MCDSTS- Why?

garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
I have never seen a posting for this cert. Why would someone want to further secure a position in helpdesk when MCSA/MCSE are readily avaliable?

Comments

  • LukeQuakeLukeQuake Member Posts: 579
    MCDST counts as an elective to the MCSA/MCSE

    Also, some people don't want to go beyond the help desk.
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  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    LukeQuake wrote:
    MCDST counts as an elective to the MCSA/MCSE

    Also, some people don't want to go beyond the help desk.

    Not MCSE.
  • TheShadowTheShadow Member Posts: 1,057 ■■■■■■□□□□
    It is also the quickest cert to obtain in what Microsoft calls the Premium category which can be used as a qualifying cert in Microsoft partner programs and MCT program. That alone could get you hired by a partner trying to fill a slot for points.

    Redmond Magazines annual salary survey just came out and they listed it as Microsoft's hot burner as far as percentage of salary increases year over year. So I guess in some places in the world it is valued. But then in that survey no Microsoft's certs at all is also valued, that must be the experience over certs category.

    http://redmondmag.com/salarysurveys/2006/charts/chart5.aspx
    Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of technology?... The Shadow DO
  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    TheShadow wrote:
    It is also the quickest cert to obtain in what Microsoft calls the Premium category which can be used as a qualifying cert in Microsoft partner programs and MCT program. That alone could get you hired by a partner trying to fill a slot for points.

    Redmond Magazines annual salary survey just came out and they listed it as Microsoft's hot burner as far as percentage of salary increases year over year. So I guess in some places in the world it is valued. But then in that survey no Microsoft's certs at all is also valued, that must be the experience over certs category.

    http://redmondmag.com/salarysurveys/2006/charts/chart5.aspx

    I never believe those reports, especially one geared only toward MS. I always have my doubts MS is in their pockets to pump their certs up. As for the other reports, we have all seen an A+ guy can make 60k/year icon_eek.gif.
  • bighornsheepbighornsheep Member Posts: 1,506
    Similar thread posted before. I dont think there was a conclusion, but personally I feel it's a milestone. It makes the journey towards MCSE less painful, I think MCDST is definitely worth it if MCSA suffice and there's no plan to obtain MCSE.

    http://techexams.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=16341
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  • keatronkeatron Security Tinkerer Member Posts: 1,213 ■■■■■■□□□□
    To put it simply, MCDST is geared specifically towards solving the most common issues end users face. It also drills down with how to best deal with end user calls, etc. For example you have a user who you're trying to instruct to click on the system icon in the control panel. The user swears there is no system icon, and you know there is because you're looking at it on your screen. Though it sounds simple, it might take even the most skilled MCSE (who's been designing AD and doing other things much more technically advanced than desktop support), figure out the user is in category view and you're in classic view. This is the type of thing MCDST focuses on, making you a more streamlined DST.

    As an MCSA, you'll be expected to know group policy and more than likely have to deal with it in your job role as a sys admin. In an MCDST role, you will probably never have to configure a group policy. We do have to keep in mind that you can make a good living and a career out of doing nothing but desktop support if you're with the right organization. I recently did a security seminar for the desktop support team for LA County; There were about 30 of them with varying positions in the department. The three supervisors make about 85,000 per year. Not bad in my book.
  • blackzoneblackzone Member Posts: 82 ■■□□□□□□□□
    promotion, advertising and Microsoft's way of making more money.

    I'm not being sarcastic
  • janmikejanmike Member Posts: 3,076
    keatron has a good grip on the thing. I gained certain skills in my MCDST studies that have helped me help. But, I actually took the exams because the company paid for it and all Help Desk techs and phone people are required to get it. Probably wouldn't if it was not required.

    I'll go on for MCSA, because that gives me "browny points". But I will probably always stay at Help Desk because migrating to one of our Admin positions is almost impossible. All of those hires are done from outside the org.
    "It doesn't matter, it's in the past!"--Rafiki
  • TheShadowTheShadow Member Posts: 1,057 ■■■■■■□□□□
    garv221 wrote:
    I never believe those reports, especially one geared only toward MS. I always have my doubts MS is in their pockets to pump their certs up. As for the other reports, we have all seen an A+ guy can make 60k/year icon_eek.gif.

    Why do you find that strange when people working in IT, even A+ type jobs, are making 60K or more per year without the A+ cert. Don't believe what you see advertised in the job market. Recruiters will tell you that as high as 80 percent of IT jobs in some locales are not publicly advertised. For example with A+ type jobs, embedded systems is the real meal ticket. It is also good for programming if you have a combined hardware/software background.

