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The Why Don't You Get a Job Thread

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Obviously you should go with what a solicitor advises and not what some berk on a wrestling forum says!

What's the timeline here?  Did things head south after you told them about your health?  Had you already handed in your notice at this point?  It sounds like they put you on Gardening leave when you gave them the doctors note, that's if you'd given your notice beforehand, so it would be standard procedure to take away access to their systems.  A lot of what they were doing sounds as if it could be explained away by restructuring the business.  This is pretty key as everyone who works there was affected and not just you.  They'd be pretty awful business wise if they were restructuring everything just to try and force you out.  So from my totally ignorant of the whole facts view, the access being revoked and the moving jobs and responsibilities won't hold any weight.

However, if the restructuring led to redundancies, there should have been a consultation period where everyone directly affected would have been kept in the loop and given the option of redundancy instead of a job that didn't suit them, there also should have been a probationary period for the employee to see if the role suited them.  I should stress that I haven't been involved with a redundancy consultation in an official capacity for a long time, so there is every chance the tories have changed the rules.

Another thing to be mindful of is if things were to get ugly, they can use things you've said against you.  For instance, have you accessed here or social media from their computers?  I noticed that you made a couple of disparaging remarks on your public Twitter about them and the whole scenario.  Also any posts on here about them, If you used their systems to do so they'll be able to see who you are on here and use that against you.  From what I remember you've always been complimentary about them, but still, it could be used against you.

TL;DR - Solicitors will know best, not a paranoid arsehole full of snide and TayTay gifs.

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I've got a (most of the time) decent job that I enjoy, at least when I'm able to just get my head down and get on with it. But managerial/administrative changes have made it an absolute chore lately. I've been separated from the team I support - and enjoy working with - to be part of a "centralised admin team", that effectively (in the eyes of management) reduces our role to being a glorified call centre/typing pool.

It's a miserable environment, and means that after nearly three years of being told I was overworked, and my department needed admin support, I'm now being expected to cover for other departments, take irrelevant phone calls every ten minutes, and be a general dogsbody - on top of having to do my actual job, which is largely time-sensitive Quality Assurance stuff. So I've gone from being told I was doing too much, to apparently having "spare capacity", because the metric they use to determine an admin's workload is the number of students in their department, not the work they actually do - again, because management have a "one size fits all" view of what administrators do, when it's actually quite a diverse job description, depending on the department. Because of all that, I'm not able to work to the best of my ability, and it's immensely frustrating.

I'm also the only curriculum administrator to work full-time - it's our half-term at the moment, so no one else is in. This was fine when I was back in my old office, and able to just put the radio on and get on with my work, catching up on time-intensive jobs without interruption. Now, though, in the "Central Admin Area", I'm having to take phone calls all the time, and get roped into doing busy-work for other departments. Or that's how it's gone so far, I've only been here two hours today, and got none of my own work done. I'm dreading being here over the Summer break, when the place will be close to empty for 6-8 weeks, with me being expected to do God knows what, rather than having time to focus on the complex (and important!) jobs that I'm supposed to do at that time. So I don't really want to still be here by then.

Perhaps more significantly, there's industrial action pending. The pay offer that all public sector workers here have been offered is considerably below what we were promised last year, and for 2019 would be a good 2%+ below cost of living rises. And not for the first time. So the Union have rejected it outright, and the government aren't budging. So that's going to cause all kinds of chaos whenever that kicks off.

 

It pains me to say it, but I just want to get out. But I have no idea what to do if I leave here. There's no equivalent role I can apply for - we're the only FE/HE college on the island, so it's not like I can go and negotiate elsewhere - and while I've got decent experience, my qualifications aren't up to much. In an ideal world, I'd want to remain either public or third sector - though remaining in the public sector might remain a problem depending on how that industrial action goes, and third sector would almost certainly constitute a pay cut. I don't have any family in Jersey any more, so lack the safety net of their support if the worst happens - I wouldn't be able to move back in with them to tide things over if I got desperately short of cash, or anything like that. 

