General questions

steph746steph746 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hello. I just joined and this is my first post to the forum. Here's my situation. I am currently looking for work in the Desktop support area. I'm currently in between jobs and have about 9 years of Desktop/Application support experience. I of course don't want to be in this area forever, but this is where my skills currently lie and I'm trying to back up my work experience with certifications.

I just passed the ITIL v3 Foundation exam and I'm looking for my next certification. Would MCTS make sense since that's the area I have been working in?

A long time ago I completed an MCP, but that is far outdated, so I pulled it off my resume. I'm looking forward to getting new certs on there.

In addition to MCTS, I've been considering A+, Network +, Security +. In general, what do you think of getting these CompTia certs vs. Microsoft?

There seem to be so many options out there that I find it a bit overwhelming.


Thanks very much in advance.

Comments

  • f0rgiv3nf0rgiv3n Connection Overlord Member Posts: 598 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Welcome to TE :)

    The CompTIA trifecta (A+, N+, S+) is a great way to show you are a well rounded IT professional. I think that really gives you a good foundation and they look good on your resume. In my opinion, the Microsoft exams are more pointed. What I mean is that if you go for the MCITP or something like that it would push you more towards the Wintel server side of things. So if you want to go down the road of Server administration (Windows) the MCITP stuff is a good choice.

    My vote? Go for them ALL!!! A+,N+,S+,MCITP!! :D
  • steph746steph746 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hi. Thanks for your quick reply.

    Would you recommend getting these certs in any particular order? CompTIA vs. Microsoft? If CompTIA, any benefit from A+, N+, S+ being done first?

    For Microsoft, I thought going for MCTS was the path, but what's the main difference between MCTS, MCITP and MCSA? These all seem like new classifications. The MCP and MCSE has been replaced with these?

    Another side note, I'm 40 years old and have been working in desktop support for about 9 years. Would you say it's a bit late to be getting these type of certs and I should focus more on ITIL?

    Thanks :)
  • lsud00dlsud00d Member Posts: 1,571
    It depends on what you want to do. ITIL is for the most part vocabulary schmocabulary and is only helpful in high-level processes. If you are capable and want to go management at this point, ITIL will help. If you want to stay/go technical, then the vendor certs will be of utmost benefit.

    The A+ is always a good starting point for desktop support. Microsoft has 2 MCITP's which consist of 2 exams each related to desktop support--
    MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7

    I recently completed the latter because my company requested I get it. It's not related to what I do at work (I do linux system/application administration) but hey, I got a free MCITP because they pay for the exams.

    If you'll be in a mixed Win/*Nix environment, a mix of the CompTIA and Microsoft exams plays well into the hiring scenario.
  • paulgswansonpaulgswanson Member Posts: 311
    Everyones suggestions are good however I would add one thing.
    You mentioned you pulled your MCP off your resume since its outdated, I would still put it on the resume since it shows that you at one point did actually have it. Employers don't care that its expired, just label it as such. such as MCP:XP(expired)

    Hr will still treat it as the checkbox :) and thus help you as well.
    http://paulswansonblog.wordpress.com/
    WGU Progress: B.S. Network Management & Design <- I quit (got bored)
  • steph746steph746 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Everyones suggestions are good however I would add one thing.
    You mentioned you pulled your MCP off your resume since its outdated, I would still put it on the resume since it shows that you at one point did actually have it. Employers don't care that its expired, just label it as such. such as MCP:XP(expired)

    Hr will still treat it as the checkbox :) and thus help you as well.

    Thanks. But, by old I mean pretty old. Its an MCP on the NT platform. I don't know the exact exams I took. Should I still put that on? Can I call somewhere and it might be on file?

    Also, just a general exam prep question...is using just a textbook and practice exams to prepare for an MCITP or MCTS good enough? I don't really have a home network to practice on.
  • dave330idave330i Member Posts: 2,091 ■■■■■■■■■■
    If you want to focus on Microsoft, then don't bother with A+ & N+. S+ can be valuable if you're looking to work in Fed gov't space.
    2018 Certification Goals: Maybe VMware Sales Cert
    "Simplify, then add lightness" -Colin Chapman
  • sratakhinsratakhin Member Posts: 818
    I wouldn't bother earning MCITP in Desktop Support, unless you want to keep doing what you currently do. Get your A+ at least (as it's a common requirement for most jobs) and then focus on getting MCSA in Server 2003/08/12. If you enjoy networking, look for Network+ if you don't have experience or CCNA if you do.
  • steph746steph746 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the replies. Still at a bit of a loss as to which way to proceed.

    For starters, does it make sense to put an MCP (NT platform) on my resume? Or is that pretty outdated?

    Also, for general studies for certs, is it recommended to have a home network setup or would studying the books and taking practice exams be sufficient?
  • eansdadeansdad Member Posts: 775 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Leave it on, can't hurt. Take the CompTIA trifecta (A+, Net+, Sec+) as they will be the most asked for certs to get in the door. Next go after M$ (MCSA200icon_cool.gif certs and/or Cisco (CCENT/CCNA) depending on what it is you want to move on to. You could also take a look at WGU and earn a BS along with the certs. As for studies, the CompTIA certs you don't need a lab but for M$ and Cisco you will want one.
  • steph746steph746 Member Posts: 7 ■□□□□□□□□□
    eansdad wrote: »
    Leave it on, can't hurt. Take the CompTIA trifecta (A+, Net+, Sec+) as they will be the most asked for certs to get in the door. Next go after M$ (MCSA200icon_cool.gif certs and/or Cisco (CCENT/CCNA) depending on what it is you want to move on to. You could also take a look at WGU and earn a BS along with the certs. As for studies, the CompTIA certs you don't need a lab but for M$ and Cisco you will want one.

    Thanks for the reply. I'm thinking of taking the 70-680 exam (Windows 7 Config) and get an MCTS and stick that on the resume and then, like you suggest, go for the CompTIA ones.

    Just to give you a little detail of my background, I have about 7 years of Desktop Support in the Financial industry and before that about 3 years of application help desk support work. (I'm 40) :)

    Given my work experience (and age), does this plan still seem good to you? Someone mentioned that because of my work experience, perhaps the CompTIA certs might not be necessary. However, if employers are looking for them, perhaps they are "necessary"?
  • kurosaki00kurosaki00 Member Posts: 973
    9 years of desktop support? like real 9 job proven years?

    If so, Id skip A+
    I would definitely focus on MS path and sure why not N+ and Sec+
    meh
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