How to get an IT related job without experience

RanxeroxRanxerox Posts: 2Member ■□□□□□□□□□
Howzit, I am new to the forum, and I was just wondering how I can get into the IT field without experience, every job I see wants 1-2 years experience, but I can't get a job to gain experience, because I have no experience. It's a vicious circle and I have no idea how I can break it. I have a Networking Diploma from an independent college, so itsnot a recognised qualification, but I am interested in IT and I am studying for my CCENT and my MCITP. Any tips would be appreciated.

Comments

  • RomBUSRomBUS Posts: 699Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Boy these days that's really hard to do, there's people with 5-6+ experience that can't land a job in some areas where the job market is so dry. I would suggest the best thing closest to experience in your case is either education by either a university, college, or some vocational training

    Certs are good too but they can only take you so far.
  • ipconfig.allipconfig.all Posts: 428Banned
    It is good that you have a diploma its a form of qualification and if you want to get into I.T without experience you either have to have contacts or apply for an internship or an entry level position and they might take you in but these type of jobs are very rare and you would be lucky if you get in that way. Try volunteering and work for free to get some experience who knows it could turn into a paid job either way you will have some experience.

    Getting into I.T is about luck, not skills. I know alot of people who are well qualified with experience but they are out of work and I see some people working in I.T and has no previous quals or experience and knows jack but they got in thanks to luck and being there at the right time.
    Im a depressed loser :sad: none wants me.
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    Ranxerox wrote: »
    Howzit, I am new to the forum, and I was just wondering how I can get into the IT field without experience, every job I see wants 1-2 years experience, but I can't get a job to gain experience, because I have no experience. It's a vicious circle and I have no idea how I can break it. I have a Networking Diploma from an independent college, so itsnot a recognised qualification, but I am interested in IT and I am studying for my CCENT and my MCITP. Any tips would be appreciated.

    You need to hawk yourself out more. Try a direct marketing approach. Get the yellow pages out for your area and make a list of all the companies offering computer type services and send them a simple letter of introduction offering your services on a part time or full time basis. Computer retail outlets may have some work for you also. Similarly advertise locally. You could also volunteer. All of these may lead to work you can list as experience on your CV. Ask at the local colleges of education too to see if they can use you. Be relaxed about the money you would like to charge. You need to get enough credible experience on your CV to be able to land a reasonable job.
  • laidbackfreaklaidbackfreak Posts: 991Member
    As others have said its tough to get a break at the moment. You need to keep knocking on doors and talking to people. Talk to friends\family anybody who will listen and see if they know anyone who is hiring.
    Look for any and every opporunity, just because a job says they want 1-2yrs expereince doesnt stop you applying for it if you feel you meet the skills. Ok so you may not get that role, but it at least gets your name in the hat should they have something more suitable.
    if I say something that can be taken one of two ways and one of them offends, I usually mean the other one :-)
  • earweedearweed Posts: 5,192Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Try what I am doing right now. I've got flyers (an idea I've got from a poster on TE) at local grocery stores and I've been doing PC repairs and fixes and I'm even getting to set up a small office network right now. Meanwhile I'm applying everywhere and putting my current experience on my resume. I've also taken a part-time contract job as a field engineer/tech doing warranty repair on HDTV's and an occasional computer (only 1 or 2 clients a week). The contract job I got by just having my A+ so it does help some.
    I'm doing this while working at Wal-Mart to pay the bills and attending WGU for a degree and getting certs.
    If you want to get into the field you're going to have to work hard to get in. If you go to church you may be able to volunteer to work with their computers are find another volunteer opportunity in the area.
    It can be done but it's not gonna be easy.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • ipconfig.allipconfig.all Posts: 428Banned
    Im not in a good situation as well, though I have experience I still have under a year of experience. I get jealous when people without quals or experience gets jobs or when people who doesn't put much effort and gets jobs I try my best but still things have not worked out.
    Im a depressed loser :sad: none wants me.
  • earweedearweed Posts: 5,192Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Im not in a good situation as well, though I have experience I still have under a year of experience. I get jealous when people without quals or experience gets jobs or when people who doesn't put much effort and gets jobs I try my best but still things have not worked out.
    It can tend to get under your skin when people get jobs by who they know instead of what they know. Don't let it get you down.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • ipconfig.allipconfig.all Posts: 428Banned
    earweed wrote: »
    It can tend to get under your skin when people get jobs by who they know instead of what they know. Don't let it get you down.


