How to Get the Google IT Support Professional Certificate and Launch Your IT Career

Have you been considering roles in IT support as a pathway to excellent, stable tech industry careers? If so, you’ve made a very smart choice!

And by opting to earn the globally recognized Google IT Support Professional Certificate to gain credentials and job-ready skills in months rather than years – that‘s an even smarter move friend!

This 2800+ word guide will comprehensively walk you through:

  • Why the Google certificate is such a valuable asset
  • Step-by-step earning it online via Coursera
  • Supplemental skills and resources to make you shine
  • Crafting an eye-catching resume
  • Finding beginner IT support opportunities
  • Acing your interviews with confidence!

So whether you’re just entering the job market or changing careers to tech, you’ll have all the strategies to set yourself up for success after reading.

Let‘s dig in!

Why IT Support: Booming Demand for Skills

Before detailing the Google certificate itself, it‘s important to understand why IT support specialist roles present such a fantastic career choice currently.

🌟 Skyrocketing Job Growth 🌟

Employment of IT support professionals is projected to grow 13% from 2020 to 2030, adding around 165,200 new jobs. That‘s 3X the average rate across all occupations according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Rapid growth is fueled by greater reliance on information technology across virtually all sectors – from businesses small and large to schools, government institutions healthcare organizations and more.

Simply put, our economy would come grinding to halt without the expertise of tech support teams managing systems and infrastructure that power 21st century life!

💰 Lucrative Salaries 💰

The average salary for IT support specialists as of 2022 ranges from $45,000 to $65,000 depending on experience and specialization according to ZipRecruiter data.

With a few years more experience under your belt, crossing the $70,000+ threshold becomes very common – significantly outearning most careers requiring just certificate-level education.

Experienced IT support managers and engineers at large enterprise companies bring home six-figure salaries in many cases! 💰💻⌨️

🌊 Widening Skills Gap 🌊

As incredibly high demand for qualified IT support pros clashes with a shortage of expertise among workers, a major skills gap has emerged.

1 million additional IT workers will be needed in the US alone by 2030 according to IDC research. And most employers prefer or require relevant credentials like the Google certificate.

This supply/demand imbalance means those taking initiative early to gain skills have a very noticeable edge landing in-demand jobs with strong negotiation leverage on compensation.

In other words – seizing opportunities like the Google IT Support Certificate prepares you to ride the wave rather than be swept aside by it!

Convinced this is a smart path forward? Let‘s get you certified then!

Google IT Support Certificate Details

Let‘s cover everything you need to know about the Google IT Support Professional certificate program itself now.

Program Overview

  • Offered through Coursera in partnership with Google
  • 100% online self-paced
  • 5 courses teaching beginner technical support skills
  • Estimated 10 hrs per week over 3-6 months
  • Certificate + badge upon completion

Cost

  • $39 per month Coursera subscription

What You Learn

  • Troubleshooting hardware/software
  • Customer service best practices
  • Networks, cloud computing and IT infrastructure
  • Operating systems and system administration
  • Security defense fundamentals

Benefits

  • Entry-level job readiness
  • Resume booster with strong name recognition
  • Dual credentials with CompTIA A+ possible
  • Foothold to escalate salaries long-term

So in a nutshell – this certificate provides comprehensive baseline training to qualify you for IT support roles in just months for very affordable tuition.

High return on investment both financially and time wise! ⏳💵

Clearly a no brainer if interested in pursuing this career path. Now let‘s get you signed up!

Enrolling Step-by-Step Walkthrough

Follow along below to get fully enrolled in the Google IT Support Certificate program offered via Coursera:

1. Visit Coursera Google IT Program Page

First, head over to the official Coursera program page here via your web browser.

Recognize the Google and Coursera brand logos to verify you’re in the right spot.

2. Click "Get Started"

Scroll down and click the large blue “Get Started” button to begin the enrollment flow.

Select whether you’re engaging in the program to advance your career, change careers or get started on a career path.

3. Click "Enroll Now"

Next, click the yellow “Enroll Now” button to create your Coursera account.

Supply your email and create a secure password when prompted.

4. Select Subscription Plan

You’ll now be asked to choose between a few subscription plan options.

The Coursera Plus monthly plan for $39 per month is required to enroll in the Google IT Support Certificate program.

So ensure Coursera Plus is selected before clicking “Continue”.

