>>> Bill Lorimer: I'm seeing the situation from a different angle. A customer of mine is in need of a strong RPG programmer with solid Gentran experience here in Chicago for perm employment and can't find anyone. I know EDI people don't grow on trees but, come on. Advertising on the major boards bring a wealth of underqualified applicants who are aiming high and lots of calls from recruiters who pretend to have viable applicants just to get the listing. I have also seen a lot of very talented contractors run for the cover of permanent jobs to escape the ups and downs of the iSeries market. If anyone is interested in the Gentran position in suburban Chicago, feel free to contact me.

>>>info@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx wrote:Here's what I don't understand. A company that will offshore outsource half way around the world, but refuses to use telecommuting professionals. ....I know that there are several EDI professionals in this forum who could solve your problem particularly if telecommuting was an option! And considering the low to moderate cost of living where some of them reside, in comparison to the cost of living in Chicago, you'd get a great resource at a great rate!

>>>This is one very true statement:......You don't mention that you are looking for "cheap" staff - which is often one of the problems - so why are all the qualified people not rushing after your vacancies?

**__The decisions of his clients are not Bill's fault. But I think some of the most outstanding results can be had by companies that realize the benefit of someone who can assimilate new skills or knowledge rapidly. I got contracted once to a fill-in position where they got tired of trying to hire strong JDE so they got strong RPG (me) with some JDE work.

Now in a few JADE shops I've been in (before and after that) I know for rock-solid fact that my production was way out ahead of some of the previous examples I'd seen. (No brag, just fact) :)

Another company transferred employees that knew the product into programming if they could just pass a programming aptitude test. At least one of them output high productivity, well worth their investment.

GOOD IDEA FOR EMPLOYERS:

Here's a clue for employers and recruiters. I taught AS/400 programming classes for several years for the local community college, mostly post-grads and currently working coders that were in other platforms. An instructor who teaches those classes, IMO, can finger the best among them. No doubt the same idea applies to those who teach the regular programming classes.

A BETTER IDEA:

If there are good technical people, coders, analysts, designers, installers, whatnot, with a bunch of years of experience in business environments in their history, and a good strong desire to learn new technology, then employers are generally making a mistake by going cheaper for the college grad, or cheaper for the overseas guy.

A CAUTION ON OUTSOURCING:

My last place was at the client site as an employee of a BIG outsource, with two other guys who had been "outsourced in place". An accountant for the client company told one of them that they were now spending two and a half times as much after outsourcing on the same workers. As rates go (for overseas remote work), nobody can save money with three programmers who have years working for the company who know the business, can make suggestions for changes to requests based on that knowledge, and who know all the field and file and system names and where the PG is buried...

But they signed for five years, and had already "outsourced" all the systems. Oops. And they were in the process of converting to Oracle. (Two years into it, probably ten more to go here).

A CAUTION ON HIGH-POWERED SOFTWARE PACKAGES

The skill set you'll have to hire to just maintain it properly is just as high-powered, in terms of your receivables. I'm thinking of studying a few skills that are kind of anathema to somebody who prefers "the System i philosophy of computing", simply because they pay so good and there is an ethical fiduciary obligation to my family (and others) to maximize earnings.

+++++++++++

DISCLAIMERS:  :)

Note however, that there are some skill sets and software packages that I do regard as literally multiplying productivity, and in the case of end-user applications make a good bottom line for the business.

And the other points noted do NOT apply universally in all cases of course..

Just my 2 cents...

---Alan


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