Notes from a Y2K presentation/Y2K job prospects. : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

I attended a technical job fair the other day. What intrigued me was an ad on the radio which stated that there would be a presentation on Y2K. I arrived just as the presentation was about to start. There were, besides myself, a total of 6 people in attendance. The presenter was from a local consulting company which specialized in PC's, LAN's, and WAN's. His powerpoint presentation was informative, but brief (18 slides). Lots of material about why things will go haywire within the PC and networking worlds.

The audience was, for the most part, silent but attentive. When his presentation ended, I asked him what his opinion was as to the consequences for the US and the world. He stated that, although he expected problems, he didn't think they would be severe, at least not in the US. I presented my best 60-second response as to why it may be catastrophic on a global scale. He didn't argue any of my points. The audience, however, woke up immediately. I spoke with several people for quite a while, and gave each of them a copy of my presentation (I always carry copies with me in my briefcase).

I then spoke with the presenter about job prospects. He said that they were having a very difficult time recruiting people, and that they had recruited in Canada with no success (I'm in Wisconsin). I gave him my resume. The next day, I received a call from their HR department. After reviewing my qualifications, we got to the bottom line. They could only offer $28,000!! I was stunned, and had to laugh. I told her that they will never fill any positions at that rate, and wished her luck.

I will let them stew on that for a few days, then perhaps call them back with a list of my demands (ha ha). I'll let you know if I hear back from any audience members (I told them I was available to speak to groups), and what response, if any, I get from the consulting company.

By the way, the company is now booked through 1st Quarter of '99, and expects to start turning away business soon.

-- Steve Hartsman (, October 23, 1998


Steve, I have had a bunch of similar experiences. Why on earth these HR twits cannot even take the trouble to surf the web a few minutes or check Microsofts yearly salary survey before making themselves sound like complete idiots is beyond me. Their reasoning seems to be - well we hired old Johnson in 82 for 23,000, and he was making 28,000 in 87 when he left. Young Peters worked for us a while, while he was in college in 92 - 12.00 per hour. That means we should get a seasoned professional in 98 for no more than a couple thousand more than old Johnson left on. What boobs! And I have actually had them get angry with me when I told them no possible way would I work for that kind of money!

-- Paul Davis (, October 23, 1998.

Well, that's because you don't have an _MBA_, and you're not, er, part of the solution....yeah, that's it, part of the solution...hurumph! You probably can't even juggle figures! :)

-- a (a@a.a), October 23, 1998.

I suggested, months ago, that companies -- IF SERIOUS -- WOULD HAVE TO CONSIDER -- HORRORS -- >>>PAYING<<< FOR TRAINING PEOPLE IN COBOL, etc. Then, COBOL newbies could handle grunt work (80%) while seniors handle the other 20% of the problems. Then they would actually have to pay more than a McDonalds manager to get people. Then, so the young people doing COBOL could get a job AFTER 2000-01-01 (note ANSI type date format), assuming survival, the programmers would work only half-time on COBOL and half on something modern (VB, JAVA, Visual C...), so come 2000-01-01 they wouldn't get the typical "human resources" crapola, "Well, where's your recent PAID experience in ."

I posted something similar to above on DICE.COM under the guise of a COBOL resume. The response was underwhelming.

Stupdity, stupidity, stupidity.

Incidentally, personnel departments are now called human resource departments because resources are something you use up and discard.

Dave Bean

-- Dave Bean (, October 23, 1998.

Scott Adams alternative starts to sound better all the time doesn't it? You know, get a bunch of like minds together, get some contracts, work your butt off for a while and then hire the college kids, give em training and benefits (like a Sandbox) they really want, and let them do the grunt work while we founders sit back and do the really interesting stuff. Hmmm .....

-- Paul Davis (, October 23, 1998.

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