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What is the work envirroment like in information technology?

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William R’s Answer

Hello Ralph,
Good question! I've been in IT for a long time. It was not long ago when IT was considered "a part of the business". Typically, we were housed in the basement of the building alongside the telephone equipment.
Today, IT is no longer a part of the business - IT is the Business.
I believe it was the president of UPS that said something like "We are a technology company that happens to deliver packages."

Your work environment can be whatever you would like it to be - No kidding. When I was a young developer I was in the middle of a Cubicle Farm so large they had to name the aisles like streets or people would never find anyone. I needed that team interaction and close-knit sharing of knowledge.

Later, I took a job as a Presales Engineer. I traveled around the world extensively doing technical presentations to a different group of folks every day and could not have found our office building if I tried - I'd never been there!

After doing that for several years I took a position where I work from home much of the time. If I need, or want, to go to an office we have a beautiful space not far from my house where I can grab an empty desk and work as I need.

There are so many different software companies out there - Be selective. The team and the physical space does have an impact on your work - Be sure to give it the respect it deserves and find the team and space that works best for you!

William R. Hart
Solutions Architect

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Bradley’s Answer

Hi Ralph,
Starting out it may be an open area kind of setup, depends on the company. It could be a cubicle where you have your own little space which is nice. Or if lucky you get a office, luckier still if the office has a nice window view. Youre in a professional role, so people treat you that way. Coming from college its alot different. A really good thing to do is be an intern. Work around experienced people and find a mentor if you can; at least someone to ask questions.

There are companies out there, good to bad. Worked at one that was going out of business, the industry itself was changing to a newer technology and "all this" was going to be obsolete. It was bitter, friends make you fail, then say I can do better! I was there to learn, enjoy what I did. Contract ended, left on good terms thats what matters. Worked at Nokia, thats a very good company that understands employees and has some really great policies. Work here, work at home, just be at your meetings and get the work done on schedule. All that mattered was the work? reduced the stress and I was early with everything they asked of me. Then Ive worked in a competitive hard pushing company, demanding top quality results, fast. Tight knit company, everyone energized and working fast, if youre in? youre fine. Got to learn more about the inner group, and boss. They belonged to a secretive religion where you had to be "in". I dont mean like some church. The problem was being asked to be part. If they just didnt have to have asked, I wouldnt have had to say no and insult them. They were insulted, I was blacklisted. But I wasnt the only one.

I did a short contract for a good company just north of Los Angeles, wow, super nice cubicle, professional folks; And you did not want for food. They had coffee units, chips, snacks, candy bars, stuff from costco. all free. Potluck? sometimes it was nice food, cake. Boss was an engineer, to the point, could get exactly what I needed. finished that contract, wished i couldve stayed more.

Another time? I worked at a University doing research. Thats home. Once a VERY wise HR director told me that, Lisa K is her name. She said my skills were really suited for that. But you know what? you could work for Geography and travel the world to study/collect information for various projects. There is so much possibility. There are so many good people in the world. Study, love what you do, learn how to interact with others on a professional level. You can do anything!

Bradley recommends the following next steps:

Be an intern working on computers/IT at a school/university
Learn professional interaction, Emily Post: rules of etiquette, always introduce yourself if no one else does

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Michele’s Answer

Hi Ralph,

I work at IBM, an information technology company and I love it. Here we learn a lot, every day, the things change quickly, so you need to be open mind and accept changes. You need to read a lot, study a lot, have soft skills (good communication, be social, polite) to lead with people on work ( we do a lot of things on group and you will always need to get some help from someone) and also with customers. Usually we have direct contact with customers.
A good thing on most of TI companies is that the work hours are flexible and you can work from home. A bad point is that sometimes you will need to work on weekends and holidays, depend on your area. If you work on support, probably yes. If you work with development, maybe not.
Another good thing is that there are some many different areas on TI companies, so if you want to change a little, do new things , you can ask your manager to move you to another department.

Thanks for the answer very informative Ralph B.

Hi Michele, Ive known a few people who worked at ibm and said similar things. Some worked back when the white shirt and thin black tie were mandatory? But no doubt ibm is like a Rolls Royce kind of company in the computer field. Bradley Rogers

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karthik’s Answer

Hi Ralph,

Its depends on the company ,project and your manager you are working for!

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Peter’s Answer

Hi Ralph - working in Information Technology is very interesting and very dynamic. The speed of change and innovation is perfect for folks who like to keep on learning new things. There are also multiple domains in Information Technology where you can find your niche - Information Security, Application Development, Cloud Computing, etc. The best part of this is that you can change your domain of choice easily if you continue to learn and keep your skills up-to-date. Hope this helps. Good luck! - Peter

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Abhishek’s Answer

Environment depends on at which stage you are in your career and the company you are working for.

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Pradeep Kumar’s Answer

Hello Ralph
It really depends on the the company you are working for.
Now a days all good companies promotes a lot of flexibility, work life balance and no micromanagement. This is best way to work in productive manner.
Alongwith work, You have a lot options to have fun at work place and in case if you need to manage something at home you have work from home option as well.