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Abused IT Workers Ready To Quit

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the thankless-jobs dept.

Businesses 685

An anonymous reader writes to tell us that new research is suggesting as many as a quarter of all IT staff in small to medium businesses have suffered some sort of abuse and are looking for careers elsewhere (PDF). "The study also found that over a third have suffered from sleepless nights or headaches as a result of IT problems at work, while 59 percent spend between one and 10 hours a week working on IT systems outside normal hours. ... The biggest cause of stress among IT staff is problems arising from operational day-to-day tasks, the survey found. Another major cause came from loss of critical data, according to Connect."

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It's not so bad (5, Interesting)

alain94040 (785132) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392893)

59 per cent spend between one and 10 hours a week working on IT systems outside normal hours.

That's the problem right there: in IT, work can be endless. Saying no is key to keeping your sanity. But 2009 is not the best year to take risks. Good luck finding a job elsewhere.

It's bad in IT, but at least you get to use your brain (to some extent) and some of it is sometimes fun. That's a start.

Do fun stuff on the side and keep your skills current. That could become very handy sooner than you think.

--
FairSoftware.net [fairsoftware.net] -- the community for fair entrepreneurs

Re:It's not so bad (5, Insightful)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392991)

As someone who migrated away from a direct IT job to an HR job that is tangentially IT related, allow me to say that I am far far happier now than when I was doing the death march for people who thought of their IT folk as "geeks" who lived for abuse and being taken advantage of.

And my mind still gets a work out, and I still get to keep my hand in the water. And, as an extra bonus, when I go home at night. I can actually enjoy tinkering on my own projects instead of feeling as if I'm just bringing 'work' home with me.

Yes, right now is a bad time to jump for some people. On the other hand, I also realize that as a group, those of us drawn to IT often wait too long before jumping. Don't wait for the perfect moment. Pick one and make it 'perfect'.

I bet you are! (5, Funny)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393245)

As someone who migrated away from a direct IT job to an HR job that is tangentially IT related,...

All the babes work in HR!

Re:It's not so bad (5, Informative)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393363)

Maybe you should have become an electrical engineer. My job's ridiculously easy, with long periods of not doing anything, while the bosses try to decide what project they want to do next.

Or maybe that's just because I work for the defense industry. (shrug)

Re:It's not so bad (3, Interesting)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393571)

To be honest, EE was one of the things I was interested in early on in life. However I made the mistake of going to an engineering college for my CS degree and after spending four years putting up with the condescending attitudes of the "real engineers" (students and staff) towards CS, I resolved to never pursue any sort of career choice that would involve having to work with "that crowd" again.

Honestly, I thought 'jocks' in high school had egos but they had nothing on these folk.

Which, is probably a sad thing. I imagine taken out of the "Huah! We're number one cause we can do maths!" atmosphere that the university fostered, most of them would have probably turned out to be passable humans.

Re:It's not so bad (5, Insightful)

ZygnuX (1365897) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393001)

If there was actually a little bit more of knowledge about IT, the people who work there wouldn't be treated that badly.

I guess one of the pitfalls is that there still exists management who believes it's all about turning the right kind of switch and everything will get fixed auto-magically.

Windows IT workers to get the shaft (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393043)

Yeah I'm talking to you. The wannabe computer programmer who thinks they are good at computers because they can click around the computer enough times and find the reboot button and 'fix' an inherently flawed windows system. You think you're cool because you can pirate photoshop but not know anything about it, get Microsoft Office for free but have the literacy of a 1st grader when writing a paper, and get a copy of Norton Anti-virus because your inherently flawed system is useless without Administrative privileges. Get a clue, you are not smart, you are just a corporate sheep for a company that will bury you if you ever tried to write any software that did anything remotely useful. You are a clickaround and all you know is your ugly gray existence that is Windows.

Want the source code to windows vista?

head -n 1000000 /dev/random > Windows.com

Re:It's not so bad (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393433)

I've seen quite a few very inefficient IT departments. More often than not, it is the clueless manager or clueless manger just above IT that was the source [1].
Not that there are not clueless workers but they either get a clue or get the boot if the manager isn't clueless.

[1] unrealistic goals with the budget like we want a DR site but then refuse to pay for bandwidth and resources to actually have a usable DR site etc...

Re:It's not so bad (5, Insightful)

drolli (522659) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393457)

In *every* Job work can be endless. In my experience (as a scientist) good management can break the endless task into sub-tasks which are doable in a reasonable time, while bad management will do the opposite. That is, shifting the responsibility for the schedule of the whole project to the lower levels. This is *extremely* stupid. If you manage a project, it is your responsibility to stay within costs, time, and promised goals. Over-hours count as costs. If not directly, then indirectly because it may drive your best workers away. Or the person who worked 40hours overtime/week the last year (good luck with replacing him/her).

Other reasons i have seen for stress and frustration: bad information system infrastructure. For example everybody handle backups himself. That is plainly stupid. I have worked as sysadmin for a long time. And there are few things i very willingly leave to be done by experts, and one of them is backup/archiving (the other one is the mailserver...). Distributing these functions makes sese fro mthe viewpoint of your boss (since assuming you may go doe not leave them woth their pants down. They at least can sent you a mail, and from your viewpoint (you dont take additional stress if things go wrong just wo restore your capability to retrieve backups needed for recovery or e-mail to communicate). I figured that accepting certain troubles is sometimes worth it if you reduce the responsibility of a single person/admin/programmer. This includes bad code.

Last but not least: If you are responsible you have to live with the coworkers/programmers you are given. If you have a person writing not so fancy code, let him/her work in a productive way (e.g. i had a coworker who wrote code i would call uninspired at best, and a if-then-else hell at worst, but well documented - but there where tasks when exactly that was needed - e.g. for writing instrument drivers). It is not good to force newbies in OOP to design a base class and the interfaces in a framework. This will cause additional night-shifts (and headache to everybody).

