Contract jobs / Jobs in education

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by Pseudonym, Oct 20, 2017.

  1. Pseudonym

    Pseudonym Kilobyte Poster

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    A couple of questions for people who might be experienced in either of these things.

    First of all, I see quite a lot of lucrative contracts about. I match some requirements, and then other requirements not so much. Are you expected to just hit the ground running with contracts? If not they'll have you out the door? I'd be tempted to do a few for the money and experience at some point, but I'd be pretty gutted if I went in somewhere and didn't make it past a couple of weeks due to taking too much time to acclimatise.

    Secondly, I really like the idea of jobs in education in the short-medium term. Specifically as an IT/network manager. I feel like it would be a relatively low pressure environment where I could hone my skills and knowledge. Also, holidays.

    Anyone recommend either of these things or point out potential pitfalls I may have missed?

    Cheers

    Edit: when i say Education, I'm looking more at schools, as opposed to universities. I can imagine the pressure being more intense there.
     
  2. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    Hi, I've not contracted before but in our place we give the contractors the easy work more often than not to free the permie guys up to do the complex work. Wagnerk will probably know best but I'd imagine if you're not far off you would be OK. Just don't go taking risks if you have several mouths to feed or a big mortgage I think is sensible advice
     
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  3. Rob1234

    Rob1234 Megabyte Poster Forum Leader

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    Only difference between contractors and permies is the wage! They do not tend to be more skilled then other people of course you need to know what you are doing some permy roles they may train you up but those are not the roles that would be offered to a contractor anyway.
     
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  4. AJ

    AJ 01000001 01100100 01101101 01101001 01101110 Administrator

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    I work in a school and it is certainly no picnic. Then again it is a boarding school and 850 bored kids trying to get to places where they shouldn't is time consuming. No I don't get the holidays off, just normal leave as everybody else does. In fact during the holidays it is our busiest time.
     
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  5. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    I'd imagine is this when they have you put in new systems, perform upgrades etc?
     
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  6. AJ

    AJ 01000001 01100100 01101101 01101001 01101110 Administrator

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    You got it. At the moment we are re-configuring the network and installing a new follow-me printing solution, removing approx 120 local/network printers and replacing with 90 HP printers.

    Nothing too big for half term.
     
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  7. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    Sounds like a big project and I'd imagine you can feel the clock ticking when everyone is back in and expects everything to be done. I'm a big fan of follow me printing. Sounds like a really good project you've got on, among other things I'm sure. I'd like to think that our Education facilities have some really good tech seeing as our kids go there. It sounds like it as I know many companies that don't have follow me printing. Typically you probably work your butt off all summer and people don't see the obstacles you've had to overcome, they just see a shiny new system that makes their life easier
     
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  8. zxspectrum

    zxspectrum Terabyte Poster Forum Leader Gold Member

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    Well I have worked in a college and I now work in a university, I can honestly say working at the college was easier as I had 2 great team so if there was a big job on, then we would all pull together.

    Working in a uni I find that everyone will quite happily stab you in the back to make themself look good or to get themself out of the brown stuff. Strangely, I have managed to back myself up on all occasions by being able to remember off the top of my head or having a paper trail, emails etc.

    I am not sure about contract work, I would be gutted like you say if after a few weeks they didnt think you were right for the role etc

    Ed
     
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  9. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    I guess each place is different and there is a lot to be said for having a good team behind you. In work I don't look sideways at what others are doing, but when one or more in a team don't pull their weight, you start to feel the increase in pressure on you and it alerts you to what others are or are not doing. Not ideal at all....

    I think a lot of people go through redundancy before they make the leap into contracting as it gives you that cushion in the bank until you find your feet
     
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  10. Pseudonym

    Pseudonym Kilobyte Poster

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    Thanks for the replies guys. Some interesting responses.

    The reason I mentioned holidays is because I've actually seen a couple of job adverts mentioning 40+ days holidays at schools. Whether you get paid for them or not I don't actually know.

    AJ, that sounds like a big job! How many d'you have on your team?
     
  11. AJ

    AJ 01000001 01100100 01101101 01101001 01101110 Administrator

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    Sounds good 40 days holiday a year, however you will find that the salary will be pro rata. I was on that kind of contract when I started and it was nice having all that time off, but saw the jump in salary when I went 52 weeks. Still get 5 weeks off a year though :)

    There's a few of us in the team, Director of IT, System Manager, Sys admin (me), database manager, web site designer, Audio/Visual Tech and 2 other techs. We are a busy dept as the school is diverse and spread across the town.
     
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  12. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    @AJ I think I'm correct in saying a lot of education related IT departments now cover multiple buildings and facilities don't they? eg IT Manager in one school, covering three schools with just hands on IT guys in each. Server admin done remote. Is that how its headed?
     
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  13. AJ

    AJ 01000001 01100100 01101101 01101001 01101110 Administrator

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    Interesting point. where I work, it is a private school and we have children from reception to upper 6th, so we encompass the whole site 850 boarders, 250 day pupils, 200 junior school pupils and all of the teaching and non-teaching staff. we cover most of the town with seperate buildings all linked with fibre. We don't out-source to other schools, just us and that keeps us busy enough.

    My wife works at a local junior school and they have a IT company visit for 1 afternoon a week to sort out their issues :headhurts:
     
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  14. JK2447
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    JK2447 Petabyte Poster Administrator Premium Member

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    Ouch does not sound ideal waiting for one day a week. Good job she's got you on speed dial ha ha
     
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