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

Change career or soldier onwards

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by Albert, May 30, 2010.

  1. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

    35
    0
    2
    Hi guys & gals.

    I'm feeling in a rut & depressed at the moment, in regards to my future career prospects.

    Some background about me:

    I'm currently 23 yrs old, soon to be 24. Also based in Newcastle. Graduated with a degree in Business IT back in July 2008. Not much applicable use, apart from the technical side.

    Worked as a junior web developer right after graduation with a local web design & development agency for a year. Struggled with the more advanced programming/scripting so decided to switch to support. I have been interested in the support side since my module studies about the PC & computer networking, back in Uni.

    So I managed to get a job as a technical advisor (1st line) for an ISP, supporting Broadband and Telephony. It is with an outsourced partner call centre, based locally. I've been in the job since Sep. 2009. I feel I've gotten to the point where I'm hitting a glass ceiling and not gaining much more technically. I know that most people will have to start at the bottom and earn their stripes but I feel it could be time for me to move on. The only good points are developing my customer service, communication skills and personal performance. All it basically involves is running a line test, if it fails then escalate to Tier 2. Hours are from 8am to 4:30pm, 5 days a week, all for a mere £6.50 phr. I have to actually overtime it, 4 days a week to 7:30pm so I can meet family outgoings. I have also confirmed there won't be Tier 2 progression as that will stay in-house, with the ISP.

    I want to remain in Newcastle. I've found a few posts already and applied. Posts were actually more IT oriented and technically involving (helpdesk, service desk, 2nd line), paying £18k+ but I haven't received any reply at all.

    I'm also studing for the A+ cert. and aiming to take the exam in March, 2011.

    What I would like is some guidance to my direction or shed some light to the current situation. Should I press on? I have even contemplated a career change to Marketing but with much reluctance. I have always had an interest in IT support at heart and still do.

    Thanks in advance. Any advice will be very much appreciated. :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2010
  2. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

    4,196
    171
    211
    Perhaps you need to be taking a look at why your cv isnt getting hits. it could be because its not good.
     
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  3. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster

    3,120
    51
    154
    Judging from you post above it sounds like you need to be a bit more proactive and determined. The A+ cert can be self studied for in three months and the exam taken not unless of course you have other commitments.

    You might want to also post your CV here for us to have a look at it and advice you as appropriate.
     
    Certifications: MCSE: 2003, MCSA: 2003 Messaging, MCP, HNC BIT, ITIL Fdn V3, SDI Fdn, VCP 4 & VCP 5
    WIP: MCTS:70-236, PowerShell
  4. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    Albert, got your PM regarding advice as I live in Newcastle as well. The best advice I can give you is to bring your A+ studies forward to now. As onoski says you should be aiming at around 3 months to study the A+. I can't remember when CompTIA are changing the A+ and Network+ from a life cert to having to take it every 3 years (it's early 2011 if I remember correctly) so bear that in mind. I don't see any reason why you can't get both of them done before the end of 2010. The other option I would recommend is doing the MCDST which is geared towards desktop support. My personal feeling with certs when I started out was to get what I felt was the necessary ones to give me a stepping stone into IT. I was lucky in the fact I bypassed 1st line and went to 2nd line but at 23 I had to start on 10k. I know you read my thread about my career going down the tubes and I really dropped a clanger on the title and regret putting it like that. What I meant and didn't state for some reason is that I see 2nd line/desktop support becoming a thing of the past with technology advances such as cloud computing. I think anyone coming into IT now really has to have a clear vision of where they want to be long term.

    Now onto the problem with Newcastle (one of my many arguments on my thread) is that the industry just isn't there to support IT professionals with a generalised background such as myself once you have 3+ years experience unless you want to settle for a wage of around £18k which I don't if I'm honest. I've basically hit a ceiling at £25k and you will be very lucky getting a better salary than that in Newcastle unless you move on from 2nd line which is easier said than done. People on here sometimes are under the illusion that it is easy to go down the correct route of 1st, 2nd, 3rd line, team leader, IT manager, Bill Gates and it isn't as the market is so poor in Newcastle. Not to pull any punches getting into IT in Newcastle and carving out a career will be hard but thats not to say it can't be done. If I was your age again I would sit down and think about my career path and stick to getting a good foot fold with doing the certs mentioned in IT but think about your long term plan very carefully and have a vision of what you want to do long term.

    Personally I think IT will move into cloud computing in the next 3-5 years leading to many jobs we do now being redundant including desktop support but I'm sure others will disagree with that. I think there will be a need for data center type skills rather than desktop skills. I would also think about doing virtualisation in the long term as it's the future. Get your basic skill set and certs and a couple of years experience behind you. More importantly get yourself a home lab setup as without that you will really struggle to learn past the basics. For long term future look into virtualisation skills like Hyper-V, Citrix and VMWare or network skills like CCNA. Don't jump into these too soon as they are advanced certs that need a long time to learn as I'm finding out with VMWare.

