How to get certs as fast as possible?

fabostrongfabostrong Posts: 215Member ■■■□□□□□□□
So when I start focusing on a cert, I try to get it as fast as possible and I'll give you the reasons. Also, this is coming from someone who's only been working professionally in IT for a year.

1. So far, at least for me, it seems that if I'm not doing the work that I learned from whatever certification on a daily basis, I'd lose a good amount of what I learned during studying.

2. It seems like experience is valued more than certifications, which I understand.

3. Even with certifications, once you're in a job role for whatever certification, it's still pretty new. You may know a lot of the terms and certain things that come with that role but actively putting everything together on a daily basis will be pretty new. So I feel like you'll get most of the knowledge from on the job training or just doing the job.

4. Certs with no experience doesn't typically get you very far from my experience. They may get you looked at though. I don't know if employers feel this way but to me, certifications alone don't mean that you know how to do the job but more so that you could more than likely learn how to do the job if put in that position. Having the certs also shows a certain level of commitment.

With that being said, I try to get the certs as fast as possible since I know that I won't retain most of the info if I'm not using the knowledge I learned in the cert on a daily basis. I could get a cert and not work in that field or do a job where that cert is needed for months. By the time I get a job that requires whatever that cert is, I may have forgotten a good amount of knowledge. Jobs don't always come quick.

I'd rather get 3 certs in 6 months than 1 if possible.

Does anyone else feel this way? If so, what do you do in order to be able to get the cert as fast as possible? How do you decide what information you need or don't need for the exam?

Thanks!
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Comments

  • SteveLavoieSteveLavoie Posts: 662Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Sure experience vs certification is a long debate and often at the beginning of an IT career it mostly serve as a way to pass HR resume review as you don't have experience yet.

    If you want that your cert really serve you, you need to really learn the material, so you dont want to be recognized as a "paper cert man". If your only way to succeed in an exam is to cram it fast, you will forget it as fast.

    I would suggest you to do certs near your job role or near your next job role, and do many lab as you need practice. So after the exam, you will remember more of it and your certs will be worth something.

    I saw some MCSE having a hard time with a 10 lines batch file with a robocopy... So where do you think he work now... not at our company.
  • revboxrevbox CompTIA: A+, Network+, Security+, Project+, CSA: CCSK 3.0 Little Rock, ARPosts: 90Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    There are some things in life that you can't memorize, for everything else there's Aderall.
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,905Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    fabostrong wrote: »
    [h=2]How to get certs as fast as possible? [/h]
    Photoshop.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • JasminLandryJasminLandry Posts: 601Member
    I guess it depends on the situation and on the certs themselves. I wouldn't suggest to anyone doing CISSP, OSCP and OSCE in 3 months. But I'd suggest doing A+, Network+ and Security+ since it's doable. But then again, if someone has been working in security for 15 years and as been doing pentesting for a long long time then it's maybe possible to do all 3 in 6 months. Same thing goes for a sysadmin with the CompTIA triad. For someone who has never worked in IT, it might not be possible to get all of them in 6 months while someone who has worked for a few years probably can do that.

  • sillymcnastysillymcnasty Posts: 254Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Certs will get you interviews if you don't have the experience. "How do I get a job without experience if I'm not qualified enough to get the job" --> Certs.

    Obviously experience with no certs will trump a cert without experience every time.

    Plus certs will let you pass HR filters, which are huge.
  • JasminLandryJasminLandry Posts: 601Member
    Certs will get you interviews if you don't have the experience. "How do I get a job without experience if I'm not qualified enough to get the job" --> Certs.

    Obviously experience with no certs will trump a cert without experience every time.

    Plus certs will let you pass HR filters, which are huge.

    That's true, but I'd only get "beginner" level certs to find a job if I didn't have any experience. I would find it odd if someone without any experience would have a CCNP or MCSE or other professional or expert level certs.

  • iBrokeITiBrokeIT GXPN GPEN GWAPT GCIH GCFE GICSP GSEC eJPT Sec+ Posts: 1,260Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    A cert is just a piece of paper if you don't have the knowledge and ability to back it up. Most employers that are actually worth working for know that and do a very good job of screening out paper tigers. See Iris's recent thread...

    How much knowledge are you actually retaining and mastering if you get 3 certs in 6 months?
  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 772Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    I find there are a few reasons for certs:

    1. Get past the HR filter.
    2. Learn something new, and the certification is like a badge of completion.
    3. Bragging rights.

    The HR filter is one big thing, but it is best with experience. Most places can tell if you're a bullshitter. This can be rushed.

