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ITGround >> Where to go from working data center


6/15/11 1:43 PM
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RoidsGracie
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 I think I posted a similar thread before but oh well...

I'm currently a data center technician - doing stuff like server racking and cabling. I'd like to eventually be a networking engineer.

My specific question is - how many companies will be willing to hire a person who worked in a data center before for a junior networking position? I don't think there's a big chance to get promoted from within the company I'm at right now so we usually just host the data for our clients on our site and then the clients use their own network engineers to remote in and do all the router and switch stuff.
6/15/11 5:29 PM
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big_slacker
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I generally don't care with Jr. guys if they've worked at a DC, small jack of all trades shop, PC tech, etc... What I want to see is something on their resume that shows they've touched switches/routers OTJ, something in the interview that lets me know they understand best practice from their end (meaning they won't break shit I have to fix) and in the interview that they have the basic hands on skills to do the job.

I guess what I'm saying is you need to have the keywords/experience on your resume to get to the interview, and in the interview show good judgement and the techie skills.

Skills you can get using Packet tracer/GNS3 and reading books/the web. Best practice you can as well, to some extent. But experience (doing it wrong a few times and getting yelled at) teaches you better.
6/16/11 8:23 AM
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RoidsGracie
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 Hmmm well I do have a couple of old routers at home that I've played around with. Unfortunately, the only configuring we've ever done here is putting IP addresses on an interface so yeah.
6/18/11 10:56 AM
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JohnnyLawrence
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 Roids, where are you located? The Data Center industry has an issue right now with most of the knowledgable staff reaching retirement age. There isn't a whole lot of younger guys coming up so there are tons of opportunities in the industry to advance. If you look around, I'm sure you could find a DC position with a company that has advancement opportunities.

Unless of course you just prefer to move into the Networking realm. I actually went the other way, from Networking to Data Center.
6/19/11 2:17 PM
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RoidsGracie
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 Hey man,

I'm in the north NJ/NYC area.

And yeah, I'm the youngest guy here. Everyone else here is in their mid 30s or up.
6/19/11 2:18 PM
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RoidsGracie
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 And please tell me more about these advancement opportunties and give me any other details you have about the DC industry! It would be great appreciated.
6/19/11 6:05 PM
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JohnnyLawrence
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Well, as I said, most of the Data Center guys are of an older age group. Data Center expertise isn't really something that's learned in school. There aren't any classes that specifically address Data Center work, etc. Therefore, guys with experience, any experience, are in growing demand.

As far as employment opportunities, its tough to search typical job sites for DC jobs. For some reason, any job title with "Data Center" in it comes up with very few results. It typically comes back with "Call Center" or some other crap.

I would start researching some of the Data Center specific websites, such as AFCOM (www.afcom.org) or The Data Center Journal (http://www.datacenterjournal.com ) or perhaps the Uptime Institute (http://www.uptimeinstitute.org ). Many of them have forums and/or job listings.

I'm actually posting for another DC guy very soon, but I'm in northern Minnesota.


6/19/11 9:14 PM
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RoidsGracie
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 Actually I've found my fair share of data center jobs on Dice. The last few months I was doing regular searches for both "data center", "NOC", and "network operation center" and I seemed to be able to pull a good number of results. The hard part was of course actually getting an interview. Maybe it's cause of the region I'm in. Northern New Jersey/New York City seems to be a nice spot for IT work.

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