CCNP-Experience advised after a CCNA

Unanswered Question
Feb 9th, 2008


i am working in a firm that does some networking deployment and i have passed my CCNA some five months ago and am planning to do a CCNP now. i want to know what should be the required experience in the field that is advised after a CCNA before pursuing a CCNP course? My boss is telling me that a CCNP without at least 18months of experience is like having a CCNP just for the sake of a certificate and such ppl are not really worth a CCNP and do not perform well on fields. i don't know what to do now. Please help me...

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Hi There

Well personally I cannot understand your bosses reasoning. If you are going to study for the CCNP properly and not just with brain dumps and the like, then it could take you 18 months or more to get your CCNP certification. At this point you have your CCNP cert and 18 months or more experience in the networking field. In my opinion, as long as you understand the technologies covered in the CCNP course when you finish and can implement those parts which relate to your current position, the certification is well worth having.

Maybe your boss is afraid that,

a) If you are studying for your CCNP that you will not be fully focused at work.

b) That as soon as you get your CCNP, you will leave as you should have a skill set and certification which are marketable.

Other than this I am at a loss as to why your boss would seem to discourage you from obtaining a more advanced level of knowledge, as more knowledgeable employees can only benefit the company they work for.

Just my 2 cents worth.

Best Regards,


Edison Ortiz Sun, 02/10/2008 - 07:44


It's very hard to predict how much working experience someone should have before attempting a CCNP.

If you start studying (the right way) and feel the technologies mentioned in the curriculum are very hard to grasp, then I recommend renting some rack time in the internet or purchase some equipment and practice at home.

Perhaps your boss have come across CCNPs who passed their exams by using brain-dumps. If you stick around and study hard you can prove to him that someone can pass with hard work :)

Good Luck.

P.S. Michael, I believe you misunderstood the question :)



jcrussell Sun, 02/10/2008 - 07:49

The question is, how much actual networking do you do at your job? You said your firm does some networking deployment, but you didn't say what your job duties are.

Your boss is probably right in that someone with a CCNP with no real-world experience is a "paper" CCNP. Whether or not 18 months is the cutoff is a matter to debate, but the point is valid. I would rather hire a CCNA with 2 years experience versus a CCNP with none, all other things being equal.

javed.bundhoo Sun, 02/10/2008 - 12:27

Hey guys,

Thanks a lot for helping me to see clearer. When i asked that question, i was somewhat on the balance between Edison and Crussel opinion.But now that am assured that there's no such definite time period needed, am abit more focused. i thought that doing a CCNP after a CCNA is similar like needing 2years experience in the field like for MBA courses. Well, am the system admin and the network engineer at the office. Am on almost all projects that involve Cisco equipments. we work a lot in setting the internet and telephone network in Hotel rooms, using Aironet Access points, Switches and recently IP telephony. We dont have ongoing projects and i should admit that i dont have much experience. Its during projects that i get to practice lots of stuffs that i learned in CCNA theory. i did CCNA practicals but real life situation is completely different. thats whats pulling me back to do that CCNP. I know well my CCNA and i got above 90% but i dont want to be like those CCNP on "paper". is that what u refer in your post Crussel?


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