    Trainers like Keatron that travel around have a much better view of the IT world. When I lived out of a suitcase from city to city as a hired gun, I know that I had a much better picture. I got tired of the travel hassle though.

    Programmers/developers particularly seem to shun certs. There are far more people working in IT than the cert numbers of all the vendors would indicate. Notice that in that survey of the people that responded many claimed no certs at all and were in the high pay category.

    The readers of Redmond tend to be older with the average age 41 and 12 years experience. That is probably one of the reasons that they teamed up with MCPmag to do the survey and get people with less experience into the mix. If you click on the graph it will take you back to the main article to draw your own conclusions.
    Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of technology?... The Shadow DO
  • SieSie Member Posts: 1,195
    Im taking the MCDST for the following reasons:

    A) Using it as an elective to gain the MCSA
    B) Another Qualification on your CV / Resume cant hurt
    C) It will aid some skills or knowledge to the mix

    and the most important one:

    D) Im on a government granted scheeme and this is what they are providiing and its costing me nothing!! icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif
    Foolproof systems don't take into account the ingenuity of fools
  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    Some good points. I understand what you are getting at & the cert is geared toward dekstops. The majority of the time a DST is a postion that someone can get into with a basic understanding of an operating system. My arguement is why study something that can be easily obtained on the job and is considered one of the lowest level jobs in IT? I can see someone studying this cert who plans on being in help desk for their entire career, but the majority of IT workers want more than that. Studying for this just seems like you are cutting yourself short on the big picture. If someone is working in helpdesk, studying MCSA helps solve more issues in help desk by knowing the OS's back end and having a full circle understanding of the problem than just being limited to the OS, hence Tier1 and Tier2 support. MCSE/MCSA is backward compatiable in the job field, meaning they can do a DST jobs. DST are not foward compatiable, they cannot do a MCSE/MCSA'a job.

    TheShadow wrote:
    Why do you find that strange when people working in IT, even A+ type jobs, are making 60K or more per year without the A+ cert. Don't believe what you see advertised in the job market. Recruiters will tell you that as high as 80 percent of IT jobs in some locales are not publicly advertised.

    I know how it works and don't agree with it. Someone who does not understand it, would easily assume holding an A+ alone is subject to 60k a year. I think along with the listed cert salaries should be information on the other held certs along with A+, job title and years in the field. I do also think MS plays their cards right on sending the message that certain certs pay out a given number. Its pure marketing and nothing more.
  • keatronkeatron Security Tinkerer Member Posts: 1,213 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Garv, I too understand your perspective, but the fact of the matter is this; Most desktop support technicians don't have the authority nor needed permissions and priviliges to do any of the backend stuff you're talking about. As I have posted many many times, I think one should get some experience, then test to validate and solidify that experience. Also, any of the skills that are part of the required learnings for any cert can be learned on job (especially if you have a skilled supervisor or manager showing you the ropes). We in the past discussed how company HR departments are killing us in IT. However, when we recommend to someone trying to get a helpdesk position to go and get MCSE first, we're hurting our own cause and in some ways contributing to the paper cert revolution.
  • bighornsheepbighornsheep Member Posts: 1,506
    keatron wrote:
    However, when we recommend to someone trying to get a helpdesk position to go and get MCSE first, we're hurting our own cause and in some ways contributing to the paper cert revolution.

    Agree icon_exclaim.gif

    I think that it's good to have experience backing up certifications. But then again, many companies expect their IT guys to do everything, so where's the line drawn?
    Jack of all trades, master of none
  • sprkymrksprkymrk Member Posts: 4,884 ■■■□□□□□□□
    keatron wrote:
    However, when we recommend to someone trying to get a helpdesk position to go and get MCSE first, we're hurting our own cause and in some ways contributing to the paper cert revolution.

    Agree icon_exclaim.gif

    I think that it's good to have experience backing up certifications. But then again, many companies expect their IT guys to do everything, so where's the line drawn?

