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Hello to all, looking to break into it suport

Discussion in 'New Members Introduction' started by davey399, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. davey399

    davey399 New Member

    Hello to all,

    My name is Dave (46) and from Manchester UK.
    As my children are all now in primary education, (been working from home part time as well as bringing my children up) I am now looking to resurrect a career in IT, particularly support. Have been in IT sales/purchasing for many years previous, however sales just doesn't do it for me anymore. Always had a keen interest in computers since I was young (gaming, internet etc) (SPECTRUM 48K + TAPE DRIVE - WHO REMEMBERS THAT?)

    Been browsing the cert forums for a while and looking for the necessary certs to get me started (at the bottom I know). I'm not put off by my age, nor the experience, nor the exams etc

    Just wanted to pop in here and say hello before posting elsewhere about the certs,

  2. SimonD
    Honorary Member

    SimonD Terabyte Poster

    I have started this reply a couple of times, each time deciding that it was coming across too... I don't know, snarky so here goes my not so snarky response.

    Unfortunately most people use certification as a means of gaining entry in to IT and for the most part they choose the wrong certification to try to do that with.

    Unfortunately at your stage of career you're really looking at something like the A+ as the basic certification to show prospective employers that you know one end of a cable from the other, anything more than this not only de-values the harder certifications, it also makes a mockery of the fact that the vendors advise 12+ months of experience\exposure to the technologies before attempting them.

    I think that ideally you would probably also want to have a look at the ITIL Foundation exam, this is a very dry subject but would give you an excellent idea of why companies follow the processes that they do, what different roles mean and why it's a good idea to have decent process defined and followed. I also think that it's a benefit to any employer if you show that kind of knowledge as an entry level engineer.

    I should warn you that gone are the days of IT being the well paid job of yesteryear, with offshoring smartsourcing it's becoming cheaper and easier to offload what used to be in-house roles to external providers so you may find that it's not as easy getting your foot in the door as it would have been 10 years ago.

    Good luck tho.
    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).
  3. davey399

    davey399 New Member

    Simon, thanks for taking the time to reply. I can imagine lots of people come here asking the same kind of thing as I have, so I appreciate your reply

    I knew it would be hard for me to break into a support role straight away, given the experience employers naturally want, but I feel determined and motivated to pursue this type of career. As I said I have lots of sales & purchasing experience of both components & software down the years and have had experience building pcs (many years ago) fitting components etc & also when upgrading my own gaming rig. So I have the basics, if you like, in my head but I also know there's a lot more to it than that & It's going to take a lot of study (and money too) as, like you said, employers will want to see some kind of certification, rather than me simply saying 'I can do that' etc.

    The A+ cert you mentioned, is this the COMPTIA A+ certification?
    I'll certainly look at the ITIL foundation exam too

    Cheers again
  4. FlashDangerpants

    FlashDangerpants Byte Poster

    To get your first job in IT you will need enthusiasm, persistence, and the kind of grim determination that will propel you through some long and boring days, weeks and months of repetitive entry level work. Do study for A+, N+ and then something else, but don't waste time holding off, you don't need those in advance.

    You've followed processes in your other jobs, you can communicate and prioritise. You are already qualified to get started. FYI, most starter positions in this game involve logging, prioritising and distributing calls. Often that is all you do for your first role. Along with a lot of chasing of engineers who don't update tickets. It sounds kind of crap, but people who get on with it and show some talent generally get noticed and promoted pretty quickly.
    Certifications: MCITP Exchange 2010, MCSA Svr 2012
    WIP: Exchange 2013
  5. Alex_xelA

    Alex_xelA New Member

    I read that nodding, thinking "yes, yes, yes AND YES!"
    you summed it up in a nut shell

    The current position I'm in (first ever IT position) is a Service Desk position and the staff from the "IT Desktop Support" & "IT Infrastructre" departments who progressed to those departments from the service desk, consider it as "doing your time" when starting off in IT and having been in the service desk role for only 7 weeks I can see what they're talking about

    About 60%-70% of my job at the moment involves tedious administration, password resets and dealing with tickets passed to me that have pages and pages of audit trails on them majority of the time leading me to go on a wild goose chase trying to work out whats happened to these tickets whos done what and what needs to happen to it now

    but thankfully the other 40%-30% of my time I can spend doing remote connections to other users in the hospital fixing their issues or doing fixes on loan laptops bought in etc

    Comptia A+ to begin with for sure and just as Simon mentioned there's even some others out there that you can take alongside an A+

    Good luck on your studies and job hunt! :)
    Certifications: None at present
    WIP: Comptia A+
  6. Sparky
    Highly Decorated Member Award

    Sparky Zettabyte Poster Moderator

    Fair to say you can still earn good money in IT but these opportunities are not and frequent as what they were a few years ago?

    Agree that the “get the MCSE and earn 30k” jobs have gone but that was all during the IT boom and the MCSE was on Server 2000.

    I wouldn’t discourage anyone from wanting to get into IT because of the low £££ but it is a hard slog if you want to earn good money and you also need some luck along the way as well.
    Certifications: MSc MCSE MCSA:M MCSA:S MCITP:EA MCTS(x5) Security+ Network+ A+
    WIP: Office 365, Server 2016, CEH
  7. Messiah74

    Messiah74 Bit Poster

    Hey davey

    first if all welcome to the forum , I only just joined myself :)

    I have read the other replies and to be honest everyone is right and giving you the benefit of their experience so far. So let me start by doing the same.

    For years I worked in sales and then catering and catering management , pretty much my whole career was working my way up from grass roots to middle management and my interest was always building PCs And troubleshooting PC and Mac environments , I started offering my services to friends and then to their friends , pretty soon I was known as a lot if us probably are as that guy who "knew computers". I was holding down a challenging position Tuesday through Saturday and then in my days off fixing I.t **** and well it didn't seem like work. So one weekend after helping out setting up a basic network share this guy said to me " don't you hate doing this at the weekend after doing it all week ? ". At that point I guess my life changed. For some stupid reason I had been telling myself that I.t jobs were for professionals and people with super brains and a list of qualifications and here I was being regarded as one of those people. So I started to research , looked at private training companies ( don't waste your time or money ) and spoke to people in the industry and decided to go it alone. I bought my first book to help me prep for my Comptia A+ . And well here I am now , in studying towards my MCSA qualification while employed as a support Analyst / Adminstrator supporting win 7 / 8 and 2003/2008 server environments.

    With your career already you prob learned to be a fantastic communicator , both written and face to face ( sales ) probably stereotyping a little there :) but that is at least 50% of any support role .so don't sell yourself short. You have knowledge of the hardware and probably inherently troubleshooting it when it goes wrong , so that is pretty much A+.

    So here is my addition , a lot of the certification exams at the basic level are multiple choice , so the answer is there and those with great memories and no understanding could pass them without a challenge. This is inherently the problem, you have to understand it and know why it's the answer too and be able to explain it in laments terms to relative monkeys , hence employers can want 2 -5 years experience supporting a particular environment. So my advice is whist taking your A+ and maybe N+ , ITIL , do repeated break fix on win 7 and 8 , even volunteer at local PC repair store for a few hours every week to get loads of exposure. Anything that let's you understand the theory and not just regurgitate it for test purposes.

    Hope at least some piece of this helped in addition to the great reply's so far ,

    Your motivated , passionate and already have a lot of the skills , all you need is the proof of your knowledge :)
    Certifications: Comptia A+ , Comptia N+ , C.C.N.A
    WIP: M.C.S.A

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