Certifications for high level jack of all trades?

N2ITN2IT Inactive Imported Users Posts: 7,483 ■■■■■■■■■■
I have a friend who works for an MSP who deals with several different technologies. Networking, Exchange, and VM mainly.

He currently has the CCNA but is leary of getting additional certifications due to several reasons. ROI, labeling himself at a level he is not at, etc.

He has been doing MS exchange work a lot more recently, but still is extremely new. My question is would it be worth while to get the Exchange 2010 certification or let's say a VM certification if you only have a few months of experience? The job he has is really good and he doesn't antipate leaving for at least a year or two.

Are these certifications you can grow into or do you think it's best left for the experts?

Thanks for any replies, he is a really good friend of mine and I am trying to help him out as much as possible, but I don't have the experience like a lot of you IT pros.


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    EssendonEssendon Member Posts: 4,546 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Depends on what he likes, I'd say. If he likes Exchange, the 2010 cert wouldnt hurt. If he's into VMware, the VCP wouldnt be a bad idea. But I reckon he should concentrate on getting the experience first, doing the job for a year or so will help him realize where he wants to go with his career and then decide on a cert. This shouldnt stop him from studying altogether though, more knowledge is always good!
    NSX, NSX, more NSX..

    Blog >> http://virtual10.com
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    IristheangelIristheangel Mod Posts: 4,133 Mod
    If he's a JOAT, then I would say to go for a little bit of variety: MCSA 2012, entry-level virtualization, Exchange, Linux+, etc. Those are all considered fairly entry-level and will give him a base-level knowledge in those areas, look good on his resume if he ever needs to leave, and don't delve so deeply into each that he is a specialist. It'll take him awhile to get through those but it'll open a lot of doors later on for him when combined with his experience on his resume if he ever leaves his current job
    BS, MS, and CCIE #50931
    Blog: www.network-node.com
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    it_consultantit_consultant Member Posts: 1,903
    I would go with Exchange, personally. That sounds like an area where he will have an opportunity to get deeper into in his current job which will complement his certification. Eventually he will have to certify or get experience in VM and Networking as well to be a true JOAT. A good JOAT is a 90% expert in most things. The only thing that separates a JOAT who knows exchange pretty well and an Exchange specialist is the specialist only works on Exchange.
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    paul78paul78 Member Posts: 3,016 ■■■■■■■■■■
    One of the valuable traits of an IT professional that is willing to be a joat is that they tend to have a broader view of technology. And if your friend wants to get into different roles (i.e. management) at a later time, that experience would serve them well.

    As for someone that enjoys different types of technologies as a joat, getting a certification is probably an individual decision. If the structured learning and the exam challenge is appealing to your friend, then getting the cert is certainly one way to do it. But getting the cert may not necessarily be worth the ROI. Your friend can still obtain the knowledge by just going through the study materials.
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    N2ITN2IT Inactive Imported Users Posts: 7,483 ■■■■■■■■■■
    Thanks for the post.

    I think he is going to go with Exchange afterall. He has been stagnant lately from an educational standpoint and I think it would be in his best interest to get the Exchange certification.
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