What does it take to get a help desk job these days?

SaSkillerSaSkiller OSWP, GPEN, GWAPT, GCIHMember Posts: 337 ■■■□□□□□□□
Not for me of course, but trying to assist some others.
OSWP, GPEN, GWAPT, GCIH, CPT, CCENT, CompTIA Trio.

Comments

  • boxerboy1168boxerboy1168 Member Posts: 395 ■■■□□□□□□□
    5 years experience, 14 certifications and a PHD in engineering
    Currently enrolling into WGU's IT - Security Program. Working on LPIC (1,2,3) and CCNA (and S) as long term goals and preparing for the Security+ and A+ as short term goals.
  • cyberguyprcyberguypr Senior Member Mod Posts: 6,916 Mod
    ^ that plus availability 24 x 7.
  • Basic85Basic85 Senior Member Member Posts: 176 ■■■□□□□□□□
    It depends on what type of help desk. If it's a high turnover call center IT than you have a higher chance at getting that job because the turnover is so high. At my last job they literally hired anyone with a pulse and yes it was 24x7.
  • N7ValiantN7Valiant Senior Member Member Posts: 363 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Soft skills, but that particular skillset is applicable anywhere. Good stress management, ability to work under pressure.
    OSCP
    MCSE: Core Infrastructure
    MCSA: Windows Server 2016
    CompTIA A+ | Network+ | Security+ CE
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 673 ■■■■■■□□□□
    A pulse, the ability to speak simple words and phrases, and a neurologically normal brain...
  • jwdk19jwdk19 Member Member Posts: 70 ■■■□□□□□□□
    CISSP preferred... lol jk

    The service desk that my company uses primarily performs data-entry. Log tickets and assign them to xyz groups que based on SOPs or past tickets of a similiar nature.

    I assume most of these folks are in their 1st IT role. Maybe fresh graduate with an associate/ bachelors or new A+ holder looking to get their feet wet etc.. ?
  • mikey88mikey88 CISSP, CySA+, Security+, Network+ and others Member Posts: 494 ■■■■■■□□□□
    LordQarlyn wrote: »
    A pulse, the ability to speak simple words and phrases, and a neurologically normal brain...

    A+ cert helps and a pulse.
    Certs: CISSP, CySA+, Security+, Network+ and others | 2019 Goals: Cloud Sec/Scripting/Linux

  • DatabaseHeadDatabaseHead Teradata Assc 16, Querying Microsoft SQL Server 2012/2014, CSM Member Posts: 2,651 ■■■■■■■■■□
    LordQarlyn wrote: »
    A pulse, the ability to speak simple words and phrases, and a neurologically normal brain...

    Truth.... Although you did leave out one of the more important features..... A symmetrical face sure doesn't hurt.
  • SaSkillerSaSkiller OSWP, GPEN, GWAPT, GCIH Member Posts: 337 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Yeah I remember trying to get a job with an A+ and Net+ and no experience, not much luck. What kind of places are going to be the most forgiving of experience?
    OSWP, GPEN, GWAPT, GCIH, CPT, CCENT, CompTIA Trio.
  • TechGromitTechGromit GSEC, GCIH, GREM, Ontario, NY Member Posts: 2,029 ■■■■■■■■□□
    Location. If there are no entry level IT jobs in your area, move to a city that employees are in demand, You might have to live in a slum with 6 room mates for a couple of years, but once you get some experience under your belt, you'll find it far easier to land a job in a area you really want to live in. I say location trumps certifications, and education, it's the fastest, cheapest way to get an entry level job in IT.
    Still searching for the corner in a round room.
  • NetworkingStudentNetworkingStudent Member Posts: 1,407 ■■■■■■■■□□
    mikey88 wrote: »
    A+ cert helps and a pulse.

    So true on the pulse. The last help desk job I had wanted 2-3 years of help desk experience. Alot of people I met on the team had a call center job for 3-6 months before joining us, and that is it. Some people didn't even have a college degree.

    Can you sit in a chair for 7 to 8 hours, hold a conversation with someone, resolve issues, and help people? Yes................ boom you're hired!!

