For the most part, people in the IT programming industry dabble a bit in the dark side of hacking, if only just on a level of gaining some information which they otherwise wouldn’t have access to. It’s almost always the case though that the manner in which our governments do things is not something we readily agree with, such as how they handle tenders and contracts.
However, some countries are lucky to boast citizens who would readily report that they’re generally happy with the manner in which their governments handle public works programmes, such as many Canadians I’ve met and collaborated with and people from across the Atlantic in Norway, Sweden, Denmark, etc. It’s funny how apart from Canada the other countries I mentioned are socialist countries, but I guess that’s a discussion for another day or for another blog altogether.
Anyway, what I’m getting at is that although for the most part we might not agree with how our governments handle policies around the awarding of contracts and tenders, in the IT industry they pretty much can’t get it wrong. It’s one of a few industries in which they really have to rope in suitably qualified professionals, so despite everything I would say that I’d be delighted to land a hefty government contract in the IT programming department.
Imagine being given the challenge and privilege of doing up the website of the Presidency, for example. That would probably just be an informational site though…
Imagine being awarded the contract to design and implement the IT infrastructure of something like an immigration clearance system of an entire country, at the national level. That’s the kind of contract which can set you up for life, but programmers and normally programming collectives live for these projects because of what they symbolise.
A kiss of life
Many of us who are active in the field of development in some way, whether it’s as a classic programming house or a web development agency, have the skills required to do some great work, but lack the portfolio of high-profile contracts to prove it. Getting a government tender or contract can make for the ultimate kiss of life, in some instances making for the only portfolio item to make reference to when you’re trying to sell yourself to new clients.
A true measure of your skill
Getting a government IT contract makes for the ultimate measure of your skill because you have to make sure to get things right. Many parallel opportunities arise as a result of the typical core government IT projects though, such as how you’d go to a platform like www.eta-canada-visa.com to apply for your travel authorisation electronically. Many programmers vying for government contracts aren’t really aware of the fact that there is such a parallel market which exists, in which they can make a real killing as it can be just as lucrative.
Either way, it’s perhaps the ultimate measure of your skill handling projects of this magnitude and which involve very sensitive public data.