Are there Job possibilities for my skill set?

Circle110Circle110 Chicago area

I'm trying to figure out what a realistic expectation would be as far as job hunting. I am not really an entry level developer but yet I have never had a proper position as a programmer. Here's my situation:

I have been coding web apps for over 20 years since the early days of CGI and Perl, following with Classic ASP, PHP, Ruby on Rails and Laravel, which is what I have built my last three apps in. I have worked all those 20 years as a Systems Analyst and many times there are requirements that can only be met by a custom application. Since the clients are comfortable with me and I am very aware of their business needs and the application requirements, they ask me to write the code.

So, I've got 23 years of coding web apps, but I have always worked alone so my coding style is probably a little unorthodox and I no doubt have gaps in my knowledge due to being self taught.

I have grown tired of System Analysis and want to work on a team of programmers, in Laravel if at all possible. The jobs I see are either for entry level, which I think I am well beyond, or else Senior Developer which I don't feel comfortable calling myself either.

Any thoughts on how I should pursue a developer position?


  • johnappleweedjohnappleweed Distant Star
    edited July 2016

    Try to apply a middle dev position. Or get to an interview at least. Knock the door and they will open.

  • Circle110Circle110 Chicago area

    Thanks, John. I'll do that. But I'm not seeing any positions described as mid level - they are all self-described as entry level or senior level. Mid sounds about right if I can find it. Knocking on doors does seem to be the ticket.

  • You can start with an interview for a junior dev position. Once you meet you potential employer, you can tell exactly what you wrote here and probably more. If they find your experience impressive and applicable to the company's projects, they'll offer you a position corresponding to your skill set. Anyway, IT companies tend to be rather flexible in this respect. For example, I came to the company I work for now – Iflexion, as a junior PHP developer. Once I filled the gaps and caught up with other team members, I got promoted. I guess everything depends on how fast you learn and adapt to new working environments.

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