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Changing Careers

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Hi All,

Has any-one on this forum changed careers succesfully?

I work in IT at the moment, Business Intelligence to be exact, so spend my days writing code, mappings and queries to keep a datawarehouse up and running, writing reports etc..... and I am sooooo bored.

I'd really like to have a career that isn't so dependant on computers, well PC's i suppose to be exact.

Everything I look at requires a long expensive training period, and/or doesn't pay as much as my current job. With a family and a mortgage that is important.

Sorry if this sounds like a moaning post, its not meant to be, i'd just like to find out about other peoples experience of changing careers, what they started out doing and what they do now.

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Guest Skinty

Often found myself seriously considering the same when I was in industry. I couldn't really come up with any ideas except academia, which was always my intention anyway. Most people seem to progress into management but that sounds even more boring to me. I realised that there were loads of jobs I would prefer than to be doing than being a software engineering grunt for the rest of my life. It didn't stop me feeling trapped by my qualifications, work experience and age though.

In the end I decided that the most important thing was to decide on the right job for yourself before making a career change as that way you don't mind taking the pay cut and working your way up again. Either that or you drift into a whole new career which is probably the easiest way to gain experience.

I don't know what other career I would pick but it would be something outside and away from computers.

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Guest X-QUORK

Once you get into your 30s/40s you tend to be stuck in a salary trap. By this stage your income is comfortable and you have responsibilities, a change in career will require either time out for expensive training, or a severe drop in pay to start at entry level. Unless you have a large wadge of cash to get you through, you're stuck.

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Guest DisposableHeroes
Often found myself seriously considering the same when I was in industry. I couldn't really come up with any ideas except academia, which was always my intention anyway. Most people seem to progress into management but that sounds even more boring to me. I realised that there were loads of jobs I would prefer than to be doing than being a software engineering grunt for the rest of my life. It didn't stop me feeling trapped by my qualifications, work experience and age though.

In the end I decided that the most important thing was to decide on the right job for yourself before making a career change as that way you don't mind taking the pay cut and working your way up again. Either that or you drift into a whole new career which is probably the easiest way to gain experience.

I don't know what other career I would pick but it would be something outside and away from computers.

I know exactly what you mean. I guess the good thing is though, when the works done, the contrast to then going outside makes it all the better.

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Once you get into your 30s/40s you tend to be stuck in a salary trap. By this stage your income is comfortable and you have responsibilities, a change in career will require either time out for expensive training, or a severe drop in pay to start at entry level. Unless you have a large wadge of cash to get you through, you're stuck.

You've hit it on the nail, i figure i have reached my prime salary level and have responsibilities; this making a change of career all that much more difficult. If indeed I knew what career to even move into.

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I may be out of a job come the end of the year - hope not as things are going ok. Right now I'm in front of a computer most days doing electronic circuit design. I'm thinking of applying to BP for a drilling role, or Rolls Royce graduate programme for something a bit more hands on. Alternatively, I'm still considering the police force.

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Hi All,

Has any-one on this forum changed careers succesfully?

I work in IT at the moment, Business Intelligence to be exact, so spend my days writing code, mappings and queries to keep a datawarehouse up and running, writing reports etc..... and I am sooooo bored.

I'd really like to have a career that isn't so dependant on computers, well PC's i suppose to be exact.

Everything I look at requires a long expensive training period, and/or doesn't pay as much as my current job. With a family and a mortgage that is important.

Sorry if this sounds like a moaning post, its not meant to be, i'd just like to find out about other peoples experience of changing careers, what they started out doing and what they do now.

See if you can find something with transferable skills, and it doesn't just have to be your IT skills, do you manage anyone ? Do you have client contact etc etc. A friend of mine swapped a job as a project manager in the city to a production co-ordinator in TV, very similar skillset but now she gets to work with Phillip Schofield.... woo hoo !

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I'm in this dilema too. Already had a change of career a few years ago to be an architect. Was a fairly easy transfer from being a structural draftsman and managed to do the training part-time whilst I was still earning.

However, looking at changing career again before I have kids. Architecture and spare time don't exactly go hand in hand. Looking for a job that would allow me time with the family. Will no doubt have to work from the ground up again, but will hopefully be worth it. Starting a design company in the little spare time I have. Hopefully this will come to something. Otherwise will attempt to make it as a session musician or go back to being a cad monkey!