    The learning something new - some people won't rush this. They'll absorb and learn the material like it was a class. They'll lab it up, try every scenario in the book, try every tool, and really learn the material. It's still working from the textbook, so it's not 100% applicable to real life stuff.

    Bragging rights. I've gotten a few of those. I really wanted the cert. I had no real reason for it when it came to my employment. However, it was something I enjoyed doing and wanted the cert for a long time. I got it. I'm an MCP in Windows Vista. :D Not a real bragging right, but it was a client exam to fulfill the MCSA in Server 2003. You can rush it or not... But, it's not as valuable.

    Certs are for you. You're paying for them with money and time and effort. Employers like to see them on your resume, but you're the one benefiting from them. Whether you rush them or not, it doesn't matter. If you rushed them, but know the material, you're still ahead of the game. If you **** and BS your way through it, it's not much value to you (not you personally, just an example). If you rush and get a good value from the cert, great. You win. If you take your time and go through the book and look at every detail and you take a job that has nothing with that technology, it might not be worth anything...
  • sillymcnastysillymcnasty Posts: 254Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    That's true, but I'd only get "beginner" level certs to find a job if I didn't have any experience. I would find it odd if someone without any experience would have a CCNP or MCSE or other professional or expert level certs.

    Yeah, I only have beginner ones =p. Network+, CCNA, 3 AWS ones. Next up is RHCSA hopefully. I will begin my study this week.
  • NOC-NinjaNOC-Ninja Posts: 1,403Member
    Certs is just a paper. Its what you learned that will get you the job. Well HR also filters your keywords.
    Anyhow, I dont know how to get certs asap. I know that you will give up your weekends, sleep, and every minute of your life to study IF you want it as fast as possible.

    Are you driving? well you better learn that certs while driving?
    Are you taking a ****? you better be reading that PDF file in your cellphone while taking a ****.
    Are you sleeping 8hrs a day? you better sleep 5hrs a day so you have time to study.
    Are you going out on the weekends? you better say bye to your friends and family.
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Posts: 2,475Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    TechGromit wrote: »
    Photoshop.

    Exactly what I did.

    https://www.thepapermillstore.com/card-stock

    Bought some high end stock paper and next thing you know I have my CCIE and MCSE in 1 day. Pretty remarkable.

    Wish me luck on my network engineer job tomorrow. I'm still trying to figure out the difference between a switch and router.
  • blargoeblargoe Self-Described Huguenot NC, USAPosts: 4,170Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Run out to Costco and grab a whole case of Certs. That will take about 30 minutes.

    certs-cinnamon-mints-12-piece-roll-432-per-case_12689099.jpeg
    IT guy since 12/00

    Recent: 2/2019 - Updated VCP to 6.5 (just a few days before VMware discontinued the re-cert policy...)
    Working on: RHCSA 7, learning Ansible
    Future: RHCE? VCAP6.5-DCD?
  • PJ_SneakersPJ_Sneakers CompTIA, EC-Council, ISACA, (ISC)², Microsoft USAPosts: 879Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    TechGromit wrote: »
    Photoshop.


    I'll see your Photoshop and raise you a fake LinkedIn profile.
  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 772Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Bought some high end stock paper and next thing you know I have my CCIE and MCSE in 1 day. Pretty remarkable.

    Wish me luck on my network engineer job tomorrow. I'm still trying to figure out the difference between a switch and router.

    I have my CCNP. I've configured lots of routers. Linksys, DLink, and I think an Asus. They were for homes or small businesses, but the enterprise stuff isn't that different... :D (I don't really have my CCNP.... Yet...)
  • ande0255ande0255 Posts: 1,178Banned
    I have never had an employer check my cert status, ever. Unless your putting CCNP or above on there, and are compitent in the area you claim, you can probably just put it on your resume and never hear a word about it from the interview to the offer letter.

    I have a coworker who did this with multiple CCNP certs, when he didn't actually take any of the exams.
    Back in my day we used to route packets on 56k lines, through the snow, uphill both ways.

    https://loopedback.com
  • NetworkingStudentNetworkingStudent Posts: 1,400Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    fabostrong wrote: »
    So when I start focusing on a cert, I try to get it as fast as possible and I'll give you the reasons. Also, this is coming f

    With that being said, I try to get the certs as fast as possible since I know that I won't retain most of the info if I'm not using the knowledge I learned
    I'd rather get 3 certs in 6 months than 1 if possible.

    Thanks!

    I was like you once.

