Oracle Database Management Strategic Directions

1. Best Practices for managing Oracle database servers.
2. Oracle Fusion Middleware products like J2EE, ADF, XML, BPEL, SOA, Web Services, Discoverer...).
3. Oracle Application Servers and Apache.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Top Ten Things to Do to Find an IT Job in Today's Economy

Right now a lot of professionals are not prepared to get a new job in today's economy. Their resume and approach to finding a job are totally wrong. The reason is they are using the same type of resume and approach to finding a job that they used in the .com boom days. That approach will not work today. It is very important for someone to make a major effort in their strategy for getting a new job.

Here is a top ten list for finding a new IT job in today's economy.
  1. Accomplishments: Make sure your resume focuses on accomplishments and things you have done to make companies successful. A resume showing you are a great DBA or Developer is not going to be enough. The competition is going to be too intense. You'll lose the numbers game. Your resume needs to show what you are going to do for a company and new boss. Accomplishments, accomplishments, accomplishments!
  2. What have you done lately: A company is not likely to care that you have tons of experience. What have you done in the last two years that separates you from all the other resumes. Focus on highly polishing your resume for the last two years, then last five years and then last ten years. In sports, your market value is going to be based on what you did last season, not ten seasons ago. It is the same in today's economic market.
  3. Go the extra mile: Properly research the organization, hiring department, hiring manager for the job you are interested in. A "To Whom It May Concern" cover letter is going to wind up in the trash.
  4. What makes you special: If you are applying for a job, it is likely 300 - 1000 other people are also. How is your resume going to get on the stack to get an interview. Your resume and cover letter has to get you the interview. Focus on that. Your interview will then focus on getting the job.
  5. First impression is everything: Your cover letter is more important than your resume. If your cover letter is not good enough, your resume will never get read. Make your cover letter stand out.
  6. Win the numbers game: You are going to be competing against hundreds of people looking for a job. Just having experience and being good at what you do is not going to be enough. There are also likely people interviewing for the position that have the inside track due to networking or people that they know. What's going to impress someone enough about you that makes you a candidate they have to look at?
  7. The 30 second resume: If someone is looking at hundreds of resumes they are not likely to spend more than 30 - 60 seconds looking at a resume. Your resume needs to be able to make the 30 second cut.
  8. Prepare: Proper preparation prevents pitiful performance. You just got an interview. You've done a great job being one of the few candidates that gets an interview. Now you have to get the job. You'd better have prepared your questions, your answers and everything you do in that interview. Someone within 15 seconds will have a feeling if they are interested in you or not. Go to the library, get on the internet, talk to friends, but you'd better be ready to completely ace an interview.
  9. Get better: While you are going through the interview process keep improving your skills. Make yourself more attractive to an interviewer. Are there additional skills you can be working on? Are there skills you can add more depth to?
  10. Life is not fair: Don't expect life to be fair. In this politically correct world we pretend people are not prejudice, are nice and will treat everyone fairly. That could not be further from the truth. Prepare yourself to win the game in an unfair world. Be the best candidate so the organization sees that you "are the one" that they have to hire.
Whatever you do, don't despair, give up or get down. Make yourself better and stronger during this process. Read books on networking. Call friends, peers, get out there. Get more involved in church, local groups, charity events, etc. to get out in front of people. Also find ways to deal with the stress. Whether it is exercise, starting a new hobby, whatever. But you have to be ready when you get the interview.

And last, work your rear end off! The harder you work the luckier you will get.

And most of all, good luck! :)

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Thursday, February 12, 2009

George Trujllo: RMOUG 2009 Day Two Highlights

Today was an excellent wrap up to RMOUG training days. A summary of highlights:
  • For RMOUG being a local users group event, there were a large number of top Oracle presenters who flew in for the conference.
  • A large number of excellent performance tuning presentations. Performance tuning was a major focus.
  • The networking and interaction of the attendees was as good as I've seen at a conference in years.
  • I would put the quality of all of the presentations be extremely high for the conference.
  • There were no marketing presentations. Excellent focus on technical presentations with high ROI for attendees.
An observation: Oracle10gR2 has been out a long time (2005) and there has been a slow adoption rate of Oracle Database Server 11gR1. So as we start the new year, I wanted to see how have skills and tools of DBAs have evolved in the last few years and what is changing around DBAs. A few thoughts about DBAs between 2005 and 20010:
  • DBAs have gotten very, very good with core skills such as performance tuning, backup/recovery, ASM, RAC, partitioning, OEM, etc. So if you are a DBA you'd better have some very serious skills to compete as a senior DBA.
  • DBAs are adding lots of scripts, tricks and techniques to managing Oracle database servers.
  • I was surprised to see the large number of DBAs are still interested in basic DBA skills and knowledge.
  • Still a small percentage of DBAs that are really good with Streams, Data Guard, XML, etc.
  • A lot of DBAs are not using OEM features in 10g to manage their database servers due to licensing of management packs.
  • DBAs are not migrating to managing the middle tier. For the most part DBAs are staying to the database server. There are more developers migrating to managing the middle tier, similar to how the traditional developers migrated to be come DBAs.
  • There is still a long way to go to develop people's skills in Oracle Fusion Middleware (J2EE, Web Services, XML, BPEL, SOA, etc). Most people I talked to at the conference still do not even understand what Oracle Fusion Middleware is. If you ask attendees what is Oracle Fusion Middleware or why is it important, I'd bet 9 out of 10 could not answer these questions.
Overall a great success for the conference. Way to go RMOUG!

