Author Topic: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?  (Read 1395 times)

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Offline engineheat

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I'm sure it'll be harder, but not sure how much tech companies would be affected compared to other industries. Any advice?

Thanks
 

Offline Bud

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I just heard Amazon is booming and expanding hiring more stuff. I think the businesses that interac with customers in person will suffer the most. Technology ones probably not that much. We just having a story here with Toyota plants closing only for a few days for desinfection after an employee confirmed case.
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Offline Stray Electron

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   UPS is hiring like mad and a buddy of mine is a truck driver and he told me today that they're looking for drivers.  I think home delivery will do WELL for the foreseeable future. That in turn will more computer systems for online ordered, package routing and tracking, etc.

  Tech should do WELL too. There's going to be a huge demand for more and better medical diagnostic equipment.  Telecommuting is also going to be in high demand.
 

Offline duak

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Some tech will do better, some will do worse.  Medical tech will probably do very well.  Gov'ts will likely shovel money into respirators, machines that go 'ping' and buildings to store them.  They probably won't spring the money to staff them.

I expect consumer stuff to take a shellacking if disposable income goes down the loo.  If we have a credit contraction like in 2008/9 big ticket items like cars will also take a beating.  There might be shiny new things in the Apple store, but fewer people will be able to afford them.

I've never been through an international crisis like this before. Most Gov'ts are doing things to themselves simultaneously - it's sort of like group self flagelation.  I'm older and more likely to suffer from COVID-19, so I thinks It's medically necessary but it's counter to economics as we've come to understand it.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2020, 01:23:49 am by duak »
 

Offline David Hess

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I do not expect added delivery, stocking, and warehouse jobs to be other than short term.
 
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Offline james_s

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My employer just enacted a hiring freeze.

I think there's an important distinction between now, and the recession or depression likely to follow. Right now everyone is panicking about the virus and trying not to spread it, so companies that are well positioned to serve people in this situation are doing very well. This is temporary though, at some point the virus will die down and demand for masks, sanitizer, delivery and other services will plummet, nobody is going to care about any of that stuff once the perceived threat of infection has passed. Unfortunately the economy overall is likely to take a tremendous hit and it's very possible that the whole thing comes crashing down. If/when this happens it will be very hard to find a job anywhere, once the dominoes start falling people panic, become uncertain and cut back. This reduces demand for everything non-essential which causes companies providing that stuff to cut back and lay people off. Layoffs make people skittish and they cut back further which leads to more layoffs and the cycle continues as a positive feedback loop. I've been through the first dot com bust in the early 2000's and the recession around 2008 and both were rough. I was fortunate to be employed through both of those times but many were not so fortunate, I watched a lot of friends and colleagues pack up their desks and get escorted out of the building. Hiring freezes were widespread and people spent a lot of time looking for jobs.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2020, 06:22:57 am by james_s »
 
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Offline julianhigginson

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I've seen a few recessions in my career, now.

If this pandemic turns into a full blown worldwide recession, then YES you can expect product development worldwide to slow down.

Less money floating about + less optimism about being able to sell a new thing in the immediate future means less money is invested in designing new things.

Of course there's winners and losers and changes in market conditions will mean some kinds of companies will do very well.... Or some new product that will become useful to people in whatever the specific situation looks like could still make lots of cash, and manufacturing companies will be all looking to be making things like that... but I think overall, most manufacturing these days produces useless bullshit for the sake of consumption, and people in a recession won't be able to just blindly consume at the rate they have recently, so won't have as much need for useless bullshit. So in general, expect manufacturing will be hit. The market for product development work will contract.

On the plus side,  if it lasts for long enough, maybe we'll reverse climate change without needing world leaders and fossil fuel billionaires to actually do anything?
 
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Offline Electro Detective

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If the usual suspect money shifters drag this BS out for another 6 months, the average small business and home gamer is FKT
and may take 10 years to -perhaps- get back to where they are now

You don't need forecast graphs, pie charts or parroted expert air based gab to work it out.

Hit the streets and see most businesses in most places dying a slow painful demise.