The only major employers here are in the finance industry, which isn't a direction I want to go in at all - and definitely not at the moment, when the whole future of that sector is uncertain because of Brexit. I've contemplated trying to save up over the course of next year and move back to England, but that would be a very long-term plan, a major risk, and I don't know what I'd be aiming to do there either...and there's still potential Brexit complications.

 

So...yeah. I have no idea. Just needed to let off steam a little, while I try and figure things out. Fuck knows what I'm going to do yet.

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38 minutes ago, Accident Prone said:

https://www.openstudycollege.com/courses/it-cyber-security-training-bundle

Does anybody have any thoughts on this cyber security course and the possibility of it just being a waste of time/money? Is an employer going to be impressed by these qualifications or is it all fluff?

My immediate concern would be:

Quote

Upon successful completion of each of the courses in this bundle, you will receive a Learn365 Certification of completion...

As someone that looks at a lot of IT CVs that's not an actual qualification or certification that I've ever heard of.  That's just a this person turned up certificate.

Where are you starting from and where are you going to?

With IT stuff it's very much chicken and egg.  With a certification way above practical experience then I'd be very wary of letting someone on live gear as there are far too many paper techs: people who have passed certification exams for technologies and equipments they have had little, or no, practical experience on.  Conversely there are those that have never had any formal training and have picked up tons of bad habits.  Somewhere in the middle is the sweet spot.

If you're looking at entry level stuff then the Comptia + certifications (Network+, Security+ etc) are a sound basis and always stand out to me on entry level and even level 2 (as a grounding) CVs.  https://certification.comptia.org/certifications

If I was being really cynical I would say that those initialisations look a smidge like the big dog the ISC2 CISSP https://www.isc2.org/Certifications/CISSP#

One final thing about IT courses in general is check what you get at the end.  Dont just check the training providers site, check the issuing body/vendor as to what you need to be qualified.  The vast majority that I've ever gone on do not come with the real certification exam at the end of it.  They're course completion certificates or tests.  You have to take and pay for a certification exam after.  Some training companies are good about highlighting this, others not so much as it makes the course look more expensive.  This is true even of big vendor legit courses and it's been embarassing for me when I've had to tell people that they haven't got the qualifications they're claiming they have.  For example, Cisco do a very good (and long and expensive) official training course for the CCNA.  People, wrongly, assume that as they've done the module tests for this and passed them that they're a CCNA, which you can't be without taking the CCNA exam(s) proper.

Edited by johnnyboy

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That's fantastic, Johnny! I'll have a look at the CompTIA IT Fundamentals. Silly question; but does it matter that the course is based out of America? Or is there a UK counterpart? I'm sure online certifications transcend countries but I'm just making sure.

Honestly, and this was naive of me, it's a tad overwhelming to see so much on the subject. I also never really thought about employers looking at the experience/qualifications balance but it does make a lot of sense.

This is something I'm going to invest time looking into. The Fundamentals course/exams seems like an excellent first step and quite affordable (the next course is $249 including the exam, $500 for the next course). 

Thanks again, Johnny! This is a big help.

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5 minutes ago, Accident Prone said:

That's fantastic, Johnny! I'll have a look at the CompTIA IT Fundamentals. Silly question; but does it matter that the course is based out of America? Or is there a UK counterpart? I'm sure online certifications transcend countries but I'm just making sure.

Honestly, and this was naive of me, it's a tad overwhelming to see so much on the subject. I also never really thought about employers looking at the experience/qualifications balance but it does make a lot of sense.

CompTIA are the awarding organisation, but you'll find local training providers, colleges etc offering sit down courses based on the material in the UK, or there's the option of online/book only study.  All of the big boys stuff is essentially global.

