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Job skills in high demand...

Discussion in 'Employment & Jobs' started by snuffy, Nov 27, 2010.

  1. snuffy

    snuffy New Member

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    Hi all,

    I am interested to know your collective thoughts on what job skills are/will be in demand, with a view to getting some direction in where to invest my studies next. i.e. which ladder to climb! Linux/Security/Cisco etc, etc.

    I am inclined towards the infrastructure side, rather than any of the software development avenues, and certainly can't afford to be on a 1st/2nd line support salary for my whole career.

    I have just passed CompTIA N+ today, and also have the A+. I am currently employed as a service desk analyst (1st & 2nd line support), and am relatively new to the commercial side of IT, but very much loving it so far!

    I look forward to your thoughts,

    Cheers.
     
  2. westernkings

    westernkings Gigabyte Poster

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    You're a bit to early on to be thinking of specialising. You need to get the business side of IT nailed first and remember, what's in demand now, may not be tomorrow. So specialise in something you are passionate about but don't specialise in something that limits your choices at the expense of any other skills.
     
    Certifications: MCITP:VA, MCITP:EA, MCDST, MCTS, MCITP:EST7, MCITP:SA, PRINCE2, ITILv3
  3. free.heron

    free.heron Nibble Poster

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    There seems to be a push on virtualisation at the moment (vmware etc) - which would go nicely alongside your infrastructure path providing you can get the relavent experience.

    Hope that helps
     
    Certifications: ITIL v3
    WIP: CCENT
  4. steve_p1981

    steve_p1981 Byte Poster

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    i have heard that cloud computing is the way to go. I don't really know exactly what it is, but my understanding is that you have all your files and programs etc loaded on one pc and that gets synched with an online source and you can then use any pc to log into it and use it as your own. not sure if this is entirely accurate but it would make sense as everything is becoming virtual one way or another
     
    Certifications: A+ 220-701 and 220-702
    WIP: none at current but poss 70-680 soon
  5. cosway

    cosway Nibble Poster

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    I vote for VMWare and Cloud computing if you want to stay away from software development and earn cash money. Big problem with VMWare is the required course for certification - no self study (please, please, please tell me I'm wrong, it would make my mates and manager go green/red and pruple if I could come into work one monday morning and add the VMWare logo/cert to my outlook signiture).

    "Oh hello senior management peoples, whats that...?
    ... you notice I'm VMWare cert, and would like me to spear head your new drive to virtualsation...?
    ... and you'd like me to take one of the offices up in the nice part of the building...? and not deal with numptys who keep hitting the delete button instead of save...?
    ...and is this my new telephone number or salery? - I keep getting them mixed up as they are so simular" - one day :biggrin
     
    Certifications: MCDST, MCSA, A+
    WIP: MCSE
  6. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    Clouding computing (data centre skills) and virtualisation technologies like VMWare ESX, Microsoft Hyper-V and Citrix Xenserver. Citrix skills like Xenapps and Xendesktop (the latter looks very interesting tech). I also think server management skills and rollout skills will be in demand.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 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
  7. orangepeeleo

    orangepeeleo Nibble Poster

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    I'm in almost the same boat as the OP with thinking about the future after doing a support role, what do you mean by the business side of IT??
     
    Certifications: A+
    WIP: N+
  8. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    The OP has indicated that he is new to the commercial side of IT support. Walk before you can run and all that.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  9. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

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    What about the following specialist security areas?

    • Ethical Hacking
    • Digital/Computer Forensics, which is what I am wanting to work towards as a long term goal

    Are they too narrow/niche specific for long-term career advancement and prospects? I think getting a job within these areas, location wise is another matter altogether though.

    Any thoughts on this?
     
  10. westernkings

    westernkings Gigabyte Poster

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    I think they are a bit of a gimmick now a days. I think the best thing any one in IT can do is combine a solid technical background and Certification path with Business knowledge and a business degree. Technical ability only gets you so far.

    Keep it well rounded but specialised to avoid putting all your eggs into a basket that may not even exist at some point.
     
    Certifications: MCITP:VA, MCITP:EA, MCDST, MCTS, MCITP:EST7, MCITP:SA, PRINCE2, ITILv3
  11. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

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    I definitely agree with your point of view in that an IT professional also needs to have business awareness. However, contrasting this with my experience so far I am 24 yrs old, graduated 2nd class with a Business IT degree back in 2008 and currently just working in an outsourced call centre for an ISP client as T1 support. It has been well over a year since Sep 2009. All for £7 per hour (50p wage increase after 1 yr), at 42.5 hrs per week.

    I am currently studying for the A+ in order to build upon my technical knowledge but most of what I learned from my BIT degree has not been applicable apart from the technical elements. :(

    Out of all those who I've known since secondary school is a friend who graduated with a games software engineering degree and doing really well at the moment. Working for a local games development company, part of Ubisoft. He even dropped back a year in order to progress onto the 1st year of the games programming degree, after successfully passing the HND first year.

    Then again, another who started off on the same ICT foundation degree as me then decided to do another 3 yrs on a Computer Forensics degree ended up at the same company I'm at, quite recently. :rolleyes:

    All of us reside in the NE by the way, specifically Newcastle.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
  12. Shinigami

    Shinigami Megabyte Poster

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    Well, yes and no would be my answer.

    Let me give an example of cloud computing:

    Hotmail and Gmail

    Here's another example:

    MSN and AIM

    And yet another:

    Facebook and MySpace

    In a way they're all cloud computing based offerings. The service is out there in the "cloud", i.e. on the internet. They host services for you such as email, instant messaging or information sharing via status updates and music clips.

