|I'd like to try something new|
I've been doing WordPress website development for about 7 years, freelancing from home.
I think this is the year I finally hit a point where I'm tired of it. I think I've lost patience with all of the issues and noise around web design and development.
I won't go into it all, but I'm taking a break and looking at what I might want to do going forward. I'm almost 50 (gasp!) and a woman (gasp again!) and I'm realizing I'd like to do something different. Sometimes the web stuff is just so much time spent on things that more and more seem like they don't matter. I've spent years learning to do things the right way, yet I see agencies and others doing things horribly wrong. I've spent time honing skills that should make me worth more money on a project. The isolation is another thing I'm sick of. Not complaining, just realizing it might be time for a change.
I guess I have a bunch of options but though I might take a chance and post this to see if others have any thoughts. I've thought about doing some freelancing via sites like Elance and such; I have some niche websites that do fairly well and could spend some time there; I've been looking at what is out there in the "real" work world and trying to find something with flexibility; I have other skills and experiences other that the things I've learned in order to do the web dev stuff so I've been looking at lots of different avenues; I've been polishing my resume and LinkedIn profile and starting to do a little more there, since I've never really done much marketing of myself.
Anyway, just thought I'd toss this out and see if others have similar feelings or any suggestions.
Elance is good for buyers but for coders it is very competitive. On any job we receive 20-50 proposals before selecting one. Even after careful selection and scrutiny of their portfolios we still encounter those who over-rate themselves and/or didn't read the job specification properly. Thankfully this doesn't happen often and of more than 250 plus projects only a few were a waste of our time.
But when it's for a website project we found that most coders are using a ready-made CMS like WordPress and that very few were prepared to code PHP independent of that CMS.
So while using a CMS can enable a coder to create an impressive site cheaply, there are still clients out there that are looking for experienced "coders" rather than "jugglers".
Please send your LinkedIn via PM.
One can always make a change in direction, regardless of age, but age does make a difference in the professional world if you are looking to join a production staff, et al. Now is the time to make that move, if that is the desired direction (and the milk of magnesia that goes along with impossible deadlines, surly co-workers, demanding management, intransigent clients, etc.) I don't think gender will be that much of an obstacle (at least not in my company or those which with I work), but be prepared for that.
What gets you noticed is your work ethic, skill set, determination and sincerity. These qualities, I believe, apply in any shop, any business, any country, though I can't truly speak for the latter as I have not worked in all countries.
Taking time now to consider future options is a good thing. Finding that good place to be may take work, but it sounds like you have the grit to get 'er done, and so all best wishes moving forward!
If you can afford it making a big change is fantastic. I dropped out of professional IT work altogether and am now happy as editor of a small music magazine although grappling with DTP software isn't that different from web design. I do keep my hand in with the magazine's web site and a small on-line gallery of gig photos.
Now I must get back to transcribing an interview I recorded last week!
Yike! I'm new to web design and WAS looking a giving the freelance-from-home thing a try. I might have to re-think that after reading this thread.
I've been taking the time since I first posted this thread to start exploring things that I might like to do.
Tangor, I agree with your comments. I totally agree that the things you mentioned like work ethic, skill set, determination, etc., are qualities that nearly every employer in any country finds desirable. I also think that now is the time to do something. I know I want something different. I know that I need to be around people. The isolation of the whole web dev stuff is part of what I don't like.
I feel lucky that I have been able to build and run a successful one person freelance biz because I know many who struggle or don't make it. It hasn't been easy. Most days I feel like a full-time worker and a full-time student because it takes a lot of time to not only do the work but to keep up with all the ways the web evolves and the correct way to do things.
I keep hearing stories about how employers cannot find people who have even basic skills like critical thinking and customer service skills, and how they are eager and willing to train people who may not have a lot of experience or skills in a particular field, but who are willing and smart. Well...that's me. :)
In the time since my first post, I was challenged by a family member to apply for one position that I thought was a really good fit for me. In the course of ONE WEEK, I updated and polished my resume; applied for the position; took their online skills test; got a phone interview; got a face-to-face interview; got a job offer.
I didn't take the offer for a few different reasons, but I can tell you that it was GREAT practice and experience. It gave me confidence and let me know that I can still do something!
Just wanted to update. Now I'm just continuing to look at various things and see what happens. Tangor, you're so right about going from working from home to the outside work arena: you have to trade some negatives for others. Isn't that always the case with life, darn it! That said, I still haven't ruled out starting a venture of my own. Who knows. But at least it's a start. :)
and how they are eager and willing to train people who may not have a lot of experience or skills in a particular field, but who are willing and smart.
Sounds like the job market has changed a lot since my last IT job. My experience for 20 years was that, apart from graduate trainees, only current experience would do and very few skills were regarded as transferable.
piatkow, I think there are a lot of transferable skills that people have but they may not realize it.
From running my own freelance web dev biz, plus my past experience in an entirely different field, I realize I have a bunch of skills that are attractive across range of positions.
There are lots of things listed on job descriptions and I have learned that employers usually list everything but the kitchen sink there or, that you can have most things and that your willingness to learn and your personality can go a long way and make a difference. There are lots of variables. :)
your willingness to learn and your personality can go a long way and make a difference.
Fine if you make interview but not much good when your CV has been filtered out because you aren't a perfect match.