Career advice.....is it worth while for 40yr old

RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hi people,
I`m after some advice on whether it`s worth me starting out in IT, beginning with A+ then N+ then looking for a job in a support role.
After gaining some experience, moving onto security+ etc.

I have only self learnt experience at home......building a few pc`s, installing software and problem solving etc.

I`m being made redundant within the next year and 40 icon_lol.gif , so I need to get a move on with whatever I choose.

Thank`s for any advice icon_thumright.gif
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Comments

  • ajmatsonajmatson Member Posts: 289
    I am in the same boat as you. I am 31 and started late. I just applied to WGU to help me on my way to finishing my schooling as well as kick start my certifications. It think it is never to late to make changes to your life as long as they are for the better.
    Working on currently:
    Masters Degree Information Security and Assurance (WGU) / Estimated 06/01/2016
    Next Up: CCNP Routing Exam | Certified Ethical Hacker Exam
    Cisco Lab: ASA 5506-X, GNS3, 1x 2801 Router, 1x 2650XM, 1x 3750-48TS-E switch, 2x 3550 EMI Switches and 1x 2950T swtich.
    Juniper Lab: 1x SRX100H2, 1x J2320 (1GB Flash/1GB RAM, JunOS 11.4R7.5), and 4 JunOS Firefly vSRX Routers in VMWare ESXi 5.1
  • phoeneousphoeneous Go ping yourself... Member Posts: 2,333 ■■■■■■■□□□
    You should only do it if you think it will make you happy. It's not a meal ticket, it takes a lot of hard work and dedication for IT to pay off.
  • mikej412mikej412 Member Posts: 10,086 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Rumpel wrote: »
    Hi people,
    I`m after some advice on whether it`s worth me starting out in IT, beginning with A+ then N+ then looking for a job in a support role.
    Yes, if you think it's something you'd like to do.

    Your age is irrelevant. It may "work for you" in some instances and it may "work against you" in others -- but just don't worry about it.
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • tpatt100tpatt100 Member Posts: 2,991 ■■■■■■■■■□
    25 years until your 65 is way
    longer than the time it takes to retrain.
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    tpatt100 wrote: »
    25 years until your 65 is way
    longer than the time it takes to retrain.

    That was my initial thought as well. As long as you're willing to put 3-5 years into intense study, starting at the bottom, and working your way back up, you'll have an opportunity for a very rewarding 20+ years. It all depends on you though; this certainly isn't a field for everyone.
  • eMeSeMeS Member Posts: 1,875
    dynamik wrote: »
    That was my initial thought as well. As long as you're willing to put 3-5 years into intense study, starting at the bottom, and working your way back up, you'll have an opportunity for a very rewarding 20+ years. It all depends on you though; this certainly isn't a field for everyone.

    I agree with these two statements. In fact, I'll go out on a limb and say that within 10 years you will have to retrain yourself for something else. The market changes quickly.

    Basically, everything you learn today ultimately accelerates your late of future learning, as well as increasing your overall capabilities.

    MS
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    That was my initial thought as well. As long as you're willing to put 3-5 years into intense study, starting at the bottom, and working your way back up, you'll have an opportunity for a very rewarding 20+ years. It all depends on you though; this certainly isn't a field for everyone.

    I was thinking along the lines of A+, N+ and either Security+ or MSCA. How long on average would that take?
    I am planning on self learning A+ and it taking 6 months.........is that about right?

    Thank`s for all the replies :D
  • phoeneousphoeneous Go ping yourself... Member Posts: 2,333 ■■■■■■■□□□
    Rumpel wrote: »
    I was thinking along the lines of A+, N+ and either Security+ or MSCA. How long on average would that take?
    I am planning on self learning A+ and it taking 6 months.........is that about right?

    Thank`s for all the replies :D


    It depends on how much time you put into it on a daily basis. There is a big difference between only studying on the weekends for 6 months and studying everyday for 3 months.
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I`d manage about 20hrs per week if I`m honest with myself.
  • janmikejanmike Member Posts: 3,076
    Hey!

    When I was 55 I was laid off when the company I worked for went out of business. I decided not more highway construction for me and I did the "reinvent yourself" thing.
    I went into IT with a lot of self-study and a couple of A+ courses at a community college.

    I am 63 now and have been employed in tech support since about 9 months into my search for a job.

    Just be prepared for a continual upgrading of your skills. The upgrading never stops!

    Get the A+ and then you will know how much you actually want to go ahead with IT of any kind.