Good luck. it's tough when there's not a definite route. Is tough enough when you know what you want to do!

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Hi All,

Has any-one on this forum changed careers succesfully?

I don't know if you'd regard this as a success, but around 12 years ago I jumped from manufacturing engineering/ergonomics consultancy to forestry contracting. It was quite a drop in salary, even more so when you consider how much housing costs have gone up in that time. At the moment, my income after business expenses covers the landlord, council tax/utilities and food..and that's it. But I've heard it said that if you enjoy your job, you don't go to work, and that's turned out to be the case. :)

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Back in the pre-NuLab days (1996 perhaps?) I had a long meeting and lunch with a Professor at one of the then up and coming universities.

He had been recruited from industry to head up a task team: the focus was Career Change. I think the then buzz term was Continual Development.

What had been realised was most adults from then on, would inevitably make career changes 2.5 times in their working lives. The old "Cradle to Grave" ethos of the post-Victorian industrial economies no longer applied.

Activites go through periods of "Churn": economically.

Anyone of 30 ish, now needs to ensure they have other career options ready and waiting, as a contingency plan.

At the moment and since the tech explosion of the late 1980s, ICT has employed a vast number of people in many differing ways.

As systems become smarter and more intertwined, this will simply not be so.

Modern ICT has been defined by one of the fathers of the Internet and networking as "A Disruptive Technology": and it very much is.

And it will continue to disrupt accepted ways of doing things: and established businesses and sectors.

So from a consulting perspective are you being Market Driven; or Market Led?

Always but always consider the market in career jumps.

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The people I do know of that changed careers to do 'non computer work' had the following things.

1/ Low / no mortgage, by agreeing a mortgage base on salary you have already chained yourself to your career path.

2/ The hobby they loved turned into their income (ie dance teacher/ workshop events/ selling diecast collector cars).

3/ A second person to provide income cover while you spend the next 6 months to 1 year setting up.

I think if your up for a career change you need to build up a few revenue streams to cover your ass, be that savings, mini businesses.

My gameplan was low mortgage, lol just as employment crash started wanted part time contract work ho hum. Was going for 3 days a week in the path i have taken, then 2 days a week in something else that i can grow.

Well now i have 7 days a week to work it out :D, and a wife to sponge off. Equality is a two edged sword it seems.

Oh one guy in the office in the 90's spent 100k to become a commercial pilot, he did it too.

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I changed my career twice. Once at the age of 25ish! And another when I became self-employed a year ago. When I graduated from uni I also did a career completely unrelated to my reputable, but specialised, degree.

Although I don't have much money or assets, I also don't have any debt and no mortgage. A few grand in savings was enough to tide me over during changeover.

Do it, you only live once.

My ambition is to be one of the NR ("new rich") as described by Tim Ferris in Four Hour Work Week. i.e. don't delay life until retirement. Live it now and build income generators that require zero to minimal upkeep.

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A different but related problem - moving from an academic to industrial environment. Everyone seems to want specific experience nowdays, transferrable skills alone are all but useless.

I imagine that the OP would have much more luck were he wanting IN to the IT industry - almost everything around me is IT so it is remarkably hard if you dont want to go there!

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You know what... I'm young (24) and might be out of a job soon. No real ties. If I can somehow break into oil & gas and work on rigs for half the year then I'm going to do it. Anybody do this type of work? Must be better than an office job getting below average wage.

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A different but related problem - moving from an academic to industrial environment. Everyone seems to want specific experience nowdays, transferrable skills alone are all but useless.

I imagine that the OP would have much more luck were he wanting IN to the IT industry - almost everything around me is IT so it is remarkably hard if you dont want to go there!

Nah. Pays **** unless you have a wide or rare skillset. Easy to outsource the entry level stuff, costs a fortune to get certified in anything...I could go on but you get the idea.

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Hi All,

Has any-one on this forum changed careers succesfully?

I work in IT at the moment, Business Intelligence to be exact, so spend my days writing code, mappings and queries to keep a datawarehouse up and running, writing reports etc..... and I am sooooo bored.

I'd really like to have a career that isn't so dependant on computers, well PC's i suppose to be exact.

Everything I look at requires a long expensive training period, and/or doesn't pay as much as my current job. With a family and a mortgage that is important.

Sorry if this sounds like a moaning post, its not meant to be, i'd just like to find out about other peoples experience of changing careers, what they started out doing and what they do now.