    Thx Earweed. It is not necessary about what they know but it is also about being there at the right time and place. For an example I have being looking for a permanat job for nearly a year while my friend finished university like 2 months ago and got a job after like 3 or 4 months of looking.
    Im a depressed loser :sad: none wants me.
  • Bl8ckr0uterBl8ckr0uter Posts: 5,031Inactive Imported Users ■■■■■■■■□□
    Im not in a good situation as well, though I have experience I still have under a year of experience. I get jealous when people without quals or experience gets jobs or when people who doesn't put much effort and gets jobs I try my best but still things have not worked out.



    MAN oh MAN. Rep for you because I totally agree. I almost thought I was going to go insane these last few months. I mean, there were jobs that I knew I could do but the recruiters told me they wouldn't submit me because of experience levels. I actually interviewed for a NOC job and they told me it came down to me and another person but the other person won out because they had their degree and a little more experience. If I didn't have enough experience, why did you interview me 3 times :rollicon_confused.gif

    Companies are greedy right now. They want it all and feel they deserve it all. What's worse is that they can probably get 80-90% of what they want simply because the job market is so bad. There is so much talent out there that they will just wait it out and get the person with the really good experience who just got laid off icon_redface.gif. It's bullshit.

    I said all this to say that it is getting better. I can tell you first hand that I have been laid off for 4 months and for the first 3 months I had 1 interview. I now have 3 next week and 2 on one day. It is getting better. I am in the midwest (aka the WORST part of the country) and I can tell you it is getting better but you are gonna have to change your game. Pretty much do whatever you have to do to impress the suits and show them you are serious (not desperate). I have mailed (yes snail mailed) letters of interest. Showed up in person to drop off resumes. Called to check up on resumes (in moderation) and all sorts of things. Be bold, be daring. You have nothing to lose. IMO as long as you aren't doing something illegal or downright stupid, you have every right to do what you need to do to get their attention. I have never run into anyone who had a problem with me hand delivering my resume. I would say that the return ratio for that has been 50 percent. Considering that I have put in over 800 apps in these last months, I would say that is pretty good.

    Sorry if I am going on but I cannot stress enough how important it is to be bold (especially in this market). To the OP it is going to be difficult. Do you have any experience at all (helping out friends, computer club in high school/college, degree, etc) because you can leverage that experience to get a position. I suggest looking at places like pomery, siemens, and teleperformance (or something like that) because their entry level positions are usually just that. My first "IT" job was a level I DSL tech for Verizon through Teleperformance ( I got promoted soon after) and the experience did help my resume. Just don't get comfortable. That was 3 years and several IT positions ago and I know some of my old co workers are still working there. Never forget that you are there to get some time on your resume and not build a lasting career there. Earn certs. Try to get more and more tech oriented (promotions, moving to different projects, etc). Get a few good references and then start looking for help desk positions. From there you can start trying to specialize: Windows Admin, *nix Admin, Network Engineer, DBA, etc.
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    earweed wrote: »
    Try what I am doing right now. I've got flyers (an idea I've got from a poster on TE) at local grocery stores and I've been doing PC repairs and fixes and I'm even getting to set up a small office network right now. Meanwhile I'm applying everywhere and putting my current experience on my resume. I've also taken a part-time contract job as a field engineer/tech doing warranty repair on HDTV's and an occasional computer (only 1 or 2 clients a week). The contract job I got by just having my A+ so it does help some.
    I'm doing this while working at Wal-Mart to pay the bills and attending WGU for a degree and getting certs.
    If you want to get into the field you're going to have to work hard to get in. If you go to church you may be able to volunteer to work with their computers are find another volunteer opportunity in the area.
    It can be done but it's not gonna be easy.

