a developer, what may matter most is which smart phone OS is going to be the biggest player a year or two from now, and fellow IT Knowledge Exchange writer Ron Miller (no relation) thinks Google may have hurt future Android adoption badly by buying Motorola’s mobile phone unit. Still, it’s probably prudent to put at least as much effort into Android app development as into developing iOS apps. Continued »

August 11, 2011  12:12 PM

Can DDoS Protection Make Your Job More Secure?

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
DDoS, defence, defense, Google, meeting, Protection, Simwood, value, Web, website

Anything you do to keep your company’s website and email running 24/7 makes you look good — possibly even indispensible. And in today’s job climate that’s a very good way to look.
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August 8, 2011  2:11 PM

Improve Your People Skills for Even More Fun and Profit

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
calm, comedian, communication, Dan Nainan, job, listening, non-techie, people skills, profit, tension, tune out

The title of my April 12, 2011 IT Ladder post was Improve Your People Skills for Fun and Profit. Today we have more of the same. Strong people skills, when added to strong IT skills, can help you move into management, find another job more easily, and even (in rough times like we’re seeing now) might help you hang on to a job you already have.
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August 3, 2011  3:12 PM

The Employment Interview

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
different, employment interview, gatherer, hunter, Monty Python, questions, tribe

It seems that the idea of the employment interview is older than we thought — and that it was just as much of a PIA for our ancestors as it is for us.[kml_flashembed movie="" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

And now, for something completely different
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August 1, 2011  9:22 AM

Beware of the Patent Trap, Software Entrepreneur

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
demons, EFF, evil, FSF, invention, OIN, patents, programming, software, troll

You are s-o-o brilliant! Your new application is going to save millions of people millions of hours and dollars. It’s selling well enough that you’re thinking about buying a better car. And then the letter from a lawyer comes, accusing you of patent infringement and demanding a payment far larger than your total income for the last five years. You have just fallen into (ominous drum roll) The Patent Trap.
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July 28, 2011  10:52 AM

More Great Places for Programmers to Live and Work

Posted by: Robin "Roblimo" Miller
Arkansas, beach, Chicago, Florida, New York, NYC, Port St. Lucie, programmer, programming, quality, salaries, skiing

Monday, July 25, this column asked the question, Where’s the Best Place for a Programmer to Live? We got a stack of excellent answers — more than we had room to publish in a single article. So today we have more answers for you.
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