Posted by: Peter Scott | January 10, 2007

Change in role?

For a while I have been dabbling in the occasional non-BI thing for my employer. They now would like me to switch away from BI altogether and run their UK Oracle applications support team. If I take the move, it will be far  less blog-worthy.

Still, if I do write less, would anyone notice?



  1. Pete, don’t do it. You’ll only regret it six months down the line. Focus on the data warehousing stuff, that’s where your interest is and it’s where you can add value. Stuff looking after someone’s Financials implementation.

  2. Agreed

  3. As someone who makes a living looking after other people’s Financials implementations my only advice is – run for your life.

    EBS support is not in any way interesting unless you are of a functional bent. The technical stuff is just one frustration after another. Just to illustrate the turnover in support staff at the customer I’m working at is phenomenal.

  4. Although I think the term applications was supposed to be broad enough to cover any application built around an Oracle database (and that could cover a data warehouse) there would be a big chunk of ebs in there.

    Point noted – thanks for the feedback

  5. “Still, if I do write less, would anyone notice?”

    It would be one less thing I have to do in the morning before starting real work. Don’t stop. I need the extra distractions… 🙂



  6. then again, “application suppot” is such a messed up concept nowadays you might have an endless source of blogs right there!

    I know I do, having to support the databases our clients use with their apps. Then again, I can’t talk much about them, for obvious confidentiality reasons…

  7. Notice?
    Yes. +1 in that camp.

    Do it or not?
    Well, it depends – people tend to change over time and, once enjoying technical challenges, you might find yourself more interested in organizational/business/support/whatever other role. If you are thinking about it, then there must be something attractive in it.
    In this situation, I find the most difficult part is to find out what that is and admit that.

  8. Hi Pete

    I hope you don’t mind taking career’s advice from a relative stranger. I have just blogged about this:

    Good luck with whatever decision you make.

    Cheers, APC

  9. I think it is a different mindset (i.e. different skills will be required) and it will definitely be less black and white kind of decision making.

    As to whether you should or should not is a decision that only you can make. A number of factors to consider includes (a) are you able to be hands-off trusting your technical folks to know what they need to do (b) ability to deal with people issues – this is probably going to be a good chunk of your workday (c) are you able to be the buffer between your group and management/other business areas (d) are you prepared to take the heat when things go wrong (e) hours of work vs compensation (f) do you have someone that you can use as a sounding board and also someone that you can vent and confide in (g) nobody will say “Thanks” but you will be the first they call when things go wrong, etc.

    I tell my folks that as a manager/supervisor, my role is to ensure that they (the team) have everything they need to do their jobs successfully so they don’t work for me but rather I work for them.

    Any which way you decide, good luck.

  10. Peter..
    I would expect to be hands off (especially for the ebs guys). In terms of compensation – no change. A big down side is the geographic spread of the people involved, we are talking 5 offices in different cities and customer sites too

  11. Around 25 years ago a headhunter gave me some marketing bs which had an interesting graph in it. One axis was $ and the other was job title, from Jr. Programmer to some glamorous executive role, I forget what, maybe Director of MIS (but no DBA 🙂

    The general thrust was that you had to hit salary windows to keep moving up this graph at a 45 degree angle. If you spent too long at a particular level, your salary would asymptotically rise above the window, then top out below where you would have had you followed an increasingly responsible career path.

    If you didn’t change companies but kept accepting promotions, you’d wind up under the window, salary leveling off.

    Now of course, I thought this was just self-serving headhunter crap, but there is some kernel of truth there – as exemplified by your last post. Where I always thought it goofed was, if you get the title, then it becomes easy to go elsewhere and get back in the window (which was the situation I was in at the time).

    So I’d say, go for it! If you don’t like it, you can always go back to what you were doing before (assuming they aren’t kicking you upstairs because they didn’t like your work – hey, I’ve seen it), and you will likely be better for the experience regardless.

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