Got my Network+ & still no job

Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
Hey guys, I have a Bachelor's degree in Biology and I couldn't find a job. So I decided I would pursue IT, where I notice there are tons more opportunities.

So I studied really harrrd for my Network+ and passed in May 2015. Since then, I've been applying for multiple jobs every day. But still, no one has contacted me. I'm starting to lose hope. My desperation has allowed me to do just about everything in my power to get through the door. I've applied online, gone to various staffing agencies, job fairs, etc...and I'm running out of ideas and options.

I don't have any real world experience. What should I do?! I'm 24 and I need a real job icon_cry.gif

Please, lend me any wisdom you may have.
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Comments

  • srabieesrabiee Posts: 1,231Member ■■■■■■■□□□
    What area do you live in? What sort of jobs are you applying for?

    Also, your resume may be a contributing factor. I would recommend scrubbing your PII and posting your resume in PDF format on here for review.
    WGU Progress: Master of Science - Information Technology Management (Start Date: February 1, 2015)
    Completed: LYT2, TFT2, JIT2, MCT2, LZT2, SJT2 (17 CU's)
    Required: FXT2, MAT2, MBT2, C391, C392 (13 CU's)

    Bachelor of Science - Information Technology Network Design & Management (WGU - Completed August 2014)
  • PlantwizPlantwiz Posts: 5,057Mod Mod
    Mudkip16 wrote:

    I don't have any real world experience. What should I do?! I'm 24 and I need a real job icon_cry.gif

    Take any job. You are more employable with a job, that means, fast food, factory, stock person, paperboy, etc... That aside, having only a NET+ and expecting to land something in IT is a bit of a stretch. There are plenty of folks (depending on where you live) who also have NET+ and probably A+ and maybe SEC+ with some experience and maybe even an MS cert or two.

    You are just beginning, now is not the time to give up, but I can only guess you did not try very long in the Biology field either? What other certs or education are you pursuing to beef up your IT knowledge? Have you tried to job-shadow anyone in the industry to gain some experience? Have you sought out an internship with any company or IT firm? Have you volunteered or tried to help out some non-profits and such? Probably not yet, and hence the comment to first, go get any job (keeps one from smelling of desperation) and helps one to network (people level) to find those better jobs you have in your mind. While working this other 'lessor' job, then pickup weekend, evening job shadowing/volunteering work. Give yourself six months of lumping a ton of hours to get your hands on as much as possible and then re-approach the IT employment, my guess is that it will not take you that long, but be ready to invest time into yourself so others will be willing to do the same.

    Hate to tell you, 24 is NOT the end, it is only the long beginning.

    What are your 1 year, 5 year and 10 year goals?
    Plantwiz
    _____
    "Grammar and spelling aren't everything, but this is a forum, not a chat room. You have plenty of time to spell out the word "you", and look just a little bit smarter." by Phaideaux

    ***I'll add you can Capitalize the word 'I' to show a little respect for yourself too.

    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • snunez889snunez889 Posts: 238Member
    I agree with Plantwiz, having a job regardless of industry is a good thing. It took me a good while before I broke into the industry and while I was waiting for my chance I kept improving. Best advice someone gave me was to build my own lab and learn as much as I could.

    I recommend going for the other two CompTIA certs then shooting for the CCNA or MCSA.
  • TheFORCETheFORCE Posts: 2,233Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    @=Mudkip16

    You need to gear your resume towards IT positions, and remove any old "stuff". It will be hard in the beginning but try and find some type of job just to get some experience, maybe through volunteering or your local school or community.
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Hey guys. Thank you for all your comments. I'm currently employed as a pharmacy technician, but I feel stagnant and truly desire room for growth.

    I have applied for many internships, even unpaid ones. No one has reached out to me yet. I will take anything. I guess I thought one certification would at least land me a tech support job.

    Currently studying for Security+ ... my endgame is geared towards InfoSec, but if I end up in Network Administration, I wouldn't mind that either.
  • PlantwizPlantwiz Posts: 5,057Mod Mod
    Glad to hear you are at least employed (and something decent).

    At this point, keep plugging away. Volunteer where you can to gain experience and exposure. Try for weekend or evening work with an area IT Pro or someone maybe an hour or so away (to limit them feeling like you are competing with them). Be open to any type of work and method of gaining experience and something will fall into place. If you can take continue ed classes in CS or some related field it may help, but personal networking will likely get you a better head start. Keep studying and build a lab if you need to practice. Look for local computer groups (though some simply won't fit your need).

    One cert is good and gets things rolling, but rarely (especially in the past 10-15 years) makes for easy gainful employment...too many people have at least one cert. Find ways to make yourself stand out. Also, if your resume needs a boost, you may need one tailored to IT, post a copy without any geography and/or personal information.
    Plantwiz
    _____
    "Grammar and spelling aren't everything, but this is a forum, not a chat room. You have plenty of time to spell out the word "you", and look just a little bit smarter." by Phaideaux

    ***I'll add you can Capitalize the word 'I' to show a little respect for yourself too.

    'i' before 'e' except after 'c'.... weird?
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Alright, here you go.

