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How to be a Networking Professional RRS feed

  • Question

  • I want to be a Computer Networking Professional.

    To do this, I have the following certifications: CompTIA A +, N +, Cisco CCNA. But with those certificates I can’t find a job as a Network technician, without production practice it is not possible. I was preparing to pass Cisco CCNP Routing exam, but I realized that I it will not help for me to find a job, without a real practice. So, I decided to start from the bottom of the IT industry and to get some Microsoft certification first, because it is easier way to find a good IT job. Now I am working as - Desktop support. My first exam for Microsoft certificate that I passed is - Windows 7, Configuring 70-680.

    My questions are:

    1.      How with Microsoft Certification to become a computer network professional?

    2.      What's next exam and what is the goal – Which certificate to obtain?

    3.      How can I utilize my CompTIA A + and N + certificates?

    4.      Should I take MCSA certificate or pick some newest certificates?

     

    I will appreciate for all advices.

    Monday, August 15, 2011 5:23 AM

Answers

  • Hi,

    regarding what you wrote, I have to tell you, that all certifications will not give you what you are missing: Practice!

    All certifications can only help you getting an interview appointment but they will never ever give you a job. At least that is what I saw so far (limited to a few copanies in germany). We are always looking exactly at the profile and what did the person do. If you have no practice, you will never ever get a job where practice is required (e.g. a job on senior level). You need to find a job for an apprentice where you can get your first experience and practice. And where you can learn, that a lot more is important than just some technical know how.

    To get back to Microsoft exams: There is no good exam to become a network professional. Microsoft offers certifications towards their products e.g. Windows Server. These exams also cover network specific areas but they are always based on a microsoft technology.

    If you decide to toke soe microsoft exams, I would suggest to target some newer MCTC / MCITP ones. Just check, which products are most important for you as network professional (If you have no practice so far, then maybe you have no idea, what knowledge is required? But you have to decide, what you want to do - if you want to be responsible for the main network, then you are not interested in any microsoft products. Then you want to learn all about network cards, cableing, switches and ronter, vlans, firewalls .... How to configure a Windows Server or a ISA Server or whatever wil come at the end I think.

    But I have to confess, that I do not know the exact job description of such a person. I am working as a software developer (which a small "pause" when I was active as system administrator responsible for software packaging / software distribution to AIX / OS/2 / Windows systems ....).

    So my main point is: certifications are not that much worth if you have no practice. People with no practice get some braindumps and pass the exam and get the certifications - but they do not have the knowledge and in an interview people will quickly find out ....

    With kind regards,

    Konrad

    • Marked as answer by Rubel Khan Sunday, August 21, 2011 7:05 AM
    Monday, August 15, 2011 9:25 AM
    Answerer
  • ...So my main point is: certifications are not that much worth if you have no practice. People with no practice get some braindumps and pass the exam and get the certifications - but they do not have the knowledge and in an interview people will quickly find out ....


    This...  You've already stated that you've got the following certs: A+, Network+, CCNA and the MCTS 70-680.  In my opinion as both an IT Manager and an IT Professional, put technical certs to one side now and concentrate on:

    1. Soft Skills and

    2. Gaining employment

    Now-a-days unless you're extremely lucky, you will not be able to just walk straight into a networking position - forget about all those ad's from training companies that say do this 4 week course and you'll be earning $50k/£30k because there is always some fine print tucked away somewhere, after all it's marketing.

    Look and apply for every entry level IT position, regardless of whether it's in a big company or your small to medium business (smb) - it's experience that you're after at the moment, not more certs, not a high paid position.  Also look at volunteering, if you can, this is another way to build and gain experience.  Network with other IT professionals, whether it's on a professional level (for example by joining a professional IT association, eg IET or the BCS in the UK - other countries have their own versions) or informally (eg via forums).

    Continue to gain and develop your soft skills, whether it's IT specific (eg ITIL) or generic (communication, team leading, etc).  Now a days IT is not just about the technical side, it's also about the customer and business.  What work experience (outside IT) do you have?  Maybe, you're not using those strengths and skills that you've learnt on those jobs on getting your foot in the door in IT?  Eg your CV/cover letter may need to be re-worded - play on your strengths. 

    Another word of advice, be realistic.  Alot of people think that they can jump right in and do the job for lots of money.  That is the first mistake alot of people make, remember you have to learn to walk before you can run and the same principles apply in any profession, including IT.  Again remember not only are you going for jobs that other people who want to gain their foot in the door are going for, but also people who have lost their IT jobs due to the recession.