Re:It's not so bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393553)

unix, osx, linix, and get a good night sleep.

In another news (4, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392961)

The number of BOFH increased significantly in 2008.

Re:In another news (4, Funny)

BSAtHome (455370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393107)

I actually think that the absolute number of BOFHs is constant. They are wilfully more exposed now by the survey. And, as all good BOFHs will do, is make sure that the survey is tainted by a --clickety-click-- unfortunate mishap caused by the surveyor. There is nothing more rewarding than a good survey beating.

Re:In another news (3, Informative)

Amazing Quantum Man (458715) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393479)

Time to order another tape safe...

My pu55y aches (-1, Troll)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392965)

The study also found that over a third have suffered from sleepless nights or headaches as a result of IT problems at work, while 59 per cent spend between one and 10 hours a week working on IT systems outside normal hours.

A related study found that 100% of IT workers are emotional and whiny, and that 105% have a God complex because they can read everyone's e-mail.

Re:My pu55y aches (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393201)

God complex? You must be in a small shop where the "experts" always say "I'll do it" instead of explaining to the new hire how things work, which helps them keep their "know it all, do it all" facade intact. Most large shops have people who are more willing to help others by explaining how things work, DON'T copy corporate secrets to their USB drives, and try to make things easier for everyone. Emotional? Sure. Stress makes people want to become emotional. Whiny? maybe on some message boards, but most of the IT people I work with are stoic, in person. If ANYONE reads another employees mail, unless directed by corporate security or HR, will be fired if caught. I imagine most other large businesses have similar policies.

Re:My pu55y aches (0)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393289)

You must be in a small shop where the "experts" always say "I'll do it"

Forgive my assumption that people would read the summary, but the story was about small and medium businesses. The title was about "abuse", but the content was about incompetent IT losing critical data. So yes, I stand by my jovial generalizations.

Wow, painful to read (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26392969)

The study also found that over a third have suffered from sleepless nights or headaches as a result of IT problems at work, while 59 per cent spend between one and 10 hours a week working on IT systems outside normal hours. [...] The biggest cause of stress among IT staff is problems arising from operational day-to-day tasks, the survey found. Another major cause came from loss of critical data, according to Connect."

holy Jesus, that's some bad grammar

Obviously... (5, Insightful)

HerculesMO (693085) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392981)

These 'small and midsize' businesses don't have the staff to hire a DBA, a sysadmin, a helpdesk guy -- you're it. You're the jack of all trades.

It's rather logical to think you're going to get abused, because the same person who is fixing SQL queries is now known to be the helpdesk guy, and unfortunately can't keep up with the work.

That said, I've been there. And working 80 hour weeks, I had enough, and moved to a large, massive corporation with good job deliniation. Not only do I learn more because I have the time, I work 40 hours a week (barely) and make far more money with better benefits.

Just a reminder folks, work to live, don't live to work. There is no such thing as a 'dream' job, because at the end of the day you'll always want more, best to find a job that allows you to live your life to the fullest and provides you a good salary as a bonus :)

Cheers and good luck to those out of work in '09, it's shaping up to be a tough year.

Re:Obviously... (1)

DaFallus (805248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393189)

I remember my first job out of college. We had a somewhat antisocial Chinese guy doing all of the programming and DBA stuff while I pretty much handled everything else that had to do with a computer. I was also on call 24/7 to handle tech support calls. I remember trying to call in sick one day. I ended up just taking the calls from home that day and I wasn't even paid for it. Eventually I learned when and how to say no. If you don't stand up for yourself in any environment then your employers will just keep walking all over you and wanting more and more the whole time. What they fail to realize though, especially if you're in a position where you are responsible for what should be done by 5 different people, is that when you leave its like having 5 employees quit at once.

Re:Obviously... (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393439)

>>>I remember trying to call in sick one day. I ended up just taking the calls from home that day and I wasn't even paid for it.

If that happened to me, I would have timed every call and recorded it to a timesheet. And yes, I would expect to be paid. If for some reason the boss was an bass and refused to pay me for my time, then I'd steal office supplies to compensate myself for my unpaid labor.

I will NOT be taken advantage of by the corporations. Ever. I do not work for free.

Re:Obviously... (2, Interesting)

moderatorrater (1095745) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393251)

I know people who love to work those 80 work weeks in exchange for the freedom to do updates on the live server whenever they wanted without going through 20 different hoops and having manager approval. For some people, the job is its own reward when they're able to set the terms. I'm not one of those people, of course, but they are out there and they get happiness out of the situation.

Re:Obviously... (2, Informative)

CrazyTalk (662055) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393351)

You obviously do not work at Microsoft, where (depending on your department) 40 hours means you just finished Tuesday. Point is, larger company does not always translate into longer hours (and vice-versa) - it depends on the corporate culture.

Re:Obviously... (1)

omb (759389) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393591)

With so much labour how can they get such poor results?

Re:Obviously... (2, Insightful)

CrazyTalk (662055) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393649)

You are right - they hardly make any money at all ;-)

Re:Obviously... (3, Interesting)

religious freak (1005821) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393453)

Agreed. I talk to IT folks that work at small companies, and I just don't understand why anybody would work in a small company. (Though I've got to say, I'm glad they do, otherwise I'd have a lot more competition)

I have a good, stable job with the occasional overtime, plenty of opportunity to grow, great benefits and good pay. I talk to those that work in small companies, and it's exactly the opposite.

