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Hi - Nice to be here!!!

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by FreakyBeanz, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. FreakyBeanz

    FreakyBeanz Bit Poster

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    Hi everyone.

    I've just discovered this site today, and been very impressed by what I've been reading.

    I'm a veteran IT (OpenVMS, UNIX, Linux) Systems Administrator, who got made redundant from my last permanent job 3 years ago, and made the stupid decision of moving out of IT and starting a business in the worst recession we've ever had! As a result, I'm pretty much living off of my savings, and earning next to nothing (and I mean NOTHING!), so I have been trying to get back into IT again.

    It's not going well though.... I've basically been told by 2 agencies that because there is a 3 year gap in my IT work history, that I'm pretty much unemployable! Even though I have 22 years of experience behind me from trainee operator, right the way up to systems administrator. Not that much changes in the System Admin world in 3 years, but being the wrong end of 40 also isn't helping me in my job search!

    So I've decided to see if I can bolster my existing knowledge and take some courses to perhaps get certified and hopefully improve my chances of employment!

    I've had a fair bit of exposure to web stuff over the years, everything from creating an intranet site for my team when I worked at one of the major UK utilities using basic HTML, JavaScript and CGI (using DCL, Bourne Shell and PERL), up to using rapid development tools such as RapidWeaver to create my own business site, and another site for a friend's business, and this is an area I'm keen to explore.

    Having looked around at various Webs Design courses, it is becoming apparent that some are just not worth the money they are asking, and many of the "certifications" just aren't in demand. I was originally thinking of the CIW Master We Designer course, but I've searched on jobserve for CIW - nothing found, and jobsite.co.uk had only two jobs for a single company!

    I've been looking at this course, which is cost-effective, and provides an NVQ Level 3 equivalent diploma/certificate at the end of it: http://www.distance-learning-centre.co.uk/products/180/WEB_DESIGN_TRAINING_BUNDLE.htm# - just wondering if anyone has any comments or experience of this particular course, or course provider!

    Thanks in advance for any advice or pointers anyone can give me!

    All the best,

    Tony
     
    Certifications: RHCT
    WIP: CompTIA Linux+
  2. kevicho

    kevicho Gigabyte Poster

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    Im pretty sure Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP were out 3 years ago, so I think they are talking rubbish, a work gap usually is a problem in fairness, but if you can prove you have retained the skills you should be worthwhile to an employer, even if you have to dumb down your CV a bit and apply at a lower level, also i would apply directly for roles with a customised CV rather than rely on recruitment agencies.

    Good luck
     
    Certifications: A+, Net+, MCSA Server 2003, 2008, Windows XP & 7 , ITIL V3 Foundation
    WIP: CCNA Renewal
  3. FreakyBeanz

    FreakyBeanz Bit Poster

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    Not my areas of expertise though I'm afraid.

    But thanks! :D
     
    Certifications: RHCT
    WIP: CompTIA Linux+
  4. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Just curious... why would you be looking to get into Web design instead of doing what you know, which is systems administration? It'll be a whole lot easier to get back into IT if you're not starting from zero. After all, if you've got 22 years of experience, you don't need a training course... you've got experience, which is what employers look for.
     
    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. FreakyBeanz

    FreakyBeanz Bit Poster

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    Because at the moment, it appears to me that experience counts for nothing - so why not explore other career options?

    If I train in becoming a Web Master I can perhaps add this to my current business portfolio, and start earning some money, or with the experience gained, may get a position somewhere that I may not have stood a chance getting without doing a course!
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2010
    Certifications: RHCT
    WIP: CompTIA Linux+
  6. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Well... on this, we will have to disagree. Despite the economy, there's still a need for experienced techs. However, there's a glut of people trying to break in at the bottom, and very few positions for them. In short, I think you're jumping from the frying pan into the hottest part of the fire.

    Employers aren't going to care whether you did a course or not... all they're going to care about is whether you can design Web sites. And you can show that with an e-portfolio of sites you've developed.
     
