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This is depressing

By tracarts ·
I have been reading through the discussions of the career section. I was reading them because I am in much the same boat as the others posting discussion questions. I have several years of experience working with small networks in small business. I have done the learn it myself route for about 8 years, so I decided to go back to school and get a Masters in IS, to back up what my experience tells me I already know. I have not yet taken the MSCE exam, but I am capable of passing it. And what I am seeing here in the career discussion is that even in the tech area, there are those that intuitively know how to find that job and then there are the rest of us, who flounder like the blind leading the blind. What is depressing is that even a site that I love with over a million memebers still can't help connect the right people with those that need them. So the question really is "how does one connect with the right people to find the right job?" I guess when you come down to it, it's still about who you know, I was hoping this site would help me find the right Who's.

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Agreed

by traffety In reply to This is depressing

Alot of it has to do with not so much your system networking knowledge but who you network with on a personal level. Developing good relationships with others outside your business is a wise choice to make.

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Careers (Part 1)

by nostets In reply to Agreed

Ladies and gentlemen, I?ve been visiting this site for some five months now. I have mostly looked at the career, certification, and the technical discussions. In this post I?d like to explore the areas related to the careers and certifications.
By professionals it is stated that most individuals will experience 4 to 5 career changes in their lifetime. Isn?t that amazing. I?m into about my third or fourth, depending on what is considered a ?career.?

I have found the dialogue regarding ?Paper MCSE,? ?Degrees,? and ?Experience? very interesting. My first career was 20 years in electronics with the US Airforce. I was working with digital to analog information when ?vacuum tubes were still in use, and the Air Force developed itsnewest career designation as ?computer technician.? I?m a little ancient.

In that career I was a novice, a ?newbie? and fresh out of a technical school based in Biloxi, Miss. I also had ?no experience.? However, I was fortunate and worked with a lot of experienced individuals that taught me what they new at the time, and what they learned as we all went along. As I said, I was fortunate, I worked with some excellent technicians, and yes, there were some individuals that were ?better? than others were, and some that left both the Air Force, and the field in which they had been trained. My point being, it wasn?t the lack of experience or the experience that made us successful, it was our ?team,? and we helped both those that were ?excellent? and the ?not so excellent.?

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Careers (Part 2)

by nostets In reply to Careers (Part 1)

My next career placed me again in a ?less experienced? situation, and again I was fortunate, and there were many there that wanted ?everyone to succeed,? whether that meant moving on, or staying with that career. I may as well go ahead and say ?IT,? I believe that the only failure in life is to ?fail to try.?

And in writing this brief expose, I?ve come to the conclusion that I?ve had three careers. The second one and the last one requiring ?degrees? and ?licensing (certifications)?,,,Well, as luck would have it, I again met some very ?experienced,? ?degreed? and ?licensed? individuals. I too ended up with the ?degrees,? and the ?licenses? and in the end much more ?experience.?

And now, I?m entering my fourth career, the IT career. And as with the other careers, I?m sure there will be opportunities open to me from others that are ?experienced,? ?degreed,? and yes, even with ?licenses?. Is there that much difference in any career track. We all need each other to accomplish what is the most important --- ?The Mission?,,,again that first career has it?s impact even today. It?s taken a long time to get to this point, but it will even be longer when I get to the end of this IT career. As this field grows, and it will, there will always be ?entry level? and ?experienced? individuals. Let?s be careful of the stones we throw, they may come back to haunt us. Best wishes to everyone in his or her chosen career path.

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Several points

by jdmercha In reply to Agreed

Finding an IT job is very dependent on location. There are a few hot spots around the country, like Boston, Charlotte, and Austin that can't find enough IT people to hire. If you don't already live in a hot spot you'll have difficulty finding a goodjob.

Getting an MSCE can help you get in the door, but it is not enough to keep you there.

A BS is more usefull in the long run that an MSCE.

The biggest problem with certifications is that 90% of what you learn is less than 10% of the job.This is why expereince is worth more.

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I agree, but experience does pay...

by Frogbert In reply to This is depressing

I do agree with you, it is depressing to see the "Paper MCSE's" with the gift to BS and know how to press the right buttons, just breeze right into the limelight...but the tide may be turning in our favor - how much we'll just have to see. Based onarticles I've read, other discussions I've had with my service providers and those at conferences, having MCSE in your resume just doesn't mean what it used to unless it's backed up with x-years experience. One of my service providers has let go almost 1/4 of it's "Paper MCSE's" because they couldn't cut it in the real world. Not only did they lack the knowledge, but also the basic troubleshooting skills needed to manage a network.

How do you find the right Who's? That's a toughy. This year alone I've been contacted by over 20 headhunting companies and each one bombarded me with 2-3 reps. Out of those 40-60 people all wanting to find me a job, only one really took the time to listen to me and try to understand just what I would want (even though I was never looking for a job to begin with)...and when she was disappointed that I wasn't an MCSE I explained that I've been doing this for five years, I built my network from the ground up and I've seen more things go wrong from simple to complex to almost unexplainable than a Paper MCSE had test questions, I'll smoke 'em in an interview.