Re:Obviously... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393583)

I've taken a lot of abuse as an IT employee. I worked 60 hour weeks without overtime pay. I did whatever I was asked to do. And I never quit. But I did start pointing out (in very diplomatic terms) that I was being abused. At which point I was fired.

It'd be nice to end this story by pointing out how much happier I am now. But that's hard to say when I'm working part-time at a job I was qualified to do 20 years ago, because that's the best replacement job I can find. It's little wonder that workers are abused when the employers hold all the cards.

That sucks but... (1)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392989)

we're in a recession. If you can find another job, then great. Otherwise, suck it up. BTW, those in other fields of this economy work even more (physicians, lawyers, etc.).

Re:That sucks but... (2, Interesting)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393045)

And why do doctors and lawyers "put up" with working lots of overtime? Could it perhaps be because it's more of a choice and because they actually get some serious compensation for it? I seem to remember some article a while back about a doctor who was found to have endangered his patients by working way way too much, and his reason was summed up as "I wanted to buy a new boat"...

/Mikael

Re:That sucks but... (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393225)

Doctors, especially with more and more nationalized medicine, don't always get "some serious compensation." Yeah, they make a fair amount, but so do senior software engineers.

And, coming from a family with two doctors and a nurse, I might add that 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, and X (up to 5 or 6) years of fellowship/residency is a lot of money (school, med school isn't cheap) and time. And you get worked quite hard as a resident... the first year especially.

All that to be said, if you're an IT guy and working a "crazy" job to begin with, that doesn't seem to be too far different from the parent post's mention about physicians. Residents do a lot of work, nurses do 12 hour night shifts or whatever, etc. It's not an IT-specific issue.

Re:That sucks but... (2, Informative)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393361)

The terminology tells how bad it used to be: "interns" used to not leave the building. "Residents" lived there but were allowed to leave during time off. "Attending" physicians actually lived elsewhere and came to the hospital. Those are not the conditions these days, but ask a resident you know how far it really is from the truth.

Re:That sucks but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393627)

Oh, this topic is about senior software engineers? My bad, I thought it was about IT workers at small and medium sized firms, regardless of seniority.

I'm the head tech, and I do 53.5 hours at week. Unpaid overtime is mandatory, in spite of it being illegal, so I get paid for 40 hours. If I don't work every third saturday for free, or I go out of town when I'm on leave, I could lose my job.

Did I mention illegal?

Re:That sucks but... (4, Insightful)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393275)

some people forget that a good number of IT workers are exempt from over time pay.

Re:That sucks but... (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393533)

What I do in such situations is to record my unpaid hours, and then at the end of the year when the workload slows down, take off that number of hours. So I might get paid 40 hour salary, but only work 19 hours that final week before Christmas, due to the fact I had 21 hours of unpaid work back in August.

BTW if you are getting paid $80,000 salary a year, but your dumb boss has you working 80 hours a week, that means you're only getting $20 an hour. You'd be better off becoming a factory worker or truck driver where you can earn $25-30 an hour, and the job is easier.

Re:That sucks but... (1)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393491)

A friend of mine was working in IT 70 hours a week a while back. His reason could be summed up as "I wanted to buy a new car."

What's your point exactly?

Re:That sucks but... (2, Interesting)

mikael_j (106439) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393545)

That most people I know who work in some form of medical profession or in various "legal" roles work overtime because they want extra disposable income while most people I know in IT work overtime because it's that or "You're incompetent and lazy".

/Mikael

name of the game, sucka. (4, Insightful)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 5 years ago | (#26392997)

Like the post office or public education...it never stops.

Unlike those examples, it never pauses. Face it guys...you are babysitting. Networks, servers, desktops, whatever... IT is babysitting. And this baby always needs sitting....

Instead of quitting in an "employers market"... try something like Gracie Jiu Jitsu... choking a motherfucker out makes me feel better after a day of IT BS.

On the bright side, we'll all be up shit creek when we use all the fossil fuels. At least your servers won't need babysitting anymore.

Re:name of the game, sucka. (4, Insightful)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393093)

Correction. System administration is baby sitting. Development is not. Unless you are doing maintenance of legacy systems in which case you are not a baby sitter, you are more a wet nurse.

Re:name of the game, sucka. (4, Insightful)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393151)

I never considered IT to include Development/Programming. Most Universities seem to agree, as there are CS programs and CIT/CIS programs.

The Dev's are a step above the IT guys, IMHO. I am saying this as an IT guy, btw.

Re:name of the game, sucka. (2, Informative)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393385)

CIT/CIS/MIS can do development. It's just day-to-day business development rather than theory and simulation stuff. CS in many schools is actually a theoretical mathematics degree with some time learning the syntax to run the math on a computer.

Re:name of the game, sucka. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393579)

Correction. System administration is baby sitting. Development is not. Unless you are doing maintenance of legacy systems in which case you are not a baby sitter, you are more a wet nurse.

Yeah, a wet nurse to a viper.

Re:name of the game, sucka. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393219)

So rolling around on the ground submitting and being submitted by grown men on your free time makes you happy? You should probably just come out of the closet already. You would be much happier =)

Re:name of the game, sucka. (1)

Kamokazi (1080091) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393541)

try something like Gracie Jiu Jitsu... choking a motherfucker out makes me feel better after a day of IT BS.

I agree completely...I work at a medium business (~100 users)...30 minutes of Team Fortress 2 at lunchtime and 1 hour in the evening does wonders. I play Heavy, and I'm pretty good at it...great stress reliever. If you play Engineer, the spies may just make things worse and you'll come into work the next day with a hardhat and wrench and nerdrage all over.

I'm checking (1)

plover (150551) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393009)

I'm going to check with my Aussie friend here at work, but I'm pretty sure he won't agree that 25% of the Bruces are actually whiny pussies. All the ones I know are pretty cool.