    I've actually shadowed a Network Admin before, and he showed me how to use Wireshark, answered all my questions about the Network+, learned about cabling, etc.
  • BlackBeretBlackBeret Posts: 684Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Your resume is laid out very well and structured just like I have mine. The difference is mine has a lot more relative experience upfront. Being that you're trying to get a job based on your desire to work in the industry and your certification I would expand the summary and make it more like a mini cover letter.

    You have the certification but no work experience so I wouldn't list that in the summary section, I would write something along the lines of why they should hire you versus someone else with little experience. "I'm a diligent worker that always arrives early, I'm detailed oriented, I have a strong desire to enter the IT industry and am looking to learn and grow within a company", etc. Talk yourself up briefly, then talk about what you're doing to work with technology. For most people I wouldn't suggest putting lab experience, but since you have little else to put on it... "I run a home server with ESXI hosting several different VM's. I've used this to study virtualization, networking, Windows, Linux, Snort, Bro, etc. etc. etc." After the summary, list your certification section, since it really is the only concrete and relevant part.

    Then the education section. Even though it's not relevant to IT, it shows that you were able to dedicate yourself to something and work hard. Last is the experience.
  • epcgepcg Posts: 65Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    OP with no experience no degree in feild and 1 cert you need to go get your A+, do a couple of the MTAs cause they are cheap and shows your learning IT and do work for people. Heck get a business license put some ads out thats real experience and will help when you get an interview. You want make much but its going to show anyone who interviews you that you really want to be on IT. Also apply on part-time and helpdesk jobs.
  • TheFORCETheFORCE Posts: 2,233Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    What Blackberet said. Also, it wouldn't be a bad idea to mention various white papers or podcasts you follow about the job positions you are aiming to get into. Again, look locally first, you are already working as a pharmacy technician. The company you work for is a great place to start. look at the internal job posting, if there isn't any contact your HR directly or even visit the IT department. A quick look on the outlook global address list can find you all the IT people in your company to make connections with or inquiry about positions available.
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thanks guys! I really appreciate your advice!
  • scaredoftestsscaredoftests Senior Member behind youPosts: 2,590Mod Mod
    As stated before, glad you are employed. Hone your skills. Build a small lab and practice. Fill out resumes and send them out.
    Never let your fear decide your fate....
  • MowMow Posts: 445Member
    Libraries and churches always need someone to assist them with basic IT functions, you can do it for them for free, and add that experience to your resume.
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Good idea! I'll ask
  • DAVIS NGUYENDAVIS NGUYEN Posts: 1,472Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Basically, A+ and Net+ certified will be land you an IT job . Best of luck my friend!
  • DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Posts: 2,013Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Just to add to what everyone else has said, skip the Security+ for now and get your A+. Unfortunately, the A+ has much better ROI than the other 2 CompTIA certs in terms of getting a job. I did the Net+, Sec+, and THEN finally the A+. I couldn't get a job until the A+ was finished. And even tho I learned a TON from both the other CompTIA certs, they've never once been brought up in interviews. I think spending the money and time on the Security+ should be postponed until you're actually working in the industry.
    Goals for 2018:
    Certs: RHCSA, LFCS: Ubuntu, CNCF CKA, CNCF CKAD | AWS Certified DevOps Engineer, AWS Solutions Architect Pro, AWS Certified Security Specialist, GCP Professional Cloud Architect
    Learn: Terraform, Kubernetes, Prometheus & Golang | Improve: Docker, Python Programming
    To-do | In Progress | Completed
  • vaguemediavaguemedia Posts: 23Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    I agree with everyone else regarding the A+ certification. As soon as I passed that exam, the phone started ringing.
  • tpasmalltpasmall Posts: 52Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    You need to write an incredible cover letter. Talk about your passion for InfoSec, your future goals in IT, any related hobbies or interests to the job. You need to sell yourself because your experience isn't going to do it for you. Being green isn't a problem if you acknowledge it and give them a plan of action for why you're worth the risk. You need to sell them on you, because your resume won't be able to.
  • alias454alias454 Posts: 648Member
    I see a lot of potential with what you are working with. Currently, you are employed in the medical field (Pharmacy Tech) and want to work in IT. The medical side of things needs people that have IT skills. Maybe you are looking at this the wrong way. Inquire around your local area for jobs at hospitals or clinics. There may be something off the standard path that you would fit right into. You should try to leverage your existing background to make your transition smoother and sell yourself more as someone that can bridge the gap of IT/IS and the medical side.