In 3 months there will be empty shops and warehouses everywhere, with locked out owners homeless on the streets (without dunny paper)
once the banks seize their assets/homes/cars/Macs/Rigols to cover business debts 

If people snap out of their brain freeze in the next couple of weeks and just get on with it, there's a slim chance for recovery
..and glimmer of hope to score a slab of dunny paper   ::)


i.e. YES it may/will good luck be harder to get a job in tech,
and everywhere else  :popcorn:



 

Offline SiliconWizard

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I do not expect added delivery, stocking, and warehouse jobs to be other than short term.

Yeah. Dunno about that... It's hard to tell. But I'm suspecting the crisis may have a lasting effect on people's buying habits. Of course it will all depend on how long the crisis lasts. We'll see...
 

Offline engineheat

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The reason I'm asking is because I work in a manufacturing plant and I can't work from home. Although I'm a white collar employee and lots of my work can be done from home, the culture here frowns upon it. I'm thinking about quitting and look for a new job in tech, where I can work from home during all this.

I've out of school for 3 years and this is my first job, but I already got $100k+ saved in the bank so even without income I should last a awhile. Just wondering how bad it's gonna look to future employers if I quit like this..

thanks
 

Online chris_leyson

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #10 on: March 22, 2020, 07:01:08 pm »
@engineheat: I'm in the same situation, I work in a manufacturing plant and there isn't really a lot of work I can do from home. We have a similar culture that also frowns on working from home. I can't work on anything live because of safety rules etc so for now it looks as if I will have to go into work until the plant gets shut down. If you get a new job and quit then I'm sure any future employers will understand your situation.
 

Offline rgarito

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2020, 07:07:34 pm »
Probably depends on the tech...

My company (Citrix) is buried in work (because everyone uses our technologies to work from home; nursing stations; etc).  Only reason why we can't hire right now is there is literally no time to conduct interviews/nobody free enough to do it and it takes about 3-6 months to train someone new even if they are highly skilled.

This is one time that I am not in fear of losing my job AT ALL....
 

Online NiHaoMike

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #12 on: March 22, 2020, 07:37:44 pm »
If working from home becomes the norm, I wonder if it would push investment in hardware encoded remote desktop. One of the biggest problems with most remote desktop solutions I have used is slow response. The only exception to that is Dell's iDRAC, which is hardware encoded.
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Offline james_s

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2020, 07:42:45 pm »
That's kind of surprising actually, as fast as modern CPUs are inassuned the lag of remote desktop was simply the amount of data that needs to be sent. It's very rare that I use remote desktop anymore though, if I need to remote into a system I just use a terminal. Anything that I can't do from the command line I do on my local system then upload the result.
 

Offline David Hess

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #14 on: March 23, 2020, 10:48:50 pm »
Assuming a good remote desktop implementation, performance is dominated by latency and bandwidth unless video is being played on the remote system.
 

Online NiHaoMike

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #15 on: March 23, 2020, 11:13:18 pm »
Most likely the next "killer" remote desktop solution would leverage hardware encode blocks inside modern GPUs rather than using a dedicated ASIC like iDRAC does. I think Nvidia basically has the technology close to perfected, all they have to do is make a few tweaks and rebrand it for office use. Besides the software, all that's really needed is a cheap Nvidia GPU for the PCs that don't already have one.
Assuming a good remote desktop implementation, performance is dominated by latency and bandwidth unless video is being played on the remote system.
Where more or less every remote desktop solution has fallen over in my experience is when using data visualization software, especially with live feeds that constantly refresh the view or manually rotating a 3D view.
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Offline wizard69

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #16 on: March 24, 2020, 12:02:26 pm »
I'm sure it'll be harder, but not sure how much tech companies would be affected compared to other industries. Any advice?

Thanks

The economy can not survive this blanket shut down for much more than a week or two.   There isn't a risk of recession but rather a massive depression, frankly one that outstrips the depression of the 1930's.     So the answer to your question is pretty simply demand and end to the shut down and let the chips land where they may.    That means lots of telephone calls to your representatives and senators.

As in the past your ability to survive will based upon what is between your ears because the remaining business will have the pick of the litter so to speak.  It actually may be a good time to start a business though if you can do so with minimal capital investment.   We could enter into a year or more of 'short contract only' work until companies can actually start hiring.