Do a masters/MBA/Management Qualification and move up the tree? or move up the tree without a qualification?

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Become a GP.

Have a look at the thread on the main forum. The consensus opinion is that they are all earning £380K pa and its such easy work anyone can do it.

Apparently

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Guest X-QUORK
You know what... I'm young (24) and might be out of a job soon. No real ties. If I can somehow break into oil & gas and work on rigs for half the year then I'm going to do it. Anybody do this type of work? Must be better than an office job getting below average wage.

A friend of mine works as a diver on the rigs out in the Gulf, probably earning very good money. He used to run a family coach business (as in bus) a few years back, so it must be possible to get into rigs work if you're planning that sort of career. It's the sort of work better suited to younger, single blokes I imagine.

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Hi All,

Has any-one on this forum changed careers succesfully?

I work in IT at the moment, Business Intelligence to be exact, so spend my days writing code, mappings and queries to keep a datawarehouse up and running, writing reports etc..... and I am sooooo bored.

I'd really like to have a career that isn't so dependant on computers, well PC's i suppose to be exact.

Everything I look at requires a long expensive training period, and/or doesn't pay as much as my current job. With a family and a mortgage that is important.

Sorry if this sounds like a moaning post, its not meant to be, i'd just like to find out about other peoples experience of changing careers, what they started out doing and what they do now.

Well... Don't dismiss this out of hand, but how about the armed forces? I did 17 years, 10 wasted in the PBI but 7 well spent in logistics. Almost guaranteed progression through the ranks (you'd be surprised at how much a senior NCO earns!), gilt edged pension, and the bull tails off very quickly if your not infantry.

Admittedly, if I had my time again I'd join the RAF......

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A friend of mine works as a diver on the rigs out in the Gulf, probably earning very good money. He used to run a family coach business (as in bus) a few years back, so it must be possible to get into rigs work if you're planning that sort of career. It's the sort of work better suited to younger, single blokes I imagine.

Thanks for the info! I've looked and it seems a lot of the roles need specialist knowledge - unfortnately the engineering I do focuses on small-scale design, not rig work or anything. Don't want to waste money on some MSc only to find no work. There's an ROV course I could do but I think the fees are £14k+. Expensive. If there was some way to break into it.........

I'm applying to the BP grad scheme in September but it's nails to get onto that, so I need to look at other ways in. A friend's father does contracting, is away a lot of the time, but he loves it and earns an absolute fortune.

I'm not a doctor or a vet, a banksta or self-employed IT whizz-kid... just an engineer. I need to break free and take a chance on getting more money while I'm still able.

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Well... Don't dismiss this out of hand, but how about the armed forces? I did 17 years, 10 wasted in the PBI but 7 well spent in logistics. Almost guaranteed progression through the ranks (you'd be surprised at how much a senior NCO earns!), gilt edged pension, and the bull tails off very quickly if your not infantry.

Admittedly, if I had my time again I'd join the RAF......

Police is something I considered for a long time. Still not completely off the cards.. although I did speak to some folks from the RAF at a careers day. Shortage of engineering officers? I don't know how much I'd like it, living on base and moving around (at least with oil (see above post) the pay is insane), getting ordered about etc. I know it would be similar in the police but at least that's local.

Any more info?

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Guest X-QUORK
Thanks for the info! I've looked and it seems a lot of the roles need specialist knowledge - unfortnately the engineering I do focuses on small-scale design, not rig work or anything. Don't want to waste money on some MSc only to find no work. There's an ROV course I could do but I think the fees are £14k+. Expensive. If there was some way to break into it.........

I'm applying to the BP grad scheme in September but it's nails to get onto that, so I need to look at other ways in. A friend's father does contracting, is away a lot of the time, but he loves it and earns an absolute fortune.

I'm not a doctor or a vet, a banksta or self-employed IT whizz-kid... just an engineer. I need to break free and take a chance on getting more money while I'm still able.

If you're serious about finding out more, PM me and I'll bounce you on to my mate. Only if serious though please.

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Guest Skinty
Become a GP.

Have a look at the thread on the main forum. The consensus opinion is that they are all earning £380K pa and its such easy work anyone can do it.

Apparently

Trouble is that by the time you hear about these things everyone is working their way up the same ladder and the opportunity goes by the time you get there. The same with plumbers, software engineers and accountants before them.

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