IT Employment

Question

Starting a career in IT (Breaking into the field)

By AridJ2002 ·
Tags: Community
Hi,
For a while I have been looking at a career in IT, but cant decide which route I want to take in order to get there.

I want to become a Cyber Security Analyst, but I understand, that wont happen over night.
I have been looking at all sorts, ranging from University to traineeship companies, but I'm unsure whether the debt is worth it, and tbh, I really don't trust some of the traineeship companies due to some negative reviews I've found (Better safe than sorry I guess??).
I started looking at going straight to doing something like CompTIA A+ and looking for jobs as a helpdesk technician once I completed it, and gaining experience whilst doing other certifications in the mean time, but I cant find many helpdesk technician jobs around.
If anyone has any ideas or thoughts about where best to start my career in IT (I have no notable experience or qualifications with direct regard to IT btw) I would be grateful!

- J
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All Answers

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The problem as some see it.

by rproffitt Moderator In reply to Starting a career in IT ( ...

Are the HARD SKILLS you must have. Nod to https://www.varonis.com/blog/working-in-cybersecurity/

I'm running into folk that want to be in the field but don't want to have the hard skills. That is, basic skills in CompSci, Info Management, and programming. When I press these folk they often dismiss that you need to be "more than a programmer." In fact I would add that coursework in Psychology are needed as well.

Beyond all that, getting a degree in almost any field does not mean you will land a job. Yes, that's disheartening so you must do more than get the paper. You must dive into the field. Today I would expect the would be applicant to done a lot of independent work in the area. Maybe work some of the issues in Open Source. It's not as if Linux is secure and doesn't need work. Read https://securityboulevard.com/2021/02/the-linux-flaw-you-cant-afford-to-ignore-cve-2021-3156/
PS. There are at present over 70 known issues to work right now.

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Where do I start?

by AridJ2002 In reply to The problem as some see i ...

That's brilliant, thank you for that. I am really into tech, don't get me wrong, I've tried in the past to start work on learning HTML and had a play around with lua code which was fun, so I am quite enthusiastic about actually learning more technical aspects of the area. Where did you start in terms of building your knowledge in IT? (If you don't mind me asking).

And thank you for taking the time to reply! Very much appreciated!

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I started in school.

by rproffitt Moderator In reply to Where do I start?

I admit I had it easier than today's folk. Electronics was still developing in the 1970's so you could get going with basic 2 years of college. For me I started back in high school with what courses could be had along with at home circuit/device building.

Later I landed a job in the defense industry, a few more courses and a lot of time coding there. I even owned a repair shop and sales of a certain line of consumer electronics along with PC sales. Back then, clone PCs were new and you could do well in that field. I found folk appreciated a PC that was almost ready to use. They still do today.

The learning never stopped with designs in motor controllers, code for same, a custom router system (1990's) and then onto smart phone apps.

Bottom line: The learning never ends.

Advice: Get your portfolio together. Be ready to "Show me what you got!" (nod to Rick & Morty.)

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So I guess it's time to get learning

by AridJ2002 In reply to I started in school.

That's a really interesting background to come from, I suppose it's like you say, building up my career from the ground up. Are there any qualifications that you recommend in the long run? Like ones that have really helped you get somewhere?

Either way, gonna do like you say, start building a portfolio and building up my knowledge some programming languages!

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A course that really helped me.

by rproffitt Moderator In reply to So I guess it's time to g ...

It's probably called something else today but it was not about CompSci or coding. It was called System Analysis and was about examining systems to be able to see and document how they work. This is an area I find a lot of folk in many fields trying to skip.

You may hear it in some replies with "Design before Coding."
Yes, sometimes you can write the solution in a few minutes but if you didn't know what you were trying to solve, that would not be possible.

Again, my answer here to your last question is sometimes a course may not seem to matter, does Mine was systems analysis.

Today I find that my early Psychology courses help explain why folk fall for scams and more. Maybe a course in Game Theory would fit well today.

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Insight

by AridJ2002 In reply to A course that really help ...

Thanks for your help, going to take this on board and rethink my strategies, definitely gonna look into the CompSci course as that does sound interesting.

Again, thanks for your help and insight into getting started!

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