Study links lottery win with sleep... (1)

Manip (656104) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393011)

A study conducted today finds that an [extremely common thing] and [extremely uncommon thing] are happening a lot.

e.g.
A study conducted today finds that sleep and winning the lottery are happening to IT workers almost daily. ... Because physical abuse is SO common at work?

Not at Ninnle! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393015)

They wouldn't have to quit if the worked at Ninnle Labs. Good pay, decent benefits, and a really great working atmosphere. Ninnle's growing, too, thanks to forthcoming projects at NASA and Google, so now's the time to come and join us. Come and work at the recessionproof Ninnle!

Abuse. (3, Funny)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393023)

"But it is hugely disappointing that, all too often, this has led to them being verbally or even physically abused.

They fired me! They would spank me, and would respond with "Faster! Harder! Tell me how I've been a BAD BOY! Tell me that I'm a filthy little whore!"

That's when they discovered that I was a masochistic pervert and canned me.

Part of the problem is Ego. (2, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393025)

While it is not the full problem. But the common Ego among IT workers exasperates the problem.
The I am smarter then everyone tone, you are stupid because you don't know to run the app nested in the menus of the start button. Without me this company will collapse. Type of ego.

A lot of the time working those extra hours are voluntary, but because you think it the collaps without you, you do the extra hours.

The I'm smarter then you, makes sure your boss doesn't feel bad about letting you go, or pushing you that much more.

We don't treat our selfs and others like humans, so why do expect other to treat us so.

Re:Part of the problem is Ego. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393327)

Man are you clueless.......

Your comments reek of a know-it-all ego. First off you speak like all in IT have an ego. Farthest from the truth. The people with the ego are typically the management be they IT or not. They tend to have the egos with their I'm management I must be smarter attitude.

No, I'm not the poor little peon abused by these types. I've been fortunate enough to avoid this scenario in the majority of my nearly 30 years in IT. I've seen plenty of it though. I've also seen very FEW people that are "voluntarily" working extra hours, they do exist though. What I have seen is the management screaming why is this broken, when is it going to be fixed, why should this take so long when they have no clue about anything going on.

Re:Part of the problem is Ego. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393347)

While it is not the full problem. But the common Ego among IT workers exasperates the problem. The I am smarter then everyone tone, you are stupid because you don't know to run the app nested in the menus of the start button. Without me this company will collapse. Type of ego.

A lot of the time working those extra hours are voluntary, but because you think it the collaps without you, you do the extra hours.

The I'm smarter then you, makes sure your boss doesn't feel bad about letting you go, or pushing you that much more.

We don't treat our selfs and others like humans, so why do expect other to treat us so.

Dunno my last boss put up a fight when I switched department. Tried to block it (government) I'm still smarter than her HA!

Re:Part of the problem is Ego. (4, Insightful)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393383)

I'm sorry, but I am smarter than most of the people I work with. Because not only do I know how to do my job, I often times have to tell them how to do THEIR job. I have to know how to do their jobs, well enough to tell them how computers help them in their job, and to help them learn how to use computers to do their jobs.

I may not know all the details, and peculiarities of their job, but I know what their job is, and how to do it.

I'm fully convinced that I could actually "do" their job (well, most peoples jobs), should they get hit by a car. Or at least do a passable job of faking it (which I'm also convinced that many of them do anyway).

And that isn't ego either. I don't want to do their job. I would hate it. And often times, pays a lot less than what I make.

Re:Part of the problem is Ego. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393587)

And this is why I'd fire you at the first opportunity.

Re:Part of the problem is Ego. (1)

avandesande (143899) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393547)

I have to agree- I have seen this plenty of times where developers want to play Hero and throw code at a problem instead of seeing if a small data or business process change could be implemented instead.

Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (5, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393029)

And at the very end of TFA:
"Ten per cent of the companies surveyed said they had lost critical data through backup tape failures."

Is it just me, or does 10% seem like a huge loss rate?
/Test your backup

Serious cause of IT stress (5, Insightful)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393083)

Managers who expect that data will never be lost, yet are unwilling to authorize equipment purchase and hours required to install and maintain a proper backup system.

Re:Serious cause of IT stress (1)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393365)

True, so so true. But the managers have a hard time asking for the purchase of a backup infrastructure too because it does not bring in direct revenues.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393133)

Testing backups requires additional infrastructure and man-hours to conduct the testing. Few companies will shell out the cash for duplicate gear.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (1)

conureman (748753) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393287)

If ten% reflects the firms that actually proved that inadequate backup could be an error, then I think I can see where the rest of them would sweat. Wild Ass Guess? Ten "I tried to tell you"s equals fifty or sixty who still can't convince the PHBs that TWO generations of (tested) back-up are wanted. cheap bastards.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393335)

I can believe this...you get pushed and pushed and then the menial tasks like changing tapes just get pushed off, and they you realize you haven't done a media test in months even when you are changing things and then you lose data.

This is what happens when you hire someone that has to do the job of three...I was there once...now in grad school in the mental health field in my mid-30s. Much better field because you have set hours and you leave as soon as your last session is done. No one asks where you are so long as you are seeing the required number of patients and no one ever bothers you in your time off...emergencies need to call 911...not me.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (1)

mr_mischief (456295) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393419)

Tapes suck. No, really. Even the new, improved, 100 GB tapes suck. Back up everything fully monthly or weekly and do incremental backups every damn day. Keep all the data that you are backing up on redundant storage (RAID or clustered file systems) in the first place. If your boss thinks the equipment is more expensive than the lost data, find a new boss.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (1)

Monkeybaister (588525) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393551)

100 GB tapes? They're made that small?

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393429)

Is it just me, or does 10% seem like a huge loss rate?

