1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Almost 40. Do I have a hope?

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by The Edge, Nov 5, 2012.

  1. The Edge

    The Edge New Member

    2
    0
    1
    Hi all,
    Im looking to move into IT but have no recent work experience. I did an IT related degree 15 years ago (one of those "xxxx and computing" degrees but was too interested in partying to do well. I blagged my way into a couple of year 2000 software testing roles afterwards but then got wanderlust and travelled, settling in asia for ten years teaching English. Basically I just wasnt prioritising my career and just enjoying myself. I'm back in blighty now and strugling to find work. TEFL teaching in this country has no career progression and Im not interested (or have a good enough degree) to go into regular teaching in this country.
    Im now extremely motivated to sort my career out and am considering getting some IT training with a view to secure employment. The training provider ads would have us believe that anyone can get a great job after studying with them. Checking the posts here however puts extreme doubts on that.
    I am happy to take an entry level job to get my foot in the door however, and I learn fast.
    Any ideas what the best courses would be to get me into an entry level job? Has anyone out there actually had no experience in IT, done a course from a training provider eg MCSE and actually got a job? Am I just too old to do this? Any helpful sugestions will be apreciated.
     
  2. Coupe2T

    Coupe2T Megabyte Poster

    590
    43
    67
    Personally I would avoid any training provider that is claiming that their training will get you a job!

    Focus on looking at entry roles. I appreciate that could feel a little backwards but you will get much more joy in my opinion scoring a proper job and learning afterwards than taking up a 4k training with promises that will prob never be met!

    Look for service desk analyst or 1st line support roles, get some interviews and make clear you are computer literate, but again, in my opinion make very clear you are customer service orientated and great at dealing with people etc!

    Most places will accept they need to teach you some technical skills, but personal skills can be a lot trickier to teach!!!
     
    Certifications: ECDL, Does that Count!?!
  3. shadowwebs

    shadowwebs Megabyte Poster Forum Leader

    841
    10
    76
    The Edge, yes you do still have a lot of hope, don't give up just because of your age. Yes you may nearly be 40, but if you were to retire at 65, then you are still giving the IT Career potentially 25 years, and when you look at it that way, I am sure you will feel better about giving it a go.

    It is your choice but I would not recommend using a training provider that promises you the earth as when it comes down to it, they will struggle to fulfil the intended promise. They will also be charging you a premium for providing this service.

    I would recommend that you give the compTIA A+ certification a try as your first certification avenue...

    Good luck and if you have any further questions, give me a shout.
     
    Certifications: compTIA A+, Apple Certified Technical Coordinator 10.10 (OS X Yosemite, Server and Support)
    MCT likes this.
  4. The Edge

    The Edge New Member

    2
    0
    1
    Thanks to both of you guys! So, get compTIA A+ cert and then emphasise soft skills to get work experience seems to be the plan.
     
  5. RichyV

    RichyV Megabyte Poster Forum Leader

    536
    17
    79
    Yep, have to agree.

    Definitely not too old - but you do need drive and a willingness to learn. There's no easy route unfortunately but have a look at the A+ and then see how you feel about its contents as it represents a good 'bottom line' for you to aim at.

    Good luck with it!
     
    Certifications: B.Sc.(Hons), MBCS. MCP (271,272), MCDST, MCTS (680), MCITP:EDST7, MCSA:WIN7, MCPS, MCNPS
    WIP: 70-686, then onto MCSE: Desktop Infrastructure via MCSA: Server 2012...
  6. shadowwebs

    shadowwebs Megabyte Poster Forum Leader

    841
    10
    76
    TheEdge, I know that I have mentioned studying the A+ but I guess I should also mention at this point what I consider to the best study materials for this exam, take a look at Professor Messer online for free online tutorials.

    Otherwise if you find reading an easier form for learning then I know many that recommend Mike Meyer's material.
     
    Certifications: compTIA A+, Apple Certified Technical Coordinator 10.10 (OS X Yosemite, Server and Support)
  7. MCT

    MCT New Member

    5
    0
    1
    Hi,

    Yes you do have hope!!!

