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To work for a Small Private Co. or Big large Co.?

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by zain, Aug 21, 2007.

  1. zain

    zain New Member


    Can anyone help me i'm so undecided wether to apply to work for a large corporate company or a small private one.

    Has anyone been in this situation before? where does everyone work and what are the pros and cons? of working for a small private or large company.

    The job role i am applying for is 1st line support, i have had a few interviews and waiting to hear back from them. Dont want to lose a job opputunity due to my being unable to decide prior to this i have never worked in I.T so its a big career change for me.

    Thanks for reading.
    Certifications: A+, Network +,MCP 70-270
    WIP: 70-290,70-271, MCSE, Cisco CCNA,
  2. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

    Small companies because of their very nature, you tend too be involved in more diverse activities than your job role may define. Large companies usually emplo people to do a specific role.

    There are pros and cons but either is a job and you will get experience, which will help you climb the ladder in the future.

    Personally my preference is for smaller companies, as they are more personal to their staff. However, a lot depends on the people running the company and thier attitude to their staff.
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  3. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    In a large corporate company, you know the company's probably gonna be around a while. The pay can sometimes be greater, and you'll get exposed to a lot of technologies that simply aren't used by smaller companies.

    However, you can sometimes be "overlooked" in a large company, and unless you REALLY stand out, you can sometimes get promoted at the same rate as everyone else does, regardless of worth to the company... a standard 2% raise for everyone across the board, for example. There's often a bunch of regulations and procedures and "red tape" in a corporation that everyone has to deal with. Another downside is that you can get stuck in a niche that's hard to get out of. For example, I was once asked to apply for an Exchange admin job at Bridgestone/Firestone. In retrospect, I'm glad I didn't get it... I'd have hated to have done NOTHING but Exchange administration.

    Simply reverse everything for a smaller company... smaller companies tend to have budgetary concerns, and could either go out of business or be bought out by another company. There tends to be less "red tape" in a smaller company. It's harder to be "one of the crowd" and just melt in, but if you're good, you can *really* shine and be noticed. You won't be exposed to some of the more advanced technologies and implementations, but you'll be exposed to a large variety of different technologies because you'll often be the one who configures the routers, configures the firewalls, troubleshoots the networks, installs the servers, administers the servers, helps the users, you name it. Quite challenging, and fun for those who get bored doing the same thing day after day.

    To be honest, I've had a lot of fun working for smaller companies, and I'll likely continue to do so.
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  4. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    Well said! :biggrin

    Working for a small company does have many advantages however the job can start to take over your life (trust me!).

    If you are just starting out its best to take any entry level job to get some commercial experience and take it from there. 8)
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  5. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

    Can you specify more than 'small' or 'large' - they are two very vague containers to put your career hopes and dreams in to.

    On my own experience, I would say it's better to work for the larger firms, for progression purposes. They usually have better funding allocation for training, and have tax-break incentives if they put enough staff through training.

    However, it depends entirely on the firm. A firm I used to do sales for, I wanted to try to break into their IT department, but the function wasn't there. The company I now work for, is technically smaller both in turnover and staffing, but the IT opportunities are vast because of management attitude and the way the company sees itself progressing.

    It's not so much the size of the company, therefore, as their 'ten year plan' so to speak. Research the companies you apply for. This will stand you in good stead for interviews anyway, as they might well ask what you think of them in their own marketplace, and why you want to work in their field.

    I agree with BM, but for an entry level role, which is what you are looking for, I would lean to a larger company. It's good to be a big fish in a small pond, if you have the ability, experience and wherewithall to handle the responsibility that kind of post could bring. A larger company can still allow you the 6-12 months of experience that is often asked for, before you move on to your next challenging IT role. The environments could potentially be more stressful - for example, tight SLAs and call requirements - but that wouldn't be so stressful as being the only 1st line tech support guy on site, being ill, and feeling obliged to go in to work despite your awfulness, because you know no one else there will be able to take up the slack.

    Hope this made sense!
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  6. Theprof

    Theprof Petabyte Poster Forum Leader

    I've never worked for a big sized corporation company before. However at the moment I am working at a medium sized private company and I couldnt be more happy.

    Reason being is first of all, you speak to your supervisors, vp on a more personal level. For Example the CIO of the company is my boss who hired me. I work with with CIO everyday at certain tasks and projects and he can see how I am, my progress, etc.

    There is no hiding or fooling of anybody. Also I work in a team of 3, me being the third person. 2 senior admins, and me the junior system admin. There isn't much pressure as long as you are doing your job well and not leaving anything to the last minute.

    Technology wise, its pretty good too in this mid sized company I work for, we have pretty up to date software and equipment like windows 2000 at the moment but we will be migrating to 2003 within the next few months, same goes for exchange, SQL, VMware, etc. The reason I love my position so much is because since there is only a few of us guys who are working in IT I my self get to do things that I would never be able to do if I worked in a big corporation company.

