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Can certifications hurt my chances of getting a job?

 
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Hi, I think I am asking an odd question, but I read the FAQ on SCEA and it says that seeking a developer job while holding an SCEA could confuse employers.
My situation is a little similar: I hold a BS in computer science but absolutely no professional experience, and I've found it very difficult to find work. As such, I went and pursued the SCJP and SCJD certifications and I'm currently working on the SCBCD. Am I going overboard? All I'd like to do is secure a junior programmer position, but is this too much? I can't think of another way to prove to an employer that I know Java and that I can learn quickly.
 
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Certifications will not hurt. They prove that you can master excessively hard material. If you want experience, build a software portfolio. That is the advice that someone gave me. Work in an open-source project. I have a BS / CS w/ 18mos of experience, SCJP, and SCWCD, and I am still having a difficult time to find work. As I mentioned earlier, I don�t have a Software Portfolio and Open source project participation.
That is the best advice that I can give you.
Good Luck, things are improving.

 
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move to india there r truck loads of IT jobs everywhere and u can work for big companies too
 
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Yup, pretty soon we'll forget about the SC* certificates and take classes on Indian culture.
 
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Well it can never hurt your chances of a job if you think about it. You should be customising your C.V. / Resume for every job application, so anything you think is not applicable to that job you leave off (bar work experience, you have to give a complete history on that).
Unless of course you've got a Tattoo saying SCEA or something
 
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Certifications are good but get SOME kind of work experience under your belt. I worked at a tech support call center for a half year.
While looking for a Java job, I'd recommend checking out consulting firms as they are often more drawn to the certs (because they have to sell you every so often for each project to different companies).
 
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The FAQ is confused. The author seems to think that if you have an SCEA you will look like an architect and if you apply for a lower position it will seem odd. The reality is your experience plaves you at some level, the cert does not. SCEA does not an architect make.
--Mark
 
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The reality is your experience plaves you at some level, the cert does not. SCEA does not an architect make.


You dodged his question and the issue in your swipe at certs. Does SCEA on his resume make him an inferior candidate to one without SCEA on his resume? Or are you saying that SCEA has no value up or down?
 
Mark Herschberg
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Originally posted by Rufus BugleWeed:

You dodged his question and the issue in your swipe at certs. Does SCEA on his resume make him an inferior candidate to one without SCEA on his resume? Or are you saying that SCEA has no value up or down?


I guess I wasn't clear. Yes, I think it makes almost no difference, because by that level you should have enough experience that the cert becomes irrelevant. Maybe it will help slightly because sonme people like certs. Maybe it will hurt slightly because someone might think he's overreaching (although I doubt it--I'm probably the only person who flags resumes because they look too cert focused). So I think it will have little or no effect.
--Mark
 
Billy Tsai
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is over 2years experience enough with certs and an IT BSc degree
 
Rufus BugleWeed
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Yes, I think it makes almost no difference, because by that level you should have enough experience that the cert becomes irrelevant.


Do I remember correctly? You believe a company has no obligation to pay for any training for its employees.
 
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Certification CAN harm your chances in that it can show that you're overqualified for the position (at least on paper).
People with heaps of certifications can also be a pain in salary negotiations as they tend to expect to be paid a lot more (hey, I deserver more since I'm certified XXQQXXTTAS).
 
Mark Herschberg
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Originally posted by Rufus BugleWeed:

Do I remember correctly? You believe a company has no obligation to pay for any training for its employees.


I don't know where you got that from. I think companies should invest in their employees and that means training. I usually negotiate conferences and/or training in my contracts.
--Mark
 
Jeroen Wenting
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Originally posted by Rufus BugleWeed:

Do I remember correctly? You believe a company has no obligation to pay for any training for its employees.


Unless laid down in your contract with them, they indeed have no obligation at all.
There's no law that I'm aware of that states a company is required to spend X days (or Y fill_your_currency) on training per employee per year.
Here in the Netherlands there are incentive programs where companies can get tax-breaks if they invest in training, but that's as far as it goes.
 
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beyond certifications, you have to know people nowadays. Networking is the name of the game. HR departments are overwhelmed with the amount of resumes they receive over the web. That alone will decrease the chances of you getting a job no matter how good you are.
However, if you know someone , and he knows someone...they you probably have a better chance of getting the job. Word-of-mouth is great in this situation.
 