Check the awarding organisation, but most don't require you do their actual courses.  You can just buy the book for £50 and take the exam for ~£150.  E.g. when I'm recertifying Cisco qualifications I hit up my favourite instructor on udemy for revision videos and buy the updated course book.  Some higher level certifications like VMWare it's mandatory that you go on a £££ course and take an exam or the qualification isn't awarded, but I'm not aware of any provisions for that at the lower level.  Look up Mike Meyers CompTIA courses on udemy or some of his freebies on YouTube.  Don't buy them when they're at "rrp" £150, but when they're sub £20 they're often cheaper than a book and probably more accessible to start off with.  (udemy always have promotions going or open it in an incognito tab :) to nab a deal)  Decent general explanation of certs in this video too, and yes they are a bloody minefield!

 

Something that also might be considering is looking at academic courses that piggy back onto the industry stuff in a 2 for the price of 1 extravaganza.  E.g. if you're doing one of the OU IT degrees you can choose CIsco networking (CCNA) as elective modules.  Now you still have to sit the Cisco exam separately for the CCNA certification, but whilst doing the coursework  you're earning degree credit at the same time as learning industry networky stuff.  You might find similar things at your local institution.

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No problem.  You're doing the right thing in investigating it fully.  Never believe the "do this two week course and earn £35k" daytime TV ads.

If ever you want to dip your toe into stuff EdX is a great resource for (largely) free content too.  It's a collection of courses from universities and companies.  Microsoft have a huge section on there.

https://www.edx.org/school/microsoft

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@BomberPat¬†Yeah, doing ‚Äėadmin‚Äô in education sucks balls.

I ran the Exams & Achievements function at my local FE college for nigh on 8 years, soul destroying stressful stuff. Got to the point earlier this year where I just had to get out, which I did in April by taking a maternity cover post at the local university. That had always been my employer of aspiration and thought that would be a good ‚Äėin‚Äô.

Turns out, HE is even more mental so I straight up quit it after about 8 weeks.

I’m now doing admin stuff in the insurance industry. Earning a fair bit less than I was this time last year, but a damn sight happier.

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Just finished my first day managing in my new job. I'm bloody exhausted but I've never been so hyped to get into my own store tomorrow and go absolutely OCD with sorting out the shitstorm that is our stock room.

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I sign off company emails as Jolly and told one of my big bosses by email that I 'ho ho hopes he enjoyed' our shops Christmas displays today.

I love this job.

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14 hours ago, Shy Dad said:

I sign off company emails as Jolly and told one of my big bosses by email that I 'ho ho hopes he enjoyed' our shops Christmas displays today.

I love this job.

My old boss once signed off an email with, "As they say in Nigeria, 'good luck Jonathan'", and I still sometimes catch myself chuckling about it.

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Has anyone just jacked in what they were doing for whatever reason and took up a new career?

Brief background on myself - started at rock bottom in the first job I walked into after finishing secondary school. A few years in I'd moved up the ladder a couple of steps. Got offered a position in our Nottingham office so moved there from Dublin in 2007 when I was 20. 2010 comes around and the office shuts so I take up a job stacking shelves at night in a Tesco. Just something to tide me over for a little bit says I.

Still here eight years later.

I don't wanna go back to what I was doing before, which was supervisor for an inventory company. I was good at the interviewing and training side of things, but really really hated the disciplinary side of things. Sacking someone is the worst thing in the world.

Has anyone thought fuck it and trained up in anything new? I'm only 32 so still young but nervous at stepping out of my comfort zone, especially now with a mortgage to pay.

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Sadly had to take the decision to resign from the job and look elsewhere.

Between an area manager who makes my anxiety disorder ten times worse, the stress of running an entire shop and just the multitude of issues I have I ended up having a full blown two hour anxiety attack black out yesterday morning which meant the shop didnt open until 11 and realised that trying to stay in the job and please everyone would just end up making me very ill.

I'm alright though, gutted because I did enjoy the role but at least I know I'm doing it for my health which takes the hit off a little.

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