    Good luck!
    "It doesn't matter, it's in the past!"--Rafiki
  • ULWizULWiz Member Posts: 722
    Well if your only 40 you should live at least another 40 years. So imo thats plenty of time. Get cracking my friend and best of luck
    CompTIA A+ Nov 25, 1997
    CompTIA Network+ March 7, 2008
    MCTS Vista 620 June 14, 2008
    MCP Server 290 Nov 15, 2008
    MCP Server 291 In Progress (Exam 12/28/09)
    Cisco CCENT In Progress
    MCP Server 291 In Progress
    C|EH In Progress
  • docspawndocspawn Member Posts: 97 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Same boat as you (40 year old), i started with MCP in Win XP after being an Electronics guy about 3 years ago and found it very hard. Failed twice and almost gave up.
    Now 2 years on i'm hoping to finish MCSE in new year and started a new job that i'd of had no chance before started. It is hard work but if prepared to give it a go then it can only benifit you.
    D.S.
    ps. I know its now 'out of date' but the 70-270 Xp MCP is the best
    cert i took for a good foundation in all things computing. The Vista (and heard Win 7) is not so wide ranging if you want to progress behond.
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hmm, helpful replies there, think I`ve been empowered by them icon_thumright.gif
    I haven`t started any courses yet, but it sounds like the A+ is the place to start without jumping in to deep at first.

    edit:
    Also, would anyone recommend or otherwise the Pitman training courses.
    A+ Certification one and two are both 60hrs each to prepare for the 601 and 602 exam.

    thank`s guys.
  • darkerosxxdarkerosxx Banned Posts: 1,343
    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress. icon_cheers.gif
  • brad-brad- Member Posts: 1,218
    1) Expect to have a hard time finding a job
    2) Dont expect to be rich for a while
  • johnhumphreyjohnhumphrey Member Posts: 22 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I am A+ Certified and just got my Network+ Cert. I have been pumping my Resume out and haven't even gotten a phone call. I am currently working on my CCNA. I am currently working in a Dr's office doing clerical work and I am miserable as hell. I am hoping that if I get my CCNA someone might notice my skills. So I guess we are all in the same boat.
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    1) Expect to have a hard time finding a job
    Is it because there are so many people appyling for the same job?
    Or because of lack of experience/qualifications on my part?
  • johnhumphreyjohnhumphrey Member Posts: 22 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I know most of the calls i have gotten were from Temp agencies looking for a 6 month contract.
  • brad-brad- Member Posts: 1,218
    Rumpel wrote: »
    Is it because there are so many people appyling for the same job?
    Or because of lack of experience/qualifications on my part?

    Yes, yes, and your age may hurt you too.
  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    And the economy icon_sad.gif

    I don't know if the age would be a big deal or not. I'm sure it varies depending on the place. As long as you have a good reason for switching careers and show that you're passionate and eager to learn, you should be fine. If you're stodgy and appear resistant to change, you might have problems.
  • NetworkingStudentNetworkingStudent Member Posts: 1,407 ■■■■■■■■□□
    I’m 32 and finishing up my degree in A.A.S., and I will be entering the IT field soon. You are never to old to make a career or life change. I would try to find an industry that you’re familiar with and align your IT skill set with their company. For example, if you do or used to work for a bank maybe you could find a position supporting a bank’s IT help desk. Also. I would find a way to highlight or showcase your age to an advantage. Some how you might be able to say or show that you more responsible or reliable than your younger peers that are competing for the same job. I’m noticing more and more that it seems managers like Tech support people that want longevity.

    Have you ever thought about starting up your own PC repair business on the side?
    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
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Have you ever thought about starting up your own PC repair business on the side?
    Yes I have, it was what I was going to do whilst studying etc icon_wink.gif

    I`m currently in manufacturing, which is dying out due to chemicals/drugs being transferrd outside of UK.........corporate tax is cheaper outside UK.

    Thank`s guys.
  • human151human151 Member Posts: 208
    Since time is of the essence you should decide what you would like to specialize in. Do you want to do networking or work with servers and operating systems?

    If you want to go with networking then jump right into the CCNA track. CCENT--->CCNA---->CCNP then branch out from there


    If you want to go into Server Admin/M$ stuff then start studying for the M$ certs. PLEASE DO NOT THINK YOU NEED THE COMPTIA CERTS. You dont. How many Job postings, besides maybe geek squad, are asking for Network + or A+, compared to how many ask for CCNA, CCNP or MCTIP?

    Good luck friend.
    Welcome to the desert of the real.

    BSCI in Progress...

    Cisco LAB: 1x 2509
    1X2621
    1x1721
    2x2950
    1x3550 EMI
  • laidbackfreaklaidbackfreak Member Posts: 991
    human151 wrote: »
    Since time is of the essence you should decide what you would like to specialize in. Do you want to do networking or work with servers and operating systems?

    PLEASE DO NOT THINK YOU NEED THE COMPTIA CERTS. QUOTE]

    +1 for this tbh while I think the comptia certs are great for getting the basics down, I've not seen much call for them from recruitment agencies..

    imo I'd start looking at the MS cert's they will open more doors for you initially. It's very tough to get in the door anywhere with cisco certs and no experience to back it up.
    And then if you feel you want to move into another area you can always cross train.
    if I say something that can be taken one of two ways and one of them offends, I usually mean the other one :-)
  • jnwdmbjnwdmb Member Posts: 99 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I am without a 4 year degree, and started my career over less than 2 years ago while in my early 30's. I worked in manufacturing for nearly 13 years before making the jump to IT. I have completed all of the certifications listed in my profile through studying an average of 15 hours per week (despite being a full time single parent).

