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Career advise for a person on a crossroad

Paul2

Active member
Hello gentlemen,

This year I have hit 30, without much exciting things to show, still a bachelor, travelling from one engineering contract to another.

For the last 4 years, I've been employed by one giant Chinese engineering contractor which has branches doing everything from consumer electronics, to TCS style IT contracting, to civil, and heavy engineering. I worked in a few similar outfits before. Salary is very competitive, $4000-$5000 net a month depending on the field deployment bonus, successful shipping of a project, etc. By the standards of China this is an enviable job.

This has been so far the most rewarding of jobs I had, even in comparison to jobs I had in the West which I would say were much more lacklustre.

I'm a Chinese guy who grew up in UK, and Canada, but nevertheless the career pushed me back to Asia, to the chagrin of my parents.

People in the West, even engineering cos top heads, have no idea just how incomparably big the job market for engineers is here. Honestly, most recent engineering grads in the West, outside of computer programming, have very little options other than to do paper pushing jobs for the first half of their career, and I was very fortunate to escape this predicament. So far, I think I certainly shipped more than 20 projects, possibly closer to 30 now. This is more than some people would've done in their entire careers.

I see very little hope of finding any similar job in the West, nor I think much of the skills I have are transferable. I doubt anybody in the US, or EU will put much value on things like how good one is at canvassing factories whole day long with prototypes to see who, and how can manufacture it.

Since I have long lost my PR status in Canada, just going back is off the table. For the much needed education status for immigration to the West, I don't have much to show as I only have a 2 year business administration diploma paper from a degree mill my parents insisted I go to instead of continuing pursuing education in microelectronics, something I already spent 4 years of my life, including 2 years in a very expensive prep in Singapore.

With the mess currently going on with the country, I really don't want to stay, or let alone start a family in China. On the other hand, the West is a job market wasteland, its manufacturing industry is pretty much dead . It's not as if I want to get back no matter what, for that I can monkey web programming, and easily get a 6 digit job, with a relocation package.

Recently, I set my sights on South Asia. I've already been to India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh on many assignments, and had first hand experience working with companies there. The biggest downside, the region is really hostile to foreign business, and you really cannot set roots there. It's easier to get a Swiss passport than Indian one. Immigration even on work visas is as hard as for foreigners in China — governments want to give foreigners a boot upon any opportunity. Not to say, every country there is messed up in its own way, for lack of any other word to describe the situation, it's tough life there. A lot of unique cons for every country, and very few pros except for the opportunity alone.

On other hand, there were factory owners, and people in big commercial groups who were almost begging me to work for them to either help them set up electronics manufacturing, or command their current effort. Electronics industry has been exploding across South Asia for the last 5 years. Even Nepal, and Pakistan are getting their first electronics factories now. Bangladesh's electronic manufacturing industry mushroomed out of really nowhere in just a few years, and now is rivalling India. I'm afraid to miss this departing train of opportunity.

The ultimate goal I have in mind is to buy my own factory in the course of the decade. My savings are enough to do some very basic setup in a rented building now, but believe doing it right away will be way too hasty without feeling the situation on the ground. Another thing here is what motivated me to turn a page in life now. My last living parent, and relative living in the West, my mother, was recently diagnosed with a medical condition which doesn't leave much years to live. It may well be that as an only child I will become an inheritor to the family fortune, along with a house which I cannot live in. Trying this, along with me trying to put roots somewhere will possibly be the last thing I will do to make her happy.

What do you people think?
 
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AFAIK, to be employed by an Indian concern as a foreigner, you need to be employed as a high level managerial employee and paid commensurately. This rule was set up by the Government to encourage companies to employ Indians and not foreigners at lower and middle management levels.
 

Paul2

Active member
AFAIK, to be employed by an Indian concern as a foreigner, you need to be employed as a high level managerial employee and paid commensurately. This rule was set up by the Government to encourage companies to employ Indians and not foreigners at lower and middle management levels.
Very much aware of this situation after multiple assignments there. While the man who was luring me for a salaried job there when we were setting up an SMT line for him said it will be no problem for him to hire an immigration lawyer to sort it one way or another, and Rs 5m on the table was way above the cutoff line, it's very uncertain what would I do if this relationship ends. As I said before, setting up yourself in India as a foreigner on your own is very, very hard, and it has no such thing as a permanent residentship scheme even for executive level workers.

Best to say, the attitude across the subcontinent is "we want your money, but we don't want you"
 
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Paul2

Active member
What do you think of somebody trying to get into semi after a near 10 year gap in studies? Either on fabless side doing HDL, or process?

With the later, I knew it's near impossible for newcomers even with 6 years education to get anywhere near actual fabrication.
 
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