    -Ken  


    -Ken | http://ken.wagnerfamily.co.uk
    • Marked as answer by Rubel Khan Sunday, August 21, 2011 7:06 AM
    Tuesday, August 16, 2011 8:21 AM

All replies

  • Hi,

    regarding what you wrote, I have to tell you, that all certifications will not give you what you are missing: Practice!

    All certifications can only help you getting an interview appointment but they will never ever give you a job. At least that is what I saw so far (limited to a few copanies in germany). We are always looking exactly at the profile and what did the person do. If you have no practice, you will never ever get a job where practice is required (e.g. a job on senior level). You need to find a job for an apprentice where you can get your first experience and practice. And where you can learn, that a lot more is important than just some technical know how.

    To get back to Microsoft exams: There is no good exam to become a network professional. Microsoft offers certifications towards their products e.g. Windows Server. These exams also cover network specific areas but they are always based on a microsoft technology.

    If you decide to toke soe microsoft exams, I would suggest to target some newer MCTC / MCITP ones. Just check, which products are most important for you as network professional (If you have no practice so far, then maybe you have no idea, what knowledge is required? But you have to decide, what you want to do - if you want to be responsible for the main network, then you are not interested in any microsoft products. Then you want to learn all about network cards, cableing, switches and ronter, vlans, firewalls .... How to configure a Windows Server or a ISA Server or whatever wil come at the end I think.

    But I have to confess, that I do not know the exact job description of such a person. I am working as a software developer (which a small "pause" when I was active as system administrator responsible for software packaging / software distribution to AIX / OS/2 / Windows systems ....).

    So my main point is: certifications are not that much worth if you have no practice. People with no practice get some braindumps and pass the exam and get the certifications - but they do not have the knowledge and in an interview people will quickly find out ....

    With kind regards,

    Konrad

    • Marked as answer by Rubel Khan Sunday, August 21, 2011 7:05 AM
    Monday, August 15, 2011 9:25 AM
    Answerer
  • I forget to mention, that MS certificates I will use as Trojan horse to get a Job at some big company with Big IT department, by this way I will be able to get jump from Desktop Support position to the some Computer Network position support. That how I will get field practice. I know it will take some time but Iam ready for that. 
    Monday, August 15, 2011 2:08 PM
  • ...So my main point is: certifications are not that much worth if you have no practice. People with no practice get some braindumps and pass the exam and get the certifications - but they do not have the knowledge and in an interview people will quickly find out ....


    This...  You've already stated that you've got the following certs: A+, Network+, CCNA and the MCTS 70-680.  In my opinion as both an IT Manager and an IT Professional, put technical certs to one side now and concentrate on:

    1. Soft Skills and

    2. Gaining employment

    Now-a-days unless you're extremely lucky, you will not be able to just walk straight into a networking position - forget about all those ad's from training companies that say do this 4 week course and you'll be earning $50k/£30k because there is always some fine print tucked away somewhere, after all it's marketing.

    Look and apply for every entry level IT position, regardless of whether it's in a big company or your small to medium business (smb) - it's experience that you're after at the moment, not more certs, not a high paid position.  Also look at volunteering, if you can, this is another way to build and gain experience.  Network with other IT professionals, whether it's on a professional level (for example by joining a professional IT association, eg IET or the BCS in the UK - other countries have their own versions) or informally (eg via forums).

    Continue to gain and develop your soft skills, whether it's IT specific (eg ITIL) or generic (communication, team leading, etc).  Now a days IT is not just about the technical side, it's also about the customer and business.  What work experience (outside IT) do you have?  Maybe, you're not using those strengths and skills that you've learnt on those jobs on getting your foot in the door in IT?  Eg your CV/cover letter may need to be re-worded - play on your strengths. 

    Another word of advice, be realistic.  Alot of people think that they can jump right in and do the job for lots of money.  That is the first mistake alot of people make, remember you have to learn to walk before you can run and the same principles apply in any profession, including IT.  Again remember not only are you going for jobs that other people who want to gain their foot in the door are going for, but also people who have lost their IT jobs due to the recession.

    -Ken  


    -Ken | http://ken.wagnerfamily.co.uk
    • Marked as answer by Rubel Khan Sunday, August 21, 2011 7:06 AM
    Tuesday, August 16, 2011 8:21 AM