I work for a HDD company, and 10% is astronomical.

Re:Backups aren't all they're cut out to be (1)

mrsquid0 (1335303) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393645)

From my experience 10% seems realistic. Backup testing seems to be something that is talked about more than it is actually done.

Use this to make extra cash after you quit (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393039)

* 1 Case Regular Pint size Mason Jars ( Used for canning)
* 2 Boxes Contact 12 hour time released tablets.
* 3 Bottles of Heet.
* 4 feet of surgical tubing.
* 1 Bottle of Rubbing Alchohol.
* 1 Gallon Muriatic Acid ( Used for cleaning concrete)
* 1 Gallon of Coleman's Fuel
* 1 Gallon of Aceton
* 1 Pack of Coffee Filters
* 1 Electric Skillet ( If you don't know what iam talking about i will have pics later)
* 4 Bottles Iodine Tincture 2% (don't get the declorized it won't work)
* 2 Bottles of Hydrogen peroxide
* 3 20 0z Coke Bottles (Plastic type)(with Lids/caps)
* 1 Can Red Devils Lye
* 1 Pair of sharp scissors
* 4 Boxes Book Matches (try to get the ones with brown/red striker pads)
* 1 pyrodex baking dish
* 1 Box execto razor blades single sided
* 1 digital scale that reads grams
* 2 gallons distilled water \
* 1 Roll Aluminum foil tape

That's what you would have to go buy if you wanted to make meth.

First things first -- the Iodine Crystals. Take one 20 oz, plastic Coke Bottle and pour 4 Bottles 2% tincture into it.

Add Hydrogen Peroxide to this. Use only 1/2 a bottle of Hydrogen peroxide. After this you know, the gallon jug that the Muriatic acid comes in take the cap off and fill this cap level with the acid. Add the acid to the coke bottle (Place in a freezer for at least 30 mins).

While the Iodine crystals are being made we are going to extract the Phsuedo from the Contacts. You are going to need a towel for this so go get one. Take the pills out of one box, add it to one of the mason jars fill with rubbing alchohol just enough to cover the pills let set for 3 minutes. Remove pills and take the towel and wipe the top coating off the pills this will remove the wax. Do the same with the other box of Contacts as well, after this add those wiped off pills only 10 to a clean mason jar. On top of this add 1 bottle of Heat do the same for the other box of Contact. Let theese two mason jars with pills, heat stand for 30 minutes. Then shake the jars till pills are completly broke down then let the jars sit again for 4 hours or until the Heats is completly clear . Once clear cyphon the heat off (Not the powder stuff at the Bottom you don't want this it will fuck your dope up).

Well anyway syphon the heat off with a piece of the sergical tubing syphon this into a pyrodex baking dish place in microwave on high till the heat is almost evaporated. Take out of microwave. Now plug up your electric plate set the pyrodex dish on this on about 180 deg continue evaporating till you get a white powder on the pyrodex (Carefull not the burn the phsudo if it turns yellow it's burned) after you get it dried take a razor blade and scrape this powder up. (put this asside for later use)

Now we are going to get the red phosphorus from the book matches take a pair of scissors and cut along the edge of the phosphorus do the whole four boxes of match book matches then take 1 small coffee cup will work to this coffee cup add about 1/4 the way with Acetone dip the match book strike pads into the acetone for 10 seconds this will loosen the phosphorus so it will be easier to scrape with the razor blades. ( put the phosphorus in an empty match book box to let dry. Now it's time to get the iodine crystals get a clean mason jar on top of this place 1 coffee filter and pour the contents of the iodine +muriatic+Hydrogen Peroxide into the filter ( do it slowly don't over pour) well once you get though with the filtering on top of the coffee filter will be a black substance ( This is iodine crystals) dry them by wraping in more coffee filters till you get a pretty good thick pile around the original filter place on ground and step on it to get the rest of the liquids off save this for the cook.

next take your digital scales wiegh your pills first say you had 2 grams of pill powder then weigh out an equal amount of iodine crystals then for the phosphorus devide the total weight of pills by 3 3 will go into 2 1 time so if you had 2 grams pill powder you should have 2 grams iodine crystal 1 gram phosphorus Now its time to make the cook jars you will need 2 clean mason jars with lids 1 foot surgical tubing poke a hole in both jar lids place one end of the tubing into each jar lid and seal with foil tape (buy this at walmart for about $ 1.60 well anyway seal off the tubes as well as you can so you should have 2 mason jars with lids that have surgical tubing foiled taped and sealed. ok this is the cook in one mason jar add distilled water in it fill it half way close the lid on it. now get you hotplate hot first at 180 degreese F when the plate get hot then its time to add the Iodine+pill powder to the other mason jar not the one with water in it once you get both Iodine and pill powder to the jar add 6-10 drops of distilled water to this place it on the hotplate now add the phosphorus once you put this in the jar there is going to be a imediatereaction place the other lid with hose onto the jar screw on tightly then turn your hotplate up to 400 degrees f let this cook for 1 hour to an hour and a half the best way to tell when it is done is when the contents of the cook jar doesn't boil anymore once this has happened turn the hotplate off and let the jar cool so you can touch it now its time to see if we have dope once it has cooled open the lid and you should smell rotten egg like smell if it has this smell congrads you have dope now we have to remove the dope from the black goey substance to this jar add about 1/4 cup of distilled water and seal the jar with a lid that has no holes in it and shake the jar till all the substance on the botom of the jar has come off into the water

