IBM Training Classes in Juneau, Alaska

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There are many excellent opportunities for IT professionals to present themselves to corporate entities for future consulting positions. You can find yourself in your next consulting engagement if you are willing to combine your IT skill-set, a good amount of corporate research and a bit of old fashioned moxie. Contrary to popular practice for applying for jobs through placement agencies and recruiters, it’s possible to meet with hiring managers, representing your firm, you, directly.

Although recruiters may not take a fee directly from you, the fact that they charge a fee for their services to a company after your placement may keep them from being able to place you. On the other hand, corporations searching for individuals with advanced knowledge of IT functions cannot rely on the friends and family of current employees to find superior consults in all fields.

What are some other options? First take the time to research corporations you would like to consult with. Look for the ones that most likely are complementary to your area of expertise because of the goods they produce or the services they provide to the public. Or you may opt to choose a company that is geographically close to where you live for the convenience of a short daily commute.  

Another way to find your next consulting job is to actively scan the news and see what corporations are making waves within their individual marketplaces. This is a good indicator of possible expansion and the need to hire on a contractual basis. Another good indicator of a need for IT professionals is a mention of a company relocation or expansion. Growth or renovation of office environments is often accompanied by a modernization of IT systems. Current IT team members may not be relocating or might not be familiar with systems other than the ones they already service.

Do as much research as possible about each corporation from their own websites and other sources dedicated to their particular field of endeavor. This gives you the edge in being able to speak about the IT systems they already have in place or your ideas for adapting their line of work or new product with the use of an IT system advancement. Their websites will often have a list of their corporate management. Make sure you address your cover-letter and resume to not only the Director of Human Resources, but to all executives in charge of their IT departments. Be specific in your abilities and the fact that you can be flexible with hiring arrangements.

Attend job fairs that have an emphasis on the more technical fields. When possible, also circulate your resume both digitally and in paper format to smaller and mid-sized companies. These corporations may not be able to maintain their own full-time IT group for fiscal reasons and your consulting prowess may be able to “save the day” for them in an emergency. You can become part of a corporate team on your own; all it takes is additional work on your part. However after your consultant job placement, you will be pleased that your efforts have succeeded so well.

 

Planning on a little spring cleaning and getting rid of all those old electronics? With the way technology changes so quickly, it seems like we no sooner have one new electronic piece and there’s a new one on the market that we absolutely have to have. The result is a ton of used electronics stored away. Now it’s time to get rid of everything, here are some tips on what to do with all that old tech stuff and how to do it safely.

Save on Landfill Waste

Few people really realize where their electronics wind up when they throw them in the trash or dumpster. They assume they’re getting taken care of and just forget about them. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, one of the fastest growing components of landfill waste is electronics. The unfortunate part of this is that these electronics are filled with lead, mercury and other toxic chemicals – chemicals that find their way into our soil and water.

This results in the contamination of our lakes, streams and soil. The best way to avoid this is by knowing where your electronics are going and to dispose of them safely. Contact the recycling center in your area and ask for the best place to dispose of your old electronics.

Think of Security

Our lives are filled with electronic technology, whether it’s in the form of computers, tablets, smart phones or video games. Most of these electronics allow network sharing with people all over the world. With identity theft such a growing concern, much of our private lives and personal information is entered in the hard drives of these items.

Before you dispose of any electronics, make sure the hard drives are wiped clean of all personal information. This requires more than just “deleting” files. If you’re not sure how to correctly get rid of the information, contact a professional to do this for you. Even if you have to pay to have it done, it’s a minimal expense compared to having your private information stolen.

Find New Homes for Your Electronics

Once you’ve cleaned out your electronics of personal information, they may still be worth something to other individuals. You may know of a child or elderly person who would really appreciate a “new” computer or a tablet. Someone who has never owned a smart phone or laptop may be thrilled to suddenly own one, even if they are obsolete to you.

If you can’t find anyone that wants them, consider selling them on places like eBay, Craigslist or one of the many other online auction sites. The old saying, “one man’s junk is another man’s gold” is especially true when it comes to electronics. Many people like building computers using their own parts.

Students in computer-related programs also utilize used electronics as a form of hands-on training. Most schools also take in donated computers, televisions and cell phones. Contact your electric company or school district to get information on where you can take your old electronics. You’ll be not only cleaning out your house but also helping the environment.

 

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Cloud Computing: What It Means and How It Could Threaten the Traditional Outsourcing Model

Back in the late 90's, there were a number of computer scienctists claiming to know java in hopes of landing a job for $80k+/year.  In fact, I know a woman you did just that:  land a project management position with a large telecom and have no experience whatsoever.  I guess the company figured that some talent was better than no talent and that, with some time and training, she would be productive.  Like all gravey train stories, that one, too, had an end.  After only a year, she was given a pink slip.

Not only are those days over, job prospects for the IT professional have become considerably more demanding.  Saying you know java today is like saying you know that you have expertise with the computer mouse; that's nice, but what else can you do.   This demand can be attributed to an increase in global competition along with the introduction of a number of varied technologies.   Take .NET, Python, Ruby, Spring, Hibernate ... as an example;  most of them, along with many others, are the backbone of the IT infrastructure of most mid-to-large scale US corporations.  Imagine the difficulty in finding the right mix of experience, knowledge and talent to support, maintain and devlop with such desparate technologies.

Well imagine no more.  According to the IT Hiring Index and Skills Report, seventy percent of CIO’s said it's challenging to find skilled professionals today.  If we add the rapid rate of technological innovation into the mix of factors affecting more businesses now than ever before, it’s understandable that the skill gap is widening.  Consider this as well:  the economic downturn has forced many potential retires to remain in the workforce.  This is detailed in MetLife's annual Study of Employee Benefits which states that“more than one-third of surveyed Baby Boomers (35%) say that as a result of economic conditions they plan to postpone their retirement.”  How then does the corporation hire new, more informed/better educated talent?    Indeed, the IT skills gap is ever widening.

In order to compensate for these skill discrepencies, many firms have resorted to hire the ideal candidates by demanding they possess a christmas wish list of expertise in a variety of different IT disciplines.  It would not be uncommon that such individuals have a strong programming background and are brilliant DBA's.  What about training?  That is certainly a way to diminish the skills gap.

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A successful career as a software developer or other IT professional requires a solid understanding of software development processes, design patterns, enterprise application architectures, web services, security, networking and much more. The progression from novice to expert can be a daunting endeavor; this is especially true when traversing the learning curve without expert guidance. A common experience is that too much time and money is wasted on a career plan or application due to misinformation.

The Hartmann Software Group understands these issues and addresses them and others during any training engagement. Although no IT educational institution can guarantee career or application development success, HSG can get you closer to your goals at a far faster rate than self paced learning and, arguably, than the competition. Here are the reasons why we are so successful at teaching:

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