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Advice on getting on the IT ladder

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by 23JMZ07, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    Hey!

    Been reading through the forums and thought it would be the best place to ask for some advice.

    I'm 19 now and finished my college course / certifications late last year. I achieved DDD in my BTEC National Diploma in IT which although is not a great qualification it was right for me at the time. I got interested in the CISCO route during college and then really enjoyed progressing with it. This led to me passing my CCNA exams and aquiring my CCNA. Since then however trying to find a job anywhere in IT is difficult due to lack of experience. I am eager to start working as I am passionate about the subject but it seems that most employers look for 2+ years experience accompanying a CCNA. I don't know how I can get experience in the industry when it seems employers are reluctant to "take a chance" so to speak. Maybe an aprenticeship would be the way forward but really I am at a loss in so far as where to look.

    Any insights would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks
    James
     
  2. teixeira.jpt

    teixeira.jpt Bit Poster

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    Hi Before I got my job I was considering volunteering to get experience helpful website is doit dot org. But from my general perception is the role you want to do ccna type work will be hard to come by until some experience is earned so maybe look for 1st line.

    Good luck :)
     
  3. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    Hey

    Thanks for the reply!

    I am looking for 1st Line at the moment however it seems to me that they are all written in a standard template.

    "Basic" Qualification such as CCNA or MSCE with MINIMUM 18 months experience in a similar role..

    Since when was CCNA or MSCE such a "basic" qualification especially for 1st Line.

    James
     
  4. teixeira.jpt

    teixeira.jpt Bit Poster

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    Know the feeling dude but to be honest I got my self a a+ CCENT and mcdst and just started to apply ignore if they ask for mcse etc just apply anyway.

    I made a post how I got my first IT job basically just keep applying.

    And I got lucky the website I mentioned before really has a lot of opportunities for volunteer work.

    Also google Microsoft apprenticeships they are doing a lot of them ( government incentive) like £100 a week but you get hands on experience and they pay for exams etc. I was tempted but I'm 25 and married so not really viable for me :) as it's a full time kind of thing .
     
  5. ethernet0

    ethernet0 Byte Poster

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    I can see instantly that your qualifications are inadequate for 1st line. A networking qualification with no OS/Server support isn't going to be that appealing for a helpdesk, especially when the market is so competitive.

    You need to gain certification in areas which are applicable to that role - You should consider MCDST (Or it's upgrade), MCTS and the like.
     
  6. coolc

    coolc Nibble Poster

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    u going to uni or doing other study, while looking for work work, try volunteering and working for free for the experience.
     
  7. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    Unfortunately it looks like your doing what I did for years. Your applying for jobs beyond your experience level you need to be taking a step back a bit.

    This. Having high level certs will make a boss hiring for an entry level job think that you will 'do one' as soon as you have a bit of experience for more money, so you wont get hired.

    Try getting the certs mentioned by ethernet0 and perhaps take the ccna of your cv until you have the experience needed to show you have the ccna.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  8. wagnerk
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    wagnerk aka kitkatninja Moderator

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    If you can get an apprenticeship place and live off the current apprenticeship wage (which is currently £2.50 p/h), then I would say go for it. In some cases you can gain degree level qualifications (eg NVQ 4, QCF level 4 and/or 5 level qualifications, etc) and professional certs without incurring the £0000's of pound debt, while gaining the wanted experience.

    -Ken
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2011
    Certifications: CITP, PGCert, BSc, HNC, LCGI, PTLLS, MCT, MCITP, MCTS, MCSE, MCSA:M, MCSA, MCDST, MCP, MTA, MCAS, MOS (Master), A+, N+, S+, ACA, VCA, etc... & 2nd Degree Black Belt
    WIP: PGDip
  9. suicide

    suicide Bit Poster

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    Are you studying at uni this year? If not you should apply for next year to avoid those high uni prices. You also will have a degree alongside your cert when you finish.

    Did you do any of the comptia certs alongside your BTEC?

    Apprenticeships are a great but they are hard to find. The pay is low but you will gain experience.
     
  10. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    To be honest Helpdesk wasn't my intention in the first place because it doesn't really fit to what I want to do. I'm not at uni because I'd rather spend a few months getting certs than spending 3 years drinking my life away getting a degree. What sort of jobs are more apt for someone just getting started?
    James
     
  11. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    It depends on what you want to do. Most people start of in helpdesk or trainee IT tech jobs because it is extremely rare for someone to walk into anything else like networking positions regardless of their certs of qualifications. Thats because IT directors/manager want people with experience and experience counts more than certs or quals.

    Aprentaships are a good idea if you can get away with the low wages because you will gain qualifications and experience.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2011
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  12. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    I luckily can get away with low wages from apprenticeships. I would rather be a tech to start with than working on help desks due to the more hands on nature of the job.
     
  13. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    There are trainee IT tech jobs out there but they are rare as still IT managers would rather have experience. You may have to consider applying as far as you may be able to afford to move and apply outside your area.

    These jobs will also be low paid but they will be higher paid than £2.50

    Now you may get more hands on experience doing a technician job or field technician job but do not dismiss what you would learn working on a help desk and remember you dont have to do help desk forever you could be on 2nd/3rd line in a few months if you stand out and then be exposed to fixes, networking and the lot.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  14. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    I will look at some apprenticeships but I think I will just apply for more jobs and be more hardcore about the situation. Might get lucky.

    Thanks for the help
     
  15. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    Also if your applying for entry level jobs it might be a good idea to take the CCNA of your cv because it isn't an entry level cert. We have had people on here before trying for their first IT job and they too had high level certs as soon as they took the high level certs of their cv they got a job.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  16. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    What job am i going to get with NO experience and just my BTEC ND lol.. I could fit my CV on a piece of toilet roll as is. I am a smart guy and love to learn more. I could go out and get all these certs but with no experience it seems that they are worth nothing? I really enjoyed doing the CCNA and was going to do the MCSE as I started studying and it was easier than the CCNA IMO but i won't do it if its not going to help.

    James
     
  17. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    You should be applying for jobs that reflect your experience level i.e none. It too me 8 years to get in to IT and it too wagnerk 5 years (he is a manager now) my mistake was that I was applying for jobs beyond my experience level and like I said we had people on here before who had high level certs and couldn't get a job because those high level certs were suppossed to reflect their experience level.

    The MCSE is designed for people who have 12-18 months experience as a systems engineer, ccna is designed for someone who works with cisco kit on a day to day basis. There'ss no harm in learning those certs but actually putting them on your cv makes an IT manager expect you to hit the ground running with no training provided but then again as soon as they see you have no experience your application will be at the bottom of pile if not in the bin.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  18. 23JMZ07

    23JMZ07 New Member

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    Im struggling to find anything that assumes no experience at all yet is still related to the industry.
     
  19. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    They are out there. What I would suggest is that you get out the yello wpages and just write of to loads of places that may need support. See this is the reason alot of people start in first line then progress to IT tech roles or network roles n stuff.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  20. coolc

    coolc Nibble Poster

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    what do first line support people do? I am curious as I have never being a helpdesk person, what kind of technical issues do they resolve? simple please restart your pc, or reset password or ? break fix stuff?
     

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