    Keatron makes a great point here. I was going to quote that same sentence.
    Bighornsheep, I would say it this way:
    I think it's good to have certifications backing up experience. That way you don't get the cart before the horse. Of course some entry level certs are helpful in getting that first job.
    All things are possible, only believe.
  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    Keatron, you do make some good points. However, I never said a DST should be configuring AD. I said the tech should be studying MCSE instead of MCDST which in turn would give the tech alot better troubleshooting skills. The more you know, the better off you are.
    I think one should get some experience, then test to validate and solidify that experience. Also, any of the skills that are part of the required learnings for any cert can be learned on job

    This is my exact arguement. If somone has a position in help desk why would they further want to secure their position in helpdesk by obtaining MCDST? They should be studying towards MCSE to better themselves and look towards the future. There is no need for a tech to study DST when its the lowest level job and there is so much technology above that cert & position, it does not make sense. MS has no requirment for experience or prior IT positions to study and cerify in MCSE. Techs in low level jobs shoud not waste time on MCDST. If everyone frowns upons a tech studying MCSE, then no experienced college students in universities with programs geared around MCSE and MCP programs are wrong too then?
  • keatronkeatron Security Tinkerer Member Posts: 1,213 ■■■■■■□□□□
    garv221 wrote:
    This is my exact arguement. If somone has a position in help desk why would they further want to secure their position in helpdesk by obtaining MCDST? They should be studying towards MCSE to better themselves and look towards the future. There is no need for a tech to study DST when its the lowest level job and there is so much technology above that cert & position, it does not make sense. MS has no requirment for experience or prior IT positions to study and cerify in MCSE. Techs in low level jobs shoud not waste time on MCDST. If everyone frowns upons a tech studying MCSE, then no experienced college students in universities with programs geared around MCSE and MCP programs are wrong too then?

    Garv, I hear this very same argument all the time from people who have been doing sys admin work or network eng. work for years. "Keatron why do I need MCSE or CCNP when I've been doing this for the last 15 years" Again, as I've already pointed out, your view of the DST/Helpdesk position sounds very narrow. While it is common for people to use DST/Helpdesk as a stepping stone to other positions, it's not the only option, and that should be understood. The most important and main goal of obtaining any certification should be for the knowledge gaining experience. I've taught a few MCDST classes (cause it's fun and I want to keep my MCT active), and I've heard too many people say at the end of the class "wow I thought I really knew Microsoft OS and how to support it, but I didn't know as much as I thought I did". Microsoft (as well as other vendors) have realized that the DST role is in itself a unique skill set. Most MCSE's I know (the ones who actually do MCSE work), feel that their superior to MCDST knowledge and that they somehow automatically know that skill set because they're an MCSE; dead wrong.
    garv221 wrote:
    Keatron, you do make some good points. However, I never said a DST should be configuring AD. I said the tech should be studying MCSE instead of MCDST which in turn would give the tech alot better troubleshooting skills. The more you know, the better off you are.

    You have to be careful with how you say this as well. The question is troubleshooting what? MCSE's troubleshoot site link issues, DNS SERVER issues, DC issues, group policy issues, permissions issues, etc. The problem is that. And as I've said again, any of the skills CAN, not will, but CAN be learned on the job. How do you validate that you've mastered those skills without having your skill set tested? By just telling yourself you have? That's what certs are actually for.

    This is my overall point; It's usually best to go for a certification that reflects what you already do in your job on a day to day basis. I think most agree with that. So if your day to day job consists of supporting end users who are running PC's with as Windows OS, then by golly, go ahead and grab MCDST. It' will be a good validation move and it will most likely fill in some knowledge gaps (because we all have those). After you do that, then by all means begin to look to the stars and start preparing for positions that you plan on getting eventually. But as someone said in an earlier post to this topic "don't put the cart before the horse". Not only that, often times people in DST roles will be likely taking their first ever Microsoft exam. I think it's best that their first exam experience be centered around material and job duties they do and understand rather than something they've probably never touched.

    Garv, you started this post by saying you haven't seen any posts for this cert, however I can tell you that over the last 18 months, 90% of all the RFP's my company has received for entry level for corporations has been MCDST (whereas it used to be A+ and Net+).
  • SlowhandSlowhand MCSE: Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, MCSA: Windows Server 2003/2012/2016, CCNA Routing & Switchi Bay Area, CaliforniaMod Posts: 5,161 Mod
    garv221 wrote:
    This is my exact arguement. If somone has a position in help desk why would they further want to secure their position in helpdesk by obtaining MCDST? They should be studying towards MCSE to better themselves and look towards the future.

    I think I agree with keatron on this particular subject. Helpdesk isn't one that's so bad no one should do it. (I've worked as a McTech, also known as depot technician, for CompUSA. Believe me, that was far, far worse than helpdesk, as it included both sales and doing regular "store cleanup" duties at the end of the night.) Helpdesk may be where some people want to be, or it may be a position some of us want to get better at. Again, as stated earlier in this thread, helpdesk and systems administration are different things, and an MCSE doesn't necessarily have the right skills and experience to assist users in the way they need.

