What kind of things do you expect the finest training companies certified by Microsoft to give a student in the United Kingdom at present? Undoubtedly, the most supreme Gold Partner Microsoft authorised training routes, providing a range of options to lead you to a variety of careers in the IT workplace. Perhaps you'd like to find advisors with experience of the IT industry, who can offer guidance on whereabouts in industry would be right for you, and the kind of responsibilities that are a good match for an individual with your character and ability. When you've chosen the job you'd like to get into, an applicable training course has to be singled out that's reflects your ability level and skill set. This can be personally tailored for your requirements.
Locating job security in this economic down-turn is very unusual. Businesses will throw us from the workforce at the drop of a hat - as long as it fits their needs. Wherever we find increasing skills deficits mixed with rising demand though, we almost always reveal a fresh type of security in the marketplace; where, fuelled by a continual growth, organisations find it hard to locate the staff required.
Recently, a UK e-Skills survey demonstrated that 26 percent of IT jobs cannot be filled because of an appallingly low number of well-trained staff. That means for every 4 jobs existing around Information Technology (IT), there are barely three qualified workers to fill that need. This glaring certainty underpins the requirement for more appropriately trained computer professionals throughout the United Kingdom. Undoubtedly, it really is the very best time to join the IT industry.
Which questions do we need to be posing if we want to get the understanding we need? As there seems to be a good many quite unique prospects for us to mull over.
If an advisor doesn't ask you a lot of questions - the likelihood is they're just trying to sell you something. If someone pushes specific products before understanding your background and current experience level, then you know it's true. With a little live experience or qualifications, you could discover that your appropriate starting-point is very different to someone completely new. For those students starting IT studies and exams from scratch, it's often a good idea to ease in gradually, starting with some basic user skills first. Usually this is packaged with any educational course.
Of all the important things to consider, one of the most essential is always full 24x7 support from dedicated instructors and mentors. Far too often we see trainers who only provide office hours (or extended office hours) support. Locate training schools with proper support available at all hours of the day and night (even 1am on Sunday morning!) Make sure it's always direct access to tutors, and not a call-centre that will take messages so you're constantly waiting for a call-back when it's convenient for them.
Be on the lookout for providers that have multiple support offices around the globe in several time-zones. Every one of them needs to be seamlessly combined to give a single entry point and also round-the-clock access, when it's convenient for you, with the minimum of hassle. If you fail to get yourself online 24x7 support, you'll quickly find yourself regretting it. You may not need it late in the night, but what about weekends, evenings and early mornings at some point.
Most trainers typically provide mainly work-books and reference manuals. This can be very boring and not ideal for achieving retention. Studies have time and time again shown that an 'involved' approach to study, where we utilise all our senses, is much more conducive to long-term memory.
Learning is now available in the form of CD and DVD ROM's, so you can study at your own computer. Through video streaming, you can sit back and watch the teachers showing you precisely how to perform the required skill, with some practice time to follow - in a virtual lab environment. Any company that you're considering should be able to show you samples of their courseware. You should hope for instructor-led videos and a wide selection of interactive elements.
Avoid training that is purely online. You want physical CD/DVD ROM course materials where possible, so that you have access at all times - it's not wise to be held hostage to a quality and continuous internet connection.
Many people question why traditional degrees are being replaced by more commercially accredited qualifications? With the costs of academic degree's increasing year on year, plus the industry's increasing awareness that accreditation-based training often has more relevance in the commercial field, we have seen a dramatic increase in Adobe, Microsoft, CISCO and CompTIA authorised training paths that create knowledgeable employees at a much reduced cost in terms of money and time. University courses, for instance, become confusing because of vast amounts of loosely associated study - with much too broad a syllabus. This holds a student back from learning the core essentials in sufficient depth.
In simple terms: Commercial IT certifications tell an employer precisely what skills you have - everything they need to know is in the title: as an example - I am a 'Microsoft Certified Professional' in 'Managing and Maintaining Windows Server 2003'. Therefore employers can identify just what their needs are and which qualifications are needed for the job.
It's essential to have the latest Microsoft (or any other key organisation's) authorised simulation materials and exam preparation packages. Some students can get confused by trying to prepare themselves with questions that don't come from the authorised examining boards. It's not uncommon that the terminology in the real exams can be quite different and you need to be ready for this. 'Mock' or practice exams can be invaluable as a resource to you - then when the time comes for you to take the real thing, you don't get phased.
Several companies have a handy Job Placement Assistance service, to help you into your first commercial role. Ultimately it isn't so complicated as you might think to secure your first job - as long as you've got the necessary skills and qualifications; the growing UK skills shortage sees to that.
Advice and support about getting interviews and your CV may be available (alternatively, check out one of our sites for help). Make sure you work on your old CV immediately - not when you're ready to start work! Getting your CV considered is better than being rejected. A decent number of junior support jobs are got by students (who've only just left first base.) In many cases, a local IT focused employment service (who will get paid commission to place you) should get better results than any division of a training company. In addition, they will no doubt be familiar with the local industry and employment needs.
Fundamentally, as long as you put the same commitment into securing your first IT position as into training, you're not likely to experience problems. Some people bizarrely put hundreds of hours into their learning program and do nothing more once they've passed their exams and would appear to think that businesses will just discover them.