This may be an unpopular post but I'm very serious. I've always wanted to do hosting support but when I did the research I realized that India was charging around $2.50/hour, so I gave up... But then I did the math and realized that I can still pay my bills working fulltime for only $3.00/hour, and I get to stay home and do something that I love!
A little about me. I've been using PC's for 21 years, and I started dialing BBS's shortly after that. In 1987 I put up my first BBS (http://bbslist.textfiles.com/407/oldschool.html) and I've been online ever since! This is my life and outsourcing to India is not going to take away my life--what I love to do! In 1994 at the University of Florida I was in the only dorm on campus to have an internet connection (but the girls left much to be desired I taught myself HTML shortly after, then Perl, and so on. Since then I've probably used 9 or 10 hosts, and I guess you could say that I know what I like as a customer--I think I would be a great hosting support tech!
We can work out the details of when I'd be working, how many hours, etc. Like most of you hardcore nerds, I'm home all day on the computer anyway--at least I should be getting paid. I'd prefer to do all support work online, support tickets, emails, IM, whatever you want. I'll work your forum for you and keep it active, friendly and professional too.
I live in Austin, Texas. If you need me to travel to a datacenter or something--I can do that too. My schedule is wide open--I just like to go to church on Sunday.
So you may be asking yourself. Why would you work for $3/hour when you have a Bachelors degree and a great resume?! The answer is simple--I love working at home in my pajamas and I hate driving in traffic, in fact I dislike driving period--it's a waste of time and money. I've been self-employed for a while now and it's just the lifestyle for me. I'm also an artist (http://myspace.com/paintingshttp://collectsart.com) and when I'm not online I'm usually drawing or studying art. I have a BFA in (studio) Fine Arts--many serious non-commercial artists don't "make it" until their 40's so I still have another 10 or so years to go as a "starving artist" before my true genius is recognized Also, like I said--I really love working on the computer and the hosting biz reminds me of when I was just a kid answering emails and watching people download games at 2400bps. This is what I love to do. I would start my own hosting company but I have rent that needs to get paid so I don't have the time to search for the 50 or so customers that I would need to make ends meet.
Besides knowing that #1 what most hosting customers need is somebody there to quickly respond, letting them know that indeed somebody is at the helm and taking care of business. There's nothing worse than being down and your host can't be reached to tell you "we're working on it". Also it's nice to be doing business with someone that likes their job so you feel like your site is in good hands. I know the basics with Telnet/SSH, edit files, grep, chmod, etc. I know how to use FTP. I know PHP, HTML, Perl, some CSS and Smarty. I've had plenty of scripts break too and know the fixes. Granted I'm not a sysadmin but I'm willing to learn. I know a lot about traffic, how to detect hitbots, how to read web stats, how to configure blogs, wikis, etc. I know how to explain bandwidth, overages, etc. in simple terms and I can also explain to people the difference between a virtual account and having their own server, what an IP# is and how to register a domain name, and why your host is so fantastic--and I can do this all in plain English--I was born in the USA baby! I've used Cpanel quite a bit also. Also if you need simple graphics work or web design done I can do that too--I've been doing graphics for a long time, but don't expect me to be working on your Flash sites for $3/hour Also I should mention that I could never pull this off at $3/hour if I wasn't living in a cheap apartment--rent in Austin, TX isn't too bad and actually I live in a pretty nice part of town.
So there you have it. You won't find a better deal anywhere, not even in India. I even worked as an intern at IBM in college. If you think I'm selling out by working for $3, then *you* offer me something better (in the USA)--put your money where your mouth is. First and foremost I want to work for a good company and people that love what they do--also maturity is really important with me and I'm not going to be working for the next upcoming smut/spam kingpin.
Please feel free to contact me if you are interested and we can work out the details: [email protected] or just reply here and I'll be following this thread... My resume is available on request and I can get references too. As for the $3/hour amount--that's negotiable and we can work it out so that everything is legal--I just want the message to be loud and clear that I need a job and I'm not moving to India to get one!
I just wanted tosay good luck pjames! A few years ago, I spoke with a couple of people who were actually trying to start a similar company that offered low wages to combat the moves over to other countries but it seemed that no one wanted to work for lower wages in the beginning while the company was getting started.
Thanks. Yes, I realize that the wages need to be low to stay competitive. It's not easy doing it all yourself and getting calls in the middle of the night with your kid crying in the background--I can definitely sympathize with the smaller hosts... usually they are the best to work with because you can still get personal attention and they really appreciate your business. As a customer I never liked to just be on a support ticket system--I like to know who I'm dealing with and being able to chat with your host to just say, "hey how's biz?" is a selling point--I feel more comfortable referring new business if I can personally vouch for the people behind the scenes.
We have a wide range of projects which you could participate in, including sales, support, web design, web programming, customer support, billing software testing and migration, writing articles, just to name a few. I will contact you off board regarding work, feel free to send me a PM or email me at aaron AT crucialparadigm.com.
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I haven't made a decision yet--I'm still open to invitations... Right now I'm still collecting information and considering my options but a decision is coming soon. Thanks to everyone that has contacted me.