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help and advice needed about trainning

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by paulbrogden, Jul 5, 2011.

  1. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    I am still wondering what to do about developing a career in IT as their is so many confusing info on the internet and I am trying to decide what to do. first thing of all is I understand allot of employers requirements are that you have a degree I don't know if this needs to be in IT or not.

    The first thing I wish to talk about is degrees I have been offered only 30 credits towards an open university degree in IT and computing based on this I would have to study it for around 4 years at least part time however I have been offered 240 credits towards an open degree.

    I am contemplating which to do I don't like the idea of doing it for 5 years basically if I did IT as a subject it would take me 5 years part time to complete a degree.

    If I do the open degree as I all ready have a HND in design communications and because of this the open university have awarded me 240 credits towards an open degree which is not a named degree as such. clearly this means I could get a degree in 2 years part time or 1 year full time.

    I am really unsure which would be best to get for me currently would not having an IT degree stop me from being able to get an IT job?

    Also I am really unsure about what courses would be a good decision for me to do for example the A++ or the mcsa, mcse courses I have seen some that are done by computeach but when I called to discuss my problems here they seemed to try to sell me a sales pitch.

    computeach told me the fee was £1700 to do the Microsoft certified courses and the A++ for 12 months subscription which seemed to me they were trying to do the hard sell.

    I am really unsure what is the best path to follow clearly allot of employers are demanding a degree but I am not convinced being Microsoft certified would get me a good paying job what do you know about the best way to break in and what is the job employment prospects out their.

    Is the fact I have 2 years experience administrating a picking and load system at a super market home shopping a good thing to have on my CV computeach was saying it would not really show any thing to an employer.

    since you have allot of experience I would like your opinion what would be the best step forward to develop a career clearly I cant go any where with in asda any more its a case who you know rather than how hard you work.

    thanks paul.
     
  2. Shinigami

    Shinigami Megabyte Poster

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    You should not attempt an MCSA/MCSE unless you have a year or two of 'real-life' experience administering an Active Directory environment and Windows 2003 servers at a relatively high level. Without real-life experience, you are highly likely to struggle with the study material.

    And as far as A+ (or an MCSA/MCSE) goes, you're better off doing self-study. It'll be cheaper and you can work at your own pace.
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, MCDST, MOS, CIW, Comptia
    WIP: Win7/Lync2010/MCM
  3. Waria Ahmed

    Waria Ahmed Byte Poster

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    Thats alot of exams you braindumped in your sigsature shinigami ;)
     
    Certifications: See Signature
    WIP: MCITP: Enterprise Administrator
  4. Shinigami

    Shinigami Megabyte Poster

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    I gained my first cert in 2003. That's an average of 5 certs a year. Having been in the industry for over ten years also makes it easier to pass some certs (e.g, Network+, which just required that I skim through the Mike Myers book).

    There are people on this site that are earning more than 5 certs a year based on a very vigorous study cycle.

    And nowadays, I build Lync/Exchange environments on a daily basis. Practical know-how in everyday usage means that the exams become increasingly easy to pass without the need for study time (doesn't mean I don't study, just doesn't have to be the 10-12 hour a day job for me that it was in 2003-2004 when I jumped into certification for the first time, and felt the need to prove myself).
     
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, MCDST, MOS, CIW, Comptia
    WIP: Win7/Lync2010/MCM
  5. millsie

    millsie Byte Poster

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    I'll put my 2 penneth in!

    I was in almost the same place as you exactly 1 and a half years ago now.
    I have just started out in IT and got my first support role a year ago. Previous to that I had only the Comptia N+ and then went onto do the CCNA course with the open university as I was interested in networking.

    My advice for someone just starting out is the same as you will hear again and again on Cert Forums. In relation to certs, go for the basic first so thats A+, N+ and I would have said MCDST but thats expired so you will have to try for the DST version of Windows 7 to get basic PC tech, network tech and MS OS knowledge, this will only prove your knowledge and obviously not your practical experience.

