A job I would really like to do, but…

So, today in my usual job searching on Jobserve I found a job that I really like the sound of, here are some of the highlights:

My client is looking for a Data Centre Technician on an initial 3 month contract based in Angel, London in the Financial, Data and Media Services Industry. Rate: GBP 20/25 per hour Ltd.

The Data Centre technician will be responsible for providing technical assistance and overall support to our customers providing 24/7 cover through a 12 hour shift pattern.

Shift Pattern: 07:00 and 19:00 start times, 12 hour shifts including breaks.

Week 1: 4 shifts (4 nights)

Week 2: 6 shifts (3 days/3 nights)

Week 3: 3 shifts (3 days)

Week 4: 1 shift (1 day)

The Data Centre Technician will also be responsible for the installation of racks, housing, network and computer equipment. Each Data Centre technician is also responsible for managing and implementing installations as required, including shelves, power strips, rails, cable management and customer IT equipment. When required identify issues with the hardware or cabling, which can include replacing internal components and testing, tracing and labelling of cabling.

So here we have a well paid job, very local to me (20mins or so walk) and it’s working inside places I really enjoy… Data centres.

I don’t know what it is about a data centre, but I just love the buzz of it, a huge building filled with computers, cabling and links to networks near and far. The noise inside these places is often deafening, but the plus side is that the air conditioning (which is there really for the machines rather than the humans) is incredible, so no baking in summer!

I have a fair amount of experience with servers, I can take them apart, replace components, set them up, etc… but I have only had one job working specifically in a data centre, which was 13 years ago and not specifically dealing with hardware.

People say to me in this situation, “why not, go for it, you might get it” and all that sort of thing, the issue is that these days unless your most recent jobs match very closely the job that you are applying for, then you can forget it, you aren’t what they want.

Lets look a bit further at the job spec and the things I do/don’t have experience with:

Suitable candidates will be able to demonstrate the following skills:

* Computer engineering experience and knowledge in order to achieve optimum methods of working

* Cabling experience and knowledge, in order to achieve optimum methods of working.

* Installation of rack mount kit including HP and CISCO

* Hardware maintenance/swapping of failed customer replaceable parts such as cache battery, HDD, Power Supply.

* Highly motivated individual, with a positive and pro/active attitude to work.

* Willingness to make changes to improve operational efficiency through innovation, process and procedures, adopting and adapting ideas and practices from elsewhere.

* Ability to act rapidly and logically under pressure and making effective use of others in resolving problems.

* Capable of working with the minimum of supervision.

* Good written and verbal communication skills .

* Good working knowledge of Outlook, Word and Excel

* Excellent team skills, with an ability to listen and contribute to discussions and meetings.

* Customer and service focused, with determination to meet their needs.

Also of interest to my client:

* ITIL Accreditation

* Experience of HP Service Manager 7

So, actually, looking at that spec, I can actually tick off most of those things. But it’s actually really hard to ascertain from a CV/Resume that you have actually got those “soft skills” like team working, being highly motivated, etc, etc…

Realistically I would expect this job to get a lot of applications and the people who get shortlisted for interview are likely to be those whose last two jobs have been working in data centres…

The question I want an answer to here really is how can we stop this kind of “unfairness” in the job market, here I think is a job I would be really suited to, but because my background is in desktop support rather than server support, I will not be considered.

Those of you who are saying “apply for it, you never know”, I can tell you I have applied, but I am willing to put £5 on never getting a call back from this agency about this position….

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