5. Begin Course Learning!

Congratulations – you’re officially enrolled in the program! 🎉🙌

You’ll immediately gain access to introductory material. Feel free to poke around the Coursera platform.

When you’re ready, keep reading here for tips getting through the coursework efficiently to earn your credential faster!

Completing Courses & Earning Your Certificate

Now enrolled, let’s ensure you complete the 5 courses successfully to clinch that Google certificate for your resume!

The 5 Courses

The program comprises 5 individual courses teaching different IT support skills:

  • Technical Support Fundamentals
  • The Bits and Bytes of Computer Networking
  • Operating Systems and You
  • System Administration & IT Infrastructure Services
  • IT Security: Defense Against the Dark Arts

We’ll overview best practices for consuming the material across courses…

Absorb Video Lectures

Courses feature video lectures narrated by Google IT instructors with long experience training support teams internally.

Take notes actively in a dedicated notebook as you watch – jotting key concepts, tools, commands etc. This helps cement knowledge.

Also bookmark module pages and revisit lecture replays liberally for refreshers.

Engage Interactive Widgets

Many concepts are taught hands-on using cool interactive widgets that bring material to life.

Be an active learner – click, slide, toggle all elements. Don’t just passively observe!

Ace Graded Assessments

Each course has graded quizzes and assessments required to pass.

*Carefully prep using practice tests before attempting graded ones that count towards certificate eligibility.

Review notes, Google search unclear concepts and rewatch lectures to address knowledge gaps the practice tests reveal before the actual graded assessment.

Complete Any Remaining Courses

Follow the above advice across all 5 courses accumulating passed assessments until finished!

Stay determined seeing it through – enter IT support roles demand people with perseverance and commitment after all.

Claim Your Cert on Coursera!

With all courses completed and passed, head back over to Coursera dashboard for the Google IT Support Certificate.

You can now claim your official certificate to showcase on LinkedIn and resumes + Credly badge to share on social profiles.

Big congrats future IT support whiz! Bask in the achievement. 😎

Then let’s supplement your learning and build an appealing resume to equip your job search…

Complement Courses with More Training

While Google’s syllabus delivers fantastic baseline knowledge on its own, going above and beyond to skill up in key areas can provide that extra edge competing for coveted entry-level IT support roles later.

Here are recommendations on supplemental training well worth your time and money…

Master In-Demand Remote Access Tools

Tools like TeamViewer, ConnectWise Control, Zoho Assist and more empower IT support pros to remotely access devices to swiftly diagnose and fix problems.

*Get very adept using 2-3 leading options through free trials and practice on your own devices. Having real tool familiarity helps tremendously landing that first job!

And you’ll use them every single day in most IT support roles – so the early practice pays continuous dividends.

Consider CompTIA A+ Too

The Google IT Support Certificate curriculum already prepares you extremely well for the globally recognized CompTIA A+ certification as well.

Completing the CompTIA A+ exams to earn that badge checks the box verifying your skills/knowledge against an industry standard – making you a more attractive candidate.

Just a few weeks of focused study materials and practice tests is enough for most learners primed by the Google program.

Check out affordable CompTIA prep options like Total Seminars training bundles for under $500 total. Wise investment for your future!

Build Your Own Home Lab

Beyond conceptual learning, actively experimenting hands-on yourself cementing skills makes a world of difference entering IT environments.

Setup a home lab environment on a spare computer using platforms like VMware Workstation Player to safely create virtual machines mimicking networks and infrastructure you’ll encounter on the job.

Install multiple operating systems like Windows and Linux options within VMs. Then practice routine support tasks like software installs, updates and configurations.

Having real savvy around using command line interfaces and tools like PowerShell looks fantastic to hiring managers assessing your competence managing systems at scale.

Craft an Appealing IT Support Resume

You’ve earned a coveted Google credential, supplemented skills training – now let’s ensure your resume is adjusted to play up these wins!

Lead with Key Certifications

Create a dedicated certifications section prominently near the top listing credentials like:

  • Google IT Support Professional Certificate
  • CompTIA A+
  • Specific remote access tool certs

Including the actual names of all 5 Google courses establishes much more credibility.

Showcase Projects

Did you build a home lab environment? Setup a NAS or media server? Automate tasks using PowerShell scripts?

Feature these under an IT Projects section with brief descriptions conveying the technical competencies involved to stand out.

Even basic hardware PC builds display core understanding that’s invaluable.