    Different companies offer different types of cloud computing services. For example, Microsoft has an Exchange (messaging) offer that can be installed internally within a given company, but we also have Exchange Online which allows companies to offload mailbox management to Microsoft versus a fee whereupon they only pay what they consume (an often attractive offer since companies rarely know how to size their requirements precisely and either purchase too many, or too few servers and licenses to manage their environment). All servers and licenses are kept in-house at Microsoft, very little may need to be deployed to the customers organization (maybe Outlook if you want it, but even webmail is an option and now we have Office 365).

    In a way it does mean what you think it means, i.e. the data is out there, available to you from just about any machine, but it can also be geared to be available for companies solely on their premise.

    Other examples exist and just about everyone will explain the above in their own way, but it helps to think of todays cloud computing offered by companies such as Microsoft and Google as a subscription service where companies can delegate the whole service to the companies from which they purchase the offering on a need basis.

    More info if you're interested: http://www.microsoft.com/online/default.aspx

    This is slowly replacing the need for internal IT staff, but it doesn't replace them entirely, and an increasing number of staff will be needed by the companies offering such services, to manage the offer, and in some cases, to sell more of it. So saying that, IT Sales may also be something to look at if placing your hands deep into hardware or software ends up not being your thing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
    Certifications: MCSE, MCITP, MCDST, MOS, CIW, Comptia
    WIP: Win7/Lync2010/MCM
  13. westernkings

    westernkings Gigabyte Poster

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    Have you tried moving onto another role? the only thing stopping anyone from making a upwards move (regardless of how little that move is) is their own mentality. Get your CV Brushed off and start believing in the **** you sell. If you want an IT Career (not just the job) then you need to have a clear goal. Stop stagnating, specialising won't help you! What will is a move to another company where you can get a wider technical skill set and increase your value as an employee.

    A degree won't do much at the bottom, I doubt it will do much in any technical role I think. I'm about to start a BSc in International Studies and then a MSc in Global Development Management because my goal isn't to specialise technically, it's to create the best foundation for the next major leap in my career and that's what you should be doing.

    First case, is start increasing your technical base by shifting roles to another firm and then you can specialise. Get it done mate :) In all bluntness, the best places for quick technical knowledge increases are small businesses, being a bigger fish in a small pond is a lot more helpful to your career than being a nobody in a big pond.


    See above mate, especially the bottom paragraph, short end of it is that IT will be shifting so you need to get as far as possible, as quickly and as efficiently as possible and will your current role allow you to do that?
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
    Certifications: MCITP:VA, MCITP:EA, MCDST, MCTS, MCITP:EST7, MCITP:SA, PRINCE2, ITILv3
  14. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

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    Thanks WesternKings. I know what your saying is true and definitely good advice. I have already applied to numerous job postings by agencies before, online, particulary through reed.co.uk but hardly receive many responses.

    Truthfully I'm also afraid I would likely be incapable in doing a higher level or actual technician job, knowing I currently lack certain skills/knowledge required (eg. Active Directory, Exchange). It is why my plan was to stick around in my current employment and move on after achieving maybe just the A+ first or once prepared.

    I tend to find, where I'm based, it would just be another call centre or dealing with yet again T1 ISP work with my current level of ability. What's your outlook on this, for someone in my position?

    By the way here is an interesting article about top ten certifications but only from a personal perspective. Not suprised Microsoft is at the top but nice to have the A+ and N+ part of it.

    http://www.zdnet.co.uk/news/jobs/2010/09/23/ten-most-valuable-certifications-for-it-pros-40090072/
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  15. zebulebu

    zebulebu Terabyte Poster

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    Best career advice I can give to anyone in the UK is, sadly, 'move to London'. All the best jobs, salaries and progression opportunities are here.
     
    Certifications: A few
    WIP: None - f*** 'em
  16. jk2447

    jk2447 Petabyte Poster Moderator

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    Sorry Zeb, as much as you kick my ass technically, I don't agree. I respect your comments but I believe the cost of living more often cancels out the few grand more you get working in London. IMHO London is over rated as you can do most IT jobs remotely from anywhere in the world. I personally think, and I'm no expert, that its more important 'who' you work for rather then 'where' you work. Just my opinion and in no way trying to argue with fellow members. To give an unbiased example, Cheltenham. You work for you know who there for 3 years, the world is literally your oyster.

    To the original poster, skills that are most in demand? There are a few but you would be better asking yourself what interests you and going from there. SCCM is in demand but you may hate it. Its better to do your reseach based on what floats your boat TBH mate as one mans dream job can be anothers nightmare!

    Jim
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), HND IT, HND Computing, ITIL-F, MBCS CITP, MCP (270,290,291,293,294,298,299,410,411,412) MCTS (401,620,624,652) MCSA:Security, MCSE: Security, Security+, CPTS, VCP4, CCA (XenApp6.5), MCSA 2012, VCP5, VCP6-NV
  17. Albert

    Albert Bit Poster

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    Ha! Coincidently I saw a job posting for SCCM the other day, over here, Jim. lol

    I already know what floats my boat Jim or at least feel that way. Getting a job in it is another matter.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2010
  18. jk2447

    jk2447 Petabyte Poster Moderator

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    And what is that sir? Two SCCM contractors sit a few feet away from me (up north) on a pretty penny.
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), HND IT, HND Computing, ITIL-F, MBCS CITP, MCP (270,290,291,293,294,298,299,410,411,412) MCTS (401,620,624,652) MCSA:Security, MCSE: Security, Security+, CPTS, VCP4, CCA (XenApp6.5), MCSA 2012, VCP5, VCP6-NV
  19. LukeP

    LukeP Gigabyte Poster

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    I agree. Also working for Microsoft or Oracle in Reading can't hurt your career.
     
    WIP: Uhmm... not sure
  20. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    Very Niche market so unless you live in a big IT area or are willing to travel I would think carefully about specialising in that area of expertise.
     
    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

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