    Where I work we have IS "liaisons" in several departments. We have Lab IS, Pharmacy IS, PACS Imaging, and BioMed, where they deal specificly with IS related issues for those systems. We also have several folks on our EMR team that started in the rank and file who worked their way up to specialists in the discipline.

    Good Luck,
    “I do not seek answers, but rather to understand the question.”
  • psaechaopsaechao Posts: 26Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Have you tried Craigslist? A great cover letter might help also. It'll give you the chance to let employers know your situation and who you are personally, as opposed to straight statistics on a resume. Does your current workplace have an IT department? If they do, maybe see if you can help them out for free. Let them know that all you're trying to gain the experience.
    DeVry B.S Network and Communications Management : In ProgressCompleted
    NETW250; SEC280
    COMP129; COMP230; CEIS100; NETW203; NETW205; NETW207; NETW230;
    NETW209; NET240
  • IIIMasterIIIMaster Posts: 233Member
    Try to get a masters in computer science of security . Once enroll put that on your resume also look into getting a vendor specific cert like MCSA Server. Just because you have a net+ really doesn't really qualify you for much in IT. A MCSA and a masters show promise. I had a friend who had a health degree grab his masters in CS with an A+ and is up there.
  • IIIMasterIIIMaster Posts: 233Member
    Sorry meant to say masters in computer science or security.
  • thatguyftwthatguyftw Posts: 14Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Maybe you can try tying what you've learned so far to your biology degree. That should help getting your foot in the door. Your resume is structured pretty well; however, I would expand on the summary section just a little bit. Just keep looking--you'll find something soon! Good luck!
    Seeking a career change from International Development to Network Engineering
    Current goals: Security+ [], CCENT [], CCNA, [], CCNA: Security []
  • cshkurucshkuru Posts: 224Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    I am going to go the contrarian route here. I see that you have conversational fluency in Chinese. Huge upsell point. Get your CCENT / CCNA and CCDA then start applying to places like Microsoft, Google, Apple.
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Hey guys! Thank you for all your kind words of advice.

    Just a quick update: I just finished my interview for a VOLUNTEER Network Admin position, and got rejected >.< I was like..."really??" I even asked politely if I could shadow once a week, and they said no. They were looking for someone with "experience" who can take the slack when the main guy isn't there.
    *bangs head on desk* I'm very frustrated right now.

    In other news, I joined a civic hacking community and became a member of an app development project.

    And I made an apointment with my alumni office in August to see if they can hook me up.

    If I don't get a "real" job/internship by September. I'm seriously going to get my graduate certificate in InfoSec in the Spring.
  • Shoe BoxShoe Box Posts: 118Banned
    You aren't qualified to be a Network Admin, not even a junior one. You have no significant IT experience. My suggestion is to start off in some Desktop Support roles and continue your studies. But you need some actual work time. I am just about to get my first Cisco certification, and I have been doing Tier 3 Desktop Support for 3 years. Getting the first few contract assignments was tough, but once people saw I had been doing it for companies, it got easier.

    If I were the employer, I would choose someone with no certs and some actual job time over a fresh college graduate with some lower level certs.
  • SpetsRepairSpetsRepair Posts: 199Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Not sure how people on here feel about this but i would say find an entry level help desk position. Craigslist and recruiting agencies might help with contract work at help desk/call center jobs.

    IT Staffing | IT Recruiters | Robert Half Technology
    Dice.com - Job Search for Technology Professionals
  • BlackBeretBlackBeret Posts: 684Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Great job with joining the community and working on a project. They say it's all about who you know, so if it's a local organization I have a feeling you'll be doing well soon enough. If it's not, try to find a local hackerspace or other IT related organization to join. Worst case is you learn something and meet some people. Even if you just get to hear about openings before the rest of the world, knowing people is where it's at.
  • Mudkip16Mudkip16 Posts: 13Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    @Shoebox: How did you land you Desktop Support Job? I've been applying for Tier 1 support for months and still no response.

    @SpetsRepair: Have you had any personal experience with Robert half? I've made an account, applied to various entry lvl positions, and when I called to follow up/make an appointment with a recruiter, I got sent to voicemail three different times.
  • SpetsRepairSpetsRepair Posts: 199Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Mudkip16 wrote: »

    @SpetsRepair: Have you had any personal experience with Robert half? I've made an account, applied to various entry lvl positions, and when I called to follow up/make an appointment with a recruiter, I got sent to voicemail three different times.

    I've contracted with them many times and have met people from all fields that end up at a help desk contract. Where are you located? If i were you i would go to LinkedIn and find the recruiters in your area. Robert half does get people hired it just depends how often you stay in contact with them and how hard you work at it. Teksystems is an alright recruiting agency but from my experience they "prefer" to deal with people with more experience.

    To be honest before you actually establish a relationship with them they won't answer the phone. Once i was referred by someone the calls and contracts started rolling in.
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