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Should I leave

Stary Kapec
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 04, 2005
Posts: 81
Hi,

I am 25 and working in a big company as a junior programmer. I am getting more and more frustrated about my job. All I do is maintenance programming, so my only role is to look for and fix bugs and/or refactoring. The code I work on is old, written in horrible style and totally undocumented. I hardly understand what's going on about it and I have little knowledge about the business of the applications I am to work on.
I've been working in the company for about 4 months. I have more then a year total experience. I'm bachelor in IT and SCJP (95%) I'm about to do SCWCD.
I don't really feel that my knowledge and skills are increasing. Especially I don't work on any cutting edge techs. Just plain old java and old struts.
Every day I struggle myself to get the job done and I hardly succeed. I'm beginning to doubt if I'm suitable to the programmer's job at all.

What do you think? Should I start thinking on leaving the company.. or wait and see, maybe I'll get use to it? I am very well paid.
[ June 30, 2007: Message edited by: Pawel Matczak ]
Wilson Gordon
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 07, 2007
Posts: 89
I would say keep working there for a couple more months, since you said they pay you well. Leaving after 8 months looks much better than leaving after 4 months on your resume. Ideally you want to leave after 1 year.

In the mean time, you could study IT books to improve your skills and learn some new technologies.
Roseanne Zhang
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 14, 2000
Posts: 1953
You have 2 choices:

1) Try hard to learn the old code and company business, when you get a point, you become in-disposable valuable asset of the company. You have a well paid and secure job. After you get there, you can do good/great refactoring on the old (not so old, struts, actually) application. You might become a domain expert too.

2) Find a new, but not necessary better, job, if you cannot stand it or are not able to do the number 1. But be prepared, you might get into a better, similar, or even worse situation. No guarantee!

Good luck!
peter cooke
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 16, 2004
Posts: 314
Unless there are very good reasons leaving your first company after a couple of months sets a bad president. Make sure you have a good excuse.

As for being being frustrated with only doing bugfixes on badly documented code. Well It is called work, it keeps you employed, that employment puts a roof over your head and food on the table. If everyone wrote good code that never needed improvement, we would all be out of work.

Sorry for not being in a sympathetic mood at the moment. But if you cannot be trusted to take the garbage out, how can you be trusted to perform brain surgery.


CIAO Peter M. Cooke
Neha Gap
Greenhorn

Joined: May 30, 2007
Posts: 29
I know exactly how it feels to be in a job that has no challenges. I have been working in an MNC that pays very well too, but quit just recently. When I decided I had to quit in order to believe that I would be a good developer, I went out and started looking for jobs, and frankly I realised there's a lot of good work happening. Its not difficult to find good work if you look for it at the right places.

In the meanwhile, my company's really big, it pays for certifications and trainings, I made the most of that in gaining as much knowledge of new technologies. After all, your manager cannot stop you from learning new things and he'll encourage it if you convince him that that will keep you going in this company.

All the best!
Neha.
v ray
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 15, 2007
Posts: 223
Yeah I find myself in a similar situation as well, but like its already been told:
1. you need a job.
2. This doesnt stop you from learning new technologies on your own.
3. Its not good to quit after 4 months, it doesnt look good on your resume.

Just try to make use of the next 8-9 months as constructively as possible, learn as much as possible about the domain as well as on your own, this is what I am doing anyway.
peter cooke
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 16, 2004
Posts: 314
After 15 years of software work. I can say 95% of it is maintenance. A company pays tens of thousands or millions of dollars for some software functionality. The business people want to see the best return on investment (ROI). If the ROI is a tweek to the existing code, so be it. Otherwise prove a complete rewrite will produce a better ROI.

First law of computer programming - there is never enough time, money, engineers to desgin the optimal mouse trap. You have to trade something other wise you would never get to market.

Second law of computers 90%+ of what you do will be maintenance. At best some entropeneaur comes up with a VB prototype of something. And it is your job to put parts of it into a real language so that it supports millions of hits a month. After 15 years of experience less that 10% of my time is involved with new functionality.

We all do stuff we don't like. Only you can make a decision if programming is for you. The question is would you rather work a job that is not all that exciting for a nice home/car/vacation, or would you rather risk being a homless bum by being a musician at the subway.
Roseanne Zhang
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 14, 2000
Posts: 1953
I consider myself lucky; someone is paying me for my hobby.

I like what I am doing; no matter it is new development, or fixing someone's mess. Solving complicated problem or fix mess someone created years ago proved to be challenging and exciting for me.

Thanks!
Srikanth Basa
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 06, 2005
Posts: 241
Originally posted by Jasiek Motyka:
Hi,

I am 25 and working in a big company as a junior programmer. I am getting more and more frustrated about my job. All I do is maintenance programming, so my only role is to look for and fix bugs and/or refactoring. The code I work on is old, written in horrible style and totally undocumented. I hardly understand what's going on about it and I have little knowledge about the business of the applications I am to work on.
I've been working in the company for about 4 months. I have more then a year total experience. I'm bachelor in IT and SCJP (95%) I'm about to do SCWCD.
I don't really feel that my knowledge and skills are increasing. Especially I don't work on any cutting edge techs. Just plain old java and old struts.
Every day I struggle myself to get the job done and I hardly succeed. I'm beginning to doubt if I'm suitable to the programmer's job at all.

What do you think? Should I start thinking on leaving the company.. or wait and see, maybe I'll get use to it? I am very well paid.

[ June 30, 2007: Message edited by: Pawel Matczak ]


It is quite common to see people getting frustated because of nature of work. I would say 4 months is too early (to get frustated) as the span with your current company is too short and it won't make a good impact on your resume if you opt for a jump right now.

I understand the state of mind in which you are... you have one choice for the next 8 months (atleast). Just go on reading new stuff if time permits.

If someone says you are not a good programmer because you struggle to get the current work done, I strongly disagree with that. Whether you are good or bad can only be judged when you are given challenging task that you are fascinated to take up.
Dawei Li
Greenhorn

Joined: Jul 01, 2007
Posts: 22
Before you leave,
You should think whether there still anything to learn.
I think the language base is more important than new technology.
You can learn much from maintaince.
If you can't learn anything,then you should leave


<a href="http://www.java-forums.org" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Java</a>
D.W. Smith
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 11, 2007
Posts: 22
I'm still amazed by how similar this guy's situation is to mine.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
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