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Isn't it like going for the driving test again?

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by Indo77, Jun 6, 2007.

  1. Indo77

    Indo77 Nibble Poster

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    Why do I say that, because I failed it quite a few times before I actually got there. My position is that my job description is not an IT job (I am a PA for a web team) but in reality I am unofficially an asp.net developer in my job. I have found this to be at my disadvantage since every job I go for specifies that you are a developer. So what is experience? I have registered with many recruitment agencies but still nothing even though they promise the world. I am not interested in doing certs, I have already a degree and a HNC. I know people say you should but I am tired out with academic courses.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons) HNC
  2. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    You don't have to take a course to get certified. If you've got the knowledge, just knock the test out.

    You might be "tired" of training, but certifications are a way to set yourself ahead of your competition. It *could* be the difference between your resume ending up in the "To Consider" pile and the trash bin.
     
    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!
  3. greenbrucelee
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    greenbrucelee Zettabyte Poster

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    I was like you at first, I have a HND in computing but and every qualification I have done since I left school was an IT one, but after conversing with the good people on here I decided that if I can get the A+ then hopefully it will give me the edge when I go for an interview.

    As BM said If you think you can pass without doing a course then do it. I on the other hand am doing a course as I have not actually done any IT related stuff for 8 years now.

    More recognition through certs or quals can only be a good thing in the end
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, Security+, 70-270
    WIP: 70-620 or 70-680?
  4. Tartanbill

    Tartanbill Bit Poster

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    What is your actual job description and what do you actually do on a day to day basis?

    If there is quite a disparity then speak to your boss and see if you can get an official change of role to something that sounds a lot better.

    For example, if you were the PA to the network team then "Infrastructure Platform Co-ordinator" would sound far more impressive :)
     
  5. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    I totally agree with tartan, in the days of 'floor technition' (read cleaner) etc the job title these days is frequently meaningless.

    I'm curisous why did they recruit a PA for the web team, and what is your degree and HNC in?

    Speak to your manager about whether they could change your job title or at least what they see as your core responsibilities. Perhaps you could get on the core team and they could recruit another PA ? Obviously its best to try this before you job hunt but some employers may not take this well. So you will have to make a judgement call.

    If you have problems with this approach then you can still change your title on your CV as long as it realistically reflects what you do (PA / Developer? Assistant to Development Team ? Development Assistant ?). You can then outline your responsibilites and the proportion of PA / developer duties you perform. Todays workplaces don't always fit into the clean perceptions of recruiters as i've mentioned on other threads. Some workplaces write really bad job descriptions and have crap job titles, why copy them onto your CV if they aren't representative ?

    Of course as has been stated your new employers will request references and check on you as part of their due dilligence. As long as you were truthful in explaining your skills and experience then a slight difference in description should not be an issue.

    I've had many jobs, I don't worry that much if I write engineer, programmer, analyst, developer, architect, consultant etc doesn't really matter as long as it broadly describes what I do and the job description is accurate.

    I agree certs aren't for everyone especially people who've been in the industry some time, many people myself included entered the industry before cert programs exisited. Why certify in something you are already an expert and have years of experience ? The cramming will be very boring and your experience can speak for itself, better to apply your time to learning something more advanced.
    Certs to me are most useful when some study is already required, if you know networking but are learning checkpoint or cisco hardware, or maybe you're a good programmer but don't know the latest language ?

    I was a Windows C++ developer for 7 years, I learnt OLE/COM/DCOM/COM+, OLE DB/ADO, ATL, MFC, Win16, Win32, WTL as well as being very interested in open standards and non microsoft technologies. I don't have a single Microsoft developer exam/cert for many reasons.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  6. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Because certifications can *still* set yourself apart from your competition. If you've got a bunch of experience, but few or no certifications, I'll wonder about your motivation and lack of initiative. I put several resumes in the "other stack" for this very reason when I was searching for my replacement at my previous job. Certification was usually the difference when comparing people of similar experience levels.

    Plus, some employers require certifications. Take a look at the job search sites... employers certainly require experience... but most ALSO require certification. Sure, you CAN get a job without certifications... but your job opportunities open up a lot with BOTH experience AND certification. It's worked for me: I have yet to be unemployed, and I've got my pick of wonderful jobs to choose from.
     
    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. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    I was not making a personal point, I have experience, a degree and certs and can also pick from many positions.

    Yes certs help discern you from your peers but then so could an MSc or many other things.