You have the experience now you just need to hook yourself up with as many people as possible until you find that one person who's acutallyinterested in helping you.

Best of Luck!

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Thanks for the boost

by tracarts In reply to I agree, but experience d ...

It's nice to know that not all the answers on the discussion board are negative. Thank you for the boost to experience. I have had just one too many odd reactions to my lack of MSCE lately. The really odd thing is that my boss encouraged me to go back to school to get the masters and he is currently and actively trying to find me a different job, not because he doesn't want to keep me, but as he says, I want to try my wings in this new area and who is he to hold me back. Thanks again.

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by Frogbert In reply to Thanks for the boost

Glad I could help. And I don't mean to take anything away from those who are MCSE's, there's just a big difference between being an MCSE with no experience and having years of experience without being an MCSE. And from what I've been hearing and reading, employers are starting to take notice of that difference and not basing their hiring on those four letters....

Once again, good luck!

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"Paper" MCSE and proud of it...

by FernS In reply to This is depressing

I'm just about finished with spending every weekend for the past year studying the ins and outs of the COMPLETE NT operating system and how it all works together - without this show of dedication to a prospective employer I wouldn't even get my resume read, nevermind an interview..... STOP BADMOUTHING students whose only chance in entering this field is thru the certification process - it used to be you were stuck without a Bachelors, now the same is true about IT - if you don't have the certifications you SHOULDN'T even be considered - how else would an employer know if you really know ALL that you need, and not just have "experience" in one aspect of the network and not the others.... If you can pass the certs why don't you just spend the $$$$ and go take them?????

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by Frogbert In reply to "Paper" MCSE and proud of ...

I'm not badmouthing MCSE's, I just think too much emphasis is placed on those four letters when it comes to hiring.

I've taken some of the classes & passed some of the tests. I know what info is required & I've spent my weekends (after a 74 hourwork weeks) with my nose buried in the books while maintaining a family life...especailly with a 6 & 4 year old that want you to play catch, baseball and soccer with them. It's tough, I know it is, but that doesn't mean an MCSE knows more than someone who's had the hands on for a few years.

You talk about dedication. Okay, in your case it sounds like you're putting a lot of effort into it. But what about the thousands that go thru the boot camps and essentially cram for an exam? You callthat dedication?

Now what about me? I just have experience in setting up NT with Token Ring, IPX and IP. Install/config Shiva's, Hubs, SNMP, routers, firewalls, RAS, VPN's. I've gone from 10BaseT to 100 to Switched Ethernet with a Fibre Channel backbone in a clustered SAN enviornment w/600+ GB of storage. I have mirrored drives and have had to break them and have used every type of RAID and have had to rebuild from dead drives. I've configured my backups with the proper GFS. I've seen the havoc AV software, SP upgrades and the like can do to NT. In the next two weeks I'll be merging networks from a two domain model to one, I know my IEEE 802 standards, I know how to troubleshoot/fix/maintain a network. I built this network from the ground up and I know nothing about NT or networking or how to properly administer/maintain it?

Hey, thanks!

In my experience, I cannot afford to hire someone solely based on MCSE in their resume...it may catch my attention, but so does x-years experience.

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Now, I did hire an MCSE....

by Frogbert In reply to "Paper" MCSE and proud of ...

A year ago when I hired my assistant, I was looking for a grunt. Someone to help with the everyday user requests, but I also wanted someone who I could teach other aspects of networking to...but their main job would be working with user requests and NT.

We have a local tech school and I interviewed 12 people from there. All fresh out MCSE's with about the same amount of experience...none. This is what I wanted since I didn't want to pay the price for someone with experience.

I interviewed 12 and after two verbal interviews, 5 were left. The third interview consisted of adding users, groups, folders and permissions. Configure DHCP with a Gateway, WINS and DNS. Adding a NIC to a pc and configuring on the network both static and dynamic and load a couple of apps. They had access to all of my NT books for reference and they had 8 hours on a Saturday to complete all they could. A few gotcha's were built in to test troubleshooting ability, but only one person attempted everything and I hired her. Three of the five struggled with just adding users and groups and these were MCSE's.

Reason #1 I don't trust the title.

My friend hired one and will probably let them go because they just can't cut it.

Reason #2

When I go on vacation/training/conferences I contract an MCSE to help out and there are several that won't ever be back.

That's reason #3

As far as bringing in people with experience - I haven't had a problem yet. They adapt to the enviornment quicker, they expect the unexpected and they tend to have more resources to fall back on.

Be proud when you get your MCSE, I know there's a lot of time involved...I'm going to be proud when I get mine. I just don't automatically trust the title anymore and I don't hire just because someone is an MCSE. And this is what I'm hearing from some of my peers in the industry...

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