I think that an IT worker (especially a System i guy) can go all the way
through to retirement (and beyond) as a valuable resource to any business.
Like others have said, there is always more to learn and new technologies to
explore: that's what makes our jobs fun (or at least sometimes fun!).
It's my opinion that if you are full-time-employed as a developer you should
expect your employer to encourage and foster your enthusiasm for all things
geekish - if they're not, it's time to move on (if possible). Of course if
you're an independent, you have to make time and expend income to get that
compulsory 'geek buzz' by obtaining training, getting certifications, and
attending conferences like Common and JavaOne. So long as you continue to be
'inspired' by what you do, and so long as you continue to do what you do
well, I think there will always be a living to be made.
(As for me, I started with System/38 in 1983, moved on to the AS/400 in 1988
(with a brief detour to a Data General machine) and spent my longest period
full-time employed at Synon Ltd and then Synon Inc. Since 1994 I've been
working mainly as an independent and primarily for clients with AS/400s. )
Trevor Perry joins KMR!
This post in MIDRANGE-L got me to thinking ... anyone know what the
average tenure of a technology worker (System i or other) is these days?
I'm just a few days shy of 10 years at my current job ... longest I've
ever been at a single company. Before I came here (MKS) I didn't stay
more than 3 years at any one company. I kind of always was in 'looking
for a new job' mode.