next take another clean mason jar and place a coffee filter and filter the cook jars contents though the filter now on the filter is your phosphorus save this for another cook later on just putt it in a dry coffee filter and put it somewhere dry and safe now you have a jar filled with a yellow honey looking substance if its this color you have done good at cooking the dope now to this add colemans fuel fill the jar about full just leave anough room for shaking now add 1-2 table spoons red devil lye let the jar sit for about 5 mins then place lid on the jar and shake the hell out of it then sit the jar somewhere to rest for about 30 mins Now we are going to pull the dope out of the coleman fuel and the product is going to be 90% methamphetamine to do this fallow what i say exactly syphon the coleman fuel into an empty 20 oz coke bottle syphon off much as you can trying not to get the substance off the bottom of the jar once you have the coleman fuel in the coke bottle add about 4-6 coke bottle caps of water to this now add one drop of muriatic acid to the coke bottle place lid on bottle and shake the hell out of it place upside down so it want fall and get your hotplate hot 400 degrees f on top of the hotplate place a clean pyrodex bowl on it now take the coke bottle still upside down and loosen up on the cap let the water drain into the pan don't get any coleman fuel into the pyrodex bowl now the water will evaporate while it is doing this take a coffee cup add acetone to it fill it 1/4 the way up now once the water has dried on the plate take plate off with gloves and add a small amount of acetone to the pyrodex bowl it will sizzle swirl it arouund and if all works out good ther will be cirle crystals all over the pyrodex bowl scrape up with a razor and enjoy Methamphetamine :-) This with 2 boxes of Contacts will make anywhere from 2-3 grams meth....

Re:Use this to make extra cash after you quit (1)

conureman (748753) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393425)

I knew it. I like to use shellac for primer when I paint walls &c. For the past few years it's been nearly impossible to get denatured alcohol at the local Lowe's or Home Depot. I also noticed the acetone spot was always empty, but the clerk assured me that a lot of cosmetologists were getting that for some reason. I'm talking Pallet loads gone before I can make it to the store. Sold out week after week. Fucking tweakers.

Physical abuse? (1)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393063)

TFA mentions physical abuse as well. I didn't bother to read the PDF but I wish that they were more specific about that.

Reminds me of a true story: A former medium-sized employer which was ran like the mob and probably had mob connections(Los Angeles, no surprise there) had "promoted" their head test software engineer to an upper-mid level position in the IT department. Perhaps I'm naive, but why the hell would anybody be "promoted" in such a manner? They did give him a big raise and he seemed to be happy about the whole thing until suddenly, a couple weeks after the promotion, he came into work with a black eye and bitched that he was going to quit his job(and he did shortly thereafter).

Anybody wanna chime in about their similar stories?

Re:Physical abuse? (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393605)

If someone did that to me, my first call would be the police, and my second call would be a lawyer. Physical assualt is NEVR acceptable, and the person who gave me the black eye would be paying the price for his stupidity.

The Book (3, Funny)

pondermaster (1445839) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393073)

The IT manager Book of Abuse:

* cat-5 strangulation
* bayesian water torture
* physical loopback devices
* burning and branding
* PROFIT!

Stress, eh? (4, Insightful)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393077)

The biggest cause of stress among IT staff is problems arising from operational day-to-day tasks

In other news, doctors get stressed by having to do clinicals, and retail workers get stressed out by daily customers.

Responsibility and time management (1)

digitalderbs (718388) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393079)

As someone who has done IT for a short time, let me say:

I've found IT to be stressful mostly because of the responsibility, whether it's part of the official job description or not. I worked in IT for a ~15 person company during my undergraduate years, and anything computer related fell on my lap. I found this difficult because the users were utterly dependent, I was the scapegoat for computer failures and estimating the time for certain repairs was difficult. Undoubtedly one of the most stressful jobs I've had. Do these things get easier for professional IT?

Re:Responsibility and time management (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393295)

While undue stress and responsibility and scapegoating is bad, of course, I'm not sure most jobs have no responsibility or whatever. IT does seem to have more because people think computers shouldn't have any problems because it is a machine (on the other hand, their cars gets tons of problems and they don't seem to think it's too weird...)

Thta said, though, having worked with IT people, the annoying, snotty, you-are-so-stupid-because-you-can't-fix-your-own-computer attitude and cynicism that seems to be common is ... well, annoying. Imagine what a great family doctor the person would make. "What? You don't know what to do about [insert disease]? *mumbles under breath*"

Not all IT people are like that, and a lot of people give IT people a hard time :) But the ones I've worked with can tend to be like that, it seems.

I am glad I work with UNIX systems. (3, Insightful)

incubuz1980 (450713) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393089)

1 to troll in 2 seconds...

Honestly I think this acceptance of things going wrong and "thats just the way IT is" belongs in the Windows world.

I have personally quit 2 jobs in the past because I was asked to work with Microsoft products.

User friendly and sysadmin friendly are two different things.

Re:I am glad I work with UNIX systems. (5, Funny)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393127)

I have personally quit 2 jobs in the past because I was asked to work with Microsoft products.

If that's your idea of abuse, the waaahmbulance is definitely coming to pick you up.

Re:I am glad I work with UNIX systems. (1)

incubuz1980 (450713) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393199)

If that's your idea of abuse, the waaahmbulance is definitely coming to pick you up.

No you are right, it is not abuse it is torture. (in the long run)

Re:I am glad I work with UNIX systems. (1)

calmofthestorm (1344385) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393233)

If OP is happily employed than I don't think it has anything to do with a waaahmbulance I think it has to do with him being lucky/skilled/etc enough to find a job he likes that pays an amount that is mutually agreeable to him and his employer.

Each employee gets some quantity of demands. I'm not picky on pay but I'm quite picky on what I do. It works out for me. Or did until we hit this economic shitstorm.