    I realize that I am fortunate and have caught some breaks (no disrespect to anyone looking for a job in this market). I do not work in a major metropolitan area, but I am employed despite the bad economy, and I am well above entry level pay. I started getting certs and then tried to take any kind of contract work I could for a few months while interviewing for perm. positions. My childcare situation has limits on the hours I can work and the amount of travel I can do, but I poured myself into it and didnt look back, resulting in a good position with a stable company and a respectable income.

    The point that I am trying to make is that eventually hard work and dedication are rewarded, and both of those factors go much further in determining your success than your age does (in my opinion). There were plenty of times that I could have questioned my decision and become frustrated with the process of being a "newbie", but i stuck it out and hopefully I am just beginning to reap the rewards.

    Hopefully you can take something from my story....good luck.
    A+ IT Technician, Network +, Security+
    MCSA:M, MCSE:S
    (MS 270,290,291,293,294,298,299)
    MS Exchange 2003 (70-284)
    MCTS: Server 2K8 Virtualization(70-652 & 70-403)
  • RumpelRumpel Member Posts: 16 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I need to get in, in anyway I can.....so will take any advice (which has been good) I can get.
    I was thinking of A+ and N+ and see how I fair at it, on the basis of not wanting to jump straight in with much bigger course only to think half way though that it isn`t for me.

    Reality tells me I need to get a certificate/qualification within a year, studying about 20hrs per week.

    Thank`s all icon_thumright.gif
  • Samurai004Samurai004 Member Posts: 68 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I was thinking along the lines of A+, N+ and either Security+ or MSCA. How long on average would that take?
    I am planning on self learning A+ and it taking 6 months.........is that about right?

    Thank`s for all the replies icon_biggrin.gif

    I started in June with no certs at all as a street cop with the same experience as you (home network, building pc's, being around pc's since my first 286). Since June of 09, I have worked full time on midnight shift, been interrupted by court during my sleep time during the day and I have gotten A+, Sec+ and Net+....I am about 90% ready for Linux+ and plan on doing that before Jan. 2010.

    So it is all about how much effort you put into it. I thought A+ and Net+ was pretty easy with TestOut videos and Mike Myers books. It has been a really fun 6 months for me.

    Good luck to you!icon_wink.gif
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]


    _________________________________
  • danclarkedanclarke Member Posts: 160
    My background is similar to yours.

    I started at 40+ with A+ and N+ (if you'll pardon the pun with the pluses). I found that I could do them very quickly (about 1 month for each cert) and I felt that it would give me something to show for the study in as short a time as possible - even if it is not exactly the cheapest way to get started on MCSA / MCSE.

    It gave me a lot of confidence to continue - and that's important, especially if you're self esteem is taking a knock from redundancy. Just feeling that you are doing something - that you have a plan which you are executing - is important.

    When eventually I lost my job in electronics, I spent my brief period of unemployment doing voluntary IT support work for a charity. That helped my self esteem, too, as well as giving me some practical experience in the areas which I had been studying.

    Getting a job, for anyone, is not easy at the moment - but you make your own luck. Keep your spirits up. Keep active. Take control - and play the numbers game: submit as many job applications as you can. There may be some people who thing that your age is relevant (even if that is now against UK law). However, you will find that for some people, your age is considered an asset rather than a liability.

    Good luck!
    -- Dan
  • Geek1969Geek1969 Member Posts: 100 ■■□□□□□□□□
    I did the same thing. 20 years in the restaurant business while playing with pc's at home. Went back to school at 39, Got A+, Net+ and MCSA --working on Cisco now. I make the same money that I used to for now, but enjoy it a whole lot more. Some employers would rather have an "life-experienced"---pronounced "mature" person. At age 39 I said ---25 more years of this isn't going to work. Time to do something different. As far as CompTIA goes---no, they do not carry the same wight as MS or Cisco, but they will give you a strong foundation for vendor specific learning. It really depends on what you want to be doing in 5-10 years. Figure that out and work backwards with your studies. Good Luck and don't look back.
    WIP:
    ROUTE
  • TurgonTurgon Banned Posts: 6,308 ■■■■■■■■■□
    jnwdmb wrote: »
    I am without a 4 year degree, and started my career over less than 2 years ago while in my early 30's. I worked in manufacturing for nearly 13 years before making the jump to IT. I have completed all of the certifications listed in my profile through studying an average of 15 hours per week (despite being a full time single parent).

    I realize that I am fortunate and have caught some breaks (no disrespect to anyone looking for a job in this market). I do not work in a major metropolitan area, but I am employed despite the bad economy, and I am well above entry level pay. I started getting certs and then tried to take any kind of contract work I could for a few months while interviewing for perm. positions. My childcare situation has limits on the hours I can work and the amount of travel I can do, but I poured myself into it and didnt look back, resulting in a good position with a stable company and a respectable income.

    The point that I am trying to make is that eventually hard work and dedication are rewarded, and both of those factors go much further in determining your success than your age does (in my opinion). There were plenty of times that I could have questioned my decision and become frustrated with the process of being a "newbie", but i stuck it out and hopefully I am just beginning to reap the rewards.

    Hopefully you can take something from my story....good luck.

    First class attitude. Well done.
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