Certification buildup on no real world experience

thewiz8807thewiz8807 Posts: 96Member ■■□□□□□□□□
How much weight do these certs really hold for an individual with no actual experience in the field? I have 9 certifications planned out for myself and I'm about halfway through the 3rd one. Was planning on chilling out on my certifications after I get my Security+, I don't know, it can't be a good thing to have so many entry level certifications before getting your first job...right? As far as expertise level I'm not really sure where that MCSA: Windows Server 2012 sits but I hear it's a difficult exam to knock out of the way. Something with that much weight on my resume with no real experience...I mean, how would that look to an employer? If I'm not actively employing this knowledge I tend to forget it. The more certifications I have to my name the more I'll be screened on in a technical interview I'm assuming.
Goals: Network+ (Done) -> CCNA: R&S (Done) -> CCNA: Security (Done) -> Security+ (Done) -> ITIL v3 Foundation (Done) -> CASP (Done) -> CCNP: R/S (In Progress) -> CCNP: Collaboration -> CCSK -> CCSP -> CISSP

Comments

  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb They are watching you Posts: 3,216Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    As long as you are retaining the knowledge and actually remembering the information on the certifications the more certs the better. But not having a job where you use the information you learned you're almost guaranteed to lose that knowledge over time. And then when you get to an interview where they ask information they think you will know, based off your certs, you'll most likely draw a blank...

    Knowledge and experience >>>>>>> Certs

    Is there a reason you don't have an IT job right now?
    GCIH | CCNA:Sec | Net+/Sec+/A+ | CCSK
    Goals in progress: MSc in Computer Science (specializing in Cyber Ops) , CISSP
  • emerald_octaneemerald_octane Posts: 613Member
    looking at your cert mix in your sig I don't think you'll have much of an experience problem :). The CASP and CISSP have various experience requirements that you'll need to meet (if you weren't already aware).

    While I would expect your resume to garner some interest above the entry level, you will not find the same ROI as if that certificate were backed by some experience. CCNA Sec is nice but you will get somewhere around zero drive time on sec kit if you do not have that prerequisite experience. I would stop there and try to find anything at all that has to do with networking, sys admin etc. Really, any experience from help desk to jr network admin or interning will help boost your profile. An active CCNA R/S is a good credential. If you can't find a help desk job with that then something might be wrong with your resume.
  • j.petrovj.petrov Posts: 282Member
    The current certs you have should be enough to get you in the door. I would not recommend getting a ton of certs without the experience. You will lose any knowledge gained. Additionally once you start working your focus may change to specific certs. Betweeen Cisco and an MS cert you should be good to go.
  • thewiz8807thewiz8807 Posts: 96Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I'm in the process of switching over into the IT career field from the lab career field. It's been tough, I'll admit that. Have a thread in the Jobs/Degrees subforum about struggling to land a job. Just recently revamped my resume. Been looking for a job for almost a month now and have put out probably 150-200 or more applications. Only one job contacted me back and I'm supposed to be having a face to face with them sometime soon. Wasn't expecting it to be this difficult to get my foot in the door honestly.
    Goals: Network+ (Done) -> CCNA: R&S (Done) -> CCNA: Security (Done) -> Security+ (Done) -> ITIL v3 Foundation (Done) -> CASP (Done) -> CCNP: R/S (In Progress) -> CCNP: Collaboration -> CCSK -> CCSP -> CISSP
  • NetworkNewbNetworkNewb They are watching you Posts: 3,216Member ■■■■■■■■■□
    Gotcha, yea, that first one can definitely be the toughest unfortunately
    GCIH | CCNA:Sec | Net+/Sec+/A+ | CCSK
    Goals in progress: MSc in Computer Science (specializing in Cyber Ops) , CISSP
  • fuz1onfuz1on Posts: 961Member
    What kind of positions are you applying for?

    Unfortunately for the IT industry, the entry-level positions are being taken over by automation and it's only mid to senior level positions that are super abundant!
    timku.com(puter) | ProHacker.Co(nsultant) | ITaaS.Co(nstultant) | ThePenTester.net | @fuz1on
    Transmosis | http://transmosis.com | LinkedIn | https://linkedin.com/in/t1mku
    If evil be spoken of you and it be true, correct yourself, if it be a lie, laugh at it. - Epictetus
    The only real failure in life is not to be true to the best one knows. - Buddha
    If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you. - Unknown
  • thewiz8807thewiz8807 Posts: 96Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Mostly entry level networking or networking security jobs ie. Junior Network Admin, Security Analyst 1, SOC and NOC.