    Albert again this is just my opinion and others may disagree. Take everything on board and form your own opinion as it's your career at the end of the day.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2010
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  5. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

    4,196
    171
    211
    Even if cloud computing becomes the new messiah (and I'm still dubious as to how strong a foothold it will gain), you will never (hang on, thats not strong enough - NEVER) get rid of the need for desktop support. How do you think people are going to access the "cloud"? It certainly isnt going to be via telepathy. Thats right, they are going to need desktop PC's to run the applications. Desktop PCs require techs to maintain and repair them. Then theres the network infrastructure which (especially in smaller companies) falls to some extent within a Desktop tech's remit.
     
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  6. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    I actually disagree with that and hope I'm wrong. In an age of cheap PC's it's a case of one PC is broken you uncouple it and swap it out and it can be rebuilt over the network as that is more cost effective than having someone onsite. Also I lost my job as the company installed a solution where your PC had a software fault well they pressed F5 on boot up and it rebuilt the PC with all your settings automatically. I think the future of IT is in data centers with cloud computing and virtualisation. 1st line will always remain but I think 2nd and 3rd line won't with technology advances and higher network speeds allowing services to be provided as a service remotely. I suppose time will tell and I hope I'm wrong.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  7. Fergal1982

    Fergal1982 Petabyte Poster

    4,196
    171
    211
    The guys here rarely crack the case, our policy prefers to swap it out and send it back to the vendor under warranty. but that isnt the sum of their role. We also have the capacity for the servicedesk (or the users if they know where to look) to perform a full rebuild of the machine back to factory standards, all over the network.

    Neither of these means that the local IT techs arent needed. There is so much more to their job than simply these two tasks. They manage asset distribution, networking, upgrades, etc. Sure some of those things can be done remotely, but its unlikely to happen. People like having face to face, direct contact with their local techs, so much so that its nigh on impossible to stop these people walking up to the tech, rather than following procedure and calling the servicedesk. Any attempts to remove the local guys will result in some sort of riot from the business - it just wont happen.
     
    Certifications: ITIL Foundation; MCTS: Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2010, Administration
    WIP: None at present
  8. greenbrucelee
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

    14,283
    254
    329
    Agree 100%

    Cloud computing will happen and the number of techs may go down but there will still be a requirement for tech support.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  9. Jiser

    Jiser Kilobyte Poster

    386
    10
    37
    I agree with parts of everything eveyrone has said. Cloud Computing is just some bs word.

    It just means more centralisation which makes sense in most circumstances. Virtulisation etc, consolidation.

    In my last job we implemented FOG - does all imaging remotely, doesn't remove the need for techs though or network admins. Any problems with a computer simply reimage. Its not allways a case of sending back to vendor but perhaps replacing a HD.

    There will allways be a need for network admin / techs but I think there will be less demand as time goes on. Things are going more web based. It is dependent on what type of network your running for what business/education etc.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), PGc, MCTS:Win 7, MCSA W7/MCITP EDST, ITIL Foundation, Prince 2 Foundation, C&G: Web Design, MOS 07: Excel, Word, Powerpoint, Outlook.
  10. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

    35
    0
    2
    Thanks a lot for all your useful advice and insightful comments. It is very much appreciated. I have certainly taken onboard everyone's advice, however negative, critical or conflicting it is.

    Michael, yeah, I think it is up until 31st December this year before A+ and N+ certs need renewing every 3 years.

    3 months to complete studies for A+ and N+ each? Wow. I'm currently just reading through the 'AIO by Mike Meyers, 7th ed.' book. Having an obsessive need to be thorough what do you think would be the best strategies to employ so I can break it down into manageable chunks? So I can achieve my goal in under 3 months. The book has approx. 1,216 pages. I have at most 1hr, 40 mins each day for 4 days, 40 mins on fifth day and another 2 full days each week of time to myself. Yeah, I know. You wouldn't be the only one thinking I need a kick up the backside and just get on with it.

    I have also been thinking about purchasing the Testout LabSim A+ course (http://www.testout.com/products/aplus/a-plus-certification-training.htm?promoCode=W-275WA), to get some hands-on practical experience via simulation. Would I be taking on too much?

    I find it disheartening and very frightening reading about how the support industry might develop in the near future, added to that the prospective IT job market in Newcastle.

    I've also attached a copy of my CV to this post for any helpful comments. Thanks very much again for all your precious time.
     

    Attached Files:

    • CV.doc
      File size:
      50 KB
      Views:
      23
  11. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    Don't get disheartened as I don't see 2nd line disappearing just yet so there is time to get experience and move on from 2nd line into other areas. Again the industry might not go that way and I hope I'm wrong but speaking to people and my own thoughts I think in some way technology will mean less people onsite are needed as I have found out being made redundant. I think Newcastle is one of the hardest places to carve out an IT career and to progress up the levels of support but keep working hard and you will get your break in IT.

