T.I.P
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Specifically the tech support/networking side? Is it a good choice of career?

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ByEeek
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You have asked two questions.

"Is the IT industry overcrowded?" Generally no. But that doesn't mean you can just breeze into any old IT job. IT work is technical requiring good problem solving ability as well as the acumen to apply abstract concepts to real life problems. Any IT company is looking for bright individuals although fortunately bright does not necessarily mean academic.

"Specifically the tech support/networking side, is it a good choice of career?"
Technical support is just that. Someone's PC breaks down, they raise a ticket and a week later you pop over to their desk and reboot it for them. However, it might be a server that breaks down and it is time critical that it is replaced ASAP. Or you might be moving offices or opening a new office and need to plan the new network, or upgrading old kit for new...

Is it a good career? It isn't my bag but it suits some down to the ground. It probably isn't the best paid if you are just working at the coal face, but there are opportunities to progress up management if that is your bag, or go freelance if you have specialist skills and what to stay technical.

It is however the sort of job that you should be able to gain work experience in. Why not tap a few companies up to see if they would let you join in for a week or two. Your tutors or careers service will also be able to help in this respect.

Good luck!
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Binary Freak
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(Original post by T.I.P)
Specifically the tech support/networking side? Is it a good choice of career?

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There's no so such thing as overcrowded in this field.. Absolutely no such thing.

Networking is a good choice for a career but you do need to be aware most of your time will probably be spent fixing broken/non-operational devices/configurations.
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adamstrawson
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(Original post by T.I.P)
Specifically the tech support/networking side? Is it a good choice of career?
I would say neither is overcrowded, there's been a high demand for more skilled IT workers for quite awhile.

Tech support and Networking are two complete different fields, you'd find it easier getting experience/work within Tech support then you would with Networking, and they both have different demands. Most Networking positions they'll often look for existing experience within the industry, and possibly some certifications (Cisco, Juniper, etc)

Like ByEeek says, Tech Support would most probably involve troubleshooting individual issues, software, "Have you turned it on and off".

Networking is so varied with what you could do, there's Routing and Switching, Security, Voip, Data center, etc. You could get an understanding in them all, but you'd be better specializing in one or two subjects.
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Async
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If anything the IT industry is in shortage of skilled workers.
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Andy98
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The IT industry needs as many skilled workers as it can get

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Mr Easy
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Having seen the industry firsthand, I can safely tell you it's not saturated yet, but it is in need of people with specialist skills. The market is moving to a contractor centric model, so learn one skill incredibly well and be competent at an array of others, so you have a technically proficient arsenal.

The people I've worked with have charged between £200-£1200 per day, and are still happily employed...so there is room, but you've just got to be very sharp.
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Topps
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(Original post by Mr Easy)
Having seen the industry firsthand, I can safely tell you it's not saturated yet, but it is in need of people with specialist skills. The market is moving to a contractor centric model, so learn one skill incredibly well and be competent at an array of others, so you have a technically proficient arsenal.

The people I've worked with have charged between £200-£1200 per day, and are still happily employed...so there is room, but you've just got to be very sharp.
What specialist skills do you see as very valuable or demanded?

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The_Internet
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(Original post by Async)
If anything the IT industry is in shortage of skilled workers.
Shhhhh. It's in our best interests to claim otherwise! (Except to other IT people I guess)
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Mr Easy
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So at the moment, Security is HUGE. Check out ISC2 for the qualifications you'll need. Also, Oracle are ubiquitous in the tech world, so the more qualifications you have using their suite of software and services, the better. To get off the ground, also consider PRINCE2 and ITIL, as they're universal. And lastly, user experience testing is coming to the forefront because of cross platform designs becoming super important, so that's also an area to consider. I'd say this one will only get more crucial with time, as user experience testing is the crux of whether an application fails or succeeds.
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T.I.P
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(Original post by Andy98)
The IT industry needs as many skilled workers as it can get

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But in what area? Every tom **** and harry can code these days

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Async
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(Original post by T.I.P)
But in what area? Every tom **** and harry can code these days

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That's why he said skilled . I think mobile development is probably the most in demand (educated guess) since everything is going mobile and since people spend most time on mobiles than anything else.

Out of all the students and teachers in my college(over 2k students), I would say there is only 2 people that I know that can code properly.
Out of all the coders I know online and in real life, very few of them actually skilled.

Anyway, I disagree with the statement, "Every tom **** and harry can code these days".. I doubt it, programming is not done by many people in comparison to the worlds population. This doesn't include those that know claim to be programmers but only know HTML.
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Push_More_Button
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Web development is a massive field.
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trident3
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Really good I.T. developers who aren't stuck in an ivory tower, i.e. they can talk to customers (from desktop end-users to CTOs), understand marketing & sales, and can handle the full product lifecycle of requirement-analysis/specify/architect/design/code/test are becoming as rare as rocking-horse crap and are now paid accordingly.

