Having been in the IT industry for 10 years, overall I'm pleased with the challenges and pace of the work. I have my undergrad in MIS and an MBA, so my experiences may be unique to what you're experiencing. You need to find your niche. Taking the time to figure out where you want to be is the secret. Unfortunately, IT ends up becoming a generalization of an industry that has a lot of unique facets.
I was fortunate enough to hire directly into a major automotive supplier straight out of college. It was VERY fast paced and NEVER a dull moment. I worked in the manufactuing plants supporting the real-time production control application. The process started out with receiving the live order from the customer (aka broadcast), and ensuring that the part was built (not my job persay), labeled correctly, racked correctly (with rack labels), sequenced, shipped in sequence, and arrived with an advanced shipping notice (ASN) all in a 35 minute window. Talk about stress. The app wasn't the greatest, but it was challenging and self-fulfilling. In addition to that sort of responsibility, at the plants, I was also responsible for pulling voice and data cabling, working with vendors (such as AT&T, Canon, etc.) to accomplish projects, work on Six Sigma projects, support 50-some users, etc. A whole variety of things. This job really taught me what I did and did not want to do. Lasted three years.
Then, I went on to work in the group office as a Tech Support Manager. I did not like it. However, things such as these below quotes really need to be taken with a grain of salt.
Originally Posted by bandit
Originally Posted by corvettecrazy
Judging by the amount of schoolwork my roommate (IT major) and other IT majors do, I can't see how they even need to go to college for their job. In the last 4 weeks I have not seen my roommate do 20 minutes of homework. That has to say something
yup thats because its all hangs on. you cant tech hangs on knowledge in school.
Thats why almost every IT person i meet thats fresh out of school... i know way more then them.
but on the other hand. the IT market is flooded. there are no good IT jobs left that you can make 50+K a year at. its all Help Desk phone type jobs.
im really starting to think about changing job field soon. :(
Huge stereotype. I agree that tech support positions require a lot more hands on experience than education. I was a tech support manager for 9 months and absolutely hated it. There was NO challenge, and I had to work with (how should I say this delicately?) "nerds." Drove me insane. There was no challenge and no self fulfillment.
Inevitably, the tech support manager position pushed me further away from what I wanted to do in IT. So, I went back to a plant role, but in a different capacity. As a Business Analyst. If you break down the position to the nuts and bolts - it'* a liason between very talented developers and the end users. My job was to define the requirements from end users and create functional requirements and specifications. Those documents could easily grow to be over 100 pages long. Once submitted and signed off by the lines of business requesting application enhancements, developers would use those specs to build the apps. While they were coding the app, I would be working with the end users/line of business to write test scripts. The test scripts ensured that the app worked correctly, and met the business objectives.
Fast forward a little more... Now, I work in a bank as a Project Manager and really enjoy it. The non-tech support IT world is shifting and Business Analysts with Project Management experience are in hot demand. Therefore, I'm leaving my current employer (Thursday is my last day) to be a BA/PM.
Sorry for the long post, but in a nut shell, don't be closed minded when it comes to IT. And, don't be deceived that college and technical traning isn't necessary to succeed in IT. IT strategic planners, business analysts, project managers, application directors, developers, chief of technology officers, etc. have the degrees and make the big bucks. They all have the degrees and do well. Tech support, such as you're doing, may not be your niche. Reach out. Network. And, I repeat: unfortunately, the term "IT" ends up becoming a generalization of an industry that has a lot of unique facets.
Good luck to you.