Sunday, February 27, 2011

Wall St IT project timeline is no joke

When I first joined GS, I was in awe of my managers' /commitment/ to project deadlines. Before GS, I always felt deadlines are usually arbitrary and deserve little respect. I used to feel deep in my guts that developers ultimately hold an upper hand over managers *when* (not IF) deadlines become difficult. Basically, I feel the regular developers are hard working but aren't saints, so we are all to varying degrees lazy and undisciplined, and tends to leave too much work to the end. On the other hand, managers can never be 100% on top of every Dirty detail, the quick and Dirty, and the Dirt swept under the carpet, so they are always surprised at end of the time frame.

Now I feel on Wall St, a lot is at stake when the timeline pressure heats up. Managers are visibly concerned about missing deadlines. Developers often work long hours. Major source of developer stress (and burnout).

If you feel elsewhere developers miss timelines 80% of the time, then it's 20% on Wall St.

The hallmark of Wall St IT -- pays more and demands more productivity (quicker delivery). Keyword is productivity.

Everyone can stick to a timeline if it's long enough, but Wall St typically gives you one-tenth to half the timeline given elsewhere. It's not uncommon to see a 10-month project squeezed into 1-month.

A lot of your career is at stake too. If you manage user/manager expectations well, then you win big wins and move up.

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New York (Time Square), NY, United States
http://www.linkedin.com/in/tanbin