    There's a reason for certifications. It may be another way for Microsoft to get more money, but they wouldn't get that money if there was no one around who wanted the product. There is a demand for helpdesk certs, and that demand comes from the need for helpdesk staff to be better at what they do, and Microsoft is taking the opportunity to fill that demand.

    A side note, as well. I don't think it's a waste of time to study anything, especially not when it helps you do your job. And, considering that most people do use helpdesk to step up to things like network or systems admin, it doesn't look bad for those people to have worked hard in the position that got them there.

    Another $0.02, on the actual topic question. Aside from helpdesk, there are others who might benefit from MCDST. I know a very talented network engineer who has worked with Cisco products and Unix for the last ten years, or so. He's just finished his CCNP, he's got RHCE and SCSA, and is probably going to take LPIC, just to round it out. In his job, he doesn't administrate Windows servers, nor does he need to. However, I do have to help him, from time to time, working with clients who have issues on their end of the world that have AD-based networks hooked up to our routers, since he doesn't have the kind of Windows experience to be able to walk them through things that come up when he's on-call. For him, I've recommended the MCDST, so that he can work with the users that aren't always calling about router questions, without having to spend the time going through superflous information on the MCSA/MCSE track.

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  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    keatron wrote:
    Most MCSE's I know (the ones who actually do MCSE work), feel that their superior to MCDST knowledge and that they somehow automatically know that skill set because they're an MCSE; dead wrong.

    Tell that to an MCSE or Sys Admin, I'm sure he will highly disagree.
    You have to be careful with how you say this as well. The question is troubleshooting what? MCSE's troubleshoot site link issues, DNS SERVER issues, DC issues, group policy issues, permissions issues, etc. The problem is that. And as I've said again, any of the skills CAN, not will, but CAN be learned on the job. How do you validate that you've mastered those skills without having your skill set tested? By just telling yourself you have? That's what certs are actually for.

    I know what a cert is for & you are putting to much emphasis on the cert alone. While this tech has his job mastered and no desire to continue in help desk, he is studying for his MCSE which is increasing his troubleshooting abilitly and understanding of the relationship between the OS on the users PC he is working on and the backend system/server it is attached to. He is now going above and beyond what you are suggesting and not staying in his place. He is now asking the question "how & why does this work" and getting the most from his low level job by watching and understanding how a real live network operates and interactes with an OS. That beats the hell out of studying something he already knows and wants to move on from, its aggressive and thats what you have to do to get to the top and acquire more skills. I only have 3 certs but somehow managed to climb my way up the latter. By being aggressive, learning and thinking outside the box and not studying certs for my low level position but the position I wanted. A DST will stand out if they grind on an MCSE & will have a better chance at being noticed for a promotion or new posting becasue its shows intaitive and being on top of your game travels fast through the office.
    Not only that, often times people in DST roles will be likely taking their first ever Microsoft exam. I think it's best that their first exam experience be centered around material and job duties they do and understand rather than something they've probably never touched.

    Perfect, take the 70-270 and start the MCSE path. Great entry level cert that they should already have some experience with.
    Garv, you started this post by saying you haven't seen any posts for this cert, however I can tell you that over the last 18 months, 90% of all the RFP's my company has received for entry level for corporations has been MCDST (whereas it used to be A+ and Net+).

    I have not seen seen a single posting, talked with anyone outside of here or seen one in the 200+ resumes I browsed through last feb-march for a new hire in my dept.
  • keatronkeatron Security Tinkerer Member Posts: 1,213 ■■■■■■□□□□
    My RFP number was referring to RFP's for entry level training for support people. They are asking for MCDST classes for their support team.

    Taken from here http://www.microsoft.com/learning/exams/70-270.asp

    MS Exam 70-270
    Audience Profile
    Candidates for this exam operate in medium to very large computing environments that use Microsoft Windows XP Professional as a desktop operating system. They have a minimum of one year's experience implementing and administering any desktop operating system in a network environment.

    Taken from here http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/mcdst/requirements.asp

    The Microsoft Certified Desktop Support Technician (MCDST) credential proves that you have the skills to successfully support end users and to successfully troubleshoot desktop environments that are running the Microsoft Windows operating system.

    I don't know how to make it any clearer than what MS does.

