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Which technology to focus my studying based on job market trends: System Center or Exchange/Lync?

    Question

  • Dear Friends,

    I am facing a big dilemma in my career path. I am 37 and still working as Jack-of-all-Trades (JOAT). I have 13 years of JOAT experience and I am really fed up with it. Being an ocean of knowledge with an inch deep disgusts me. It's my call whether to keep working as JOAT or focus on one or two technologies for the rest of my career life.

    Now, I admire the System Center family as I loved playing with SMS and MOM in the past. However, I see more jobs for Exchange and Lync. I am not saying the SC jobs are little but they are lesser than the latter in the middle east region.

    I also admire playing with the Microsoft's mail system because it's fun. And because I have a decent background on VoIP systems, I see no difficulty going for Lync. I even see Lync is more fun than the hardware VoIP systems that I worked on.

    You got the idea.

    I need someone to share my pain with me and give me a nice push for the right path.

    What do you think? :(


    Wednesday, February 17, 2016 2:22 PM

Answers

  • I just was looking at all of the posts without replies and saw this one.  I'm surprised nobody responded!  As you know, everybody has an opinion.  This will be mine.

    I think the job situation and the future of specific technologies is a bit region specific.  At this point, you can choose to go down any path.  You have a bit of knowledge across a bunch of areas.  And, you can also opt to just keep doing that for a few years to see how things play out.

    I think the cloud will have an impact on all of the technologies.  For email, that is quickly moving to the cloud.  And I suspect more momentum with that ahead.  The same with Lync/Skype for Business. Both Exchange and Skype for Business are prime cloud candidates. When moved to the cloud, admins are still required to plan migrations to the cloud, mergers/acquisitions, perform day-to-day administration, etc. But, you don't have as much work - no designs, no installations, no patching, no service packs, no upgrades, less integration, etc.  In smaller shops, admins may take on some cloud sync duties, and other related areas.  But overall workload and duties change a bit.

    For the System Center family, I see a pretty solid future.  There will be cloud impacts but maybe not as many.  For example, if some of the core systems move to the cloud, what will System Center be used for?  The rest of the stuff.  Not as much stuff, but there will always be on premises stuff for the foreseeable future.  And, if you think about System Center managing all devices - smartphones, tablets, computers, personal computers, on premises servers, then there is quite a bit of work to do with System Center.  But as you noticed, System Center isn't as pervasive as Exchange and probably not as pervasive as Lync/Skype for Business.  But, I think it may grow.  Could even out in a few years.  If you are into traveling, you can find plenty of System Center work.

    You could also opt for something like Office 365 - you get to play with Exchange, Skype for Business, OneDrive, SharePoint, hybrid cloud, etc.  I see a pretty bright future there.  Plus, you can still tap into your on-premises knowledge because there will be hybrid environments for quite a long time.  You can get certified specifically on Office 365 and market yourself as the guy that can take companies there!

    Brian

    Thursday, March 24, 2016 3:31 AM