Now on to IOUG Collaborate 2009 in Orlando, FL starting May 3rd 2009!


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

George Trujillo: RMOUG 2009 Training Days Highlights Day One

My Highlights of Day One at RMOUG 2009 Training Days:
  • As always RMOUG is a very well run conference and the volunteers and RMOUG team are outstanding.
  • Congratulations to Peggy King for a RMOUG Lifetime Achievement Award! Very well deserved.
  • Tom Kyte: Went to a presentation by Tom Kyte I was very familiar with, but his presentation style, techniques and demos always make it a pleasure to attend one of his presentations.
  • Debra Lilley: Excellent presentation on Fusion. It was great to have Debra deliver a detailed presentation on Oracle Fusion Middleware from the "applications" perspective. Debra has been a key leader in the Oracle Fusion Council for years and her insights and perspective on Oracle Fusion applications is invaluable.
  • John VanSant: Outstanding presentation on Oracle WebLogic Application Server. This was an excellent presentation for me to attend. I've spent years trying to master the Oracle Application Server and in Oracle 11g Fusion Middleware, everything is moving over to the WebLogic Application Server. It was great to hear from one of the top Java architects, his perspective on the WebLogic application server.
A few take aways for me:
  • Despite working with Oracle Fusion Middleware for a few years, there is still a lot to learn as middleware technology and surrounding standards continue to evolve. The enhancements to JDeveloper and the integration of Oracle technology into the WebLogic Application Server keeps the Oracle Fusion Middleware a moving target for right now.
  • I'm going to wait for the Oracle 11g WebLogic application server instead of investing heavily in Oracle WebLogic 10.3 skill development.
  • The new features of Oracle Fusion Applications bring alot of incredible technology and new functionality into the next generation of Oracle business applications. The role of SOA will continue to grow in large organizations and Oracle technology is in the center of this next generation of business applications.
It was great running into so many friends at the conference. There is a lot of energy and enthusiasm at the conference. It was also excellent to get a pulse and perspective from the attendees. I heard a number of people mention presentations I was not able to attend that they really enjoyed. A great first day of the conference.

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

User Conferences for 2009

As always there is a great list of upcoming conferences to look at for the upcoming year. On my wish list is:
  • RMOUG - Training Days - Denver, CO, February 10 - 12, 2009
  • MySQL - MySQL Conference, Santa Clara, CA, April 20 - 23, 2009
  • IOUG - Collaborate 2009, Orlando, FL, May 3 - 7, 2009
  • JavaOne - JavaOne Conference, San Francisco, CA, June 2 - 5, 2009
  • Oracle - Openworld 2009 - San Francisco, CA, October 11-15, 2009
I have not attended presentations at all the local user group conferences but the following is a list of users conferences I have attended that were excellent.
  • Houston Oracle Users Group
  • Dallas Oracle Users Group
  • Northern California Oracle Users Group
I can't recommend highly enough to get involved in your local technical user groups and start getting involved.
Monday, February 09, 2009

George Trujillo at RMOUG (Denver Colorado)

The Rocky Mountain Oracle Users Group (RMOUG) is one of the top local Oracle user groups in the country. Their training days are February 10 - 12, 2009 at the Colorado Convention Center. On February 10th there are all day University events where you can see some of the top presenters focus on a specific topic. Then on February 11 - 12, there are the 1-2 hour presentations delivered by some of the top presenters in the Oracle world.

In today's economic climate it is more important than ever to maximize your networking, improve your technical skills and understand strategic directions. For technical DBAs, Developers, Application Server Administrators, Analysts, etc. technical user conferences are one of the best ways to achieve these goals. I can't recommend highly enough to attend the RMOUG conference if you can.

This year I am taking a break from presenting at conferences due to the number of side projects I am working on. However, there is incredible value in these Oracle user conferences and I plan on attending as many as I can. I thought I would go ahead and publish the presentations I plan on attending. There is no rhyme or reason for this schedule. I try to balance listening to future directions, new tips, looking at upcoming speakers, or seeing what a specific presenter has to say on a topic.

Presentations I plan on attending at RMOUG (this is tentative and may change):
Tuesday: February 10, 2009
Undecided on whether to attend University event.

Wed: February 11, 2009
9:00 Encryption Tom Kyte
10:30 Partitioning Tim Gorman
1:30 Tuning Advisors Donald Burleson
2:15 Best Practices Iggy Fernandez
3:15 Fusion Hands On Lynn Munsinger
5:00 Websphere John Vansant
6:00 Reception Four Seasons Ballroom

Thu: February 12, 2009
9:00 Execution Plans Charlie Callaway
10:15 Dev Workshop Cary Milsap
11:15 Execution Plans Tamal Poder
1:30 Connection Pools Michael Rosenbloom
2:45 Partitioning Hermann Baer
4:00 SOA for DBAs Brad Brown

I hope to run into as many friends as possible during the conference and hopefully will make a few new friends before the conference is over. You should also take a look at the upcoming IOUG Collaborate conference May 3 - 7, 2009 in Orlando, FL.

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