    I guess it depends on the help desk role too. I have some companies call a position help desk, and you're do some high level system administration work, mixed in with project management.
    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
  • AvgITGeekAvgITGeek 70-410, 70-411 Member Posts: 342 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Help desk: Entry level certs A+ and more to be safe. Experience with the cert should be good enough. If experience is needed, I'd tell them to check with any local MSPs to see if they have any extra hours to give up. Great way to get experience.
    Can't believe the help desk is requiring a degree.
  • JamesBarkerJamesBarker Member Posts: 18 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Customer service experience as a minimum although usually is one of the most important.
    A+ is a good start technically Certification speaking.
    Tinkering with computers/servers in spare time to gain knowledge for questions in interviews is always favored.
    Standard questions I have had for helpdesk/service desk jobs, what is DHCP and what does it do, what is DNS and what does it do.
    Had one where they asked about CIDR.
    Some in interviews may ask you to take an short exam, with the said person gaining a bit of hands on knowledge this will help for this.
    Currently helping a guy get his A+ while he's working for TechGuys as he would like to do Helpdesk in a office for more money.
    A good starting point from a job prospective is working for a company like TechGuys or a small local IT shop, a good step from here is an Office helpdesk or desktop support.
    When on helpdesk a good cert to get you past and above helpdesk is the Cisco CCENT &/or a CCNA.
  • Moon ChildMoon Child Member Posts: 183 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Seems pretty hard at least in my area. I have a B.S. in Computer Information Systems, a Master's In Education, A+, Net+, Security+, Apple Certified Associate, MCTS - Windows 7, Microsoft Office Specialist, Several MTAs, close to 2 years of Experience as a laptop technician, a previous year as PhP developer/ Internship and I have gotten turned down from every help desk job I have tried to apply to that pays only like $30k a year.

    I get emails back that I don't meet basic qualifications, or impressed with credentials but we decided to move in a different direction, or you were not selected as one of the final candidates for the job. These have all been Tier 1 help desk jobs I have applied to... so yeah it seems a bear where I am at at least in Chicago Area. I am not local to Chicago and a lot of the jobs say "local candidates only please". No help desk jobs in my area. So staying at current job as a Laptop Tech for $12/hr.

    A lot of my co-workers I suspect who also have degrees and certs have had similar problems so they have left for other fields. Had our IT manager leave the company to be a Truck Driver, another employee to be an electrician, another to become a Chicago Police Officer, another left to work at a factory that started at $16/hr with a lot of overtime and great benefits.

    I left the company as well for a short time to get a CDL and try truck driving then came back, but after I gained more experience at my job with another year of experience at my current IT job hoping that would open up more doors for IT jobs and getting only few responses back for any IT job that pays better I am seriously thinking of going back to Truck Driving or going into a good paying factory job like a co-worker of mine did.
    ... the world seems full of good men--even if there are monsters in it. - Bram Stoker, Dracula
  • IsmaeljrpIsmaeljrp Member Posts: 480 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Moon Child wrote: »
    Seems pretty hard at least in my area. I have a B.S. in Computer Information Systems, a Master's In Education, A+, Net+, Security+, Apple Certified Associate, MCTS - Windows 7, Microsoft Office Specialist, Several MTAs, close to 2 years of Experience as a laptop technician, a previous year as PhP developer/ Internship and I have gotten turned down from every help desk job I have tried to apply to that pays only like $30k a year.

    I get emails back that I don't meet basic qualifications, or impressed with credentials but we decided to move in a different direction, or you were not selected as one of the final candidates for the job. These have all been Tier 1 help desk jobs I have applied to... so yeah it seems a bear where I am at at least in Chicago Area. I am not local to Chicago and a lot of the jobs say "local candidates only please". No help desk jobs in my area. So staying at current job as a Laptop Tech for $12/hr.

    A lot of my co-workers I suspect who also have degrees and certs have had similar problems so they have left for other fields. Had our IT manager leave the company to be a Truck Driver, another employee to be an electrician, another to become a Chicago Police Officer, another left to work at a factory that started at $16/hr with a lot of overtime and great benefits.
    I left the company as well for a short time to get a CDL and try truck driving then came back, but after I gained more experience at my job with another year of experience at my current IT job hoping that would open up more doors for IT jobs and getting only few responses back for any IT job that pays better I am seriously thinking of going back to Truck Driving or going into a good paying factory job like a co-worker of mine did.


    Why would you look for help desk with a Master's? Seems overqualified for a help desk role.

