A Support Engineer is basically a glorified Customer Service Representative, and the title is just an excuse for the HR representative to recruit his friend from Stanford. So he jumps on the trendy “Engineering” bandwagon, and glorifies his friend, who can’t find a decent job because he majored in Gender Studies.
But hold on, to be fair, Technical Support is not an easy job. It requires a great deal of technical know-how. I once interviewed for a job in Tech Support; needless to say, I didn’t get hired. I simply don’t understand why we need to throw “Engineer” on every job title these days, why can’t people be proud of what they do?
Business Development Manager
The responsibilities that rest on a Business Development Specialist are sophisticated; it requires much analysis, as well as strategizing. However, they are really “just” Business Analysts, or Marketing Analysts. These are positions that require a considerable amount of skill (though I don’t think college is the best way to acquire these skills), but why do we have to throw “Development” on there; it makes them look like some sort of Industrial Engineers, but they are actually business professionals.
Also, Business Development Managers are not really managers; don’t get me wrong it’s a very respectable profession, but again, they make reports and help organizations strategize, they do not manage anybody, or anything. Despite the necessity to possess some complex skills in order to perform this job, they don’t literally “develop a business”, most of the time they merely provide analyses and reports for an already mature business, and the business certainly benefits from it, but it is not built on it..
Sales is the bread and butter of any company; these professionals are by far the most integral piece of any startup puzzle. But they are just that – Sales Representatives.
In order to appear more cunning towards fresh college graduates, they concoct this appellation, and make sure to mention “Manager” on the ad; doing so scores them the much needed Communications / Art History graduates to fill these positions, probably blowing off sales professionals with decades of experience. There is no need for “Manager”, these workers do not manage anyone, nor do they actually manage the Clients’ accounts, they just sell and retain.
There is no such thing as ‘Data Scientist’. Statisticians existed for centuries, Maching Learning Experts existed for decades, Business Analysts existed for over a century, Software Developers & Computer Programmers existed for over five decades; the only infant in this group of data professionals are Data QA Specialists, who acquired demand following the creation of the web, and the massive amounts of data that came with it.
The term ‘Data Scientist’ was coined in an effort to convince more college students to take courses in Math, Statistics, and Computer Science, instead of taking courses in Gender Studies, Art History, and Philosophy. By declaring ‘Data Science’ the “sexiest job in the 21st century” colleges (who are losing relevance) succeeded in making Statistics “cool”, and Art History “dull”.
Community Managers are vital to any business wishing to establish a positive image of itself; however, the job is typically laboriously tedious. As a Community Manager, you will spend 8 hours replying to enraged customers, checking up on customers, engaging in awkward digital small talk with customers and prospects alike, and talking to hermits who participate in your organization’s Facebook contests, which you have no part in creating.
As vital as they are for any organization, the ‘Manager’ is a bit overkill considering they don’t manage anyone, and they do not even have a say in Social Strategy (creating & promoting contests). When you see an ad on Indeed for ‘Community Manager’, remember, it is merely a glorified term used to convince schmucks like yourself to jump on the ‘underemployed’ bandwagon.
Data Entry Specialist
Data Entry Specialists are merely office clerks – they tediously add or change the data, per other employee’s requests. Most people would assume that the job is some kind of gateway for a career in Data Science, where you will be building basic data pipelines, and that is what these companies intended.
By passing the misleading notion that the job is engaging and versatile, companies can get away with paying lower salaries, which is supposed to be a trade-off.
The Software Engineer is the most crucial breed in modern society; without them, you would not be reading an article about ‘Overkill Job Titles’. Ironically however, the title ‘Software Engineer’ is overkill, in and out of itself. Nowadays, employers stuff the term ‘Engineer’ everywhere, and Software Engineers are not immune from this epidemic. An appropriate title would be ‘Software Developer’, or ‘Computer Programmer’, or ‘Web Programmer’, or ‘Web Developer’.
It all depends on your responsibilities and the platform you are developing on – but there is one thing you are not – you are not an Engineer. An Engineer typically needs a professional license, because [insert pronoun] deals with physical processes, such as mechanical systems, manufacturing systems, and so on. Although the ability to write quality code is a unique trait, sitting on a desk and starring into computer monitor all day does not make you an Engineer.
‘Technical Evangelist’ is just a sugar-coated term for [Product Manager, Tech Support, Project Manager, Community Manager, QA Specialist, Software Tester, Sales Representative, Business Analyst].
This is just a term Microsoft uses to make their employees feel special. However, their skill set is urgent for any organization that wants to sell it’s product.
In reality, Sales Engineers are in fact, probably the most important piece of any startup pie; this is because the biggest challenge for any pioneering venture is the part of educating clients/prospects on a product they are completely oblivious to.
However, this doesn’t mean that the term ‘Sales Engineer’ is not overkill; making highly technical and complex presentation is challenging no doubt, but you are not engineering the sales process, or any kind of process.