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How can I get experience if no-one will give me a job

By steelejedi4 ·
If I were to send my CV and covering letter in application for a job to any company or employment agency, for a specific network technician/ engineer post. They would see that I have spent several years honing my IT qualifications to the point that I have the CompTIA Network+ Certificate and am studying for the CCNA Certification. But lacking is the practical expoerience gained in actual employment, this is the down fall and reason I keep facing rejection after rejection.

So can any one give me advice on how to break into this prestigious profession given the lack of experience, but the quality of theoretical knowledge I have.

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I think you have answered your own question...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to How can I get experience ...

Having honed your IT qualifications to the point you have, you are ONLY proficient in the theory of the job, the practical is still lacking. I would suggest one of two things:

1. Revise and redraft your CV to present your willingness over your theory abilities.

2. I would aim lower in the food-chain, rather than applying for IT posts you continue to be unsuccessful at.

When I left college I had a string of 'letters' after my name but soon discovered that in the real world letters is all they were. They really only prove that you can learn - not that you are already proficient. Just wait until someone is paying you to perform a task, under a strict deadline, with no possibility of any "resit" if you fail!

Pressure is a big factor here - and one you do not have a qualification in.

I would suggest you set your sights slightly lower.

You may also be failing due to your interview techniques. Your former college lecturers would be a good source of information in this respect.

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Intern

by clarkd038 In reply to I think you have answered ...

Maybe you should try to apply for Internships, this is a great way to hone your practical skills. And if all goes well they may hire you for a job when you are done.

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Geek Squad

by alphatech9 In reply to Intern

Do you have any degree? Certifications are nice, but a degree in computer science will go a lot farther, and most tech schools have employment contacts to get you in the door.

If you won't want to go the school route, try an entry level job (as these other guys said) at a place like the Geek Squad or something similar.

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My route

by Langlier In reply to How can I get experience ...

I went from college to a dead end job as a PC Tech, then to a better PC Tech job that involved networking. Now I'm working as an assistant Systems Coordinator (basically admin for this area) and this job should be a launching pad for bigger things.

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Baby steps, my friend

by mdphoenix In reply to My route

I'm assuming that you're still quite young and don't have the financial responsibilities that those of us supporting families do. If that is indeed the case, just find yourself a low-end PC tech job. As mentioned above. My first job was at Radio Shack! It stunk, it paid very little, BUT, it enabled me to learn how to communicate with co-workers and customers. I got an idea of what people exepected from me in the work place. AND, it's how I got my first real PC job. I was hired by a customer of mine. Anything you do that's even closely related to the field is going to potentially open doors for something better.

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Good advice, but...

by kpfreelance In reply to Baby steps, my friend

the danger in that is that you get pigeon-holed as a PC tech for life. No matter how much you invest in improving your skillset for say a career as a network engineer that's where a lot of companies will keep you. It's to their advantage to keep you there because they know it's hard to keep desktop support staff. Why you may ask? it's a deadly, mind-numbingly boring repetative job...

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You have to be proactive

by Langlier In reply to Good advice, but...

Don't sit at a job if you are pigeonholed. Start applying to different companies other then the one you are at. Desktop support is just a small sect of IT but its a good launching point.

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Which is what I did...

by kpfreelance In reply to You have to be proactive

however other companies also wanted at least 2 years of Cisco experience as well. Which brings us back to the beginning of the conundrum, little to no hands-on experience = no network job, or still stuck in desktop support. (I've got CNE & CCNA certs, for all the good it's done.) It seems companies don't want to bother with hiring entry-level network techs and training them.

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Try your best

by kobu.selva In reply to Which is what I did...

Keep applying and keep trying (some of the suggestions in previous replies are good).

All you can really do is try, the actual outcome of getting a job matters on so many factors that are outside of your control (let's group this all into something called LUCK). That's just how the world works my friend. I know people who fell ***-backwards into amazing jobs (that I knew they didn't deserve). Then afer a few years these people built up an amazing resume and could find a job easily. I also know people who were brilliant and hardworking but just didn't get that good opportunity. Some ended up taking not-so-great jobs (like testing things) and then that set their careers back severely for many many years.

What can you do? Try your best and keep looking. Don't blame yourself for not trying.

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Older but new to IT

by watcher2 In reply to Baby steps, my friend

I've been in the security industry for over 20 years and involved in high end projects (which has included some small IT experience) and project management with excellent customer service skills.

I've also recently reorganized the Service Department for my most recent employer. However, the financial rewards in my current industry are limited (currently at 50k/year but pretty much topped out).

I will have my CCNA in a couple of months through a Cisco Academy and plan to get my MCSE over the summer and my CCNP in the next school year.

Now, the big questions:

Is it reasonable that I will be able to make an income even close to what I'm making now starting out? ...or how long should I expect to be in my new career before making what I make now?

Will the current experience that I have be at all attractive in a resume seeking IT employment?

Any thoughts are appreciated.

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