Hi to everyone. I just passed my CCNA last week and now I am not sure which professional cert to study for next. I just changed my career to IT and am now doing entry level work not related to networking or servers . I took the CCNA to increase my chances of landing an actual network job but as of now, it seems it would take some time before I could get one. My question is which professional cert (CCNP, CCSP, etc) should I study first if I am not exposed now to cisco devices and am not planning on building a home lab in the future?
I am considering taking those specialist certs specially the ones on security but I seldom see job postings looking for firewall specialists, etc only. Maybe I should just go ahead to CCNP but I heard that most people who passed built their own home labs or actually doing network jobs. Or maybe its better if I dont go for a specific cert and just continue to study basic to advanced network material like the tech books "Routing TCP/IP" by Doyle, Network Security Architechtures, etc
Please help.... I am sure there are some people out there who want to start a career in IT by getting certifications but its just so hard to get an actual IT/networking job
well I am jvalin fron dubai.
I completed my CCNA from India in 2005, I thought now I would get routers and switches to configure. But it didnt happened, so I prepared for CCNP still I got job where I was just doing troubleshooting job in leased lines and isdn nothing else. coz I had no experience. so finally I decided to go for CCIE routing & switching examination.
and then I landed in Dubai directly as a Senior level engineer.
Now m able to configure routers switches even firewalls everything and that too without any opinion of others. I am my own boss in the company.
If u dont have any budget problem go for CCNP and den directly for CCIE, u will surely get what u r interested in.
offcourse experience is also necesary but job satisfaction is also important.
Rest is up to you.
ALL THE BEST
Here is just my opinion.
You have passed your CCNA and have succeeded in getting a job in the IT industry. This is a good start. If your interests are in IP networking then I would suggest keeping an eye open for positions where you can get some entry level experience with networking. This could be with your current employer as well a with another employer.
As for what exam to take next. CCNP is aimed at intermediate Routing and switching. CCSP is aimed at network security. CCDP is aimed at network design and CCIP is based towards the ISP market. Which you choose depends on where your interests lay. I would say that the topics you cover with the CCNP would give you a good base for any of the other Cisco Professional level certifications, but that is just my opinion.
I would also think that while maybe not necessary, having Cisco equipment to practice hands on configuration on will make a big difference, not only on how well you perform on any exam taken, but also with your understanding of the technologies covered.
Finally if you are going to put in some time studying, then in my opinion you may as well aim for something that you can show to an employer to prove how you have spent your time and go for a certification.
Well don't know if this is of much help, but good luck with both the studies and the future.