    I think it's all good experience and a tip for anyone reading this looking for advice on different ways to get some work hours logged. Be sure to get all this listed on your CV.
  • DevilsbaneDevilsbane Posts: 4,212Member
    Apply to them anyway. It will take a lot of applications, but eventually you will be able to sit for some interview. Use your education, and a company might just decide to take a chance on you.
    Decide what to be and go be it.
  • MeanDrunkR2D2MeanDrunkR2D2 MCSA: Server 2012, MCITP: EDA KCPosts: 889Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    The fact of the matter is that if you know someone that can help you get in front of the hiring managers it will help you out tremendously. The position I just got was because I reached out to friends and family to help me get in front of someone and not only did they give me great references, but my professional references did as well. Now I'm moving 9 hours away, but for a position that is exactly what I want, doing what I want, and will grow into the Sys Admin role that I want to get into.

    If you aren't on LinkedIn, join it immediately and join the local IT group and go to their meetings and network with others. It's a great way to get yourself known out there and to get people who can influence decisions to help you get that break.

    I was laid off last April and was unemployed for 7 months before I found a low paying tier 1 help desk position that was seasonal and then moved to another company for the same low pay to help build my hardware experience a bit to make me look more well rounded to employers. Not to mention that it wasn't a seasonal job and could have stayed there as long as it took to find a job that was more in line with my skills and qualifications. Luckily I was there for only 5 months before I landed this job.

    Keep your chin up and stay positive. Be excited and remember to smile even on phone interviews because your attitude can show through the phone if you aren't happy and beating yourself up. Look up local companies that may be smaller and search their job openings to see if you can get an in. Once you get into a company (even doing a job that isn't IT related) you can prove your worth to the company and apply internally for a position that will get you into IT.

    It's a tough market right now and you have to use every single resource you can to stand out in this crowd of highly skilled IT people that are unemployed or underemployed.

    You can do it!
  • earweedearweed Posts: 5,192Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Thx Earweed. It is not necessary about what they know but it is also about being there at the right time and place. For an example I have being looking for a permanat job for nearly a year while my friend finished university like 2 months ago and got a job after like 3 or 4 months of looking.
    The degree probably helped a lot. Keep working on more certs and if possible go to school somewhere and keep on putting out applications. I've been doing most of my applying online and I'm going to be starting soon with applying in person at some agencies in Birmingham, AL which is about 25 minutes away. A lot of my apps have gone through these agencies and I figure if I get them a nice looking resume on good paper I may be able to at least get a recruiter actually talking to me about positions.
    What I've been doing on my own is going to help a little but I need to put myself out thetre more in person to get noticed.
    No longer work in IT. Play around with stuff sometimes still and fix stuff for friends and relatives.
  • mikej412mikej412 Posts: 10,090Member
    Ranxerox wrote: »
    every job I see wants 1-2 years experience, but I can't get a job to gain experience, because I have no experience. It's a vicious circle and I have no idea how I can break it.
    You apply anyway. Consider it the first test of your future job performance. If you have a large problem to solve -- do you give it all you've got and do what it takes to solve the problem? Or do you give up and walk away at the first obstacle with out even trying?

    A lot of people still find jobs through their contacts -- friends, family, former coworkers, classmates, etc. Have you let everyone you know that you're looking for a job?

    In the US a lot of jobs are available only through the temporary staffing agencies. A lot of large corporations post job openings internally before posting on their web site or releasing the job to their preferred staffing agency where the job could be offered "contract to hire." And a lot of the jobs that have been "lost" may only come back as "temporary jobs." So if you don't deal with the Temporary Staffing Agencies you may be missing out on a lot of jobs. Since there are a lot more people looking for jobs than there are available jobs, the staffing agencies don't have to advertise.

    You have to think long and hard about what you want to do -- and what you're willing to do to get that break. If you distribute resumes saying you want a Senior Network Engineer position, yet don't have any networking job experience, you've probably lost out on any consideration for a Junior Network Administrator or NOC monitoring position.

    In the US Small Business still creates the most jobs. And a lot of times when they have job openings they ask their existing employees if they "know someone" -- so if you don't already know someone who works there, you may miss out on a job opportunity unless you find them. That's where you may have go through your local phone books to find companies that could use your services themselves -- or sell services that include things you know how to do.

    In CiscoLand you can look on the Cisco web site and find local Business Partners in your area. You may have to do several searches and come up with different strategies for applying at the local office of "Mega-Partners," the large local Partners, and the small Partners. You might not have the high level knowledge and skills -- yet -- to do a lot of the things they provide for their customers, but you could drive a delivery truck and rack 'n stack the hardware. That get's your foot in the door and could give you a chance to grow into a different job and move up from there. It's actually possible that you may get more experience with more different equipment in 6 months than some people get in their entire career -- if you have what it takes to learn and keep up with the "new stuff."

