Friday, October 27, 2006

To Cert or not To Cert

I have been working as a network engineer for 12 years. When I first started out, like many, I got my Novell CNE. Of course, IP soon became the protocol of choice and my CNE became a wall decoration. I spent most of my career working with Cisco routers and switches, but did not acquire my first Cisco cert until I had already put in over 10 years. I got my CCNA after I had been laid off and needed it to get back in the workforce. Initially, the minimum requirement for employers was the CCNA; now, it seems to be the CCNP. Can you imagine if it becomes the CCIE?

I am one who doesn't lend too much weight to certs, when compared to real world experience. I have met my fair share of CCIEs who couldn't tell you how to FTP a file let alone how to make a cross-over cable. Still, I can see how employers need a way to weed out the the sea of network engineers all applying for the same positions.

Obviously, there is big money in certs. Also, companies need CCNPs, CCIEs on staff just to keep their Cisco partner status.

Where do you stand on this? I would love to hear what people think.


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