    Speaking as a over 40er myself. Now is a great time to get back on the certification train. Think about it Windows 8, Exchange 2013, Server 2012 to name a few of the up and coming products that corporates will be transitioning to over the next coupe of years. (All the IT Pro's will need to learn these products - and many of them are totally different to what we have been using previously.)

    Point to note - the old style MCSE retires in July 2013 - so get a move on as I always think its better to have a few legacy certs on your transcript - as it shows you have a broad knowledge base rather than a newbie with all the gear and no idea.

    I have been a Technical Consultant and Trainer for a few years; and would be happy to point you in the right direction on the certification front, as many organisations want Platform experts now not just Microsoft guys - (Folk with VMware, Citrix, Symantec and some good hardware knowledge too)

    My advice would be to get your MCSA on 2003 then start on the Windows 2008 MCITP track - THEN specialise on something you enjoy! (Exchange, SQL, SCCM)

    You really shouldn't be paying much more than £200+ VAT per exam if you self study - you will need some new kit as well as a machine that supports hardware assisted virtualisation. download securable.exe from GRC - to verify if your machine is up to scratch.

    On the job front there are loads of websites advertising IT roles (I have comprehensive list) you don't need to start too low as that can go against you; however you will also need some other training courses such as ITIL and N+ (google them).

    Finally the money in IT is in the server-end so don't spent too long on the desktop side of things.
     
    BigG likes this.
  8. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,806
    314
    184
    Microsoft recommend 12 months on the job working with windows servers before attempting MCSA or MCITP, its going to be a bad idea for someone that has never worked in IT. Mentioning MCSE, VMware/VCP, Citrix is not relevant to someone who has not got significant experience. These are all things that as an MCT you should know and advise people about honestly.

    Very little in IT is truly revolutionary, most of it is evolutionary, despite what the marketing people would have you believe. Therefore new products don't always mean newcomers have much of an advantage. That goes double if you then recommend that that person also needs to learn and certify on the old stuff too.

    The big money in IT is generally for the more difficult or senior positions, you simply won't get offered these without the required skills and experience.

    The market is very tough right now, probably 100+ people going for every job, you are going to struggle to stand out.

    Your best bet might be to go back into software testing if you have experience and decent references.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  9. MCT

    MCT New Member

    5
    0
    1
    DMARSH

    15 years ago I was a forklift-truck driver earning £3.50 per hour from agencies - now I am a freelance IT Consultant still working for agencies and have commanded rates of up to £600 per day.

    In my view Microsoft's recommendation of using the product for a year is just that a recommendation - remember many companies use 1st/2nd and 3rd Line roles - so guys on 1st and 2nd Line will never get to install a server or create a DHCP scope. And saying that when was the last time you implemented RRAS?

    I have literally travelled the world as a direct result of passing my first MCP in August 2001 - to date I have passed 11 Microsoft exams and a raft of other vendors exam.

    One huge word of advice though is if you don't use it you will loose it - I got to where I am by having the right attitude and a positive outlook on life.

    I agree that the market is tough right now - I applied for over 600 positions to land the gig I am on right now (plus only 4 interviews) - but the roles are out there.

    Right now there are 13,876 IT jobs on JobServe - all I can say is the roles are there.

    The only way you get experience is by doing it - I am a Microsoft Certified Trainer and fully understand that practice makes perfect.

    So my advice is get the experience by building your labs (over and over and over again)- reading white papers from TechNet and using the multitude of study materials out there.

    Remember attitude is everything - The IT industry spans almost every industry sector (military, medical, government, retail, construction, charity, small business, education) all have computers and most run active directory and have a messaging system.

    Volunteer if you have to - I have met at least 20 or more IT managers or senior techies who started in company as a order pickers or post room clerks (or information workers) - my advice is if you are already in a company speak to the IT manager or Director - and tell them your aspirations.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
  10. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,806
    314
    184
    Its normal for someone with 15 years experience to have a lot of qualifications and be able to command higher rates. The Edge will likely be nearing retirement before he is in the same position.