    In regards to having a degree to get into IT I would say it is not necessary. It is if you want to impress certain employers with your dedication to something but often degrees are wide in their subject matter whereas certs are more directed.
    I got my first IT support role without a degree and you can do the same. Now I have my first IT role I am looking to get more exp in support hopefully. with some exposure to networking and start off slowly and build up to my 5 year plan of being a network engineer but that its a long way off me thinks.

    I agree with above unless you are working with servers/storage then MCSA or MCSE is not what you should look into at this stage, and even though I have done it, the CCNA as these are for people already in a role in this area.

    In regards to your experience you have done a technical role but not sure if it would be good for a basic first line support role I dont know enough about it. What really helped me get into IT was customer service exp 6 years, as most 1st line roles will involve lots of customer contact and they want to know you can look after their customers and be first point of contact, you must have all the traits of a people and customer focussed person.

    Hope this helps

    Millsie
     
    Certifications: N+, CCNA, MCDST
    WIP: CCNP route 642-902
  6. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    Thing with the OU is that in order to get a 'named' degree, you need to study a fairly restrictive set of modules that map to that subject. In terms of IT, this is made worse by the fact that points stop counting a year after a particular module retires in order to keep things current. That can be a problem if your degree is likely to take 5 years.

    There's nothing wrong with an open degree, it just gives you more flexibility in what you study. I've been mixing business studies with computing because I think it gives me the best balance to offer an employer.


    Don't confuse academic qualification with certification. Going down the computeach project will see you out of pocket with little to offer an employer. Although you may well get your Microsoft certification out of it you will not be able to apply for jobs requiring that certification without experience.

    Certifications have long been marketed as the magic ticket into an IT career - but they never are.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  7. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    hello guys thanks for your responses is always helpful to get advice I wanted to add I have 3 years experience in customer service in call centres and 2 in admin which includes taking calls in all that includes 1 year in o2 1 year in northern rock 6 months in natwest bank 6 months in empire direct before it went bust and 3 months in coors brewery. 2 years in a big supermarket in uk i dont wana say the name just in case i talked about the company and got fired .

    the problem i am trying to consider is do I do a IT degree that could take 5 years to complete part time as they have only given me 30 credits towards it or do I do an open degree i could do 2 IT modules in IT but because of a hnd in design communications they gave me 240 credits which means i only need 120 to gain a degree.

    Is it worth doing the it degree or not? a path i could go down is do the open degree quick and do some certs to bring me up to scratch or would doing the IT degree be worth doing? again guys thanks for the advice
     
  8. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    You don't need a degree you need an entry level job, there are many ways to get these but generally you are looking at showing enthusiasm and commitment. Things like your general knowledge, A+ certs etc also help.

    You should start looking now and continually be looking for opportunities. Also try networking etc.

    It sounds like you have good credentials for a helpdesk position.

    You could get an A+ either self study or by attending evening classes at a local college.

    Since its nearly September I would recommend enrolling on a Foundation degree at a local college, then later on you can top this up to a full degree with the OU. At this point you can then decide for open vs non open.

    Doing a whole named degree with the OU does not really seem practical to me for most people.

    Drawbacks include :-

    It will take too long to help with an immediate career aspiration.
    It will be too hard to maintain interest and commitment, distance learning for a 5-6 year period.
    Despite being distance learning, tutorials, assignments and exams can still geographically limit you.

    Don't get me wrong, I think the OU is great for short courses or ongoing personal study.

    Open degrees generally make a lot more sense with the OU, but I have to agree they don't look as impressive on a CV. It would be down to you to maybe put your own spiel in to highlight your core subjects.
     
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  9. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    I agree with dmarsh.

    Degrees are great, if you've got the aptitude and opportunity then go for one.
    But, they aren't the magic ticket to a better life that they used to be.
    If you didn't go to uni and get a degree back then, I wouldn't do so now.

