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What to do next?

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by doppers, Aug 13, 2012.

  1. doppers

    doppers Bit Poster

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    Hi All,

    I'm wondering if could get some advice. I have been at a company for around 5 years now and we have recently gone through an upgrade on the infrastructure from Windows XP desktops to Citrix Xen App, this has been . Unfortunately for me this work has now been outsourced to another company and I blatantly have no chance of any proper further server administration experience and I am just doing basic 1st & 2nd Line support. Before we did this upgrade we were using Windows server 2003 and exchnage 2003 with some servers virtualised and have now gone to AD & Exch 2010 with Windows server 2008 R2 . I was promoted to team leader but i believe this was just a title with decent pay.

    I'm now in a situation that i believe if i don't make any changes to my situation i will become stagnant tand before i know it be out of the game technology wise. After speaking to a recruiter friend of mine he has said that even though i have had exposure to different OS' and hardware (not mentioned) i will be seen as a sort of 'generalist' in IT and this will not take me that far. The only official training i have had is an ITIL certification.

    I would really like to improve my job opportunities but feel like i'm at a cross road at what i should do next. After reading through a number of forums and again speaking to my recruiter it seems that i should find a niche area and focus on becoming skilled in the in that. The problem with that is that i generally love all aspects of IT and am not sure which area i should focus on.

    Just wanted to put this out there and see if anyone else has been in a similiar situation and what possible courses or actions they took to make them more attractive to propective employers.

    Thanks
     
  2. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

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    It’s good to have some core skills but don’t think you have to specialise in one area.

    I generally work with AD\Exchange but this week I have a firewall migration for a web hosting company, Cisco VLAN setup for a school and then I am migrating a print server for an existing customer as part of a new managed print solution. Some other work will probably be scheduled to get the £££ in as well.

    I would get some certs on your CV mate to compliment your 5 years experience and then start applying for jobs that appeal to you.
     
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Exchange 2007\2010
  3. doppers

    doppers Bit Poster

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    Thanks Sparky......you are right! I know i need to do this as you would in most professions. I think when i wrote above i had one of those realisation days about what direction my life was going :-)
     
  4. silverbull stoperror

    silverbull stoperror New Member

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    Cisco certification is the best in the business and can turn your career
    around. Cisco encourage employers to take on certified staff so
    employers WANT certified staff. Try CCNA............
     
  5. PAT

    PAT Byte Poster

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    You could always ask the company who have taken the work from you if they have any jobs. Or as the others have said start working on some MS/Cisco certs.
     
  6. SimonD

    SimonD Terabyte Poster Moderator

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    See I disagree with this, it may be the best in the business if you're in the Cisco business but it's not the best in the Microsoft or VMware business arena.

    Yes having a Cisco certification can be very fulfilling but tbh I never got the use out of it and never bothered going beyond the first CCNA (which expired years ago).

    Certification is really only ever any good if you're using that technology on a day to day basis and is useless having certification in a product you don't use regularly \ ever.

    Oh and don't forget that Cisco aren't the only player around in the core networking arena either, you have a multitude of others offering just as good if not better equipment out there (Extreme Networks, Juniper, Arista etc).

    There is nothing wrong with being a generalist, I still class myself as one because I haven't specialised in a particular product but have a broad understanding of a load of different ones. It hasn't held me back at all.
     
    Certifications: CNA | CNE | CCNA | MCP | MCP+I | MCSE NT4 | MCSA 2003 | Security+ | MCSA:S 2003 | MCSE:S 2003 | MCTS:SCCM 2007 | MCTS:Win 7 | MCITP:EDA7 | MCITP:SA | MCITP:EA | MCTS:Hyper-V | VCP 4 | ITIL v3 Foundation | VCP 5 DCV | VCP 5 Cloud | VCP6 NV | VCP6 DCV | VCAP 5.5 DCA
    WIP: VCP6-CMA, VCAP-DCD and Linux + (and possibly VCIX-NV).
    Sparky likes this.
  7. doppers

    doppers Bit Poster

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    Thanks again guys.......one point that keeps being pointed out is that it dosen't matter too much about being a generalist i simply need to get some certs!!!!
     
  8. Beerbaron

    Beerbaron Megabyte Poster

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    Does the CCNA expire or does it just expire if you wanted to take the CCNP?
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), MSc, ITIL v3F, MCP, MCDST, MCITP: edst7, MCTS, MCSA: Server 2003, MCSA: Windows 7, N+, NVQ IT lvl 3, MCSA Windows 7, VCP5, CCENT, CEH
    WIP: CISSP
  9. SimonD

    SimonD Terabyte Poster Moderator

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    Yes, the CCNA\P expires every three years.
     
    Certifications: CNA | CNE | CCNA | MCP | MCP+I | MCSE NT4 | MCSA 2003 | Security+ | MCSA:S 2003 | MCSE:S 2003 | MCTS:SCCM 2007 | MCTS:Win 7 | MCITP:EDA7 | MCITP:SA | MCITP:EA | MCTS:Hyper-V | VCP 4 | ITIL v3 Foundation | VCP 5 DCV | VCP 5 Cloud | VCP6 NV | VCP6 DCV | VCAP 5.5 DCA
    WIP: VCP6-CMA, VCAP-DCD and Linux + (and possibly VCIX-NV).
  10. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    About Recertification - IT Certification and Career Paths - Cisco Systems

    CCNA expires after 3 years if you don't take a Cisco qualifying exam that will extend it. Basically you need to take a Cisco exam every 2-3 years for rest of your life, not something non networking specialists probably want to get involved in.

    I may take CCENT one day just to brush up on my networking, but I wouldn't bother maintaining it.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  11. Beerbaron

    Beerbaron Megabyte Poster

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    There must be a lot of people with CCNAs that have expired then. Once it has expired can people technically still say they have a CCNA?
     
    Certifications: BSc (Hons), MSc, ITIL v3F, MCP, MCDST, MCITP: edst7, MCTS, MCSA: Server 2003, MCSA: Windows 7, N+, NVQ IT lvl 3, MCSA Windows 7, VCP5, CCENT, CEH
    WIP: CISSP
  12. dmarsh

    dmarsh Terabyte Poster

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    You can list it as expired on your CV, listing it as active probably breaks Cisco's rules on misrepresentation.
     
    Certifications: CITP, BSc, HND, SCJP, SCJD, SCWCD, SCBCD, SCEA, N+, Sec+, Proj+, Server+, Linux+, MCTS, MCPD, MCSA, MCITP, CCDH
  13. Monkeychops

    Monkeychops Kilobyte Poster

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    I had a brief spell specialising in a particular product, kind of fell into it as it was something I knew well in one role as part of being a generalist when I got offered a role mainly dealing with that one thing.

    Now I guess I'm a generalist within a particular area if that makes sense (security), I don't focus on just one particular aspect of security.

    Sounds like a sales pitch ;)

    Cisco certification is likely 'the best' if as said you are working with Cisco kit day in day out.

    It is by no means the best if you don't.

    Certainly nowhere near 'the best' say for my role where having that would make no difference what so ever.

    As we always say it's all about relevance and context, pursue the certifications that are relevant in the field in which you are or want to be working in.
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2012

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