    I got an HDI cert.

    The test was not monitored or proctored at all.

    I hardly had to study for this test/cert.

    I put the cert on my resume and I wasn't able to discuss it in interviews. Add to this no one knew who HDI was...

    During the interview some companies will administer a technical test to see if you're BS them or NOT on your technical abilities.

    Do you have a 2 year degree?.... if not get one. Do you have a four year degree? If not get one.

    There are quite a few companies that demand a 4 year degree. Degree's don't expire, certs do.

    While you're back in school you can get certs. WGU is a good example of this, because certs count as credits.

    Comptia A+ would be a good entry level cert.

    Born to learn has a know it prove it thing going on, might be worth a look. It's not a cert, but you could learn alot and build up some knowledge on the Microsoft technologies.

    https://borntolearn.mslearn.net/b/weblog/posts/mva-know-it-prove-it-challenges-for-it-pros

    Don't miss these two IT pro tracks in the latest Know it. Prove it. challenge

    IT Pro Fundamentals. Are you interested in a career change? Want to join the exciting world of information technology professionals? Businesses depend on IT pros now more than ever, and people with IT administration and management skills are indispensable. In this challenge, chart your course as you get a grasp on the basics—managing networks and keeping them secure.


    How do you retain the knowledge you do use everyday? Well you don't retain all of it it, but as you're study put your notes in evernote or onenote, and they can stay there in the cloud for review.

    I'm rambling

    Good Luck!!
    When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened."

    --Alexander Graham Bell,
    American inventor
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,905Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I'll see your Photoshop and raise you a fake LinkedIn profile.

    I see your Photoshop & Fake Linkedin Profile and raise you changing my name to someone who has a lot of certifications already.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • dontstopdontstop Posts: 578Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    NOC-Ninja wrote: »
    Certs is just a paper..
    Certs for show, skills & knowledge for dough

    - Dontstop 2017
  • PJ_SneakersPJ_Sneakers CompTIA, EC-Council, ISACA, (ISC)², Microsoft USAPosts: 879Member ■■■■■■□□□□
    TechGromit wrote: »
    I see your Photoshop & Fake Linkedin Profile and raise you changing my name to someone who has a lot of certifications already.

    Damn bro, you win! I can't top identity theft.
  • kiki162kiki162 Posts: 635Member
    Time management is your friend when it comes to studying for certs. Now keep in mind that depending on what you are studying, you may be applicable at your job, or not yet anyways. A lot of us here have gotten certs in prep for something that never materialized, or got a cert for something they were doing at the time, but have transitioned away from that into something else.

    The point is to get certs that are in line with your career goals. For example, if you are in a help desk job, and you want to get a role as a NA or SA, then you should work towards some of those certs. Yes, some of what you study for you may forget, but that's what the job experience will help build over time.
  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead CSM, ITIL x3, Teradata Assc, MS SQL Server, Project +, Server +, A+, N+, MS Project, CAPM, RMP Posts: 2,475Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Okay - True story

    I worked with a guy on the help desk many moons ago, and this gentleman had a fairly common name. He was without degree, and in fact never finished high school.

    This is where it gets funny. He actually paid a guy (no idea how he found him) to sell him a copy of his degree (both CS bachelors and masters) both from a VERY VERY good University.

    Last time I checked he was working as a architect for a tech company. I'd love to know how much he paid.......

    Just saying....
  • mbarrettmbarrett Posts: 397Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    This thread reminds me of the whole "Catch me if you can" Frank Abagnale story...
    I don't think cert theft would get the attention of the FBI, though. It might get you blacklisted by a few companies, though. Other companies would just be grateful for the free exposure...
  • ThePawofRizzoThePawofRizzo SSCP, A+, N+, Sec+, CySA+, Cloud+, CWTS Posts: 389Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Yes a "certificate" itself is "just paper", but certs, in general, show a validation of skills. Certs are more than "just paper". I hear a lot of non-certified techs and admins use the "certs are just paper" or "degrees are just paper" excuses when a certified or degreed job candidate interviews for a job where that non-certified or non-degreed admin or tech is employed. All excuses for why those techs never bothered to go to school or study for a certification. Doesn't mean a cert is "just paper" and worthless.

