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Will my certs matter if my job path has wandered?

I was working as a system administrator for the past four years. Recently I changed my job, and I'm currently working on a SiteMinder (single sign-on) product in an application support capacity. I am keen on returning to core support and am interested in AD/Exchange environment.

I have earned three Microsoft certifications, with the fourth being on Exchange, thereby completing the MCSA 2000.

But the question that is always running through my mind is: Will my CV be considered if I apply for this kind of a profile since that I have deviated from core support for sometime now?

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As long as you can speak intelligently, convincingly and cogently about your knowledge of and experience with core support matters, you shouldn't be too hampered by your recent detour into supporting SiteMinder. If anything, the increased knowledge of and appreciation for good network and information security you probably picked up in working with the tool will augment your other experience at the core. Particularly if you have good Exchange and Active Directory skills and knowledge, you should have little difficulty finding the kind of job you want; those subject matters are in high demand right now, with plenty of opportunities for knowledgeable, savvy practitioners.

Again, as long as you're prepared to speak to the needs of the positions for which you interview and can be convincing about your ability to handle the job's requirements and workload, you should be in pretty good shape.

Good luck in your certification and career planning. I'd urge you to go ahead and get your MCSE and then to start working on the MCTS and MCITP certifications for the next generation of Windows as and when they become available.

-- Ed

This was first published in November 2005

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