The Best and Easiest Ways to Get IT Hands-On Experience

Have you ever heard the expression “those who can do, do; those who cannot, teach”?
This is the worst thing about education. It is frustrating to sit and listen for hours to people who talk only about themselves, but don’t know if they really understand what they are talking.
Only a handful of schools and institutions have professors who have actually had to practice what they preach. Too often, they don’t have any real world experience.
People are often given a big fat slap on the face when they try to put what they have learned into practice. It’s amazing how quickly college graduates can go from “I’m going to take over the world” and “man, this entry-level job sucks!”
Related: How to get 6 figure job offers at top tech companies in 2-4 years, even if you don’t have any experience.
This is especially true in the IT industry. Every year, thousands of people realize it doesn’t really matter what their degree is. Despite the harsh reality that it may seem for some, the IT industry is all about hands-on experience.
Before you jump on me, certs are important to the industry, yes. It is not for all the reasons you might think. Entry-level certificates are a filter that narrows down large lists of applicants.
Certs and degrees can help you get in the door and land a job as an entry-level position. However, it is your soft and hard skills and an understanding of the whole IT landscape that will determine your success.
Imagine this scenario: You are a hiring manager at a well-known tech company. Your job is to find people who have the potential to add value to the company for many years.
A candidate walks into your office, asks you questions about current trends and the industry, and even whiteboards complex flow charts. The candidate then hands you a stack and says, “Here’s a list that I can do flawlessly on real-world equipment.” I am happy to show you if you would like. By the way, I was certified in person on all of these skills by former Cisco Systems Engineers.
Nobody in their right mind would question the motivation of that person. No one will question the person’s dedication to their personal and professional development. The only way to convince someone is to ask them to do a few tasks on the list. The effect will be the exact same, provided that there is no bluffing involved.
A hiring manager at a company that values these traits will not care if you have a Ph.D. (ok, maybe he will, but you get the point)
You will be noticed by the hiring manager regardless of whether you have certifications or a degree. If you are able to perform real-world tasks and bring a list of skills to the interview, you will be a good candidate.
You’d also be able to stand out from the rest and get promoted quicker than your peers if you had previous hands-on experience and confidence in your work.
Good news is that you don’t have to be in the industry for a million year to gain the right kind of experience. It is the quality of your experience that matters, not the quantity.
Hiring managers want to find people who are motivated, passionate, and eager to grow as professionals. You must be hungry! You must be motivated and driven to succeed in your company.
Here are some things you can do to get hands-on experience.
Do it yourself
Many companies, schools, and sometimes even individuals upgrade equipment so often that they give it away. You can start to modify used devices. Too often, the best way to learn is not to think but to do something!
You can learn and improve your skills by using used equipment. You’ll feel comfortable using your own equipment and you’ll be ready to move on.
Here are some things you can do by yourself:
Building your own computer used to be a difficult process that required careful selections of many delicate parts. It’s now quite simple. Clear standards for compatibility, simple choices for performance and value, as well as comprehensive guides that will guide you through the entire process. You can search for “How to Build Your Own PC” and choose the one that interests you.
Do your own full-stack networking project. Experienced people will tell you it will benefit you tremendously to get your hands dirty with projects. This is true. This is true. However, completing a full-stack networking project will help you get started on the path to becoming full stack network engineers, which is what companies want. This career blueprint program will show you how to manage your own full-stack networking project.
You can set up your own labs. Hiring managers will be impressed by your home lab. It will show that you are passionate about IT and eager to gain hands-on experience. Some hiring managers will ask about home labs in interviews for more senior positions. This is because it shows that a person is interested in continuing their education. Remember that the IT profession is all based on self-motivation, self-discipline, and self-discipline.
Volunteer your services
Most charities and small businesses are open to receiving help at no cost. By giving a hand, you can improve your skills and gain new ones. You can also make connections with people.