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Advice needed on new career path! :)

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by Dreamz, Mar 28, 2010.

  1. Dreamz

    Dreamz New Member

    Hi all,

    Thought I should register as I'm looking at doing the CompTIA A+ and Network+ exams soon.

    I've decided to get back into what I know, that being IT/Software/Hardware, and am really looking for some guidance on doing this.

    I've worked a career in retail management and am in my early 30s, now looking to step away from this and start thinking about a career in IT support/solutions.

    Everything I know is self taught over the last 15-20 years, I'm your original kinda techy-type person, I recently sat the CompTIA A+ mock exam and passed 1st time despite not having worked in this field since I was about 18 (and even then it was only a very brief role as a Technician on my way through to management!).

    I'm very knowledgable on PC's down to hardware/component level (building/fault finding etc) and also as an IT Account Manager I worked closely with IT Consultants & Companies in helping put solutions together (hardware/software/licensing) so am also familiar with a lot of networking/server side things as well (although I'll be the first to admit I've got a LOT to learn RE: server/more advanced networking).

    I thought the best course of action (as I have no formal IT support work experience, although have worked in the IT retail/sales industry for the last 10 years or so and have always kept in touch with the techy side of things) would be to get my CompTIA A+ and Network+ down so that I can at least get my foot in the door somewhere? 1st line support to start? MCDST?

    It's been suggested I also look at doing ITIL to combine that with my previous management experience? Whilst I know it will be a few years ahead and the course I take may vary by then, I'm aiming to get to a level such as MCSE/Network Manager etc, but who knows where it will take me! :D

    All feedback appreciated! :)

    P.S: I'm very impatient and want to get stuck into this sooner than later, I'm in a position to be able to change career path now and fully intend to take it, with plans to emmigrate within 5yrs with my IT skills in tow :)

    Oh, and I'm under no illusion that just getting these qualifications down on my C.V will find me that perfect job, it's going to take dedication and effort, I just want to make sure it's worth doing them at all lol :D
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2010
  2. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    Hi Welcome:)

    The A+,N+ and MCDST are the best place to start and no further until you have real on the job experience.

    Most of us here self study, that is getting the books yourself, studying and practicing the concepts until you are comfortable enough to take the exams and I would suggest with your experience and knowledge you do the same. You will save yourself a lot money doing so.

    You book the compTIA exams through pearsonvue or prometric and you will find you nearest test centers on their sites you can also buy discount vouchers from www.gracetechsolutions.com for compTIA exams just make sure you buy international vouchers as the others are for the US and Canada. You use the vouchers to pay pearsonvue instead of your credit card. For the A+ you will save yourself about £60 if I remember correctly.

    Good practice exams can be found on www.proprofs.com which is free but if you want proper comprehensive exams then you have to pay with www.boson.com being the best and transcender and preplogic being good too.

    As for the MCSE you shouldn't do that until you have 12-18 months experience as a systems engineer, getting this without proper experience will make you over qualified and thus find it harder to get employment.
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  3. nugget
    Honorary Member

    nugget Junior toady

    Hi and welcome to the forum. :biggrin

    GBL said it well. :biggrin
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP (270,271,272,290,620) | MCDST | MCTS:Vista
    WIP: MCSA, 70-622,680,685
  4. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

    Sounds like you have a good plan, a good mindset, and realistic expectations. :)

    Welcome to the forums!
    Certifications: CISSP, MCSE+I, MCSE: Security, MCSE: Messaging, MCDST, MCDBA, MCTS, OCP, CCNP, CCDP, CCNA Security, CCNA Voice, CNE, SCSA, Security+, Linux+, Server+, Network+, A+
    WIP: Just about everything!
  5. Dreamz

    Dreamz New Member

    Thanks all much appreciated!

    And also exactly why I've asked these questions :) The MCSE would be a goal but as part of my overal progress/career within IT, so understand there's no point trying to jump ahead to something like that too soon without any practical experience.

    Guess I just wanted to make sure getting the A+ and Network+ were the "right" things to do (if there's such a thing) and also the area of work I'd expect to look at getting into first, ie: 1st Line Support/2nd at a push perhaps.

    I know I can pass the A+ fairly easily, although there's always the odd completely random question that pops up on the tests that throws you, but as long as there aren't too many like that and I can fill any knowledge gaps this month with study, then I should be set to sit the exam next month.

    I guess from that point it will be a case of modifying my CV towards technical roles, playing on past experience/customer service/management roles?



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