With the economy down and jobs being hard to find, you have to do whatever it takes to get the edge up on most people. This is especially true in the tech industry because there are many people that are now entering the technosphere. Therefore, companies have to be able to distinguish between who is qualified and who isn't. In my experience, most jobs are obtained by networking and getting to know an employer. However, there are a few things that you can do. One of those things is to sit down and get an education. A degree in the field of IT, computer science or something similar helps out. Most employers though look for experience. They want to know that you did more than read a textbook, and that you can actually perform on the job. Certifications are a mixture of education and experience, and hence are a good way to get noticed by an employer. The Gild is a site that allows you to be able to take free certification tests. The site also has job boards, and other tools to aid you in your job search. Furthermore, they also have partnerships with companies such as ebay and Oracle, so big tech companies are looking at these cert results. When you take the test, results are put up on a public profile. They also have certs in writing, which is a vital skill in the workplace.