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I think SCJP and SCJD are ok, but if you are an SCEA you may not want to apply for a developer's position. Also I think that it is really difficult to become an SCEA without getting some real world experience. Even if you become one I think you will get more out of the certification if you do it after you gain some real world experince.
Besides, why do you want to become something which you have a doubt that will hurt you? Spend that time in learning music, spend more time with your girlfriend( or searching for one if you don't have), walk in beaches etc. When you start working you may not have so much time to yourself.

Vasu
 
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yes if you have s***load of certifications it's not going to help you in getting a job . you need better soft skill/prople skill rather then tech knowhow .
 
Marc Peabody
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... because by that level you should have enough experience that the cert becomes irrelevant.


I don't quite agree with that. If I were to hire one of two people, both with 10 years experience and only one had the cert, I'd give the job to the cert techie. (This assumes I know nothing else about them.)
Sure, there are cert-freaks that aren't all that bright but there are also many people with years of experience that aren't so hot either. Some never quite picked up on Object Oriented development. Some have become cowboys that refuse to follow a company's coding conventions.
You have to prove to an interviewer that you know your stuff. Years of experience does not an expert make. Certs does not an expert make. But having either one (or both) can make the interviewer a little more at ease that you know what you're doing.
 
Billy Tsai
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if having too many IT certifications can hurt chances of getting a job then does it mean an IT master degree will too?
my friend's friend cant find a job after u graduated with Master of Computer Science and he also has a Bachelor Of Engineering in computer engineering but he cant find a job and he just got declined again yestarday.
 
Jeroen Wenting
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it sure can. At his level of education he's too expensive for the low-grade jobs but with his level of experience he's too junior for the mid-high level jobs.
He's basically caught in limbo between the million identical codemonkeys punching away at their million identical keyboards to input the designs from the people in their ivory towers into the computer and being in that ivory tower.
As the number of doormen to ivory towers is rather limited so are the jobs he has the skills and seniority for.
I was in more or less the same situation when I graduated.
All job openings that showed themselves in that field required either a higher education than mine (Bachelor's degree in physics) or required 5+ years work experience.
I ended up in IT instead but last year when I lost my job in a bankruptcy found myself in similar waters again. With 6 years of experience I fall just in the middle between junior and senior jobs, a point in a career which is typically filled internally in companies by promotion rather than hiring a new person.
I was lucky to find a company that needed someone in a midlevel position with my skills that had no juniors capable of filling it, but such opportunities are rare.
 
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Originally posted by Billy Tsai:
if having too many IT certifications can hurt chances of getting a job then does it mean an IT master degree will too?
my friend's friend cant find a job after u graduated with Master of Computer Science and he also has a Bachelor Of Engineering in computer engineering but he cant find a job and he just got declined again yestarday.


It's a hard market, Billy. You know that as well as anyone, correct?
The MSCS probably isn't helping him much right now, although it may well do further into his career. Many people in the US feel that a full time MSCS is not as valuable as the experience would have been. For that reason a lot of the Americans doing the MSCS do it in part-time programs.
Right now your friend needs to keep trying until he lands his first code monkey job. That's not a put-down, BTW. Guess what I'm doing right now? :roll:
 
Mark Herschberg
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Originally posted by Marc Peabody:

I don't quite agree with that. If I were to hire one of two people, both with 10 years experience and only one had the cert, I'd give the job to the cert techie. (This assumes I know nothing else about them.)


If you were looking at two candidates each with 10 years of experience and the *only* difference you see between them is the cert, then there's something wrong with your interviewing skills. Given two people with that much experience, there should be clear differences. Maybe not one better than the other, but they will have different skills sets, experience, etc, and then you just need to decide which is more relevant. If the question comes down to a cert for you, you are probably not qualified to select candidates because you don't see all the experience and needs and how they relate.
Now yes, in some theoretical situation if the only difference is a cert, then fine. Next you can tell me how me SCJP angels can dance on the head of an RJ-22 cable. :-p
--Mark
 
Rufus BugleWeed
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SCJP angel is one thing.
But
MCP,MCDBA,MCSA,OCP 8i&9i DBA,SCJP,SCWCD,SCBCD,SCJD,SCEA
is another.
If everyone of those was a three hour college course that starts looking like 30 hours.
 
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