So… what do you do for a living?

After being in the work force for over 6 years since I left college, most of my family and friends still do not have a clue what I do for a living. This is especially true for my current job in the U.S. Even my wife can’t tell her friends exactly what my job is.

I don’t blame them really as first I am not the best communicator as far as describing what I do. It does not help that my job as software engineer contains technical terms and something non-physical, namely software. It wasn’t like I was selling software, or fixing hardware. I was programming software, and now I am not even programming for over a year and a half.

So what do I do everyday in the office? Well, as the project technical lead I was involved in the project, which has to do with online banking, right from the beginning. Thus, I was working on-site with the client to gather their business requirements and worked out what can be done and what can’t.

Then I was instrumental in laying out the overall design of the system and acted as the repository of requirement information during the development phase. This was especially important as my company is based near Portland, Oregon, while the client is in New York, NY. During all these time I was the primary technical interface with the client as I work on-site. And now as the project is near the end of the testing phase, once again I am in Oregon helping to speed up the bug fixing process.

The project is due to be launched to the public in early January 2004 and not a moment too soon. On one hand it would be so satisfying to see the labour of my last year and a half comes to fruition. But at the same time, this project has been one of the most difficult and stressful job I have ever did in my life. The lack of support from my own company and a inflexible development team make it almost impossible to work with the client, who is pretty accommodating. If it were not for my desire to follow through with my work and see it to the end, as well as my current immigration status, I would have left the company long ago. There are plenty of people in New York who will appreciate my skills and expertise.

Anyway, this is what I do and I am not ashamed to say I am pretty good at it. All I want now is a company that value me.

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