    Honestly, employers are mainly looking for someone with a good personality, that just has that helpful attitude to them. Add in a bit of skill and that's about all you need. You seem way overqualified. I'd say you may be having trouble with one or more of these things: 1. Overqualified, 2. not a good personality for the job, 3. Giving off a bad message or vibe (like clearly just using the role as a stepping stone and ready to jump ship asap)

    You might just need to try to develop more interpersonal skills, get some charisma and charm.
  • LordQarlynLordQarlyn Member Posts: 673 ■■■■■■□□□□
    Moon Child wrote: »
    Seems pretty hard at least in my area. I have a B.S. in Computer Information Systems, a Master's In Education, A+, Net+, Security+, Apple Certified Associate, MCTS - Windows 7, Microsoft Office Specialist, Several MTAs, close to 2 years of Experience as a laptop technician, a previous year as PhP developer/ Internship and I have gotten turned down from every help desk job I have tried to apply to that pays only like $30k a year.

    I get emails back that I don't meet basic qualifications, or impressed with credentials but we decided to move in a different direction, or you were not selected as one of the final candidates for the job. These have all been Tier 1 help desk jobs I have applied to... so yeah it seems a bear where I am at at least in Chicago Area. I am not local to Chicago and a lot of the jobs say "local candidates only please". No help desk jobs in my area. So staying at current job as a Laptop Tech for $12/hr.

    A lot of my co-workers I suspect who also have degrees and certs have had similar problems so they have left for other fields. Had our IT manager leave the company to be a Truck Driver, another employee to be an electrician, another to become a Chicago Police Officer, another left to work at a factory that started at $16/hr with a lot of overtime and great benefits.

    I left the company as well for a short time to get a CDL and try truck driving then came back, but after I gained more experience at my job with another year of experience at my current IT job hoping that would open up more doors for IT jobs and getting only few responses back for any IT job that pays better I am seriously thinking of going back to Truck Driving or going into a good paying factory job like a co-worker of mine did.

    Right off the bat, what screams at me is you appear to be overqualified, though I detest that term, for help desk tier 1 jobs. As Ismaeljrp points out, you have both advance degrees and quite a few certifications, it would raise red flags for you to be applying for what is basically entry level jobs. I get that you need to get the experience to move up, but any hiring manager will see that you will likely jump ship. Assuming that is your plan, you need to stress why you would apply for tier 1, that is, you want to build and develop your experience, that in fact it is your plan to move up within the company. You also need to highlight what you bring to a tier 1 job, that is, your extensive qualifications allows your to approach users' problems from outside the box, you're life experience while obtaining degrees has given you the advantage of interacting and collaborating with all types of people. Finally, you need to demonstrate patience with really stupid and obnoxious users. You will run into users that are such a pain in the *ss that you would rather hit them over the head with their laptop than to hold their hand for the umpteenth time in doing their password. But of course we cannot assault users, so you need to demonstrate in your personality you can deliver solutions to even the most difficult users with a (synthetic) smile.
  • Moon ChildMoon Child Member Posts: 183 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I use to think the reason was I was overqualified... but after working as a Laptop Tech for almost 2 years now and seeing my fellow co-workers who also have degrees and certs or no degree but lots of experience have the same difficulty I am having finding other IT jobs or better paying ones I don't think it's that I am overqualified just a very oversaturated IT market. My former IT manager who has a degree in networking and certs 5+ years in IT left the company for Truck Driving his main reason was he was discouraged with the money he was making and knew could make more doing trucking. I am assuming he tried for better paying IT jobs but couldn't land them. Another co-worker of mine left the company to be an electrician. He had previous IT experience at several other companies like 6 years of low pay break/fix experience with different IT companies. I imagine he got discouraged too trying to land a better paying IT job, so gave up and joined an electrician apprenticeship. Another co-worker I worked with left the company being a computer tech to work on the railroad. Another guy had an associates in it and like 4+ years of IT experience left the company and IT field to become a Chicago Police officer. Another co-worker of mine left her job as a Laptop Tech to work in a factory that paid like starting $16/hr with overtime and lots benefits and pay raises like every 6 months. Another guy with an associates and a year of previous IT experience and experience at our company a year left to get a good paying job with UPS that has a union.

