10 Hot IT Jobs That Deliver Work-Life Balance - InformationWeek

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10 Hot IT Jobs That Deliver Work-Life Balance
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TerryB
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TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
10/22/2015 | 2:04:10 PM
No Managers
Interesting all these jobs you do actual deliverable work versus a management postion that it becomes much tougher tell what they do. My observation is management forces you to work long hours to keep up appearances, since telling a good manager from a bad one is not a straightforward thing. 

Well, unless you work for them. :-) I remember the IT mgr for a company in Dallas that bought our company. I could tell that in the past his technical skills were probably pretty good, how he got to manager in first place. But this company was so ate up politically that this guy came to work every day at 7am and went home about 8-9pm at night. From a getting work done perspective it made no sense, he was just "showing how much he cared". Didn't do him any good, about a year after they bought us they got bought and ceased to exist.

Another anecdote on this hypothesis. My current company implemented Lean, which part of the system was having weekly meetings between supervisors and their reports, updating to a cockpit chart. I jokingly asked why nobody wanted to meet with me weekly to get project status updates. Our Plant Mgr replied "we don't need to, we see and use the work that you do".  That's a good place to be. Well, unless you actually like meetings. :-)
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
10/22/2015 | 2:17:16 PM
Re: No Managers
@terryb- I think you are right about the visble product helping. I don't know whether it is really fair to say that you can measure a developer by the number of lines of code they write or a QA analyst by the number of bugs they find, but if you do write a million lines of code in 8 hours, no one is goign to say you didn't come to work.

What are we measuring bosses on? "Oh, I can go home, I yelled 15 times today."
Gary_EL
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Gary_EL,
User Rank: Ninja
10/22/2015 | 5:02:34 PM
Re: No Managers
Let me list one other job, and it has the perfect work-life balance. The freelance technology writer!
Technocrati
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Technocrati,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 1:38:10 AM
Is the Grass Greener ? Sometimes it is......

Work-Life balance in IT ?  I was certain that this was not possible yet I did find it somewhat in this past year as a freelance engineer.  It was really nice and just recently I took a gig in the industry I have worked in for many years only to be reminded that it is the reason I am so skeptical of work-life balance in IT.

I am going to try to stay for awhile since I am finally being compensated for my expertise, however I am leaning towards going back to freelancing because of this issue of work-life balance.

Technocrati
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Technocrati,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 1:45:30 AM
Re: No Managers
"...What are we measuring bosses on? "Oh, I can go home, I yelled 15 times today."

 

Just recently encountered the boss that likes to put you on the spot in front of your colleagues at a high pitch, really trying to understand that management style.

I won't try too long though, because I will eventually fight (yell) back, no patience for that kind of management style.

DDURBIN1
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DDURBIN1,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 9:49:48 AM
Low Job Count and the necessary evil.
For these top 10 jobs, I find it interesting the number of "open" positions listed nationally is quite low in my opinion.  For example, just 500 web developer positions open?  Its been my experience work life balance has more to do with the company and its leadership than the actual position itself.  Since most IT departments report to the finanical executive,  all IT jobs are treated like necessary evils. 
TerryB
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TerryB,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 1:05:39 PM
Re: Low Job Count and the necessary evil.
No more evil than A/P clerks and other positions which don't directly add value to whatever your company's product is. But you'd be surprised how much CFO warms up when you create systems which eliminate/prevent clerical positions. Or create system they would otherwise pay for and then drop another bundle on integration/implementation work. Or radically improve key metrics like inventory days and OTIF with system enhancements.

That's some bottom line math they easily understand. :-)  I do agree with you it gets a little fuzzy at larger places where your job is keeping the IT plumbing working. Probably the worst is in security, where job success is measured on keepng something bad from happening. That's tough for them to get their head around at bottom line. Although much easier today with all these high profile attacks/breaches.
dried_squid
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dried_squid,
User Rank: Moderator
10/23/2015 | 2:22:02 PM
IT Morality
    I once discussed with the hotel controller the uncertainty of IT success. To a certain extent, accounting and IT are similar. The general public's ideas of your "success" is based on their knowledge of something they don't want to do. Or know. Just results.

    My point was that while much of my work was behind the scenes preventive maintenance, this lessened my ablility to look good because my fixes were fast and easy. No big problems - no glory. No big results. All for 60+ hrs and 24x7x365. BTW, the food and health plan were good.

    Work-life balance? Maybe it depends if it's job, or a calling.

    I was a bartender for many years, and one thing i learned in my early twenties was there were men who were proud of the money they made at work for it's ability to provide for their family, but they did not seem to like going to that work. It seemed to be only the money.

    Can one take disposable income out of the question?
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
10/23/2015 | 2:52:43 PM
Re: Is the Grass Greener ? Sometimes it is......
@Technocrati - I feel like Freelancing or Consulting are truly the only ways to have "true" work-life balance because you call some of the shots and decide what projects you are willing to take on, as well as having a say in defining the scope of the project.  

I know there are some companies out there that promote their committment to work-life balance.  My firm is one of them.  But the reality is, we're not approved to work any OT unless it is billable back to the client or a dire emergency, so I pretty much have to complete whatever is thrown at me in one day by 5:30 pm, no ifs, ands, or buts.  So I have to run around like a crazy person most days - I would call that "imbalanced."
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
10/23/2015 | 4:56:09 PM
Re: Low Job Count and the necessary evil.
@ddurbin1- Those are open positions listed on Glassdoor alone. I can't testify as to how many there are open that aren't listed there. I suspect there are always more.
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