Bay Area Quitters (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393111)

Contact me. And I'm serious. I'm looking for work and willing to take abuse.

IT Director/Project Manager/General Windows IT guy in the Bay Area.

niceguywithagreatgirl@gmail.com

I can arrange my schedule to fit yours and provide a smooth transition.

Re:Bay Area Quitters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393513)

As long as you are willing to work for pay that is not commensurate with your experience, education, and skill you should have no problems getting an IT job in the SFBA.

O really (2, Funny)

ezwip (974076) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393117)

Sorry to troll but this is from the heart. I'm not that big but I will straight whoop that ass if someone attempts to phsically abuse me in the workplace. Maybe I'll lose, and if I do I'll be back to jack up your car.

Re:O really (1)

Actually, I do RTFA (1058596) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393493)

Maybe I'll lose, and if I do I'll be back to jack up your car.

Call a lawyer. Take more money that it'll cost to replace their car out of their wallet (hurting them more) and increase your lot in life.

I got out of IT and into a new career (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393139)

I hijack supertankers for ransom. It's fun and pays really well! Back in college, I never would have guessed those Somali language courses would end up being so useful.

write-only backups (4, Insightful)

dltaylor (7510) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393143)

While I don't condone abusing the incompetent, we have been doing our own source code repository backups in engineering, since IT admitted that they cannot recover the repository from backups. We can't recover the repository either, since IT "owns" it, nor are we permitted to use an alternative, but we do incremental and full backups regularly of a "latest" sandbox, and at each release tag, so we can reconstruct the data set.

We have a Linux development environment, but those systems are hobbled by a Windows-centric IT shop that has firewalls blocking access to Google from non-Windows systems and Linux-centric forums everywhere.

This level of incompetence is typical of IT at many small-to-medium (once, even large) places I have worked. Mordac(s), the preventer(s) of information services, work(s) at too many places, and I wouldn't miss them if they all quit and got jobs where they could be useful.

Re:write-only backups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393477)

...that has firewalls blocking access to Google from non-Windows systems and Linux-centric forums everywhere...

I have a hard time believing this.

No surprise here (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393155)

Small to medium sized businesses probably don't want to spend the money required for a decent IT department.

Most other departments won't respect the IT department because they're all dorks and geeks.

It is like the janitorial staff in the eyes of many. They don't produce anything they support the "real" innovators and money makers.

This is why I'd like to eventually move into a completely tech related company (in gaming ideally) so there are less of those types and more tech people.

Re:No surprise here (1)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393449)

Yeah definitively much less of what you described if you support technical groups. With that said, those people usually are good at REALLY breaking things.

I work in IT (4, Interesting)

Xerolooper (1247258) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393169)

Yes I work in IT I think TFA was referring more to the personality type that migrates towards the IT jobs being nerds. Thus being nerds IT types tend to take abuse rather than standing up for themselves. If someone is being abusive they are probably just stressed out themselves. If it happens where I work I just quietly walk away and they are usually falling over themselves to apologize later(so I will come back and fix their computer). This is not because of some god complex. It is because I treat everyone in our diverse workplace with respect. So I demand it in return. BTW I have thick skin so it takes a lot for me to walk away but I will.

Severe lack of respect for IT (4, Interesting)

topham (32406) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393175)

There is a severe lack of respect for IT; a number of comments in here are unexpectedly examples of it.
IT work can be easy. IT work can be hard. IT is generally very time consuming; whether it be easy, or difficult.

I've done the gauntlet, from network drops, router configurations, firewalls, server installs, application suites, application development, end user training, requirements gathering. In the end the biggest problem is that everyone seems to think everything takes only about 10% of the time it actually takes. They see that one instance when everything goes right and decided that it must always be that fast and easy. It seldom is.

definitely agree (5, Insightful)

Trepidity (597) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393393)

I'm a computer science academic, and so our department at one point got the brilliant idea that they could save money by greatly reducing the IT staff. After all, computer scientists have PhDs in Computer Stuff, so can run all their own IT, right? It turns out not really---and even when they can, it'd be a full-time job to do so, and they already have other full-time jobs (like writing papers and research grants and teaching classes and supervising grad students).

What's kept the whole thing running at all is that the reduced staff has two really excellent people who manage to pull things together, both of whom are much much better at their jobs than any numbers of CS PhDs would be at that job, because being a top-quality IT staff member and being a top-quality CS researcher just aren't the same job.

I suppose the change has sort of increased the respect the IT people around here get though: you definitely notice all the stuff that used to Just Work after the IT staff gets canned.

Re:Severe lack of respect for IT (1)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393407)

In the end the biggest problem is that everyone seems to think everything takes only about 10% of the time it actually takes.

Is it everyone or just a few that bully their time frames on others? Back in my IT days, I would run into the problem of, when I would give time estimates, I would get the "It shouldn't take that long!" or I would hear about someone behind their back, "He said it would take a week! He's slow!" and someone else would chime in, "Yeah, it would only take me a day or two."

That's when I learned to give small time frames or you'll be considered a moron by your colleagues (they'll be saying shit to the boss) and worse, the boss. It' better to give an unrealistic time and when you do miss, come up with all the problems that cam out of nowhere and screwed up the deadline. I once replaced a guy and from what I've seen, he did some great work. When I mentioned this to the boss, he said, "Really? He had a reputation not being any good." The poor bastard left because his coworkers were such geniuses, they made him look stupid [/sarcasm] No, come to find out, they were a bunch of arrogant bastards who were no where near as good as they thought the were.

Re:Severe lack of respect for IT (1)

WDot (1286728) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393411)

I have a question--how do I estimate the time it takes me to do a particular task and communicate that to my employer?

