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old school deciding which desktop cert

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#1 Mac29


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Posted 30 January 2016 - 04:26 PM



I'm someone pretty new to these forums, ask a few t-shoot Q's once in a while and I need a bit of help deciding on which MS cert will help me get going again in IT. I got A+ about a decade ago, studied Net+ but never got certified, or mastered it, supported proprietary software (and Windows XP and 98, & printers) for 6 years, and now bounce around doing crap jobs for IT temp agencies (among other things).


I was in an SQL database program (twice) but both got canceled due to bean-counters or incompetent instructors, but that's a tangent. That's where I'm going as soon as I can land a steady gig.


I think my best chance for a steady job is one of the following certs:


MCTS: Windows & Configuration

MCITP: Enterprise Support Technician

MCITP: Windows 7 Enterprise Desktop Admin

MCITP: Windows 7, Enterprise Desktop Support Technician


I like working with hardware and read a lot about things like new technology, firmware and drivers. I'd rather deal with hardware any day, some software problems drive me nuts. However, straight hardware gigs are almost non-existent and low pay. I've picked up a few things re: laptops but know I need to up my game w/supporting 7 and 8. I don't want to sit and do phone support, I'd like to find a gig where I move around some and pick up skills.


So I read some threads here but didn't find anything real close. Could anyone take a stab at my situation and would one of the above certs be the best one to get the attention of the staffing agencies? I'm thinking the last one looks good. I have access to some decent training materials.



Thank you,






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#2 Kilroy


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Posted 02 February 2016 - 11:35 AM

Since you obtained your A+ a while back it should still be the forever certification, not the current cert that you have to refresh.  I don't know that obtaining another certification is going to be of much benefit in getting a steady job.


Normally once you are in IT normally experience is how you are judged.  While your Windows 98 and XP experience are not very helpful in today's job market, they show that you are capable of supporting Windows machines.


My experience in IT is that it is easier to turn a contract position into a full time position than to be directly hired.  One of the main things is to be picky about the contracts that you accept.  I only accept six month or longer positions.  These positions are frequently extended.  My current position was a six month contract and I knew from experience that it would only take three.  After the initial reason I was hired was taken care of I started picking up additional work.  I'm now on my second one year extension.  My manager requested to hire me in May of next year, but there is a "hiring freeze", once it is lifted I will most likely become an employee.  I look at contract work as a long term interview.  You get a good look at the company and they get a good look at you.


I recommend that you stay away from the larger contracting houses.  My experience has been that you will be paid less and none of them have placed me.  My last three contract jobs have all been with companies I've never heard of prior to being contacted.  My current company offered me three dollars more an hour than I was asking.


You should be picking up things at these "crap jobs" to add to your resume.  Post your resume on Monster, Dice, and Indeed.  Every Sunday upload your resume, even if there are no changes.  This reset the flag on your resume and marks it as new so that people searching for new resumes will get yours every week.  Normally I get from six to a dozen calls on Monday morning.  If I don't update my resume that number drops steadily over time.


Follow Liz Ryan of Human Workplace on LinkedIn, she has a lot of great posts about what you should accept from a job.


Take a look at your resume and think about investing in having it done professionally.  I paid about $300, through Monster the company is actually Career Perfect,  over a decade ago to have my resume professionally done and have kept it up to date myself since then.

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