    270 is Installing, Configuring, and Administering Microsoft Windows XP Professional

    MCDST is 271 which is Supporting Users and Troubleshooting a Microsoft Windows XP Operating System

    and 272 which is Supporting Users and Troubleshooting Desktop Applications on a Microsoft Windows XP Operating System.

    Again, these two skill sets ARE NOT the same. Yes, having knowledge of one helps you with the other, but because you have one doesn't mean you're exempt from learning the other. 272 specifically deals heavily with supporting end users having problems with office apps, internet explorer, etc. 270 does not. A good implementation/admin person does not equal a good support person. It's just that simple. Yes, a person can be both, but it doesn't mean because you are one you are automatically the other.

    Watch a seasoned MCSE who's spent the last few years in the trenches doing implementations and design try and walk a person who's never touched a PC through changing desktop settings. You might be surprised.
  • sprkymrksprkymrk Member Posts: 4,884 ■■■□□□□□□□
    garv221 wrote:
    keatron wrote:
    Most MCSE's I know (the ones who actually do MCSE work), feel that their superior to MCDST knowledge and that they somehow automatically know that skill set because they're an MCSE; dead wrong.

    Tell that to an MCSE or Sys Admin, I'm sure he will highly disagree.

    This one won't. icon_cool.gif
    It's been several years since I worked help desk - Win98 and just coming on to W2K. While I do have a very good working knowledge of WXP, it's from a setup and configuration and security (hardening) perspective. My help desk folks are a lot more familiar with issues the user runs into and how to fix those issues. Same goes for Office Applications. I use Word, Excel and Power Point, but not like a secretary or office manager does. My desktop support techs know this stuff better than me - I admit it.
    garv221 wrote:
    I know what a cert is for & you are putting to much emphasis on the cert alone.
    That's your opinion. I don't think he is at all. He has said that the cert should validate the skill. If that's too much emphasis than we need to rename the site to whoneedscerts.net. icon_lol.gif
    garv221 wrote:
    While this tech has his job mastered and no desire to continue in help desk, he is studying for his MCSE which is increasing his troubleshooting abilitly and understanding of the relationship between the OS on the users PC he is working on and the backend system/server it is attached to. He is now going above and beyond what you are suggesting and not staying in his place. He is now asking the question "how & why does this work" and getting the most from his low level job by watching and understanding how a real live network operates and interactes with an OS. That beats the hell out of studying something he already knows and wants to move on from, its aggressive and thats what you have to do to get to the top and acquire more skills.

    This is okay in a best case scenario, but this is also a source of "paper MCSE's" in many cases.
    garv221 wrote:
    I only have 3 certs but somehow managed to climb my way up the latter. By being aggressive, learning and thinking outside the box and not studying certs for my low level position but the position I wanted. A DST will stand out if they grind on an MCSE & will have a better chance at being noticed for a promotion or new posting becasue its shows intaitive and being on top of your game travels fast through the office.

    A DST will also stand out by being the best DST on the staff and being certified as an MCDST. If we take the logic from your line of thinking to the extreme no one should bother with any certification except the CCIE. Why waste your time on all the low level MCSE, CCNP, CCNA, CompTIA stuff?
    garv221 wrote:
    I have not seen seen a single posting, talked with anyone outside of here or seen one in the 200+ resumes I browsed through last feb-march for a new hire in my dept.
    This will change. A quick monster.com search with the keyword MCDST within 200 miles of my zip showed 112 hits. Mileage may vary, but as I said this cert will gain in popularity. My company is already putting several of the support techs through this training.
    All things are possible, only believe.
  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    That's your opinion. I don't think he is at all. He has said that the cert should validate the skill. If that's too much emphasis than we need to rename the site to whoneedscerts.net. icon_lol.gif