    However like what's been said above there are positives and negatives to any situation and I am just speaking of my situation. But just because one likes the job does not mean the other will.
    Certifications: A+ | CCA | CCAA | Network+ | MCDST | MCSA | MCP (270, 271, 272, 290, 291) | MCTS (70-662, 70-663) | MCITP:EMA | VCA-DCV/Cloud/WM | VTSP | VCP5-DT | VCP5-DCV
  7. fortch

    fortch Kilobyte Poster

    Great advice from people around here.

    Myself, I'd rather be personal and work for a small-mid sized company -- small enough *not* to be a number, and large enough that training, raises, and budgets aren't too tight. Now, I work for the 4th largest defense contractor in the world, so any technology I want to pursue is at least available.

    Most large IT companies also have their own training regiment, and usually they are very high quality. As such, large companies also employ comfortably-sized work groups so that training is never something that is there, yet you have no time because you're the only one with a certain skillset.

    Lastly, while big companies generally have a *lot* of lazy buffoons, they also probably have a good many *very* intelligent people that are more than willing to provide some kind of mentoring. It's always nice to have a large cache of knowledge and experience to draw on -- it makes work life a bit less stressful.
    Certifications: A+,Net+,Sec+,MCSA:Sec,MCSE:Sec,mASE
  8. Fluid

    Fluid Byte Poster

    This comment is not going to be helpfull at all! but personally i prefer larger corporations, the larger the better as there is job security and you know you could earn yourself a nice little pay rise at the same time the girls are sooo fit man! You get to perv all day long!
  9. grim

    grim Gigabyte Poster

    i personally have no preference, i'm looking for experience and training and everything else takes a back seat. over the last few years i've not stayed at a job for longer than a year purely because i've learnt all i can and then i have to move on. if a company gives me what i'm looking for i'd stay. at the end of the day it's down to what you want from the job.

    Certifications: Bsc, 70-270, 70-290, 70-291, 70-293, 70-294, 70-298, 70-299, 70-620, 70-649, 70-680
    WIP: 70-646, 70-640
  10. TheMagician

    TheMagician Nibble Poster

    My first job after university was (and still is) in a small company.

    I wasn't really in a position to be picky so I obviously took the first job that I was offered.

    The trouble I find with a small company is that there is far far less opportunity for career advancement than in a large company.

    When I leave my current position I will be aiming for a role in a large company if at all possible. Whilst there are certain advantages from working in a small company, I believe the benefits from working in a larger company would probably outweigh them in the majority of instances.
    Certifications: MCSA 2012, MCITP: EA, SA, ITIL
  11. hippy

    hippy Kilobyte Poster

    Ive cheated :P.

    Im in a small IT Team in a medium sized company owned by a large company (with sales of £6.0 billion) :D.

    I get to use alot of different types of technology and support remote sites which adds some flavour.

    I get all the benefits apart from a training budget though, although there is supposable some formal training on the different software packages but nothing towards certs.
  12. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

    Personally, I would apply for any jobs in your interest. regardless of their size. some large companies can be a pain to work for, but likewise, so can small companies.

    If you interview (and are offered the position), then base your decision on what you thought of them, the team, opportunities, etc.

    To me, i just personally think its stupid to ignore companies offering jobs relevant to you because of something like size.
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  13. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    Agreed - it's hard enough to get your foot in the door with your first IT job... take anything you can get. Only after years of experience can you afford to be selective in your job search. :)
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  14. zain

    zain New Member

    Just wanted to say thank you very much :biggrin for everyones replies, Its really helped, I have just passed my A+ and N+ exams yesterday. :p and hoping to sit my Windows XP -270 next week.

    I've had a few interviews and i think i will take what ever comes along, as its only my first role and i think i'm jumping ahead of myself, by being selective.
    Certifications: A+, Network +,MCP 70-270
    WIP: 70-290,70-271, MCSE, Cisco CCNA,
  15. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    3 exams in one day? Holy crap, what'd you use to study? :ohmy
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  16. madman045

    madman045 Kilobyte Poster Premium Member

    well I have worked for one very large multinational organisation and now work for a small IT company

    I did enjoy working in the large company for its structure and already said you employed for a specific role, however I left due to becoming just another headcount and poor career prospects internally...

    I now work for a small IT company, feel like a member of the team, my opinion counts as im involved in a lot of the decision making both with clients and products.

    I have a great boss, he has a sense of humour, very helpful and recently got him back into gaming..

    Its all down to the company and as already said, its also down to who runs them...

    Im just coming up to my 3rd year and my previous job was nearly 5yr years and i dont regret the change.
    Certifications: 70-270, 70-290, PRINCE2 Foundation, VCA-DCV & VCA-DT
    WIP: MCSA 2008, VCP5-DCV, ITIL V3

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