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What's the best I.T. course/ qualification to get into full time IT employment.

Discussion in 'Careers, Employment and Professional Development' started by Aero Rich, 1 Nov 2018.

  1. Aero Rich

    Associate

    Joined: 15 Oct 2016

    Posts: 56

    Hi All,

    I've recently looked into this and a 3 year full time Uni course isn't really viable a la BSC course - http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/courses/2018/applied-software-engineering-bsc

    Have you got any suggestions as to the best way to go about this to get into an IT job.

    Will be classed as a complete Noob.

    Have seen courses advertising 16-48 week to completion and into employment but I'm well wary of 'too-good-to-be-true,' just want your money enterprises.

    Thanks.
     
  2. MrRockliffe

    Mobster

    Joined: 14 Apr 2014

    Posts: 3,440

    Location: Sunny Sussex

    I would say, from experience, the course matters less than how you come across as a person, so any IT related course will be fine. Just make sure you're covering stuff that interests you - it's really hard to stay motivated in a course you're not enjoying.

    Depends also what you mean by IT industry. Programming? Electrical engineering?
     
  3. Maccy

    Commissario

    Joined: 23 Nov 2004

    Posts: 36,996

    Location: Herts

    What sort of age are you and experience do you have? Are you currently working in a different industry, or a student or..?? Need some more background :)
     
  4. Aero Rich

    Associate

    Joined: 15 Oct 2016

    Posts: 56

    Programming/ coding - anything really.

    48, mechanical engineering background 30years experience, looking for a change of career really so any course where it would be viable to start work straight after completion.

    I've had a LTD. co. for the last few years, going from place to place contracting and would like to start contracting in the IT business if possible.

    What qualifications would potential employers be looking for?

    Hope this helps.

    Edit: afk
     
  5. MrRockliffe

    Mobster

    Joined: 14 Apr 2014

    Posts: 3,440

    Location: Sunny Sussex

    At your age, I'd personally:

    • Get into a software company, but not necessarily working in the IT side of stuff, but one that funds uni courses
    • Do open university type thing (or local part time course) in a course you want to do
    • Progress through the company while you're doing the course
    • Make your manager aware of intentions, and just spend time in different parts of the company etc, get to know the managers in that department
     
  6. Maccy

    Commissario

    Joined: 23 Nov 2004

    Posts: 36,996

    Location: Herts

    Get yourself onto Udemy or CodeAcademy and have a look at some of the courses available if you want to get into programming. There are hundreds of courses available so have a read through what each one offers and see which one you find most appealing.

    The biggest issue will be completing a course and going straight into employment, a lot of employers wouldn't be willing to take you on without experience (especially as a contractor). You might have to look at a salary job and take on a more junior role to begin with.
     
  7. Haggisman

    Capodecina

    Joined: 6 Oct 2004

    Posts: 13,531

    Location: Birmingham

    Do you have any experience in coding? E.g. You've done projects at home and just want to formalise that via a qualification, or are you completely new to it?

    You could look at a pluralsight subscription (other online training video providers are available :p), and then do some of the Microsoft exams, but it can be quite a difficult field to break into with no experience, and you'll be unlikely to get any kind of decent contract with just a certificate and nothing to back that up.
     
  8. Mr_Sukebe

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 23 Dec 2002

    Posts: 9,111

    Location: London

    At your age, and unless you've got some background in programming or similar, I'd suggest you avoid programming and the real indepth technical roles like network, DBA and similar.
    You're going to be competing against much younger people who are likely to have far more recent experience and exposure. They also tend to "soak" better during learning.

    Be aware that there's other areas of IT requiring less indepth technical knowledge, but require more interpersonal skills. At your age, I'm guessing you'd be more capable in that arena. Options include project management, security (higher level) and similar. Where I currently am, we have a whole bunch of PMs with bugger all background in hardcore IT skills, just as an example. For that, might be worth looking at courses on both waterfall (Prince2) and agile development.
    Good luck
     
  9. dowie

    Caporegime

    Joined: 29 Jan 2008

    Posts: 48,265

    It depends what you want to do in IT, just saying IT is a bit vague and you could probably do with sharing more details about your background/qualifications.

    You say mechanical engineering background does that mean to imply that you have a BEng/MEng already and presumably with that sort of experience you've presumably had your CEng status for a while too and several years managing teams/projects etc..?

    I mean an obvious transition given your age/experience is to become a project manager as already suggested above - assuming you've already got extensive experience managing projects albeit in a different sector this could be an easy move. The PM related qualifications are a bit of a joke and can be passed with minimal study time but unlike some new grad trying to break into PM roles straight out of uni you'll presumably already have several years relevant project experience under your belt. Being a PM doesn't really require significant domain knowledge thus is probably the easiest transition given your background.

    If you've got some funds available then you could perhaps go for something like this assuming your undergrad degree was fairly decent and you've got some good experience behind you from your current field:

    https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/graduate/courses/msc-major-programme-management?wssl=1

    That should give you much more than any of the short courses the typical PM gets sent on and the brand name will get you plenty interviews, you'll likely find (as with most prestigious universities) plenty of big name companies recruiting from the course school too. Get something like that under your belt and perhaps a stint at a big name consultancy and you could be looking at some sweet daily rates.

    Alternatively if you're looking at other areas you could perhaps look at a specialised masters degree, you can do specialised degrees in say security or networking or data science/ML. Presumably with an engineering background you've got some programming experience in say Matlab and know your multivariate calculus, linear algebra reasonably well?

    I certainly wouldn't bother doing an undergrad in CS at your age, if you want that sort of background then there are MSc CS degrees aimed at non-CS grads that basically teach you the core curriculum of an undergrad CS degree anyway - that would save you a lot of time... 1 year full time/2 years part time vs 3 years full time/4-6 years part time.
     
    Last edited: 3 Nov 2018