Is UPS Information Technology worth it for me?

Discussion in 'UPS Information Technology' started by mikegior, Nov 28, 2009.

  1. mikegior

    mikegior New Member

    Currently I am a full time student at a vocational college during the day, and a part time loader at UPS for Twilight. For a long time, almost as long as I can remember, I've wanted to do networking and security. Since I've graduated high school, I've been attending Anthem Institute (formally known as Chubb) under their Computer Networking & Security program. Over time I've taken advice and information from multiple persons within UPS. People that have had experience in IT with UPS, people that have many years with the company as well as taking advice from my shop steward. Quite frankly, I'm kind of stuck, and I would like advice from people who have worked for I.S./T.S.G. or do work in those departments.

    I've tried looking at it from many directions. Taking into consideration my thoughts about it, as well as the advice I've recieved from people that have more knowledge/experience with UPS.

    1) Job security: Since I'm in the union (allegedly) I have a decent ammount of protection from losing my job. Which in this economy, who wouldn't like that?

    2) Lay offs: My girlfriends father has been with UPS for many years. He's done side work whilst being a driver for IT as well as attained many friends in that department. He's told me the "bad side" to IT with UPS. That bad side is, which I'm sure many of you know, are the lay offs. I've though would that be good for me? To (possibly) be hired, then laid off soon afterwards? I suppose that would just be another entry for the resume.

    3) Benefits: Talking to my shop steward overtime, I've taken into serious consideration his advice and suggestions. I've told him my standpoint, which is "If I'm spending money to go to school, why would I not make that ultimately my career?" He agrees, but suggests possibly doing network security as a full time job and continue working Twilight part time, in hopes to one day become a driver. Which being a driver apparently carries the benefits (union and health) as well as a generous salary.

    Any suggestions? Basically, I've always seen myself doing networking/security/general IT. Throughout the years, I've spent all my time teaching myself anything I can grasp. Which now pays off, since I'm excelling in all of my classes at Anthem. Heh, but is that anything to be proud of with a vocational school?
  2. Deeohem

    Deeohem New Member

    If you are serious about networking/security, then TSG won't be for you. On the networking/security side of things. We replace the WIDS devices when they fail, we run network cables (in some jurisdictions, not all) we build patch cables (sometimes) and we configure switches and Access Points via copy and paste of config files. In the UPS scheme of things we're the local hands when it can't be fixed by the help desk remotely
  3. whiskeyagogo

    whiskeyagogo Member

    If you work in North Jersey or near the Atlanta campus, then an IS-type job might be up your alley (esp. NJ). You don't sound like you would be happy with TSG; based on comments here and from talking to some of them, they are doing less and watching their numbers dwindle. IS did have layoffs this year and will probably have more next year but in this economy, that is to be expected. Actual layoffs in IS are rare, this is the first round I've been through in 16 years with IS.
    Be prepared - with a Anthem/Chubb degree, you'll probably have to start with some kind of shift work. If you aren't willing to do nights or holidays to get your foot in the door, IS may not be for you; shift work isn't for everyone.
    And if you do get laid off, working for UPS for a year or two will help you land a bigger job. They are doing little hiring right now, so I think you can be pretty assured the few openings are *really* needed and will probably stick around.
    Good luck!
  4. mikegior

    mikegior New Member


    What's funny is I do work in North Jersey. In Parsippany to be exact. Could you explain more of the difference between IS and TSG as well as explain what you mean by shift work? I'd be ready for anything, as long as my foot's in the door somewhere.
  5. randomUPSISer

    randomUPSISer New Member

    IS = UPS IT department. I.S. is the actual IT department of UPS. Anything interesting, from programming, systems architecture, database administration, strategic network design and security, etc is done within I.S.. I.S. reports up through the CIO of the company and is its own "unit".

    TSG = UPS IT Support. TSG are the guys that tell you to reboot your machine when something is broke. They also replace the physical PC in the district when the hard drive fails and anything else that requires someone to physically be there. These guys USED to do alot of stuff like you'd think, but in recent years most of their job has been reduced to mindless stuff. The things you'd think they were supposed to do are now handled centrally from I.S. via remote access. Problem solving has been reduced to following a script that someone in I.S. wrote. TSG reports up through I.E., with the exception of corporate TSG who reports through I.S., and Worldport TSG, who report through AIR / TTG.

    Honestly, with the direction UPS is going I'd probably take the first job offered to me and not worry about getting into UPS I.S. or TSG. I get the feeling UPS TSG will eventually be handled remotely, not from NJ, but from Mumbia. (along with most of the rest of I.S. for that matter)
  6. Monkey Butt

    Monkey Butt Dark Prince of Double Standards Staff Member

    TSG has a reputation of being a good training job working within a very structured organization. It might be a good place for a first job working 1 to 2 years and then go to another job and do the same thing there.

    Your goal should be to work at 5 jobs in your first 7 years always getting a raise with each new job. Try to work for companies that have 401K and a 401k matching program so you can start to work towards your retirement nest egg.
  7. whiskeyagogo

    whiskeyagogo Member

    Random covered the difference between IS & TSG very well. As for picking one over the other, it depends on what you want. IMHO a TSG job would prepare you to do basic PC support - swapping drives, rebuilding machines. An IS job would get you more into the supporting of a specific UPS application set, the network, etc. Hoax's advice on not waiting is also sound - you could do a year of TSG work and then pick/choose the best IS opening. Right now there isn't a lot (any?) to choose from for either TSG/IS.

    When I said shift work, I meant they work 24x7, so someone works overnight, early AM, mid-day, evenings, weekends, holidays, etc. You get time and a half for the holidays but no other special compensation for the overnight/weekend work. There is a helpdesk in Morristown that handles '2nd level' support calls that might be a good fit. There are also 24x7 groups in Mahwah that might be a good entry level fit. There are rumors of all these desks being shuttered and outsourced to Las Vegas or overseas but the rumors have been around for years.
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2009
  8. mikegior

    mikegior New Member

    Based on what you guys have told me, IS seems to be what I want to head into. But let me get something straight. Someone said it could be an option to go into TSG then after a year or so try and go into IS? Would that work or would (trying) to get into IS first be more wise. Also, could I get into IS with a degree from Anthem/Chubb?
  9. randomUPSISer

    randomUPSISer New Member

    It may be possible to move into I.S. from TSG, but I really wouldn't hold my breath to get into UPS I.S. over a similar job with similar pay somewhere else. There are certainly better paying IT jobs out there. (perhaps not right now with the economy, but there used to be and I'm sure there will be again)

    In my part of the UPS I.S. world, we wont hire anyone without a 4 year degree in CS, or "equivalent work experience". For that matter, the last couple years its seemed we wont hire ANYONE, and close all req's that are open from someone leaving.
  10. whiskeyagogo

    whiskeyagogo Member

    Well, going into TSG first for a year or so might turn into three, four years. You said you like networking/security, right? Are you willing to work really hard at something like PC support that doesn't interest you? If you don't work hard, you might not have a good recommendation on moving up from your boss.

    Random's advice on the '4 year degree' kind of depends on what you want. If you are willing to do hourly shift work watching the mainframe or the morristown helpdesk, your Anthem degree should be plenty. If you want a job working '9-5' that's salaried or MIP, the Anthem degree probably won't cut it.

    All things being equal, there are only one or two jobs open anyway right now. I wish you the best of luck.