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# 1  
Old 08-23-2015
Who would you employ?

Hi guys...

I will be retiring soon and we are looking at someone to replace me.

My question is if you were in the position to employ someone in your business what type of person would you be looking for to replace a retiree to take said retiree's place?

1) An amateur,(like me), who has little computer science knowledge but has experimented, has aptitude and is willing to learn and become one of your team...
2) A Semi-Pro, who has written code that is probably shareware and has some knowledge of computer science but probably lacking the qualifications, young with youth on his side.
3) An IT engineer with some level of qualifications but with limited programming knowledge and willing to learn.
4) A fully fledged Degree in Computer Sciences post graduate with little or no on hand experience of the real world but needs to start from somewhere.
5) Other of your choice..

# 2  
Old 08-23-2015
Really depends on the job, and the rest of the CV.

1) For ANY security relevant job, i'd require a 'state of the art' diploma - regarding security.
2) For any science relevant job, i'd require a semi pre - preferable with diploma - and some background on the science matter.
3) For any basic job, such as supporter (1st,2nd,3rd, or stuff like Lotus Notes admin) i'd hire any amateur over someone with a diploma.
4) For any manager kind position, i'd prefer either a MAS on IT, and practical experience - so he doesnt order things that are not possible, or management diploma with proven former IT background (not as manager!).

So in the sum, please be more specific with your question Smilie
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# 3  
Old 08-24-2015
Attitude and aptitude.
Everything else you can teach.
Most importantly, do you want to come back after two or three months and work as a highly paid consultant? Smilie
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# 4  
Old 08-24-2015
Originally Posted by jgt
Attitude and aptitude.
Everything else you can teach.
Most importantly, do you want to come back after two or three months and work as a highly paid consultant? Smilie

I am happy being an amateur, once I am retired in October I do not intend to carry on in my profession, ([RF] Electronics Engineer).

I do intend to keep my mind alert coding as I really enjoy it and it is now my hobby of choice along with UNIX shell scripting. I have all but abandoned the other languages I have learnt.

As I am a licneced Amateur Radio callsign holder, I think I would prefer another Amateur Radio callsign holder to take my place as they are already interested in the subject and have also probably had practical experience in correcting their failures, building one-offs, testing, etc...

Raw qualifications are not my prime mover...
# 5  
Old 08-24-2015
I am more on the side of jgt in this matter: you can teach almost everything except the "mental environment" to make the learning experience take place - which is why idiots are quite resistant to education. And i have to disagree with sea: diplomas tell something about a persons industriousness (there is no convincing translation for the german word "Fleiß", but this would describe it best) but nothing about the learning capability.

I have no diploma at all in computer sciences or any related area (i am actually a musician) but still can hold my own in front of a keyboard, more or less. ;-))

I think a requirement for a prospective electronics engineer is a good command of some basic and intermediate math and the ability to quickly estimate orders of magnitude. I have often seen people using calculators for even the simplest calculation and not even flinch when results were way off because of typing errors. i.e. i would need some time to calculate "10 / 7" but i can immediately estimate it to be "1.5 or thereabouts". I simply know "15" to be wrong and ".15" to be wrong either. This is not a matter of relying on technology or not (i'd use a calculator too if i want a precise result), it is a matter of being willing to exert some mental effort for getting an (even limited) result.

Here is a test question, no tricks involved and the answer can easily be calculated once you know what to calculate. Take your time in solving it:

Suppose you have a melon, which weighs 100kg. 99% of it is water. Now, this melon lies in the sun for some time and some water evaporates, so now it is is down to a water content of 98%. How much does it weigh now?

Most will, without thinking, say "99 kg" or something near this value. But "99%" and "98%" are not from the same base, yes? Here is a hint: What would be 100% when 1kg is 2%, hmmm?

/PS: on second thoughts: knowing the limitations of ones knowledge is an even more critical skill. Suppose the following situation: places A and B are roughly 100km apart. You go with your car from A to B maintaining an average speed of 71.047 km/h. Question: how long will the drive take? One usually gets an answer "exact" down to the nanosecond, completely ignoring that "roughly 100km" hardly justifies anything more precise than quarter-hours.


Last edited by bakunin; 08-24-2015 at 10:31 PM..
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# 6  
Old 08-25-2015
You missed the greatest point in my opinion, passion and love for the work being done.

It is the irrational thing that drives people. If you lack passion for the job you will do it poorly, no mater what is your education or skill set.

A must have is a sense of self-accomplishment or you will be a drone expecting month to month paycheck doing in best case, mediocre.

Unfortunately (in my opinion), tendency in IT is to fine grain till all it is left is powder Smilie... causing a job to be done by more people then are required for it.
This is limiting and bounding to the people inside the process, making them drones.
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# 7  
Old 08-26-2015
I would employ someone from this board, preferably one with the handle wisecracker That candidate seems a perfect employee Smilie

But ignoring the blatant sycophancy and assuming that you wish to escape, I would humbly suggest you seek one who is:-
  • generally bright rather than qualified
  • open to ideas
  • old enough not to be GUI-only
  • doesn't have a fancy looking C.V., but has content over visuals
  • who can read manuals well
  • is not scared by problems and will ask for help

In larger companies, a good Personnel or H.R. department may well have puzzles that stretch the mind and allows you to observe the process. That may give you an insight too. Additionally, try to set some puzzles of your own, e.g. try to get them to describe the difference between truncate table table_name ; and delete from table_name ;

It might sound like passing the responsibility, but I have had too much experience of very qualified people who don't have a clue, and when you consider the cheating that is common in some places where some people may have obtained qualifications, they become worth even less, which I'm sure for some is a grave injustice.

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