    I've been with the OU for about 10 years now. I'm not really aiming for a degree, I'm just doing it as ongoing personal development - which is what it's good for. I just pick subjects that interest me or may be helpful in my chosen profession. Mix in a bit of certification, sorted.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  10. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    ok guys well to add to things i currently work for a big supermarket i manage a picking system where pickers pick food items. I check these orders had been picked correctly check subs and then finalize the order then when all orders have been checked and finlized a full load is then ready to be sent to the till to be put through their after the paperwork is printed out and given to the driver ready to be given to the customer this is bassically what i do i allso balance the tills and paperwork at the end of the day.
     
  11. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    I also noticed that some jobs have asked for a 2.1 degree but i wonder if this needs to be a computer degree or not.
     
  12. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    If the subject of the degree is important, they'll mention it. Some jobs just require 'a degree' in order to whittle down the applicants.
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  13. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    I asked computeach for some advise on the above and they keep trying to call me and sent me 2 emails rather than reply to my email they asked me to ring me so they could try to do the sales spin i call it a hard sell. I see that computeach has allot of angry customers out their in various forums this is a lesson for every one research before you buy no matter what it is.

    I still feel having a degree on my cv would be good and since I have 2 years experience administrating a system at work I think I should be in a stronger potsion than most graduates leaving college with no experience at all.

    I currently keep trying to apply for the IT helpdesk jobs at asda house and will keep trying I think I one day will do it even if its part time .
     
  14. JonnyMX

    JonnyMX Petabyte Poster

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    Truth.

    You're never going to get great advice from a salesman with only one thing to sell...
     
    Certifications: MCT, MCTS, i-Net+, CIW CI, Prince2, MSP, MCSD
  15. paulbrogden

    paulbrogden New Member

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    I have 3 years call centre experience and 2 years administrating a Pam /oracle based system at a super market would this count the system in question allows me to monitor what is picked then I finalize orders and then finalize a full load normally 8 to 16 orders once complete and put through the till I print paperwork for the drivers would this be considered a IT job?







    I have a HND in design communications what that means is video editing and making video projects graphic design/ photography . additional to this most of year 1 on a TV production degree. privately I build my own computer up and have installed 98 , 2000, nt server, xp home ,xp professional ,xp 64 ,windows 7 ultimate I have even managed to install on partions 98/2000/xp in the past all on the same hard drive.

    I all ways keep upto date on latest processors in deed upgraded my aging single core amd 1900 to quad 2.8 clearly replacing most things in it like motherboard psu,ram,even sound card and graphic card from agp to exspress. any way back to the subject I am wondering what to do it seems every career change their is issues. some one suggested plumbing again after looking into that the same is true of that you cant do the second or 3rd years nvq training unless you have a job this is what Leeds college said so its a catch 22.

    unless you can do gas your unlikely to get a job any way. so most career paths seem to have problems. so I turned to IT since computers has always been my interest from the days of the Amiga to Pentium 1's and beyond so clearly getting a job in IT would be a good choice right? well for me but the question is how do I get their?

    as I said I could complete an open degree in a short time then top that up with short IT practical courses for example Dewsbury are doing a Cisco IT essentials 1/A+ course for £260 it might of gone up in price since 2010 . my choice is this do I do a degree with open university in IT and computing for 5 years to get a science honours degree or do I do some sort of top up degree to top my hnd up to a degree and then do some short IT part time courses at college or do I stick to the IT and computing degree?

    the quicker option would be to do open degree just so I have the degree for the sake of having one then do a few certs or other IT courses or do I go the whole hog to do the IT degree I think my experiences in customer service and admin should stand me in good stead what do you guys have to say on the matter.

    I will say this forums are like the best teachers you can find forget books it seems forums are full off wonderful people more than willing to give out advise. thank you for that I am very grateful and please keep up with your advice it is so much welcome help to us little people.
     
  16. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    You don't need a degree you need a job! A degree won't magically help you get a job, you will still be in competition with hundreds of people. If you want to get into support its unlikely to make much difference to your application.

    You need an entry level job and should begin your search now.

    Even an open degree will likely take you 1-2 years to complete, waiting another 1-2 years to begin your job search is not a good plan.

    Alongside said job you can then continue to develop your skills and education.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH

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