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Work Dilemma

Discussion in 'Training & Development' started by exonje, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    Hi guys. For the last 5+ years I worked for a local computer repair company, then I went to uni and they had to replace me. Since then I have dropped out of uni and found a job as a tech advisor and work 1 day a week still as a computer technician at my previous employer. Now I want to get back into IT and find a support job and was wondering if you guys could give me a push in the right direction? I want to try and find a 1st line supporr / helpdesk job and waswondering if my past experience will be enough to land me a job? If not, what quals should I look at getting? Should I go with A+ or straight into Micro certs? Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
     
  2. Boffy

    Boffy Megabyte Poster

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    Don't wait for any certifications before applying for jobs - I'd advise you to apply for any IT First line roles you can find while simply putting on your CV that you are currently self-studying for the A+.

    It shows to anyone looking at the CV that you're motivated and willing to learn, while also understanding the importance real-life experience.
     
    Certifications: BSc Computer Game Technology, A+
    WIP: MOS 2010
  3. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    Would you say the A+ is worth doing even though I have been working for a computer repair company for the last 7 years?
     
  4. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    In your case, I would think 7 years of hands-on experience would be sufficient evidence of your accomplishments. Certifications are just (in theory) supposed to confirm that you already know what you're doing. I don't know what it's like in your particular job market, but when I was doing this sort of work, just having an A+ cert seemed to get me a lot of contract work. It probably wouldn't hurt to work toward getting an A+ and/or Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST) at some point, but like Boffy said, start applying for jobs now. My son got a job as tier one tech support for pre-paid phone service with absolutely no experience in that field and then worked his way up to tier 2.

    Like the mini-sloth said in Ice Age 2, "worth a shot".
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  5. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    Every job I look at seems to want server experience with active directory and exchange (which I don't have). What's the best way to get this? Make my own server and play about? What Microsoft cert is the best to learn these?
     
  6. tripwire45
    Honorary Member

    tripwire45 Zettabyte Poster

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    I want to try and find a 1st line supporr / helpdesk job and waswondering if my past experience will be enough to land me a job?

    Wow! Every 1st line helpdesk job wants you to have AD and Exchange experience? I certainly see where that can be an advantage, but tier one support isn't exactly a high paying job. You could try applying anyway (couldn't hurt) to see if you can get an interview. Those quals may be their "pie-in-the-sky" list but sometimes a prospective employer will hire the best candidate, even if they don't meet 100% of the requirements, and then train the person to help meet the gaps.

    Start applying for work now and then consider enhancing your skill sets with self-training as things go along.
     
    Certifications: A+ and Network+
  7. Monkeychops

    Monkeychops Kilobyte Poster

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    As I've said in a previous thread, whilst they might well be mentioning exchange and AD in a first line job description I'm sure if you dug deeper into what they mean they aren't talking about full on AD and exchange stuff.

    It'll be the basic admin type stuff, they are just wanting someone who has either seen it before or at least knows what it is etc.

    So yes whilst it must be frustrating for you guys starting out you need to look at the context in which they are talking about.

    A lot of first line jobs, all the ones I've known or been involved in, have involved some form of AD and exchange work.
     
  8. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    But they are listed as esstential skills. How would I go about learning these pieces of software?
     
  9. kevicho

    kevicho Gigabyte Poster

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    Your best bet is to set up a test server, and have a play.

    in first line you will be doing password resets, maybe adding groups etc, basic admin really
     
    Certifications: A+, Net+, MCSA Server 2003, 2008, Windows XP & 7 , ITIL V3 Foundation
    WIP: CCNA Renewal
  10. exonje

    exonje Byte Poster

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    I have a few spare/old machines knocking about. Does the server need to be of decent spec if being used for test purposes / basic things?
     
  11. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    Since the server is not going to be serving multiple hosts all at the same time, like in reality you should be able to run it on an old dog of a system. Server OSs are pretty lightweight compared to desktop OSs in terms of bloatware.
    If you're going to start playing with MS software in a lab environment you might like to check out technet subscriptions. The standard one gives you access to all but enterprise versions, apart from that you can download and play with pretty much any piece of MS software you want. It's around £160 for 1st year's subscription, cheaper for subsequent years by about 30% iirc.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2011
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  12. DryPlate

    DryPlate Nibble Poster

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    You can run a server and a client machine (always good to see what the user does) on one machine if you install the systems virtually and you don't need extra desk space that way. Doesn't matter how fast it runs cause you're only doing it for experience/exposure.
     
    Certifications: CompTIA A+, MCDST, Apple Certified Associate
    WIP: CompTIA Network+, MCITP: EDST 7
  13. soundian

    soundian Gigabyte Poster

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    I forgot to add the virtual option.
    I run an old machine as a server (with a KVM switch so I don't take up valuable desk space) and run different clients virtually on my main rig.
     
    Certifications: A+, N+,MCDST,MCTS(680), MCP(270, 271, 272), ITILv3F, CCENT
    WIP: Knuckling down at my new job
  14. Monkeychops

    Monkeychops Kilobyte Poster

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    As has been said, download the trial versions of the software available free from MS and have a play.

    But also remember that companies will ask for the moon on a stick with regards to requirements, I wouldn't worry if you don't meet one or two of the requirements even if they are listed as essential.

    It largely depends on what kind of role it is as well, whilst it may 'only' be first line roles it doesn't mean they don't want someone with experience. If it was specifically ntoed as a trainee type role then that's a bit different.

    Part of the problem now if that you will get experienced peopel going for these, what are deemed as, lower roles as there is a bit of a squeeze on jobs at the moment which bumps the competition up for each position up a notch.

    My last job had a list of requirements as long as my arm and I didn't have half of them!
     

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