    So it just makes me wonder if the IT jobs are out there and they are not hard to get why are all my co-workers going into other fields instead of IT and why do they seem to be having just as much difficulty as I am having finding a better paying IT job and moving ahead even after they got their experience, degrees, certs ?
    ... the world seems full of good men--even if there are monsters in it. - Bram Stoker, Dracula
  • upmhh20upmhh20 Registered Users Posts: 3 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I think start your own server farm at home. Do MCSA , should be enough.
  • anthonxanthonx CISA, CRISC, CISM, CDPSE Member Posts: 107 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Moon Child wrote: »
    Seems pretty hard at least in my area. I have a B.S. in Computer Information Systems, a Master's In Education, A+, Net+, Security+, Apple Certified Associate, MCTS - Windows 7, Microsoft Office Specialist, Several MTAs, close to 2 years of Experience as a laptop technician, a previous year as PhP developer/ Internship and I have gotten turned down from every help desk job I have tried to apply to that pays only like $30k a year.

    I get emails back that I don't meet basic qualifications, or impressed with credentials but we decided to move in a different direction, or you were not selected as one of the final candidates for the job. These have all been Tier 1 help desk jobs I have applied to... so yeah it seems a bear where I am at at least in Chicago Area. I am not local to Chicago and a lot of the jobs say "local candidates only please". No help desk jobs in my area. So staying at current job as a Laptop Tech for $12/hr.


    Maybe you can start with improving your resume writing and interview skills. Sounds like you already got rejection letters during the HR filter process. As suggested on other threads in here, don't list down all your education, certifications and etc... Just list down the relevant stuff in the job post. Do professional networking that can lead to jobs or other good opportunities.

    By the way, did you pay for all your education and certifications with your own money? I've been hearing people in here talk about getting a master's degree or certs only if their company pays for it.
    AnthonX
  • anhtran35anhtran35 Member Posts: 466
    Volunteer to work nights and weekends.
  • Node ManNode Man Member Posts: 668 ■■■□□□□□□□
    when i was first getting into IT. i would not tell potential employers about advanced degrees. they seemed to raise more concerns than good.
  • MeanDrunkR2D2MeanDrunkR2D2 MCSA: Server 2012, MCITP: EDA KCMember Posts: 897 ■■■■■□□□□□
    Good communication skills both verbal and written. Also, pulse. And decent enough ability to deal with difficult people.
  • IsmaeljrpIsmaeljrp Member Posts: 480 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Moon Child wrote: »
    I use to think the reason was I was overqualified... but after working as a Laptop Tech for almost 2 years now and seeing my fellow co-workers who also have degrees and certs or no degree but lots of experience have the same difficulty I am having finding other IT jobs or better paying ones I don't think it's that I am overqualified just a very oversaturated IT market. My former IT manager who has a degree in networking and certs 5+ years in IT left the company for Truck Driving his main reason was he was discouraged with the money he was making and knew could make more doing trucking. I am assuming he tried for better paying IT jobs but couldn't land them. Another co-worker of mine left the company to be an electrician. He had previous IT experience at several other companies like 6 years of low pay break/fix experience with different IT companies. I imagine he got discouraged too trying to land a better paying IT job, so gave up and joined an electrician apprenticeship. Another co-worker I worked with left the company being a computer tech to work on the railroad. Another guy had an associates in it and like 4+ years of IT experience left the company and IT field to become a Chicago Police officer. Another co-worker of mine left her job as a Laptop Tech to work in a factory that paid like starting $16/hr with overtime and lots benefits and pay raises like every 6 months. Another guy with an associates and a year of previous IT experience and experience at our company a year left to get a good paying job with UPS that has a union.

    So it just makes me wonder if the IT jobs are out there and they are not hard to get why are all my co-workers going into other fields instead of IT and why do they seem to be having just as much difficulty as I am having finding a better paying IT job and moving ahead even after they got their experience, degrees, certs ?

    All I can say about this is look at what they are doing, and do the opposite lol. Joking, but not joking.

    I take pride in being mean sometimes and providing opinions that crush sensitive people (the Marine in me), so I'm going to make assumptions about your former co-workers. Seems they had a very conformist mindset. Like the one that did 6 years of low pay break/fix. How do you just do that for 6 years. That had to be intentional, absolutely no other way. Another thing that seems missing is mentorship. All your former co-workers just seemed clueless.

    Truck Driving, railroad, police officer, ups?.... these aren't jobs for go-getters. These are jobs for people that only follow the leaders. Which says so much about their mindset.

    I could be completely wrong. But again, it's an opinion I'm sharing nonetheless.

    Chicago is too big to not have opportunities for you. There are opportunities and you can make it. Don't give up just yet. Change your mindset, attack this problem with a vengeance. Start networking with people here on TE that may be in Chicago area, pay for their lunch, invite them for beers, whatever. Try linkedIn, do you have a profile?

    Network, network, network.
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