But to get there takes a lot of hard work, some talent, a bit of luck, more than a little experience and constant learning/self-education, but the rewards are worth it
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Andy98
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(Original post by T.I.P)
But in what area? Every tom **** and harry can code these days

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As Async said, skilled in most areas to be fair. But I'd say more so in the programming areas because the numbers of people who can code to a high standard is decreasing.
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lumberjack77
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(Original post by T.I.P)
Specifically the tech support/networking side? Is it a good choice of career?

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I have a BSc in Computer Networking and have not even had an interview.

Waste of time.

Every company wants 3 years experience.

Gave up now
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T.I.P
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(Original post by lumberjack77)
I have a BSc in Computer Networking and have not even had an interview.

Waste of time.

Every company wants 3 years experience.

Gave up now
Helpdesk perhaps? Just to get your foot in the door..

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beerbaitedballs
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(Original post by lumberjack77)
I have a BSc in Computer Networking and have not even had an interview.

Waste of time.

Every company wants 3 years experience.

Gave up now
That's rubbish, not every company wants 3 years, how do you think everyone else does it?

If you're a fresh graduate, then that's all you are and your searches and applications should reflect this. A basic search would be 'graduate network engineer' if that's what you're looking for. Bearing in mind you should also be open to sysadmin roles where you'll do the networking too at smaller companies etc.

I graduated a couple years ago and I've just started my 3rd role. I spent about 16 months at the first one and 8 months at the second. Once you get a little bit of experience you're set - I started as a sysadmin and moved into DevOps. DevOps is a kind of hot term at the moment and I'm messaged / called on a daily basis about roles mostly from LinkedIn and jobsite.co.uk, my last 2 positions came from LinkedIn, I never actively searched.

This isn't me boasting, it's me saying there's plenty of work out there but you have to go and get it. I'm not in a special area, in the sense friends I graduated with moan about lack of jobs too.

My advice is to set up an email address you're going to use purely for gaining employment, it's also a good opportunity to use one that isn't '[email protected]' etc, if you have the cash then it's a few quid to have your own domain name and mail address - this isn't a stretch for a CS graduate. The reason for a new one is, you're gonna get spamed.

Make sure you have an account on the likes of LinkedIn, keep it professional and add everyone you've ever met as a connection. Add a photo that doesn't make you look like a tosser or closet murderer. LinkedIn provide tips on getting views via their stats, e.g. people with photo's get clicked on more often. Recruiters usually don't branch much beyond 3rd degree contacts. (A 3rd degree means they have a contact who is a contact with someone who is contacted to you...)
Read LinkedIn's advice though I don't think you need to pay for it, however, you'll likely get a month for free in which case take it. It doesn't give you a whole lot more, just more info on jobs, such as your potential success rate, estimate for salary, more history of who viewed your profile etc etc.

Milkround is a big one for fresh graduates but they will email you a lot, that's why we have a new email. Don't just view the jobs, join the site and create a profile. I didn't have any success from them but it can't be ignored.

jobsite.co.uk is where I got my first job. Have a good CV and if needs be get it checked on here and asked any recruiters who are willing to give you the time to give some quick feedback on it. I wrote my original one in Ubuntu font, I was told it was readable by a recruiter so I changed it, I added bits etc from feedback I asked for. Upload your CV to jobsite and create a decent profile, you can track your views etc so make sure your keywords are 'in'.
If you don't get any calls within 3 days, re-upload your CV (keep checking it and getting feedback) even if you don't change anything, that alerts recruiters you're potentially looking for work and always brings me in a lot of calls, granted many of them aren't suited to me now.

Recruiters are an interesting breed, take what I'm about to save with the warning - I dislike them. Recruiters are nothing more than salespeople who will feed you nothing but **** just to get that commission. If they think they need you to fill a role they love you, if not, they can't be arsed. Don't believe them when they tell you they're different.

When it's your first job you're really going to take what you can get to a degree so you do need them more than they need you when you're fresh. But, they are just that, they're an agency providing a list of candidates. I've now dealt with recruiters from both sides, so I can assure you they're pretty brutal and want to protect a contract.
So, if you're on the phone to one and they say they've seen your CV online, ask them for feedback on it and try and have a chat with them, if the job interests you then show passion and an interest and they'll likely put your forward. They send your CV on and the company will respond with who they want to take to the next stage. Now the recruiter potentially needs/wants you. This is when you milk it for all you're worth. Most agencies have packages to help noobies, interview prep etc, some may ask to meet you if you're local to them. Get any daft questions you may have put to them, chances are they've dealt with the company before and have had successful and unsuccessful placings. Find out what the company does and doesn't like etc etc.

Once you're in the job, this is when you have to keep your CV up-to-date and keep adding on LinkedIn. You can ditch the other sites until you need them again. This does a few things for you, it keeps your head in the market and let's you continue to build a network.
If you end up loving the job and it's a great company, you can use your market knowledge to know your worth when it comes time for pay reviews. If you hate the company and or job, it let's you know how likely you are to be able to move to something better suited. It may be that it confirms you need to knuckle down and blast through it for a year before anyone is likely to be interested...


This is a long post and a lot of waffle. But I can assure you lots of people gets jobs who are pretty crap, there's lots of work out there but it just involves playing the game a bit. Sure you'll hear about people who did nothing and walked into a great job, well you're not one of them so get on with it.
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