    It is my opinion just as this is yours. You are forgetting their is a process to obtaining the cert and that is what I am stressing. You are too concerned about a DST being an MCSE or paper cert when I am actualy suggesting the DST study the cert to acquire more knowledge to benefit themselves. Would you feel better if the DST studied MCSE, then waited until he was a sys admin to take the certs even thoguh he could have began the cert process while being a DST. MCSE takes time.... Is there something wrong with the DST studying MCSE to actualy get an edge? The impression you are giving is the same as I said earlier, college kids don't meet up to your moral standards of the cert process then, while taking classes geared toward MCSE. The students are learning just as I am suggesting the DST to do. People want to learn and excel and the way to do that is study, work experience, with no work experience use a home lab. I am stressing the skills that can be obtained from the cert process, not the cert in general. So what do you call a DST who knows way more than their position but is not certified in MCSE? If he was certified he would be a paper tech?
    garv221 wrote:
    While this tech has his job mastered and no desire to continue in help desk, he is studying for his MCSE which is increasing his troubleshooting abilitly and understanding of the relationship between the OS on the users PC he is working on and the backend system/server it is attached to. He is now going above and beyond what you are suggesting and not staying in his place. He is now asking the question "how & why does this work" and getting the most from his low level job by watching and understanding how a real live network operates and interactes with an OS. That beats the hell out of studying something he already knows and wants to move on from, its aggressive and thats what you have to do to get to the top and acquire more skills.
    This is okay in a best case scenario, but this is also a source of "paper MCSE's" in many cases.
    I am talking about the case I just explained. The one with someone working hard at achieving a goal. There is nothing wrong with that.
    A DST will also stand out by being the best DST on the staff and being certified as an MCDST. If we take the logic from your line of thinking to the extreme no one should bother with any certification except the CCIE. Why waste your time on all the low level MCSE, CCNP, CCNA, CompTIA stuff?

    You are correct, if you take my line of thinking to the extreme. This situation is not extreme, someone is just trying to get out of help desk by studying and learning more technical skills instead of studying MCDST. CCIE is proprietary to Cisco anyways. If I followed your idea, I would still be in a low level tech job, do I not deserve my job?
  • sprkymrksprkymrk Member Posts: 4,884 ■■■□□□□□□□
    garv221 wrote:
    Why would someone want to further secure a position in helpdesk when MCSA/MCSE are readily avaliable?

    Answer #1 & 2
    LukeQuake wrote:
    MCDST counts as an elective to the MCSA/MCSE

    Also, some people don't want to go beyond the help desk.

    Answer #3 & 4
    TheShadow wrote:
    It is also the quickest cert to obtain in what Microsoft calls the Premium category which can be used as a qualifying cert in Microsoft partner programs and MCT program. That alone could get you hired by a partner trying to fill a slot for points.

    Redmond Magazines annual salary survey just came out and they listed it as Microsoft's hot burner as far as percentage of salary increases year over year. So I guess in some places in the world it is valued.

    Answer #5
    personally I feel it's a milestone.

    Answer#6
    keatron wrote:
    To put it simply, MCDST is geared specifically towards solving the most common issues end users face. It also drills down with how to best deal with end user calls, etc.

    Etc., etc., etc.
    I think many people answered your original question and no one intended this to become an opinion poll or disagree with your stance on the cert in question Garv. If you don't think the answers given were valid that's fine. Nothing wrong with that. We'll just respectfully agree to disagree. icon_cool.gif

    sprkymrk
    All things are possible, only believe.
  • garv221garv221 Member Posts: 1,914
    sprkymrk wrote:
    We'll just respectfully agree to disagree. icon_cool.gif

    icon_lol.gif I remember Will Ferrel saying that in Anchor Man, I agree with that. The majority of the time the answer lies somewhere in the middle of the two stances anyways.
  • strauchrstrauchr Member Posts: 528
    keatron wrote:
    Watch a seasoned MCSE who's spent the last few years in the trenches doing implementations and design try and walk a person who's never touched a PC through changing desktop settings. You might be surprised.

    Thats me right there. I been in the 'trenches' for a few years now and have lost so many of my desktop and end user skills. I wouldn't say i know about all the latest desktop abilities either as my job doesn't call for it. Systems engineering and desktop support are 2 very different fields and success in one does not mean success in another.

    If I use my example a bit to put my 2 cents worth in. I was doing help desk/desktop support for about 2 years and was stuck there with no certs. I went out of my way to get the MCP for XP as well as the CNA for the basic level netware admin I was doing.

    Not only did I surprise myself with a lot of new knowledge (yes, I thought I knew it all) I also learnt better, more efficient ways to do things as well as new features we could use to get more value for the business that no other people thought of before.

    It was then I was promoted to 3rd level systems support and engineering. So without getting those basic certs, proving I knew my stuff at that level and helping with higher level work I might be stuck at desktop level. If MCDST was around at that point I would have done it too and I would have got MCSA if it was around before I got MCSE as those certs would have closely aligned with my career and also helped me prove that was a position I could master and that I was ready for the next level.

    I don't think I would ever hire a person who has worked at help desk level with one years experience or no experience with an MCSE. Working towards MCSE with a MCP or MCDST and that would say this person wants this job. I would never want to hire someone who just sees a desktop support position as a stepping stone. You need to become experienced at one level before moving to the next.

