Tipping The Scales

The nice thing about being in TPF was the job security. In the past, if you were a good technician and you did your job, there was never a big concern about remaining employed. After all, in terms of supply and demand, TPF programmers are a somewhat rare commodity. At least they used to be.

Events of the past few months have dramatically tipped the scales on the TPF marketplace. Economic anxiety within the U.S. coupled with the Gulf War have hit the travel industry particularly hard. Fuel prices shot through the roof, fears of terrorism decimated load factors, several major players filed for protection under the bankruptcy laws, and Eastern Airlines was sadly put to rest.

The trickle-down was unavoidable. Airlines, hotels, car rentals, tour operators, and so on down the line, all felt the pinch immediately. Since TPF is so heavily used throughout the travel industry, it should come as no surprise that it would take its share of lumps as well.

And so the layoffs came. From ocean to ocean, and then across the ocean to Europe, people suddenly found themselves without jobs, and without much hope of finding new ones. While I wish I could conjure up a few thousand TPF jobs, I have to be more practical. The scales will certainly tip again, although that may not happen for 6-9 months. What's important to keep in mind, is that TPF is not the culprit in this case, only an unfortunate victim. The technology is alive and well, and there is no doubt things will rebound.

But let's address the current situation. If I could say one thing to those people looking for jobs, it would be this. Don't be discouraged by the large number of people seemingly going after a small number of available jobs. Let your prowess and your accomplishments give you the competitive edge. There are positions out there, and there are companies looking for talented people. Get your resume polished up, get a reputable recruiter on the phone, and go for it.

If I could say one thing to those companies with available jobs, it would be to take advantage of the situation, and not the people caught up in the situation. A saturated market offers prospective employers a greater assortment of skill sets and experience to draw from. That experience and knowledge is worth no less today than it was a month ago, or a year ago. Fair and equitable compensation today is the cornerstone of a stable job market tomorrow.

Alan Sadowsky