    My point is that many certifications only cover basic use and only test for a basic understanding of a subject (Sure there are exceptions to this). They are also role and industry specific, IT support is covered much better than other areas. Certifications are therefore not for everyone, if I'm doing computational physics do I really need some certs ? If i'm doing linux device driver development, what cert should I get ? If I'm a games developer what cert should I get ?

    The certification industry is very useful for certain things, it is however not universally useful to everyone.

    that is why I said this :-

    Yes I think its very important to actively manage your career, ensuring you go the extra mile to get certs (where available) when you learn new topics.
    I'm less convinced going over old ground is useful for people with alot of experience that are not rusty.

    Also as I mentioned certs may not pertain to my field of expertise.
    Certs are not the only way to prove initiative, excellence, deadication, commitment or any one of a number of other traits.
    I might be a member of an expert working group, a standards body, a local user group, I might go to international conferences or I might write open source.


    I have recruited people, the fact that you employ people and vet their CV's matters little in the context of the point I was making.
    I recruited my last replacement and I gave the job to someone with no certs.

    For the record I think Indo could certainly benefit from some Web Developer related certifications.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  8. BosonMichael
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    BosonMichael Yottabyte Poster

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    Yes, it can, and does.

    There's not a certification for Linux device driver development or computational physics or chemistry research. Nor is there a certification for wooden cabinet repair. Doesn't change the fact that there ARE certifications for certain job responsibilities... so you shouldn't just discount them out of hand.

    Certifications don't simply test on a basic understanding of a subject. And on this, you'll have to simply believe me, or not; that's my career field.

    It's important only because some employers expect their individuals to be certified. If they *truly* know their stuff, it's not such a hassle. And if you don't certify, you automatically block yourself out of certain jobs because of that fact. Even if ONE employer has that mindset, that's ONE job you've missed out on. And whether it's fair or not, MANY employers have that mindset.

    I never said they were the only way. However, it is *a* way. The fact that I use it as a criterion when weeding through resumes should be enough of a warning to cause people to think, "Wow, do other employers do the same thing?". Because some of them do. Doesn't matter that we see things differently; if only SOME of them use lack of certification to disqualify people, MY point is proven that lack of certification limits your job prospects.

    Doesn't mean you CAN'T get a good job without certifications... I never said they couldn't. After all, an individual might end up with a company who thinks similarly to you. But if they end up with ANYONE who thinks similarly to me, they've lost that chance... whereas someone WITH certifications would be appealing to BOTH me AND you.
     
    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!
  9. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    I think if you read my post you will find that It was a balanced post concerning the pros and cons of certs relevant to the title of this thread. I never discounted certifications 'out of hand' as you put it.

    Many employers will expect many things, you won't be able to please all of them, you also have a finite amout of time in your life. Its unlikely for instance that you would undertake an MSc in maths, do a full time job and self sudy for IT certs at the same time.
    As you yourself have pointed out multiple times you did not pursue a career in Chemistry because it required a Masters or a Phd. There are still many jobs where this is the case, if either of us were to apply for these positions we would probably not get the job regardless of any number of certifications.

    Quips on cabinet making and pig farming aside, there are many areas where a deep knowledge of computing could be very useful, battlefield simulation, mapping the human genome etc New degrees are springing up all the time, theres many combined chemistry/computing degrees now.
    The routes into these postions probably won't involve certs.

    I will state again I am in no way 'anti certs', you can clearly see that I have studied for multiple Sun certs which are well regarded and have had a positive impact on my career. My certs involved multiple exams and two assignments, one involving submitting a working program. I'm also aware of the Cisco lab based exams.

    I still think most certifications are limited by the method of multiple choice testing to be only entry level qualifications. I think most people in education will argue that this is not the best way to test an individuals knowledge or understanding. Look at practically every other type of qualification and you will see many different types of testing being applied to the student.

    There was a very interesting study perfromed by Arnold Arons Paper, Video (2 minutes in...)where physics graduates could not create a simple electrical circuit. This shows that even experts can get it wrong, the tutors thought they had taught their students well, they had passed the exams, but obviously something was missing...
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  10. Indo77

    Indo77 Nibble Poster

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    I am a personal assistant to one of the web development team members who is disabled. My degree is in web technology and my HNC is in Computing. There is a Sharepoint job coming up in our place so I will give it a go. It has been what I have been doing this past 6 months. Do you understand why I do not care to be retaking more exams. I spent 7 years of my life on Computer/Development courses and it just gets so tiring and repetitive. They all promise the world but deliver nothing.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons) HNC

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