    Ambition is fine but someone isn't going to perform at the level you need them to then they aren't ever going to move up.
  • Young FredYoung Fred Member Posts: 80 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Truth be told contrary to what people think you have to have tons of patience with computers. This cert not only shows you computer skills it shows some people really how to communicate effieciently.
    (THIS IS MY 50TH POST)
    p.s. webmaster i want my second star lol
    YoungFred.jpg
  • blargoeblargoe Self-Described Huguenot NC, USAMember Posts: 4,174 ■■■■■■■■■□
    garv221 wrote:
    If someone is working in helpdesk, studying MCSA helps solve more issues in help desk by knowing the OS's back end and having a full circle understanding of the problem than just being limited to the OS, hence Tier1 and Tier2 support. MCSE/MCSA is backward compatiable in the job field, meaning they can do a DST jobs. DST are not foward compatiable, they cannot do a MCSE/MCSA'a job.
    I agree with you that working toward the MCSA would give the engineer a better understanding of what's going on on the back end and a credential more in line with a sysadmin job. But you are grossly underestimating the value and separate skill set that a great desktop engineer should bring.

    Yes, an MCSE could adequately function working on the desktop side, but I promise you an experienced desktop engineer with proper training would run circles around the "average" MCSE, on the user support and desktop side. I would rather have handful of decent desktop tech doing deskside and helpdesk support than an team of MCSE's.

    Some people don't want to be sysadmins, they would rather interact with the user community.
    IT guy since 12/00

    Recent: 11/2019 - RHCSA (RHEL 7); 2/2019 - Updated VCP to 6.5 (just a few days before VMware discontinued the re-cert policy...)
    Working on: RHCE/Ansible
    Future: Probably continued Red Hat Immersion, Possibly VCAP Design, or maybe a completely different path. Depends on job demands...
  • bighornsheepbighornsheep Member Posts: 1,506
    blargoe wrote:
    Yes, an MCSE could adequately function working on the desktop side, but I promise you an experienced desktop engineer with proper training would run circles around the "average" MCSE, on the user support and desktop side. I would rather have handful of decent desktop tech doing deskside and helpdesk support than an team of MCSE's.

    Some people don't want to be sysadmins, they would rather interact with the user community.

    I think this is very true. If you read old news releases from Microsoft, that is exactly the intent of MCDST. If you look at the marketing trend of today's computing industry, customer service and customer support is very important. As mass production and quantity drives up, it's natural for quality to decrease, that's why sufficient support and training is needed. Same goes for corporations that rely more and more on technologies, there needs to be support and training.

    I can see such "support roles"-type of certs become more and more popular as technology becomre more and more high level; creating a larger gap between designers, and technicians.

    The best example I can think of is cars, you have your engineers that design and improve car designs, and they probably know alot about fixing them as well, but ultimately dealerships have their own seperate mechanics to support drivers and their maintainence/problems. As well, there are third-party auto shops that provide similar services.

    Similarly, computers are the same.
    Jack of all trades, master of none
  • deneb829deneb829 Member Posts: 292
    What I am seeing here is the same caste system that I have been privy to since I entered this business in 1994. There is a stigma tied to working the helpdesk - it is viewed a the lowest job on the totem pole. I guess you could conisder it low job if that is (or has been) your job and it is your intention to climb your way up the ladder.

    Having started as a bench tech, then to help desk, then to desktop tech, then to network engineer, then to network administrator (would that be considered a step-down?) then to Unix sysadmin, then to teaching - I can say that I have worked most of the positions along the way. The most difficult position was working the helpdesk - not technically, but the job itself. The desktop techs tended to look down on us and often complained that some issues should have been solved at the helpdesk and the tech should have never been dispatched.

    Wow, look at so many of you nodding your heads in agreement! Why aren't those network admins and desktop techs over there not nodding their heads in agreement? Oh! They've actually worked the helpdesk. They've been looked down on, tried to deal with users who had simple issues, but just couldn't be helped over the phone.

    Funny, you think since they are Desktop techs and Network administrators that they should have the right to look down upon the helpdesk now - like so many of their peers who have never worked the helpdesk. No, they won't, because they know. They also know that the helpdesk peers that they have left behind who are still working the phones are normally pretty good at what they do, and they have their reasons for working the phones. I have found that some people just don't like to leave their chairs and are more than happy to answer the phones. It works for them - frankly, I am glad that they enjoy it, because while I consider myself a decent helpdesk tech, I do not want to go back and do that job again. Still, I have done the job, and I have a resepect for the helpdesk techs that only another helpdesk tech could have.

