Breaking into networking...

no!all!no!all! Posts: 245Member ■■■□□□□□□□
I've been with TE from my help desk days about 6-7 years ago and I've always wanted to be a network engineer. I feel pretty stuck in my career right now and I'm starting to get depressed about it. To be honest, the only reason I'm still with my current employer  is because the amazing salary, benefits, and proximity to my apartment. I've been with this company for 6.5 years and they seem uninterested in moving me from desktop support to networking full time. I do assist one of our engineers quite often on troubleshooting, IOS upgrades, solar winds, etc., but my main duties are still desktop support stuff.

I guess my question is, how do I get my break into networking? I've applied for entry level gigs and mid level positions but no one seems interested. I live in the Baltimore area and jobs are abundant but I think the area is just saturated with candidates who have more experience. I'd love to relocate (if you can't tell by my signature) but it seems without a few years of pure hands on networking experience no one is interested. Have any of you been in my shoes? I'm studying for my ROUTE exam and honestly I just don't know if CCNP even worth it because I'm still working in desktop support and who wants a CCNP with no real world experience? I'm sorry for ranting, but I just feel irritated, working so hard for the past 4 years to get Cisco certified and then having your employer not recognize your achievements. Ugh.
A+, N+, S+, CCNA:RS, CCNA:Sec

"In high society TCP is more welcome than UDP. At least it knows a proper handshake" - Ben Franklin

2019 Goals: CCNP:RS & relocate to St. Pete, FL!

Comments

  • ps.89ps.89 Posts: 32Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Maybe look into NOC positions and move up from there. That's what I'm doing. I was in Help Desk for 3 years before moving into my current NOC tech position. But beware - not all NOCs are the same. At my current company, the NOC is it's own department, separate from the Networking team. We hardly do much "networking" and mainly incident response/monitoring, but it's definitely a step in the right direction.
    Complete: BS in Networking, CCENT
    2019 Year Goals: CCNA
    Future Goals: CCNP:Security, CISSP
  • no!all!no!all! Posts: 245Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    ps.89 said:
    Maybe look into NOC positions and move up from there. That's what I'm doing. I was in Help Desk for 3 years before moving into my current NOC tech position. But beware - not all NOCs are the same. At my current company, the NOC is it's own department, separate from the Networking team. We hardly do much "networking" and mainly incident response/monitoring, but it's definitely a step in the right direction.
    You know, I didn't even think of this. That's a good idea, I'll check out some NOC positions.
    A+, N+, S+, CCNA:RS, CCNA:Sec

    "In high society TCP is more welcome than UDP. At least it knows a proper handshake" - Ben Franklin

    2019 Goals: CCNP:RS & relocate to St. Pete, FL!
  • MitMMitM Posts: 581Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    If you want to be a network engineer, the CCNP R&S is great for your knowledge. You don't necessarily need to put it on your CV, if you're worried about employers questioning it. Keep learning and labbing, 

    Continue to have discussions with your employer about your goals.



  • Domm362Domm362 A+, Network+ Long Island, NYPosts: 26Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Are you looking to stay with your current employer or branch out? Like @ps.89 said, your best bet is to apply for NOC positions and gain job experience there to use as your stepping stone into network engineering. Make sure you list in your resume that you assisted engineering at your current employer with network-related assignments and that you are open to learning.
    I would also recommend going for your CCNA r/s rather than the CCNP at this point if you don't already have it. Being able to list that on your resume will get you through most HR filters, plus I rarely see CCNP on job postings (of course, that could just be the job market in my area - it may be different for you).

    Hope this helps, and best of luck!
    "Winners focus on winning. Losers focus on winners."
  • no!all!no!all! Posts: 245Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    Domm362 said:
    Are you looking to stay with your current employer or branch out? Like @ps.89 said, your best bet is to apply for NOC positions and gain job experience there to use as your stepping stone into network engineering. Make sure you list in your resume that you assisted engineering at your current employer with network-related assignments and that you are open to learning.
    I would also recommend going for your CCNA r/s rather than the CCNP at this point if you don't already have it. Being able to list that on your resume will get you through most HR filters, plus I rarely see CCNP on job postings (of course, that could just be the job market in my area - it may be different for you).

    Hope this helps, and best of luck!
    Thanks for the reply! I'm probably looking at  leaving the company at this point, they're not interested in advancing me to another team. But, I'm going to apply for some NOC jobs this weekend. I guess my certs aren't in my signature, I've got my CCNA:RS and CCNA:Sec already though.
    A+, N+, S+, CCNA:RS, CCNA:Sec

    "In high society TCP is more welcome than UDP. At least it knows a proper handshake" - Ben Franklin

    2019 Goals: CCNP:RS & relocate to St. Pete, FL!
  • MontagueVandervortMontagueVandervort Senior Member Posts: 399Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    no!all! said:
    Thanks for the reply! I'm probably looking at  leaving the company at this point, they're not interested in advancing me to another team. But, I'm going to apply for some NOC jobs this weekend. I guess my certs aren't in my signature, I've got my CCNA:RS and CCNA:Sec already though.

    You said you would apply to some NOC jobs back in March of 2016. Did nothing come of it back then? Did you change your mind? What happened?

    Also, are you still earning the $25/hr you were back then (March 2016) or have there been any raises since?

    With the certifications you have I feel that you are seriously underselling yourself. You could have moved on after you got the CCNA in Dec 2015. Now you also have the CCNA Sec.

    What exactly are you waiting for?
  • Domm362Domm362 A+, Network+ Long Island, NYPosts: 26Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    no!all! said:
    Thanks for the reply! I'm probably looking at  leaving the company at this point, they're not interested in advancing me to another team. But, I'm going to apply for some NOC jobs this weekend. I guess my certs aren't in my signature, I've got my CCNA:RS and CCNA:Sec already though.
    It would have helped if I read your signature... *facepalm*

    Since you already have your CCNA r/s and plenty of IT experience, you should get plenty of interviews for NOC roles. However, if you got that cert back in 2015 you may need to renew it to further validate your abilities.

     If you know of any IT-based meetups in your area, try attending and networking with other professionals in network engineering. Having connections always helps!
    "Winners focus on winning. Losers focus on winners."
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