    If you're in school -- or a recent graduate -- hopefully you were a good student and impressed an Instructor or two. Anyone can wander into the School Job Placement Office and find out the local McDonald's is hiring -- but if you made an impression on any of your Instructors they may be able to recommend you to one of their industry contacts. That's how I got my first job without any experience -- one of my Professors asked me if I'd be interested in a job programming on UNIX systems.

    If the extent of your job search is looking on the Internet (or local newspaper employment/job section) to see what few jobs have been posted that match your qualification 100% -- or posting your resume on a few job boards and waiting for companies to call you -- then you're missing out on the jobs with your local ISPs, phone companies, cable TV providers that people have walked in and asked for already. If someone else has walked through the local "Tech Center" or "Business Park" dropping off their resume at likely companies that could use their skills -- and found the opening before it ever got posted anywhere and got hired -- you'll never see it.
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • TheSweetnessTheSweetness Posts: 27Member ■□□□□□□□□□
    Great advice in this thread. An additional way to get up some experience to put on your resume is volunteering. Check out this website: VolunteerMatch - Where Volunteering Begins

    Even if the work you do is boring or easy, in addition to adding it to your resume, you're networking as well. Impress someone who doesn't know how to access their e-mail, and they might mention your work to some executive friend of a friend they have.

    For reference:
    When employers are trying to fill a position they
    1. look to promote internally
    2. ask internally for reference hires
    3. ask 3rd party to fill position
    4. post on monster/careerbuilder/dice/etc

    When unemployed are looking for jobs they
    1. look on monster
    2. contact staffing agencies
    3. contact friends/family

    The reality of the situation is networking is your strongest source for employment. Spending most of your effort on employment websites is a waste of time.

    Good luck!
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    mikej412 wrote: »
    You apply anyway. Consider it the first test of your future job performance. If you have a large problem to solve -- do you give it all you've got and do what it takes to solve the problem? Or do you give up and walk away at the first obstacle with out even trying?

    A lot of people still find jobs through their contacts -- friends, family, former coworkers, classmates, etc. Have you let everyone you know that you're looking for a job?

    In the US a lot of jobs are available only through the temporary staffing agencies. A lot of large corporations post job openings internally before posting on their web site or releasing the job to their preferred staffing agency where the job could be offered "contract to hire." And a lot of the jobs that have been "lost" may only come back as "temporary jobs." So if you don't deal with the Temporary Staffing Agencies you may be missing out on a lot of jobs. Since there are a lot more people looking for jobs than there are available jobs, the staffing agencies don't have to advertise.

    You have to think long and hard about what you want to do -- and what you're willing to do to get that break. If you distribute resumes saying you want a Senior Network Engineer position, yet don't have any networking job experience, you've probably lost out on any consideration for a Junior Network Administrator or NOC monitoring position.

    In the US Small Business still creates the most jobs. And a lot of times when they have job openings they ask their existing employees if they "know someone" -- so if you don't already know someone who works there, you may miss out on a job opportunity unless you find them. That's where you may have go through your local phone books to find companies that could use your services themselves -- or sell services that include things you know how to do.

    In CiscoLand you can look on the Cisco web site and find local Business Partners in your area. You may have to do several searches and come up with different strategies for applying at the local office of "Mega-Partners," the large local Partners, and the small Partners. You might not have the high level knowledge and skills -- yet -- to do a lot of the things they provide for their customers, but you could drive a delivery truck and rack 'n stack the hardware. That get's your foot in the door and could give you a chance to grow into a different job and move up from there. It's actually possible that you may get more experience with more different equipment in 6 months than some people get in their entire career -- if you have what it takes to learn and keep up with the "new stuff."

    If you're in school -- or a recent graduate -- hopefully you were a good student and impressed an Instructor or two. Anyone can wander into the School Job Placement Office and find out the local McDonald's is hiring -- but if you made an impression on any of your Instructors they may be able to recommend you to one of their industry contacts. That's how I got my first job without any experience -- one of my Professors asked me if I'd be interested in a job programming on UNIX systems.