    Ironically, just yesterday (true story!) I noticed that our one helpdesk tech was looking a bit frazzled. I know what the other techs say about her technical skills, and while she is not a very experienced tech, she is decent and makes an effort to resolve any calls before dispatching them to the desktop techs. I told her a story of when I was a helpdesk tech. One of the desktop techs complained that I should be resolving more calls on the phone. So, the manager sat me down to talk to me about it. He told me that some of the techs complained about me. "Which techs?" I asked. Knowing full well it was only one of the techs who seemed to have a great deal of comtempt for helpdesk techs. The manager told me he couldn't tell me. "That's fine, I know it's only so-and-so." I can't remember his name - this was back in 1996.
    "Which calls were they", I asked. He couldn't produce a single one. "Ok, I said, "Can you give me a ballpark estimate?" The manager said, "I don't know, 3 or 4."
    "3 or 4?" I was ready for this meeting because I knew it had nothing to do with my skills. Here is a summary list of all of my calls. "I produced a sheet with over 3000 calls. "3 or 4?" The manager, who really liked me, started to crack. He admitted it had nothing to do with me personally and that the new lead tech's father was a senior manager in the company and that the son wanted to hire all of his friends. It's easy to complain about the helpdesk - especially when you don't know them. I wasn't being fired, I was being moved, but that was it. Within 2 weeks, and before I was to be moved, I found another job paying $5 more per hour - basically due to the several thousand dollars worth of laser printer training at HP that my current company had just paid for (I have only left 2 of 8 tech jobs because of the work environment - all other job changes were due to moving out of state or the company closing). Less than 2 years later, that company had been fired from that site and told never to return or they would be arrested. My new company was hired to take over that contract, knowing that I had experience at that particular site, I returned as lead tech.

    Ooo! Lots of morals here, but the point that I was trying to make to our helpdesk tech is that I know there are scores of calls that we never see because she solves them at the helpdesk.

    The helpdesk is a noble position that only someone who has worked it can appreciate. Sure, there are plenty of people who would never want to go back, myself included, but I resepect what they do because I have been there. Let them have their MCDST - they deserve the good feelings that go with being certified!
    There are only 10 types of people in this world - People who understand binary and people who do not.
  • sprkymrksprkymrk Member Posts: 4,884 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Dang deneb, that's well said. I thought this thread was about done, too. icon_lol.gif

    I have to agree. I was fortunate in that I started as a Computer Tech and never had to work as a helpdesk, phone support type, tech. Though we always did try to solve simple things over the phone, many times it was easier just to go visit the customer. The difference being that we dispatched ourselves, not someone else who would be ticked if it was something easy. If I took a call and couldn't resolve it over the phone, I was responsible for making sure it got fixed by personally going to the customer.

    I wonder if part of the reason helpdesk folks have a bad rep (sometimes) is because in many cases it is the entry level position so they have less experience overall. It also can have a higher turn over rate, thus keeping the average helpdesk person lowest on the totem pole. Not always, but sometimes. I too am glad to have a good helpdesk staff. They need to be paid what they are worth, and a good helpdesk person can be worth gold. icon_cool.gif
    All things are possible, only believe.
  • rcooprcoop Member Posts: 183
    deneb829 wrote:
    The helpdesk is a noble position that only someone who has worked it can appreciate.

    Well I for one, as a professional services consultant for a software company, appreciate my companies helpdesk personnel (called "Configuration Support Techs" or "Configuration Support Engineers" here). I am often installing, configuring, and possibly enhancing our newest software, on a client configuration I've never seen before at the clients site with the client (or his tech guys) watching my every move. Something comes up (some crazy unhandled exception or other unexpected problem that I've never encountered before), I take a break, call support, and normally one of the techs has come across the error before or something similar... once I get back in town and in the office, I'm sure to buy them lunch and let them know how much I appreciate their help... even if they just had to look it up. It makes me (and by association, my company) look a lot better, than if I continued to burn hours (and very expensive hours at that) trying to troubleshoot the issue with "MY" software, that I'm "supposed" to be an expert on.

    Maybe advanced software is a bit different, but even here, helpdesk is considered more entry level than any of the other technical jobs (other than software egineering interns)... but the smart ones, who enjoy technology and helping people solve problems, are golden. In our company, they know our software (and where it is weak) better than most in our company.

    Take Care,
    RCoop
    Working on MCTS:SQL Server 2005 (70-431) & Server+
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