17 job-hunting resources for Microsoft Certified Professionals

job hunting
Caught up the bad economy? Need a new job? There is some good news. Because Windows is still the predominant operating system in the corporate world, IT professionals with Microsoft skills and certifications remain in demand. (We'll bow to Microsoft-speak and use the generally accepted term "MCP" from here on, meaning "Microsoft certified professionals.") Unfortunately, as the job-seeking market floods with MCPs, you may need a fresh approach for your search before you can land that suh-weet offer. To that end, we've compiled a list of Microsoft-specific resources and some off-the-beaten track ideas to help you network with potential employers, find a recruiter or locate the perfect job listing.

Details begin on Page 2 of this post. But to make the list easier to navigate, here's an alphabetized quick-link guide.

INETA devBistro Dice iFreelance Indeed.com IAMCP Job-hunt.org JustWindowsJobs MCP-Careers.com Microsoft Facebook groups Microsoft Jobs on Myspace Microsoft JobsBlog Microsoft Students to Business Microsoft's Certified Professional Career Center Network World's IT Careers Topics Center Payscale.com Sologig

Now, onto the list ...

job hunting

Microsoft's Certified Professional Career Center

Microsoft.com's career site includes a list of Microsoft-specific jobs from the Careerbuilder.com database. The main advantage of searching jobs via Microsoft's page is that it has a ready made list of keyword searches based on Microsoft certifications (MSCE, MCSA, etc.)


Network World's IT Careers Topics Center

OK, maybe it is a little self-serving to put this one at No. 2, but so be it. Network World's IT Careers Topic Center includes bloggers who specifically cover Microsoft training and certification. It also includes research and articles on careers and links to job posting via the 4jobs.com database.


MCP-Careers.com

MCP-Careers.com is job searching nirvana for MCPs. It focuses only on matching MCPs (such as those holding MCSE, MCSA, MCSD, MCT, certs) with employers and recruiters. " Instead of being a gigantic job board for every possible resume, this job site is 100% focused on Microsoft technologies, including tough to find skill sets such as MCAD, MCDBA and Microsoft Dynamics (Navision, Great Plains and Axapta)," the site promises.

NOTE: Microsoft Subnet will soon be hosting a three-month guest blog by MCP-Careers founder Andrew Mikols. Watch for news on that on this blog and the main Microsoft Subnet page.

Note: For a quick-link guide of all the resources in this post, see Page 1 of this post.

job hunting

JustWindowsJobs

With a name like "JustWindowsJobs" there's no denying that this is a resource for MCPs. The same people bring you even more Microsoft-specific job hunting Web sites such as JustExchangeJobs.com and JustSQLServerJobs.com. Like all the job sites, this one includes many links to job postings by recruiters that specialize in IT jobs.


devBistro

Despite the name of this job site, it is not limited strictly to developers, although it does include only IT jobs. Type "Windows" in as a keyword and you'll see the expected .Net positions, but also network admin and senior IT security analysts jobs. devBistro is frequently included in other "conglomerate" job posting sites, too, but like most of the job sites these days, the postings are largely from recruiters, not the hiring companies themselves. There's nothing wrong with that, of course, but do be aware that you will want to write a resume differently for a recruiter than for a hiring company. (See related story: 20 ways to survive a layoff for more tips on that.)


Dice

Again, its hard to call out Dice as a Microsoft-centric online resume site above any of the others, but it does have it share of Windows-related postings. And it has a couple of other advantages. It allows you to search for a wider range of Windows skill sets than others sites and it shows off its Windows-related job listings. Dice also puts on live job fairs in various cities and might be worth spending some time poking around. While we're at it, we'll throw in a plug for Indeed, which allows you to easily search for Microsoft-related jobs such as "Windows administrator," Windows programmer, or MCSE and then to taylor that search by both location and salary estimate.


Sologig

If you are fed up with corporate life and want to strike out on your own as a consultant, then a site such as Sologig is for you. While devBistro also lists a lot of contract jobs, Sologig specializes in consulting, contract, temp and freelance jobs. It doesn't, however, specialize in only technology jobs, nor in work for MCPs specifically. However, using Windows as a keyword resulted in a list 850 postings long, so the site hosts enough work for the independent MCP to make it worth a gander.


iFreelance

Along the same lines of Sologig is iFreelance, which has an entire section geared toward Windows programmers. (Also database programmers.) The site is unique in that it wants to act as a broker between the programmer and the hiring company through the bidding process.

Note: For a quick-link guide of all the resources in this post, see Page 1 of this post.

job hunting

Microsoft JobsBlog

If you are an MCP that dreams of working at Microsoft, this blog is aimed at you. It is full of tips on how Microsoft finds and recruits employees, as well as general job-hunting advice.


Salary research at Payscale.com and Indeed.com

What kind of pay can you expect in today's market? Salary surveys abound but the ones at Payscale.com and Indeed.com are interesting because they are MCP-specific, very recent, and draw from a large number of participants. For instance, as of Sept. 16, 2008, and according to 1,290 respondents, Payscale.com says the average salary for an MCP network administrator is $50,752. Indeed.com says that the average pay for an MCSE is $66,000. We mentioned Indeed in an earlier entry, too, in that it allows you to search for your Windows-related jobs by salary. If you are evaluating if an offer is good enough, or casting about trying to figure out which direction to take your career to make more money, the data on these sites can help.


Microsoft Jobs on Myspace

Hosts jobs at Microsoft and at other companies looking for MCPs. If MySpace is your thing, and you want job listings delivered to your MySpace page, this is the space for you. Likewise, those dreaming of a job in gaming or gadget development may want to check out the Microsoft Entertainment & Devices Jobs MySpace.


Microsoft Students to Business

For those still in school, this page gives you a method to apply at Microsoft and the entry form for other student programs, like Microsoft Students to Business , which matches students with employers that have internships and entry-level jobs.

Note: For a quick-link guide of all the resources in this post, see Page 1 of this post.

job hunting

Ideas for job-hunting networking in the Microsoft world

Getting a job is equal parts what you know and who you know. The good news is that social networking makes it easier to find like-minded souls, no matter where in the world they work. And each connection is an opportunity for people to learn about your job search. This is a list of potential sites where you can meet other MCPs.

Microsoft Facebook groupsMicrosoft Hardware group and other assorted group each united by an appreciation (and sometimes a love) for Microsoft technology. This would include Microsoft's own Facebook and the Save Windows XP group.

On Facebook, check out the


The International Association of Microsoft Certified Partners

IAMCP is an independent nonprofit dedicated to networking between businesses that make their livings developing, reselling, servicing or otherwise interacting with Microsoft and its products. IAMCP is organized by regional chapters -- almost 100 strong -- and each would offer an MCP the ability to mingle with potential new employers. In addition to networking and collective advocacy between Microsoft and its channel, the group also sponsors charity/nonprofit work (always an easy way to get involved) and education opportunities.


INETA

INETA is a group of user groups. More specifically an umbrella for .NET user groups. If you are a Windows programmer and need to meet up with others, then INETA can help you connect with local chapters and contests.


Honorable mention: Job-hunt.org

We'll close this list with another good resource, albeit one that is not Microsoft specific: Job-hunt.org. While there must be hundreds of general job-related sites out there, this one is worth a mention because it wants to be the granddaddy of them all. It includes listings (of course) from multiple online job databases but also consolidates the best of job advice blogs, tips, news and more.

Have you got a great Microsoft job-hunting resource to share? Post it as a comment and from time-to-time, we'll edit this post and add additional resources to it.

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