Help. Career path change.


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Hello, I hope everyone is doing okay. 

I have been wrestling with the idea of changing career paths for a while, and thinking about trying something software related. 

My main issue right now is that I don't have knowledge on the subject, and I have no idea where to start looking. A friend sent me this graph Comptia , and told me to learn Active directory, A+. She also told me learning CCNA if I'm thinking about an IT job.

Again, I don't know what to do, or what to focus on. Any tips, or advice would be appreciated. 

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If you don't have knowledge on the subject and a baseline of a few programming languages, you are going to want to start there. Ignore things like Machine Learning and AI Integration, which are both huge growth markets right now. FYI, CCNA isn't a language, but a basic Cert that CISCO does that for almost ANY into IT job, you'll need. It won't land you one, but it'll help. The graph is nice for showing you what certs you might want to look at depending on path, but you don't really know what path you want right now. Also, don't think of the paths as too linear. You can do a lot of jumping around after getting your foot in the door somewhere.

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In terms of ground floor, data analytics is a great market and has a lot of entry level spots around $60,000 - $70,000. Great thing is most employers don't care about your credentials, but rather about what you know and can prove. 

$100 training course here that's really solid.

A lot is going to go over your head, but that's okay. Write down what you don't know so you can follow up on it later and shore in those skillsets.

The cool thing about data analytics is you don't need to come in knowing Java, C++, Python, JavaScript, .NET all at the same time. You will want to become familiar with one of them. Python is fun, but if you have to pick one to learn well, I'd probably recommend C++. Codeacademy is a nice place to start to really begin at Square 1 and see if it clicks for you.

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If analytics isn't your cup of tea, Cyber Security is a constant growth market and not super hard to get in. A lot of this is going to be results-based and certificates can get you in the door at a ton of places, but it's getting saturated and you might find yourself being passed over by people coming in with a Bachelors.

That said, CISSP is a gold standard Cert and CRISC is already really nice to have. Having both can get you a call back for a job where you will be grilled.

Once again, I'd recommend putting down around $100-200 on a training course to see if you like it, because this is a major investment in your time and energy. I don't have a recommendation on a specific course, but I'm sure there is a University with a reputable one.

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Different from the above 3, UX/UI design is big right now. There is a lot of coding involved, but if you want to combine creativity with coding, this is an awesome career path. My brother actually does this one for a living with an Ad Agency, so don't think you need to stick to traditional with this path. It's all about making interactions easier. 

Great course for $94.99 here (could ask for it as an XMas gift even?)

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There are a lot of ways to get into programming and evolve a career. The above 3 represent a mix to show where it can go. Getting that first job is really hard and you have to be willing to constantly learn and evolve. The more you stay ahead of industry changes, the better off you'll be.

Also, I'm not sure what your personality is like, but if you are personable and can explain technical concepts to board rooms of non-technical people, it'll help you GREATLY with networking regardless of specialty. Consultant companies are always looking for individuals that fit that bill.

Bottom line, you're probably looking at around 3 months of hard work and training before I'd even consider submitting a resume anywhere. Build a couple of projects and work on a portfolio while you are picking up some programming languages and skills.

Since you are coming in so new, I'd highly suggest just playing around on Codeacademy with a few languages and see if anything stands out to you as more intuitive than others. Then look at doing some courses and see if you can grasp some of the concepts. After doing that, you may find that one subset calls to you more than others. If that happens and you enjoy it, focus your energy there.

 

Good luck Waz!!!

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I can speak to quality of Dez' response here. I am starting a new position that involves a knowledge of Linux OS,  and languages like C#, C, and Unix (due to the dated systems. Eventually, I will only be using C# and Java. 

I also would recommend understanding SQL as a possibility. 

Do some research, ask questions, and always be learning. Technology like this is the future, and getting involved now will get you going in that path. 

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  • 5 weeks later...

Looks okay, but I think the one you linked before is better:

https://grow.google/programs/it-support/#?modal_active=none

 

Not only is that truly designed for someone that is coming in with very basic knowledge, it's also pretty affordable and gives you a wide knowledgebase off the bat, which I think would be useful for you.

 

Fact is that until you learn more, you don't really even know what is going to interest you or which way you want to focus. The Google program will introduce you to a lot of topics at a level that is good for you, give you a certificate, and it seems like they have a lot of job placement services, so if you shine, you might have an easier time getting your foot in the door.

 

Nothing you can do would be bad, but I'm partial to that one your friend pushed you to.

 

Edit: Looks like you can do a 7 day trial or $19.99/mo after trial, so might not hurt to do a few of their 24 courses @ udemy

Edited by MadCast: Dez
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1 hour ago, MadCast: Dez said:

Not only is that truly designed for someone that is coming in with very basic knowledge, it's also pretty affordable and gives you a wide knowledgebase off the bat, which I think would be useful for you.

 

Fact is that until you learn more, you don't really even know what is going to interest you or which way you want to focus. The Google program will introduce you to a lot of topics at a level that is good for you, give you a certificate, and it seems like they have a lot of job placement services, so if you shine, you might have an easier time getting your foot in the door.

Man has it right.

Dip your toes into a broader course to see what you enjoy/learn easier. Then you can make the choice on more specific courses. It also is easier to get started in the IT field with wider practical knowledge.

 

We also use udemy as a source outside of out network, and use www.cbtnuggets.com on a preferred 'outside of network' site to learn from.

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