Not getting the experience I expected at my job

Hello everyone,

Looking for opinions on how to approach this situation. I have been at my current job for over year and we do get involved with front end languages but it’s not nearly as intensive as I expected when I took the job. Things move extremely slow and we aren’t developing any real applications. Most of what I do ends up being product support but I do have to use JS at times. Of course I’m looking for another job but I don’t feel “ready” to take a step up yet since I haven’t gotten the on job experience I expected. I have been going through the curriculum here but wonder if that will help me on my job search or not. What would you do? Would you focus on building as many side projects as possible to get your experience or wait it out?

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Of course it will help, but you’ve already got professional JavaScript experience, if only on paper. Life is short. If you’re not getting what you want out of a job, don’t sit there spinning your wheels and hoping things get better. Actively apply for other jobs. Do as many projects as you can. Join hackathons. Do anything but “wait it out”.

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I am the poster child for that situation. I spent many years doing software maintenance (fixing bugs) on an old platform you likely have never heard of unless you are over 40. I would send off resumes here and there and… nothing. However I did notice that from time to time we would lose some of the better software engineers to much better jobs. I often wondered - how did they manage to gain the relevant experience… Finally I got frustrated and read some PHP books. Then I built a simple CMS based on XML and put that on my resume. I got an interview and moved on before a tidal wave of layoffs hit.

So what I learned - how did those people with limited practical experience (like me) move on to better jobs - (1) they had strong networks, and I didn’t and (2) they went above and beyond finding relevant projects to stay current. Example - One group at my old job was so persistent at making things happen for their careers, they created a presentation to highlight the benefits of porting old junky applications to java. They went before management, and it got accepted. The result was tons of -relevant- new work, and excellent resume fodder.

But as noted above - keep moving. Keep searching and doing. FCC is an excellent resource for that since it is structured, relevant, and also has the social networking aspect which is huge. I was one who waited it out for a while. Trust me - bad idea.

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Thanks for that input! That was a perfect example and made complete sense especially since you saw people in the same situation at your job end up leaving for much better. I’m actively looking but like you said I don’t get as many responses as I would expect. Have to get back building my portfolio and use that to supplement what I’m not learning at my current job

Very interesting, I would like to know more about your CMS and how you went about using XML and for what!

Well it was very, very rudimentary. I read a few php books (not cover to cover, I am not that disciplined), but this one was the best for what I wanted to achieve: No Nonsense XML Web Development With PHP, Thomas Myer I thnk that book is from 2005, so keep that in mind.

My CMS was just one page. It showed one ‘article’ at a time along with a list of tags. It used javascript to parse and display ‘articles’ that were stored in individual xml files. That way, I could host it with a service without the need for a database. Each xml article had ‘tags’ as child nodes, so you could filter on tags. The articles were just my attempt at blog articles for things of interest to me. I want to something similar with my FCC portfolio but with JSON. Oh yeah I also had another page where you could enter a new article into a form, and it would generate the xml and necessary links so you could automate a new article. That was it!

Thanks for the info! So each time you created a new post with your CMS you used the filesystem API of PHP to create a new XML file with the contents and tags for that article?