To perfectly honest the best thing the populace could do is demand an end to the shut down and let the chips fall where they may.    It is pretty simple, the longer the shut down the more damage we do to the economy.    Dome may think that that is horrible but the reality is the only reasons we have a shut down is to make life easy for the medical industry.    Any argument that they are containing the virus is nonsense considering the virus is world wide now.   Those that are likely to die from the virus will no matter what until there is a valid treatment.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #17 on: March 24, 2020, 12:38:24 pm »
To perfectly honest the best thing the populace could do is demand an end to the shut down and let the chips fall where they may.    It is pretty simple, the longer the shut down the more damage we do to the economy.    Dome may think that that is horrible but the reality is the only reasons we have a shut down is to make life easy for the medical industry.    Any argument that they are containing the virus is nonsense considering the virus is world wide now.   Those that are likely to die from the virus will no matter what until there is a valid treatment.
I don't think it's that simple. If the whole world were shut down for a few weeks, then the virus could theoretically blow over, leaving no new cases and the economy should recover fairly quickly. If we do nothing, then it has the potential to cause more economic harm, in the long run. Of course we know the whole world isn't going to shutdown, but China has already proven this can be contained. It will be interesting to see what happens to China now. I think this will make the rest of the world weaker and China will dominate more.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #18 on: March 24, 2020, 04:27:00 pm »
They need to at least define a length for the shutdown. Here where I am the stay home order is "at least" 2 weeks and the uncertainty is paralyzing. I mean as a business how do you plan for that? Do you hunker down and hope you can survive 2 weeks or do you lay off all your employees betting that the lockdown will stretch out longer? It seems better to just say "we're going to try this for 2 weeks and then that's that", if it doesn't work it doesn't work, but ditch the uncertainty.

This all certainly shows how woefully unprepared we are these days. We have few manufacturing facilities left anymore and those we do have are heavily automated highly optimized operations that already run 24/7. Gone are the days when we could simply hire a ton of people and crank the output way up to mass produce huge quantities of stuff in an emergency. This virus should not have come as a surprise, we've known for ages that something like this would happen eventually and we know there will be other massive emergencies like wildfires, earthquakes, floods terrorist attacks and pandemics in the future. We should have a plan in place already rather than panicking and flailing like officials are now.
 
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Offline SiliconWizard

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #19 on: March 24, 2020, 05:05:10 pm »
The uncertainty is a big problem indeed, but not sure they have currently a choice. Economically speaking, this is a disaster. No doubt about it.

I think the idea is to confine people while monitoring the spread closely. Only when it shows signs of decline will they end the confinement IMO, with a margin.
Problem is, no one knows when this is going to happen. While confinement itself is effective, at least at keeping things under control, since we largely under-detect infected people, it's almost impossible to judge just by monitoring the figures when it's going to be OK to end it. It's just going to be a game of probability. But for anyone in charge of deciding this - let's say things start to look good, they end the confinement, and a while after the infection rate is on the rise again. They may risk jail for that. Who's going to have enough balls?

One thing I'm wondering is how long someone infected, but showing no symptoms, is contagious? Is it even possible to carry the virus more than a few days if we have absolutely no symptom, and if so, how many?
« Last Edit: March 24, 2020, 05:09:02 pm by SiliconWizard »
 

Offline james_s

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #20 on: March 24, 2020, 06:41:38 pm »
But you can't just press the pause button for s bit and then resume, the world doesn't stop turning. While we are all stuck at home we are still consuming food, water, energy, all manner of services, and somebody has to make or provide all of that. There is a whole supply chain involved in getting food on our tables, from the obvious stuff like farm workers down to all of the equipment makers, mechanics, chemical companies, fuel, truckers, road maintenance, spare parts, and dozens of other interconnected pieces. The people living in densely populated urban areas which is most people are utterly dependent on a functional economy for survival, we can't just shut it down. Disruptions cause ripples that propagate throughout the whole system and the effects can be catastrophic.

