A+ certified; Need some assistance

GubzsGubzs Registered Users Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey fellas, I was actually here a few months ago talking about how I was looking for an IT job and looking for advice. As per what I was told there I decided to get an A+ cert.

It took me a few months to get my A+ as the exam costs were roughly $180 each and I wanted to make certain that I didn't have to retake one of the them. Fortunately, I can say that as of a week ago, I passed the 802 and am now A+ certified. :)

But onto my dilemma, so to speak,

I already have Mike Meyer's Network+ book, as I am definitely planning on getting that one next; literally every tech I've ever spoken to about it says to do so. I needed nothing but his A+ book and some free online practice questions for the A+ exams, so I should be just fine with the Network+.

However, I would really, really like to get my first IT job so I have something other than "22, A+ certified with retail experience, 2 years of an IS degree completed" on my resume ...and the money would be nice too; currently making $8.25. The problem is that there are basically no jobs listed anywhere within even excessive distance that don't have some level of experience as a basic qualification.

I keep seeing this kind of job posting:
-Minimum 2 years in computer/technology related field
-Must have comprehensive knowledge of ___________. (Insert one of an immense number of business-only applications here)
-On the job experience working with Java/ PHP/ SQL etc.

Thus far I have only tried looking online on places such as careerbuilder, monster, indeed, simplyhired, and basically anything else that comes up on google. In all my looking I only found 2 jobs within 60 miles that I qualified for (I live near Birmingham Alabama). I applied at one 3 days ago, and another yesterday morning.

Am I missing something? Where else can I look for open positions? I don't have much experience doing this, every job I've had so far I got because I just walked into the store, have people skills, and filled out an application... but it's just not that simple once you're past the $8.00 an hour, bottom of the barrel stage of your working life.

I'm currently living at home with my parents, who have graciously allowed me to stay until my life can finally take off, albeit while treating me like a child, so I have very few expenses. I need to either save about $20k so I can finish my degree without a giant pile of debt or start making enough money to survivably move out with a roommate who makes a similarly low wage.

Do I rush at the Network+? Will that help?
Should I keep looking for jobs? Am I looking in the right places?
Am I even employable?

I have an excellent customer service background with glowing references, I have great language and people skills, both written and otherwise, I'm a fast learner and extremely trainable and yet I find myself at the mercy of hundreds of employers who all demand experience.
(..suddenly having flashbacks to raiding in World of Warcraft, "link achieve", anyone?)

Anyway, I just feel like I'm not in a very good situation and I would appreciate any advice on the matter. I need my first IT position, but I'm at a loss as to how to get it.

Thanks in advance guys.


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    ShdwmageShdwmage Member Posts: 374
    Temp agencies and internships are probably your best way to get the foot into the door of your first IT job. Best Buy, and other mom and pop shops may work as well.
    “Hey! Listen!” ~ Navi
    2013: [x] MCTS 70-680
    2014: [x] 22-801 [x] 22-802 [x] CIW Web Foundation Associate
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    Tremie24Tremie24 Member Posts: 85 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Just start applying to some of those entry level jobs. Have someone review your resume to get nice and neat. You have to remember is that most job posting are for their "ideal" candidate. Apply, hopefully one of them gives you call for interview and that's when you wow them. Sometimes its not about how much technical stuff you know, because you'll learn way more on the job then you every would in the class room. They look for how you handle your self with customers and troubleshooting things. Job hunting sucks, no doubt, but you just have to keep your head up and keep going.
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    H3||scr3amH3||scr3am Member Posts: 564 ■■■■□□□□□□
    rushing a network+ likely won't help that much.

    First of all, I'd say you shouldn't be afraid to apply to positions with requirements that you do not currently posses. If you've got 50% or more of what they're looking for, throw your resume and a cover letter in the ring.

    Secondly, that being said, I'd say that you allow the forum members to review your resume and provide feedback and ideas that may help you, but make sure you remove any identifying material from it. (name, email, phone No., linkedin, etc.)

    Third, if you don't have a linkedin account start one, make connections with anyone you've done business with in the past and have a good rapport with, list your skills and certifications, get endorsements, get profile views, and perhaps recruiters will find you, or linkedin will post some jobs that interest/apply to you. join groups as well.

    I'd take a look at the postings in your area, that interest you, and see what certifications/education they're looking for and see if you can self-study it. If 80% of the jobs that interest you call for a network+, go get it, it'll help you fill that requirement for many positions. but if they're asking for ITIL experience/exposure, perhaps an ITIL foundations would be a better investment of your time and resources. Furthermore CCENT/CCNA, MS certs, or others may have more value and RoI in your job market/field.

    Best of luck,
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    markulousmarkulous Member Posts: 2,394 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Most all jobs are going to say higher requirements than what they will actually hire for. Look at the job duties and if you feel you can perform those functions with a bit of training, then apply. I wouldn't even really pay attention to the requirements.

    Another avenue I'll always suggest is places like protonic.com. It's pro-bono work, but it gives you ticketing and troubleshooting experience to put on your resume. It keeps track of your tickets so if a job calls you out on it you can login to your account right there and show them. Makes places a lot more comfortable in interviewing you in my experience.
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    djeffrey26djeffrey26 Member Posts: 6 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hey Gubzs I am in the same situation as you are what did you use to pass the A+ test will love to get mine also.
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    GubzsGubzs Registered Users Posts: 4 ■□□□□□□□□□
    djeffrey26 wrote: »
    Hey Gubzs I am in the same situation as you are what did you use to pass the A+ test will love to get mine also.

    I thoroughly read and highlighted Mike Meyer's book which I purchased here: CompTIA A+ Certification All-in-One Exam Guide, 8th Edition (Exams 220-801 & 220-802): Michael Meyers: 9780071795128: Amazon.com: Books (This book is the reason I passed the exam, hands down)

    Prof. Messer has some very helpful videos, I recommend watching all of them: Professor Messer's CompTIA 220-801/802 A+ Training | Professor Messer - CompTIA A+, Network+, Security+, Linux, Microsoft Technology Training

    And I also filled out this form here and had CompTIA email me some practice questions: Sample Questions

    Thanks everyone for the prompt advice! I really do appreciate it. I wasn't aware that most job postings were for an ideal candidate or I'd have applied to many more of them by now. I was under the impression that they were minimum requirements and that they'd hire the best man with said attributes.

    The local Best Buys aren't hiring, but I haven't tried temp agencies yet, that's an excellent idea.

    I guess I'll just start throwing applications around everywhere and see what ends up happening. In the meantime, I'll anonymize my resume and see if I can get some feedback, I'm horrendously new to all of this.
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