    Yes, experience is a big part of learning skills. Work ethic and attitude are also a big part of a person's skillset; those that work hard and put the time in will be stronger techs. And, like many of you, I've worked with certified and degreed techs and admins who really weren't all that - mostly because they had crappy work ethics and attitude, and were bad at IT. I've worked with a LOT MORE non-certified, non-degreed techs and admins who never bothered to continue learning, and never bothered to prove they learned something new with a certification or a degree who were also very bad at IT. The ones I've ever heard - falsely - claim how invaluable degrees and certifications can be, are those who haven't bothered to certify in years, or ever, nor gone through the regimen of studying for degrees to know what one can learn in the process.

    Job experience to become a strong tech or admin is great, and very worthy. I think someone who is willing to dig in and learn and work hard can be great at IT without an education or certification. However, job experience can take a long time, and the IT job you have may not be preparing you for other IT roles. This is where certifications and education come in. In a shorter time, you can expose yourself to foundational knowledge that you may not be getting on the job, and broaden and deepen your IT knowledge. AND have paperwork to validate that for a resume, or to convince your boss you're willing to put in the extra time and sacrifice to be better for that promotion you want.
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,905Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I worked with a guy on the help desk many moons ago, and this gentleman had a fairly common name. He was without degree, and in fact never finished high school.

    If they can counterfeit drivers licenses and passports, how hard really is it to counterfeit a college degree? The verification system employers use is flawed. I just need the name of someone who has a good degree, lots of certifications and isn't so well known people recognize his face. Preferably with someone as the same first name as me, I get my name legally changed, now when I go for jobs, if they verify my degree and certification's, they all check out. I just need to know enough to BS my way though an interview. Hopefully I do not get IristheAngel grilling me during the interview. Another thing I can do is pay for Linkedin Premium, this way when someone does a search, my face is the first to come up.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,905Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    Yes a "certificate" itself is "just paper", but certs, in general, show a validation of skills. Certs are more than "just paper". I hear a lot of non-certified techs and admins use the "certs are just paper" or "degrees are just paper" excuses when a certified or degreed job candidate interviews for a job where that non-certified or non-degreed admin or tech is employed. All excuses for why those techs never bothered to go to school or study for a certification. Doesn't mean a cert is "just paper" and worthless.

    The same could be said about a college degree, or even money for that matter. It's just paper, maybe so, but paper with buying power behind it. You might not be able to trade your college degree or certifications for a Starbucks coffee, like you can with money, but they help you get better employment, which leads to getting more paper money.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • PC509PC509 CISSP, CEH, CCNA: Security/CyberOps, Sec+, CHFI, A+, Proj+, Server+, MCITP Win7, Vista, MCP Server 2 Oregon, USPosts: 772Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    What ever happened to pride? I'm proud of my accomplishments. I earned every single one of them. I know my ****. Those pieces of paper on the wall (or on the resume) are trophies from what I've earned. No way could I fake it and say I've done something I didn't. Even the more difficult certs, I feel are foundational. They aren't the end all. They are the "You can do this, but there is so much more you can do" things.

    Fake name, fake certs, fake degrees? May get you a job. But, I'd rather have the real thing and have my skills and ethic be part of my reputation, not the letters behind my name. There are people in the industry that it doesn't matter what certs/education they have. You trust them, you know their name, you know their reputation. There are a few people in here like that. They should be proud of their background, but I know them more as a trusted industry expert.
  • paul78paul78 Posts: 3,015Member ■■■■■■■■■■
    PC509 wrote: »
    ... Certs are for you ....
    PC509 wrote: »
    ... What ever happened to pride? ...

    +1 - well said!
  • TechGromitTechGromit A+, N+, GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Posts: 1,905Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    PC509 wrote: »
    What ever happened to pride? ... Fake name, fake certs, fake degrees?

    There will always those that will take the easy way out. Sure there are honest people that would never do this, but there are plenty what will, and I'm sure do. My point is the verification process is ripe for abuse, but with just a few security measures, it doesn't have to be so. If I controlled my account of certifications and provided you with a temporary code to access my account just to verify my certifications or degree, this would eliminate any kind of fraud. If I can't provide you with a code, then the certifications/degree are not really mine to begin with.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • fabostrongfabostrong Posts: 215Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Thanks for all of the input guys.

    I don't want anyone to think that I'm trying to **** my way through the certs or anything because that's extremely far from the truth. I study very hard and give a lot of time to whatever cert I'm going for.

    I'm more so curious about people's study habits that allow them to pass whatever certification as quick as possible.
  • Packet2070Packet2070 Posts: 5Registered Users ■□□□□□□□□□
    The problem resides not in how much you study but how much you recall. The trick is to start Recalling at least more than what you Study. The more Recalling you do during a day the more complex information your Brain can learn.
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