    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!
  7. chuckles

    chuckles Kilobyte Poster

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    Howdy and welcome to CF! Good luck on the search. I know the feeling of positions disappearing (not work just positions ....) :(
     
    Certifications: '07/'09 A+, N+, S+
    WIP: maybe something Apple
  8. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    Not much changes in the UNIX world in 3 years, recruiters can often not be your best option when looking for jobs, they want fast easy commission and apparently studies have shown them to be ageist too.

    You should be able to land work as a UNIX admin somewhere if your skills are good.

    Might help a little if you can show you kept your hand in somehow on the CV, like running the IT for your own company for instance ?

    Good UNIX admins are hard to find, the older ones with decades of experience are also likely to be the best.

    Freshly minted front end web developers without experience or art/design skills are a dime a dozen. Kids and peoples mums's know most of the CIW foundation material now.

    Even for experienced web developers the market can be pretty cutthroat.

    LPI or RHCE certs might help you a little on marketing front longer term.

    You could try more creative ways of looking for a job or volunteer for a non-profit organisation, any IT job would then help remove the recent gap. Also maybe try to exlpain the gap with a covering letter or by adding you company position to your CV.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2010
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  9. FreakyBeanz

    FreakyBeanz Bit Poster

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    Thanks for all of the constructive comments!

    I'm taking this on board, and seriously considering my options.

    @BosonMichael:
    Extremely valid points indeed in your last post. It would almost be pushing the RESET button, and ending up back at the start. So perhaps I should forget this course of action and not only save myself a lot of time, and hassle, but also the expense!

    @dmarsh:
    The "Not much changes in the UNIX world in 3 years" is a point that I tried to get across to the recruiters at the time, but as you said I also believe them to be "ageist" hunting down the young-bucks to fill their vacancies. I have indeed also been running my own IT in my business (as I'm a one-man-band I had to!). Thanks for your other suggestions too - I got an RHCT many years ago (when I was very new to Red Hat Enterprise Linux), so perhaps going for the RHCE or the CompTIA Linux+ Powered by LPI may improve my marketability, and also prove my knowledge is up to date!
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2010
    Certifications: RHCT
    WIP: CompTIA Linux+
  10. BosonMichael
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Looking at your .forward posts you made, it boggles my mind that you would consider abandoning something you seem to be so knowledgeable at doing, ya know? There's already a buncha career-changer-casualties out there at the moment... I'd hate to see you as another of them.

    Pfft. I couldn't care less how old you are; if you can do the job I need you to do, and you're the best candidate for the position, then I want you on my team. And, from my experiences in the IT career field, that's been the opinion of just about every manager and co-worker I've had the pleasure of working with.

    Then you don't REALLY have a 3-year gap, do you? Self employment IS employment.
     
    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!
  11. BrizoH

    BrizoH Byte Poster

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    Very good point - I think you need to tailor your CV to the roles your applying for and make sure you highlight the IT work you did as part of running your own business.

    Recruiters are the last people I'd take career advice from tbh - they're a necessary evil in obtaining work but that's about it. The trick is getting your CV right so that they forward onto the client (who hopefully is knowledgable enough to recognise your experience) and get you the interview

    Good luck!
     
    Certifications: CCNA, CCNA Security
    WIP: CCNP
  12. onoski

    onoski Terabyte Poster

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    Good replies from everyone so far and would take onboard what's been said as recruitment agencies are just sales people. I would get my CV or CV's tailored and up to date for each role and start applying for roles am suitable for etc.

    I would also join a forum i.e. linkedIn and look through the newspapers and apply directly to companies and especially ISP's and server hosting company's that host websites as they're heavy users of Unix and Linux.

    The trick is to get relevant training and keep updating your knowledge and skillset as technology of today is one that quickly becomes obsolette. Best wishes:) and keep us up to date of your job hunt progress.

    N.B.

    You might want to check amazon.co.uk and look for one or two good books on inteviewing.
     
    Certifications: MCSE: 2003, MCSA: 2003 Messaging, MCP, HNC BIT, ITIL Fdn V3, SDI Fdn, VCP 4 & VCP 5
    WIP: MCTS:70-236, PowerShell
  13. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    I totally agree with all of the above.. Well said Mike :iagree
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)

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