Category Archives: Jobs

Tips for OBIEE recruiters – headhunters

Dear recruiters,

Please don’t ask for people with 15 years of OBIEE experience – OBIEE’s 1st version was officially released on Jan 27th 2007 – http://www.oracle.com/corporate/press/2007_jan/012907-OBIEE.html UPD: actually, it was available for download throughout 2006 – and many people used it back then (like beta, except it wasn’t). Just wanted to correct myself.

However, to be honest, the grandfather of OBIEE was a product called nQuire Suite (I believe there were versions 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0) which was initially shipped in 1999. A few years later, the company was purchased by Siebel. The software was re badged as “Siebel Analytics” and became even more successful. Oracle acquired Siebel in the end of 2005, and the product remained largely unchanged (I’m pretty sure someone commented they they have seen code from pre-2000).

I know this has been discussed numerous times, I just wanted to emphasize this one more time.

Good luck

OBIEE – state of the market – rates

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Good afternoon all. In this post, I wanted to give my analysis of the current state of OBIEE market in the US. There’s a regular disclaimer that these opinions of mine – and not of my employers’, clients’, or other 3d party.

First observation: Dice. I’m trying to be cautiously optimistic, but it seems as Business Intelligence market in general is picking up. I use my own Dice job index, where, I enter keyword (OBIEE) – and track it through out time. The results aren’t statistically correct, since it’s been my experience that there’re many similar positions advertised on Dice by different consulting companies – which means that in reality it’s the same position. During fall of 2007, there were very few positions (150+) . In 2008, there were stale (150-200). 2009 starting to grow (on average 250-290).  Now, I see 350+ on a regular basis (again remember -that doesn’t mean there’re actually 350 open positions, as frequently various vendors compete for the same position). Other trend I’ve noticed, most companies demand US Citizens/Green-Card holders, and many companies specifically exclude H1Bs (even through 3d parties).

Second observation:  OBIEE blogging has cooled down. That might indicate that first, people are busy on their current assignments; second, there’s plenty of business to handle, so not much incentive to be involved in self-promotion. Third, warm weather could be attributing to general blogging cool-down.

Third:  it seems as OBIEE has penetrated federal and state organizations throughout the U.S. It’s literally golden time for OBIEE consultants who are US  Citizens and who are able to obtain security clearance (usually that means  no criminal history of any kind, decent credit report/score,  references/education check). I’ve seen full-time salaries on federal projects offered at 150-180k  range + benefits, and I’m sure there’s potential for more. Hourly rates for independent consultants could also be above average. Unfortunately, for H1B consultants, it’s very difficult (if not impossible) to find a federal project which would allow foreigners. Some agencies (such as USCIS, DOD) will not even consider Green Card holders employees/consultants. Some agencies (such DOE) would allow consulting companies to place GC holders, provided they can obtain clearence. I’ve also seen a strong trend in state agencies to utilize OBIEE for reporting purposes. As US government is becoming more and more keen on disclosing various data gathered from federal agencies, OBIEE will be there to stay (foot-in-the-door-principle).

Fourth: even though the amount of positions/jobs have bounced back, the rates haven’t fully bounced back to 2005-2007 levels. However, with proper negotiation skills and market research, one can live a comfortable living. Without getting too much into details, I suggest ignoring ads that advertise their willingness to pay $50 Corp-to-corp to an OBIEE senior architect.  On the other hand, people make mistakes while creating ads, so buy beware.

Fifth: There’re a lot more full-time OBIEE jobs than ever before, mostly in three types of companies: a) large consulting companies growing their OBIEE practice b) companies that have invested heavily in OBIEE and would like to make the best use of their investment c) small consulting vendors bidding on pieces of larger projects with their small-disadvantaged-minority-owned status

I invite you to participate in the discussion. I avoided discussing hourly rates for the reason that there’re many key factors that influence rates, mainly: immigration status, location, form of contract, consulting company’s cut, etc. etc.  So that makes it difficult to weight-in. Do you think that an anonymous rate survey would be in order?

Visitors

I’m getting close to a 100 unique visitors daily. I’d really appreciate if you could take a minute and leave a comment about yourself – how did you find the blog? do you like it? how could I improve? did you find information you were looking for? do you check it daily / weekly? Please leave a comment – and let me know (just add “don’t publish”) if you don’t want your comment to be published.

Thank you in advance.

OBIEE and enterprise architecture.

Sometimes, the challenges get to us from where we don’t expect them to come from. Imagine, your OBIEE application has been developed and tested – and you’re ready for production. And this is definitely the area that your biggest challenge might come into play. I’ve worked on numerous OBIEE projects where security was a paramount priority for production servers. Deploying OBIEE was a big pain for various reasons, such as:

1. Restrictive access (or no access at all) to production server for OBIEE team. This is definitely a killer issue, since it’s inviting so many things to go wrong. You might not be able to troubleshoor repository, check DB connections, run various OBIEE scripts, and a lot more. Also, you need to train the infrastructure team on being OBIEE server admins, which is a challenge (unless you have a dedicated OBIEE team). A big risk factor is timing – your work might get delayed, because your request for services restart takes a few days to complete.

2. OS / Software / Platform issues. Your application might work fine on your test and development servers, however, in most cases you loose any control leverage once you move to the production. OS patches, Database patches, restrictive firewall policies might cause many things to break (some of the things I can think of – LDAP Authentication, Ibots). Worst thing is that you might not even be aware of any changes if you’re not on the technical infrastructure priority list. Usually, the server people are overworked – having to provide support to hundreds of web applications in a large enterprise, so you might want to develop good working relationship from the start.

3. Network connectivity. This might happen at large projects, as well as small ones. Due to today’s networking complexities and proliferation of cloud computing, your related servers (authentication, data-sources) might be located in a different building / state / country (I’m not joking). As such, the network lagging issue might be affecting your OBIEE application in the worst ways possible. Always check this immediately after deploying and make sure that you don’t see any increases in ping times.

This is it for today. Please come and read again