Working in IT in New York? Help me look for work...

Hi Dopers,
I’m working in the IT industry here in Ireland, but am investigating the possibilities of moving to NYC to join my girlfriend, who is currently studying there. Does anyone have any good sources of information on the job situation in and around NY? Also, if anyone has any experience of looking for a company to sponsor you for an employment visa, that would be helpful.
I am currently working as a systems admin with strong windows skills, moderate *nix and DBA skills.
Either links to info or just general observations on the IT scene in NY welcomed.
Thanks in advance,

I don’t work in IT but one thing I would recommend is to take a good look at New Jersey. There are a lot corporate HQs there with sprawling campuses. I work in Manhattan but all our servers are out in NJ and managed by GE. My brother in law works for IBM and has clients all around central NJ. My guess is that the bigger companies have staff to handle sponsorships and other immigration issues. I’m not sure how the smaller consulting firms handle it. I just brought up some IT positions at Merck in NJ. Johnson and Johnson is in NJ, Exxon-Mobile, Honeywell, Schering-Plough, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Novartis, to name a few.

Just a bit of friendly advice: make sure you’ve got something lined up before you make the move. Don’t just come here figuring that “something will turn up” on the job front! Following the general collapse of the dot coms, and the IT industry in general, there are a lot of IT folks who are currently waiting on tables, doing temp work as admin assistants, and so on (nationwide, not just in NYC).

You might be able to find a suitable position here, but the streets certainly aren’t paved with gold at the moment. Best of luck, nonetheless!

I wish you luck. The job market here is not good - especially not for experienced professionals who have high salary expectations. I have a friend with more experience than myself who’s been out of a job for over a year.

Since you’re looking for advice, I’ll move this thread to IMHO.

Thanks for the advice.
I don’t think the salary expectations should be an issue. I know people in equivalent positions as mine in the states and they are earning almost twice my current salary. Even allowing for cost of living increases, I was thinking I would probably be happy with earning less than my counterparts while still having an increase on my current salary here in Ireland (at least to begin with :slight_smile: )
I’m certainly not expecting a job to fall into my lap either, Ireland’s IT industry is heavily reliant on American and other multinationals (for instance Dell, Intel, Motorola), and as such our jobs market has had the same problems here with layoffs almost everywhere.
I figured if I’m going to be looking for work in a tough market, it may as well be there as here.
The main reason though, is my girlfriend is american, and for our relationship to work out, I’m going to see if I can make a life for myself over there.

flairgun, I’ve been looking for work in IT anywhere from Ohio to Maine, including Virginia, Maryland and New York for the past four months. There really isn’t much out there.

What are your qualifications? Most of the companies I’ve seen are looking for a 4 to 6 year degree in Computer Science with 3 to 5 years experience.

Honestly, if you can manage to keep it in a long distance romance until the job market turns around, you might be better off.

Good luck, in both job and love,

Thanks CJ,
I work for a American data storage company.
I worked for two years in a department here doing customer support for a webhosting business before being promoted to a systems admin in the same line of work, which I have been for 3 years now. Along the way, the webhosting has been scaled down and now we do proof-of-concepts and feasibilty testing on our companies products and partners software.

Education is interesting actually, I was wondering how to compare an Irish college education with an american one, as the two systems are quite different from what I’ve seen. I’ve got a cert in Electronics and diploma in Telecoms, but I’m not really in those lines of work anymore as you can see…
Anyone know exactly how to relate American college quals to Irish (or other european?)

ps: Thanks to all who’ve posted so far, btw…