    As for A+ study don't throw a lot at doing the A+ so I would say as long as your taking the book in then it would be overkill to get a lab for it. As for how to go about it I'm probably not the best to ask as I did it about 6 years ago and it's changed format a lot since then but if you have a PC at home and can study on that then it will help a lot. In the future for more advanced certs you will need a lab setup of some type to install virtualisation software (plenty of free ones out there that will run on normal PC's) to run multiple VM's to test on.

    Lastly your CV is too long in my opinion and should be kept to 2 pages or at least that's what I was always told. I posted my CV on here a bit ago so have a look and the formatting of my CV has always done well for me and the agencies say it's laid out well.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  12. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    10,191
    296
    319
    Eh? How come? Regardless of cloud computing users still need to sit in front of something to access applications etc. There will be a need to support whatever that environment is.

    Cloud computing doesn’t mean printers\PDAs\laptops are going to disappear as well. All of this needs technical support.

    Perhaps you have hit a brick wall in your current job but there must be other jobs out there in Newcastle that could offer you some more £££.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  13. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    I was speaking to my brothers mate who has 20 years experience when I was wanting advice on my next career move and we spoke about cloud computing and it was something I thought about as well. I think with network speeds getting faster and the technology being in place then everything will be served up as a service centrally in data centers. As for onsite support I think that companies will see it cheaper to swap a PC out than fix it paying a wage. A lot of things with PDA's, and printers can be done remotely including setting them up and things that can't will be done by contracts with the manufacturers like printer support. It's the way I see 2nd line and 3rd line going as companies look to save money. Again it's just my opinion but think technology will lead to support roles being made redundant at some point.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  14. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    10,191
    296
    319
    The majority of IT support is done remotely these days, the on-site stuff is mainly all hardware related tasks or equipment moves.

    Regardless of network speeds for small businesses the stability of ADSL\SDSL is not there to move all their IT services to cloud computing.

    I see where you are coming from but I don’t see IT support jobs becoming redundant, it may be that the job role moves away from the break-fix idea and more towards the “How to” kinda requests such as setting up document formatting (just an example!) etc.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  15. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    I don't see it happening at present but maybe 5 years down the line. I'm doing VMWare as I see a long term future in that area but just can't say or feel confident of saying the same about support roles 5 years down the line. I think Data Center skills will be big in years to come if cloud computing does take off. I suppose time will tell.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  16. volatile

    volatile Nibble Poster

    60
    3
    19
    I say persevere on the path that your heart tells you. Don't change course just because the going is tough; you will, likely, end up regretting it. I haven't taken a look at your CV but I'll see if I can give some feedback.

    As far as the Cloud....(if it becomes everything that the prognosticators say it will) could it potentially make some jobs obsolete? Yeah, sure. But just because some of those jobs may be eliminated does not mean new jobs will not be created. People were all doom and gloom when automation took place at the eve of the industrial age. All that labor wasn't displaced and lost; new opportunities in other fields were created. You just have to be agile enough to adjust with the changes.
     
    Certifications: Computer Science Degree, A+
  17. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

    2,085
    29
    141
    Totally agree it won't be the end if it takes off just means people will have to adapt and learn new skill sets. Anyways sorry think this might be going off topic and probably isn't helping Albert so I'll shut up now :biggrin
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  18. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

    35
    0
    2

    Very interesting comments, Michael. I know I haven't even learnt to 'crawl' yet nevermind walking (figuratively speaking) but what about the 'networks' side?

    How about Information Security or even more exciting, Computer/Digital Forensics?

    All based within the 'Newcastle' location context.
     
  19. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

    35
    0
    2

    Well, on the positive side I find it quite motivating, to an extent, trying to see what is around the corner and prepare for it. Certainly very intriguing and interesting knowing what others are currently thinking in their minds about the future of the IT industry because of their wealth of experience gained already ('been there, seen it').
     
  20. Len

    Len Byte Poster

    189
    4
    37
    I looked at your CV.... Heres what I think is wrong:

    1) No need to put Curriculum vitae at the top, an employer will know what it is.

    2) Keep your full name where it is, and move your address and contact details underneath it, center.

    3) No need to put nationality. Stop giving the employer chances to discriminate.

    4) Do employers really care if you are a member of a society? Leave that until after the more relevant information e.g. Employment history, education etc

    5) Add "References" "Available on request" at the end. You do have references don't you?

    Its also best to keep it two pages max. Crop what you think is irrelevant.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2010
    Certifications: BND IT Practitioners
    WIP: Comptia A+

Share This Page

Loading...