    Quite true and I totally agree you need to be a self starter in IT and train yourself into your next role all the time. The trouble is someone that has virtually zero IT knowledge has to start at the bottom, the 291 is a HARD exam for people that understand networks, servers and IT, its not suitable for a beginner to attempt it.

    How can you say the roles are out there for a newcomer to get into server work when you as yourself with 15 years experience required 600 applications ?

    This figure means very little, dead jobs are left live, others are re-advertised or listed by multiple agencies. Recruiters also post fake job advertisements.

    Then you know that someone that has not practiced IT for 15 years and quite likely never learnt many basic concepts, is likely not ready for advanced material. You have to learn the prerequisite material first and then build on that.

    Took me about 6 months to pass my MCSA and I had been in IT for about 12 years at the time. Someone with little experience is going to struggle, its not impossible sure, but its a steep curve. That is why people recommend MTA, A+, N+, ITIL, Windows 7 MCTS etc. These certs are also more useful for the sort of roles someone with little experience has a chance of landing.

    Attitude helps, but is not a substitute for knowledge, skills or experience when applying for non entry level roles. I've worked in IT for 17 years in many industries.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  11. MCT

    MCT New Member

    5
    0
    1
    All I am going to say on this matter is a mans reach should exceed his grasp

    It takes me less than 4 weeks to totally master a product - so my advice to "the edge" is to GO FOR IT.

    I have seen students learn subnetting from youtube ;-)
     
  12. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

    3,806
    314
    184
    So you can totally master Oracle RDBMS, Websphere, SAP FI, Visual Studio 2012, NASM, GCC, Metasploit, etc with only 4 weeks on each and be an expert ?

    I doubt you have 'totally mastered' MS Word, can you customise Normal.dot ? Write your own macros ? Automate word with COM/OLE ?

    Never heard such nonsense.

    If you think you can master these topics in less than 4 weeks I'd say your reach is less than your grasp.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  13. MCT

    MCT New Member

    5
    0
    1
    The only nonsense I have heard todate is your negativity.

    The guy wants to try something new - stop being so bitter and give him some encouragement...

    You are correct I can't customise Normal.dot Write my own macros or Automate word with COM/OLE - because I have a life away from my keyboard - I am a geek by day - freak by night ;-)

    But I bet I could work it out by typing a few choice phrases in google or asking a friend - or joining a forum...

    That is where the real skill in IT come from - knowing how to find a solution - In IT there is only a PROBLEM if there is no SOLUTION.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2012
    cisco lab rat likes this.
  14. SimonV

    SimonV Petabyte Poster Administrator

    6,616
    153
    228
    Alright guys, lets keep on topic and not make this personal. Im sure The Edge would appreciate that.
     
    Certifications: MOS Master 2003, CompTIA A+, MCSA:M, MCSE
    WIP: Keeping CF Alive...
  15. MCT

    MCT New Member

    5
    0
    1
    Here here
     
  16. cisco lab rat

    cisco lab rat Megabyte Poster

    660
    62
    116
    My 2 pence worth is always the same to anyone coming into IT or in my case Networking and that it is go to amazon, buy the A+ or N+ book depending what it is you wish to pursue, read the books, play with the kit, if you enjoy it and understand the material then there is a chance IT is for you.

    It is never a good idea for anyone without any IT expereince to jump into a training course without having done at least a reasonable amount of study first to find out if this field is really for them.

    IT is not the land of milk and honey that the adverts on TV make it out to be with instant rewards, you know the ones I mean, the ones were one moment the guy is sat in some grey miserable bed sit in his bathrobe with washing hung up behind looking at a mountain of bills then the next moment he is striding into and office with a suit and briefcase pointing out to some poor hapless non-IT literate sap the error of their ways, this is utter nonsence and will not happen!

    IT is a lifestyle choice, a career filled with endless learning, learning, learning. I am 17 years into this game and I know 1% what's out there, but I would not swap Networking for the any other profession
     
    Certifications: Yes I pretty much am!!
    WIP: Fizzicks Degree

Share This Page

Loading...