    If the extent of your job search is looking on the Internet (or local newspaper employment/job section) to see what few jobs have been posted that match your qualification 100% -- or posting your resume on a few job boards and waiting for companies to call you -- then you're missing out on the jobs with your local ISPs, phone companies, cable TV providers that people have walked in and asked for already. If someone else has walked through the local "Tech Center" or "Business Park" dropping off their resume at likely companies that could use their skills -- and found the opening before it ever got posted anywhere and got hired -- you'll never see it.

    Im bumping this because Mike emphasises a lot of the advice I given in the past. You need to open a wide front to land a job. Do the job boards and work the agencies but also get off your ass and get around town with fliers you can post someplace on notice boards. Get the yellow pages out and list the local companies. Send letters to them, make telephone calls. You will be surprised how many technology offices there are lurking in business parks in parts of town you never visit. Get in the car and find these places. Note the company name down and address, then attack with a simple cover letter and a CV. The cover letter is a simple introduction saying you are available for parttime or fulltime opportunities. List what you have to offer. If you can drive or have a vehicle say so. Similarly use google for cisco partners and computer services companies in the locale. They nearly all have a website these days and an email address for HR or Sales. Use it and say hello. Networking with friends and family helps too and try joining linkedin and using the groups. There may also be a local chamber of commerce and meetings and events held to support local businesses. Attend with a CV and calling card and say hello to a few people. They may not have a job but if you are professional they shouldn't bite and may check back with you in the days ahead.
  • TurgonTurgon Posts: 6,313Banned
    knwminus wrote: »
    MAN oh MAN. Rep for you because I totally agree. I almost thought I was going to go insane these last few months. I mean, there were jobs that I knew I could do but the recruiters told me they wouldn't submit me because of experience levels. I actually interviewed for a NOC job and they told me it came down to me and another person but the other person won out because they had their degree and a little more experience. If I didn't have enough experience, why did you interview me 3 times :rollicon_confused.gif

    Companies are greedy right now. They want it all and feel they deserve it all. What's worse is that they can probably get 80-90% of what they want simply because the job market is so bad. There is so much talent out there that they will just wait it out and get the person with the really good experience who just got laid off icon_redface.gif. It's bullshit.

    Companies are greedy all the time my friend. That is the model we have chosen for ourselves. Sorry to hear about the NOC job. I imagine you were interviewed because you had credible experience but just lost out to a slightly more experienced candidate who also had a degree. If you had three interviews you were close.

    In terms of the company greed it manifests itself in a wish list for a hire but in reality there is usually some room for a candidate that doesn't tick all the boxes. Just tick enough! In terms of waiting it out for the next round of layoffs Im not convinced that is actually the case. The base of the IT pyramid is pretty wide these days and when the layoffs come its usually more of the same type of people with mostly the same skills coming on the market. There are already plenty of people in that category right now to choose from so why wait for more?

    In fact just at the moment I think it's the converse, at least in the UK where the budgets for the new financial year have come to the departments. There is some hiring going on as companies have put off capex for a long time due to the economy and really do now need to spend a little bit of money so they dont fall off the map in terms of competitive advantage. So they are hiring now, retooling to get the talent they need in now for the rest of the year. Just try and differentiate yourself from the herd at the pyramid base and your chances will increase. Folks passing themselves off as admins and engineers isn't really enough because there are lots of vanilla IT pros out there. Talk about your accomplishments in work. That is what an employer is looking for, what have you done and importantly what are you going to do if you are hired.
  • ipconfig.allipconfig.all Posts: 428Banned
    Hands down, I can tell you that getting into IT would be an tough task, I am going through it, but it is not impossible, if you get in you will feel happy and feel that you have accomplished something major. It all depends on luck bro not skills but to go further in IT you will need skills.
    Im a depressed loser :sad: none wants me.
  • getitngogetitngo Posts: 44Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I got my first doing some work for a small local IT company. I offered to work for free after classes and on weekends (in other words intern). One thing led to another and they hired me a semester before I graduated. That job led to an even better job.... Basically what I am saying is what everyone else is saying... Reach out, volunteer your services and socially network.
    In Progress:
    Degree in Engineering
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