Tailor Key Skills

Carefully review job descriptions of IT support roles that interest you – identifying key skill requirements like:

  • Specific OS proficiencies
  • Customer support
  • Troubleshooting processes
  • Cloud platforms like AWS, Azure or Google Cloud
  • Common workplace apps and equipment support

Then tailor your skills section using matching keywords from those job listings that resonate.

This aligns your resume tightly with what hiring managers seek in candidates.

Describe Soft Skills

IT support pros interact constantly with coworkers and customers – making communication abilities extremely important.

So highlighting competencies like:

  • Customer service
  • Collaboration
  • Written documentation
  • Presentations
  • Patience

Helps present you as a mature professional ready to thrive in people-facing functions.

Finding Entry-Level IT Support Roles

Polished resume prepped showcasing your credentials and abilities? Let’s get it out there and land you some interviews!

Here are tips targeting your job search for beginner IT support specialist roles:

Prioritize IT Staffing Firms

IT staffing and recruiting firms like TekSystems and Robert Half specialize in placing talent into support functions.

So establish relationships with 2-3 firms by:

  • Submitting your updated resume
  • Scheduling calls to discuss ideal roles
  • Turning on job alerts

Great way to gain exposure to opportunities possibly unlisted publicly.

Leverage Premium Job Sites

Activate notifications/alerts tuned to entry-level IT support and help desk terms on sites like:

  • LinkedIn
  • Indeed
  • Dice
  • ZipRecruiter

Then diligently apply to matching new openings daily.

The boring key to job search success? Persistence and consistency!

Take Contract Roles Initially

Consider taking short term contracted IT support roles, even part time, at larger companies you admire to get that official experience listed on your resume.

Hiring managers seeing you succeed even in basic temp functions makes you much less risky to onboard full time later.

Think incrementally using each role as a stepping stone towards a proper FTE specialist position.

Prepare For Interviews!

You’ll need to ace the interviews first 🙂 Read on for tips…

Interview Confidently for IT Support Roles

Interviews are your chance to showcase both technical abilities and intangible maturity proving you’re the safest bet to entrust supporting an organization’s precious systems and infrastructure.

Master these strategies to shine across IT support interviews formats:

Behavioral Questions

Expect questions probing how you’d hypothetically react in various challenging support scenarios:

  • Frustrated executive yelling about sudden app downtime right before major presentation?
  • New software update crashing repeatedly first week of rollout across company?
  • Junior team members coming to you with basic issues repeatedly rather than researching self?

Have 2-3 illustrative examples ready demonstrating calm under pressure, root cause analysis prowess and mentoring/teaching skills respectively.

Prove you can handle the rigors of this work intelligently and graciously before ever stepping foot on site!

Technical Questions

You’ll invariably face questions directly testing your core IT support knowledge as well:

  • Asked to explain how to troubleshoot 500+ employees suddenly losing WiFi and internet connectivity in the office?
  • Queried on most likely reasons for a computer freezing repeatedly when opening Adobe Creative Cloud apps?
  • Posed scenario of company servers struggling to stay online after regional power grid outage?

Review common support issues across operating systems, network infrastructure, hardware and critical software before interviews so you can speak intelligently to resolving them.

Demonstrate savvy stepping through methodical triage and fixes.

Ask Intelligent Questions

The interview conclusion presents a chance for you to ask thoughtful questions conveying genuine engagement:

  • Company Trajectory“I’d love to hear leadership’s 3-5 year vision to understand how IT support ties in enabling that?”
  • Team Dynamics“How would you characterize the working relationships across IT internally and with other departments served?”
  • Training Investment"How is skills development and career growth encouraged on the IT support team?”

Smart, researched questions aligned to company goals establishes impressive EQ and strategic thinking abilities highly valued in support roles interfacing so broadly.

You’ve got this! Onwards…

Quick Recap

We’ve covered a ton of ground solving the puzzle of smoothly earning the Google IT Support Certificate to switch into a rewarding support focused tech career!

Let‘s recap key steps:

1) Confirm high demand 🔍

2) Enroll in Coursera program 💻

3) Complete 5 courses ☑️

4) Supplement skills 🚀

5) Craft resume 📄

6) Search IT support jobs 💼

7) Interview confidently 😎

You now have all the tools needed to thrive on this journey pivoting into IT support – congrats!

Wishing you monumental success partnering with end users and organizations to keep critical systems smoothly humming along. Go get em! 😊👍