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How to Jumpstart Your Data Center Career: Insights from Matt Rekart – Ascent’s Director of Site Services  

Data center career

The data center industry is thriving, with demand expected to double by 2030! If joining this fast-growing industry is of interest, this blog is for you! With more than 20 years of experience in the industry, Matt Rekart, Director of Site Services, provides his best recommendations and tips on how to jumpstart your data center career.  

  • Pursue education and training: Consider obtaining a degree in computer science, information technology, or a related field. Additionally, participate in industry-specific training programs, workshops, or online courses to keep up with the latest trends and technologies in the data center industry. 
  • Gain a solid foundation in Information Technology (IT): Start by building a strong understanding of IT fundamentals. This includes knowledge of computer hardware, networking, operating systems, and database management. 
  • Obtain relevant certifications: Consider obtaining industry-recognized certifications that demonstrate your expertise and commitment to the field. Some well-known certifications in the data center industry include Certified Data Center Professional (CDCP), Certified Data Center Specialist (CDCS), and Data Center Infrastructure Specialist (DCIS), CompTIA A+, Network+, and Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP) can help establish a strong foundation.  
  • Focus on data center-specific skills: Familiarize yourself with the specific technologies and tools used in data center operations. This includes knowledge of server hardware, virtualization, storage systems, data backup and recovery, network infrastructure, security protocols, and cooling and power management systems. 
  • Seek practical experience: Look for entry-level positions at data centers or IT departments within organizations. Practical experience will help you apply your knowledge in real-world scenarios and gain a deeper understanding of data center operations. 
  • Develop problem-solving and troubleshooting skills: Data center operations often involve identifying and resolving technical issues quickly. Cultivate strong problem-solving and troubleshooting skills by practicing on hands-on projects, participating in coding competitions, or joining IT communities where you can collaborate with experienced professionals. 
  • Stay updated with industry trends: The data center industry is rapidly evolving, with new technologies and best practices emerging regularly. Stay informed about the latest trends, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML), cloud computing, and sustainability initiatives. Engage in continuous learning by following industry blogs, attending conferences, and joining relevant professional organizations. 
  • Networking and professional connections: Build a professional network by attending industry events like Data Center World, Data Center Dynamics Events, International Telecoms Week (ITW) + more and connecting with professionals already working in the data center industry. Networking can provide valuable insights, mentorship opportunities, and potential job leads. 
  • Emphasize soft skills: Along with technical skills, develop strong soft skills such as communication, teamwork, adaptability, and problem-solving. Data center operations often involve collaboration with diverse teams, effective communication with stakeholders, and the ability to adapt to changing requirements. 
  • Continuously learn and adapt: The data center industry is dynamic, and new technologies and best practices will continue to emerge. Maintain a mindset of continuous learning, be adaptable to new challenges, and seek opportunities for professional development throughout your career. 

Interested in a data center career with Ascent? View our open positions here and apply today! 

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