 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #21 on: March 24, 2020, 07:42:47 pm »
But you can't just press the pause button for s bit and then resume, the world doesn't stop turning. While we are all stuck at home we are still consuming food, water, energy, all manner of services, and somebody has to make or provide all of that. There is a whole supply chain involved in getting food on our tables, from the obvious stuff like farm workers down to all of the equipment makers, mechanics, chemical companies, fuel, truckers, road maintenance, spare parts, and dozens of other interconnected pieces. The people living in densely populated urban areas which is most people are utterly dependent on a functional economy for survival, we can't just shut it down. Disruptions cause ripples that propagate throughout the whole system and the effects can be catastrophic.
Are sales going to be different? Obviously they will be. But I don't think it should be considered a recession in the normal sense. We could scare ourselves into an actual recession but we have to remember that everything is still here. We just put things on hold for a bit.

The whole infrastructure is there and functioning. We're just cutting down on the non vitals and those can be paused or slowed. Some people will need some help getting by while they sit idle and that's something which can be provided. Now's not the time to get hung up on political ideologies. Just get done whatever needs to be done and we'll figure the rest out once we're through it.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #22 on: March 24, 2020, 07:47:53 pm »
There's nothing political about this, at least there shouldn't be. I just view keeping the economy running as absolutely vital. That says nothing of my general political leanings. Speaking for myself, if I become unemployed and stay that way very long, I won't have medical insurance and will have to forgo treatment for anything non-emergency. If that continues long enough I'll end up homeless without food to eat and at that point I'll be willingness to take just about any job I can get regardless of the risk to make ends meet and with more than a year's wages in the bank I'm in a far better position than most. Don't underestimate the risk of a catastrophic economic collapse or the suffering it would cause. We are nowhere near as self sufficient as we were during the last great depression. Just look at how much a little impact like people buying extra toilet paper is having, the system is a delicately balanced house of cards and fewer cards are non-essential than people realize.
 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #23 on: March 24, 2020, 08:48:22 pm »
There's nothing political about this, at least there shouldn't be. I just view keeping the economy running as absolutely vital. That says nothing of my general political leanings. Speaking for myself, if I become unemployed and stay that way very long, I won't have medical insurance and will have to forgo treatment for anything non-emergency. If that continues long enough I'll end up homeless without food to eat and at that point I'll be willingness to take just about any job I can get regardless of the risk to make ends meet and with more than a year's wages in the bank I'm in a far better position than most. Don't underestimate the risk of a catastrophic economic collapse or the suffering it would cause. We are nowhere near as self sufficient as we were during the last great depression. Just look at how much a little impact like people buying extra toilet paper is having, the system is a delicately balanced house of cards and fewer cards are non-essential than people realize.
I fear that aid may be viewed as welfare or socialism in the US. We simply need to do whatever needs to be done to keep everyone afloat so we can resume life as quickly as possible and with minimal damage done.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: If COVID-19 causes a recession, will it be harder to get a job in tech?
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2020, 09:13:16 pm »
There's nothing political about this, at least there shouldn't be. I just view keeping the economy running as absolutely vital. That says nothing of my general political leanings. Speaking for myself, if I become unemployed and stay that way very long, I won't have medical insurance and will have to forgo treatment for anything non-emergency. If that continues long enough I'll end up homeless without food to eat and at that point I'll be willingness to take just about any job I can get regardless of the risk to make ends meet and with more than a year's wages in the bank I'm in a far better position than most. Don't underestimate the risk of a catastrophic economic collapse or the suffering it would cause. We are nowhere near as self sufficient as we were during the last great depression. Just look at how much a little impact like people buying extra toilet paper is having, the system is a delicately balanced house of cards and fewer cards are non-essential than people realize.
I fear that aid may be viewed as welfare or socialism in the US. We simply need to do whatever needs to be done to keep everyone afloat so we can resume life as quickly as possible and with minimal damage done.
I agree. I think James has put forward a very good argument for a why decent welfare and universal healthcare system is necessary. I've noticed there's a culture of blaming the poor for their poverty, especially in the US. The poor are generally not scroungers but people who have simply fallen on hard times and are struggling to clime out of poverty. Done the right way, welfare and universal healthcare should really be investments, rather than supporting laziness because they enable people to get decent jobs and pay the money back in taxes.

I hope some things good come out of this crisis and governments sorting out their health systems should be one of them.
 


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