    Also help desk as well ie. Tier 1 help desk support, etc. This has been my first week with my improved resume though so we'll see how that plays out.
    Goals: Network+ (Done) -> CCNA: R&S (Done) -> CCNA: Security (Done) -> Security+ (Done) -> ITIL v3 Foundation (Done) -> CASP (Done) -> CCNP: R/S (In Progress) -> CCNP: Collaboration -> CCSK -> CCSP -> CISSP
  • fuz1onfuz1on Posts: 961Member
    Cool! I hope you can latch onto one of those entry network/sysadmin jobs but I'd really look at help desk Tier 1 just to get your foot in the door. I think most guys started out there - I did way back when (1998?). If you were HR or a sr. engineer looking at candidates, what would you think of hiring yourself with a few nice IT certifications but only experience with a lab environment? They'd probably take a second look at you but would go with the guy with 1 year of help desk experience that has been there and done that. Keep on working hard though - sometimes you get lucky and can find a great employer looking to take an estimated gamble!

    Contract positions which you can take a leadership role are also great to make an impact and statement. I've worked really hard as a contractor a few times and got full-time employment (3-6 months).
    timku.com(puter) | ProHacker.Co(nsultant) | ITaaS.Co(nstultant) | ThePenTester.net | @fuz1on
    Transmosis | http://transmosis.com | LinkedIn | https://linkedin.com/in/t1mku
    If evil be spoken of you and it be true, correct yourself, if it be a lie, laugh at it. - Epictetus
    The only real failure in life is not to be true to the best one knows. - Buddha
    If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you. - Unknown
  • thewiz8807thewiz8807 Posts: 96Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    fuz1on wrote: »
    Cool! I hope you can latch onto one of those entry network/sysadmin jobs but I'd really look at help desk Tier 1 just to get your foot in the door. I think most guys started out there - I did way back when (1998?). If you were HR or a sr. engineer looking at candidates, what would you think of hiring yourself with a few nice IT certifications but only experience with a lab environment? They'd probably take a second look at you but would go with the guy with 1 year of help desk experience that has been there and done that. Keep on working hard though - sometimes you get lucky and can find a great employer looking to take an estimated gamble!

    Contract positions which you can take a leadership role are also great to make an impact and statement. I've worked really hard as a contractor a few times and got full-time employment (3-6 months).


    Yeah I really didn't want to do help desk initially but now I realize just how crucial it is for getting into the field. I've also been applying to entry level contract positions with DoD that require the ability to obtain a clearance.
    Goals: Network+ (Done) -> CCNA: R&S (Done) -> CCNA: Security (Done) -> Security+ (Done) -> ITIL v3 Foundation (Done) -> CASP (Done) -> CCNP: R/S (In Progress) -> CCNP: Collaboration -> CCSK -> CCSP -> CISSP
  • Christian.Christian. Posts: 88Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    thewiz8807 wrote: »
    How much weight do these certs really hold for an individual with no actual experience in the field? I have 9 certifications planned out for myself and I'm about halfway through the 3rd one. Was planning on chilling out on my certifications after I get my Security+, I don't know, it can't be a good thing to have so many entry level certifications before getting your first job...right? As far as expertise level I'm not really sure where that MCSA: Windows Server 2012 sits but I hear it's a difficult exam to knock out of the way. Something with that much weight on my resume with no real experience...I mean, how would that look to an employer? If I'm not actively employing this knowledge I tend to forget it. The more certifications I have to my name the more I'll be screened on in a technical interview I'm assuming.

    The screening varies depending the position you are applying to, not based on what certifications you have listed in your resume. If you are trying to get a security or networking role, they will not ask you regarding printers because you have the A+. Depending on the seniority of the position, the complexity of the questions.

    Companies are hiring because they require people with certain skills to perform a given task. Your goal is proving you can achieve such task. If this will be your first job, my advice is for your to craft your resume to show you have the theoretical knowledge for it (certifications that are directly related to that role, I wouldn't include everything just because you have them), the predisposition to learn (not behaving like a know-it-all) and a good attitude.
    CISSP | CCSM | CCSE | CCSA | CCNA Sec | CCNA | CCENT | Security+ | Linux+ | Project+ | A+ | LPIC1
  • TechGuru80TechGuru80 Posts: 1,539Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    First...Security+ should be before CCNA:R&S and CCNA:Security. It is far easier so not sure how that ended up where it did on your list. I also probably would move CASP to before the CISSP. Not because people view it as hard, but because its close to the transition for CISSP knowledge. You will find those certifications will start to take you longer the higher you get...just more difficult.

    Keep this in mind...the higher certs you get, the more you are competing with people who have experience for the appropriate job. With that being said you should always be studying trying to learn more about something. Chances are at some point you will decide if you want to specialize in an area and your list will change. I always assume about 3-4 months per exam and so far that as held true.
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