In my first internship (as a programmer, not an IT guy) I was asked often how long I think I would need to do a particular task, and I usually had no idea because I had not done something like it before. I would be noncommittal about it, work to get the job done, and get derisive comments from my employer about how he would have had the job done much faster. Perhaps he was correct, but I took as long as I personally needed to get the job done. How do I resolve these communication issues?

You just need to learn how to be... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393581)

... a BOFH, then you'll start to gain some respect!

i just got off the toilet (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393261)

i shit out an obama

Aright, Mate! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393265)

I realize that there is a general dislike for the PHB's of small/mid Biz's, but I'm not allowed to work in Aussieland without the expressed written consent of the Gov't of Downunda. And the trend for this to migrate outwards to the rest of the world is....nil.

I can see it (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393359)

When you're a small company, sometimes you have to try and get more out of a smaller number of people. Even if you discuss it up front, it can still be stressful. On the flip side of the coin I've had IT staff go off with little provocation.

It's a business with a lot of stress, a lot of ego and many times more than one right answer. That's pretty much a formula for hurt feelings.

what burns me (3, Interesting)

nuclear_zealot (1227240) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393427)

TFA is pretty thin. IT people are stressed due to the... economy?
Rant begins>
What's driving me mad at work is dealing with buzz-word spouting idiots. They can barely spell "computer" but they'll come with requests that I perform some half-witted change to fix a problem that they created. (that, of course, won't work)
If they could just summon the brains the come to me with a goal (i.e. we want the application to run faster) I could fix their problems. Instead, I'm not allowed to address the garbage they've created for themselves so they can avoid looking as clueless as they really are. And just forget about introducing new tech to make everyone's life easier. They'd have to learn something new. That makes me a bad guy, until we NEED that new tech, in which case I'm a slacker for not having already done it!
And, no, I'm not perfect, but when I make a mistake I admit it and fix it. Meetings are a lot shorter when you say "yeah, that was my mistake. Sorry about that. I'll fix it" instead of blame-storming the issue for an hour or two of my life that I'll never get back! FUCK!!! FUCK!!! FUCK!!!
So I guess I'm saying, it not the job, it's the people. In the end, it's way less stressful to lower yourself to their level and play the blame-game instead of trying to achieve something useful. Note: this drives you insane if you have a brain. Never forget:
- no good deed goes unpunished
- if you fix something it's your fault that it broke in the first place

Anyway, that why I think about quitting 5 times a day. Unfortunetly, now is not the best time.

/bias - Sysadmin in a medium-sized company/
Note: there are some rare semi-competent to competent people out there who can at least partially do their job (whatever it is). They are no problem to deal with at all.

13 years in IT (1)

Daswolfen (1277224) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393445)

I have had various jobs in the IT field for 13 (almost 14 now) years. Everything from Help Desk to Network Management. I have worked for myself, for the private sector and in education. I currently work at a smallish Midwestern university in a desktop support/network support/project management role and I love it. I have been here over 2 years and it is one of the best jobs I have ever had. I guess it just depends on where you go. But then again, I prefer the mid to upper level support to anything else.

Self employed (1)

Stele (9443) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393481)

Happy to be self-employed. I only have to spend 100% of my time "outside normal hours" working.

too bad (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393507)

Boo fuckin' hoo.
Get real, this is no different than most fields.

The real issue? (3, Interesting)

DesertBlade (741219) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393549)

How many of those IT people are not truly qualify to handle the positions they are in? While many IT people are extremely competent there are many, many who are not. Seen some IT people spends hours and hours trying to get something to work, the competent Joe IT fixes it in five minutes.

"But I am MCSE certified! I know exactly how to do it."

Reactive vs. Proactive (5, Insightful)

hemp (36945) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393593)

I find a lot of folks in the IT trenches tend to be reactive rather than proactive.

They seem to enjoy being the "goto" guy that saves the day by resurrecting the server with the melty motherboard and toasted power supply while hundreds of users anxiously sit by their desks in breathless anticipation. Merely, switching to a failover server would never be as rewarding.

They regale in bragging to their co-workers and more importantly, their bosses about how many hours they spent rebuilding databases and applying emergency kernel patches at 3 am.

Face it, what kind of attention do you get when your servers never fail? When you never lose a database?

Nothing.

Yup yup yup (5, Insightful)

rawtatoor (560209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26393607)

And IT is still the industry that refuses any form of unionization. Everybody is too smart and too privliged because of the technicality of what they do to see the benefits of working together to make things better for us.

And before you start flaming, think where you would be if you were actually on your own, if you had to code your own OS, compiler, library and every other piece of software you use in your job. Yeah, but you are a lone wolf. Keep it up IT

If these problems didn't exist... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26393631)

What would IT do during the day (or night). Would they still be paid those high salaries? [glassdoor.com] (don't worry, IT managers make twice as much if you search that site). Look, a nurse makes 40% less and likely will save a life in their career!

.

If everything worked as IT engineers/managers wanted it to, then all they'd be doing are things a cashier register host would do, @$12/hr.

.

Quit whining IT folks, a. that's why your job is hard, and b. that why you're paid the big bucks. If you want respect, tell your customers to tell your managers your high salary is not to get problems solved faster, but that problems are time dependent (i.e. at 2am) and they are hard in your environment. In some cases, that's why IT get a bad rap, some IT folks take advantage ignorance from customers and work at 10% capacity, charging 110% hourly rates. Same in the auto-mechanics industry (some are good, most are bad, but they all charge $100/hr). Also, no one takes ownership of a problem--it's Cisco's fault, MS's, Apple's, HP's, IBM, etc... Sure it maybe the right thing to do, but it sure loses respect from your customers quickly (I've been there, believe me).

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