CCNA and Broadness of Security Coverage

Unanswered Question
Apr 10th, 2008

I am planning to acquire the CCNA and the CompTIA A+ to help me get started in the IT field, but I know many employers are also looking for potential employees who have computer/networking security knowledge as well. Would it be beneficial to get the CompTIA Security+, or is there sufficient coverage in the CCNA? Thanks!

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celticfc2007 Fri, 04/11/2008 - 00:23

Hi,

The following is just my opinion, take it as you will.

Security experience + certs, VoIP experience + certs, and Wireless are really high demand skill sets globally. Moving on from that, you say your looking to break into the IT Field, the CCNA is quite a leap. I'm not saying you can't learn the material and pass the test--what I am saying is its much easier to glue the concepts together if you've been in the IT world for sometime, and have some practical experience.

I would start with trying to get some sort of 1st line tech support/helpdesk job. Certifications will help you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Even if you don't have the experience to start with, having some certs will show your potential.

I'd recommend goal setting. Getting your A+, then begin looking for an entry level IT job. Once you get your A+, begin working on your Network+. After you build up a one years experience start working on your CCNA. During that first work year, you could work on the wireless# cert and security+.

If you ever find a job on monster requiring CCNA, its usually a non-entry position, the exception to the rule are the entry-level jobs (that ask for A+, MCSE, CCNA etc), but in reality the CCNA is overkill for those postions and the other certs, like the A+ and Network+ would still give you a good chance.

The last thing you want to do, is get your CCNA, and not work on a Cisco gear or do any network administration for the first few years; at which time your cert needs renewed, and you can't remember what you learned 3 years ago, because you haven't worked at a more higher level.

These are just my thoughts, I wish you well in your success.

HTH

celticfc2007 Fri, 04/11/2008 - 00:26

Hi,

The following is just my opinion, take it as you will.

Security experience + certs, VoIP experience + certs, and Wireless are really high demand skill sets globally. Moving on from that, you say your looking to break into the IT Field, the CCNA is quite a leap. I'm not saying you can't learn the material and pass the test--what I am saying is its much easier to glue the concepts together if you've been in the IT world for sometime, and have some practical experience.

I would start with trying to get some sort of 1st line tech support/helpdesk job. Certifications will help you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Even if you don't have the experience to start with, having some certs will show your potential.

I'd recommend goal setting. Getting your A+, then begin looking for an entry level IT job. Once you get your A+, begin working on your Network+. After you build up a one years experience start working on your CCNA. During that first work year, you could work on the wireless# cert and security+.

If you ever find a job on monster requiring CCNA, its usually a non-entry position, the exception to the rule are the entry-level jobs (that ask for A+, MCSE, CCNA etc), but in reality the CCNA is overkill for those postions and the other certs, like the A+ and Network+ would still give you a good chance.

The last thing you want to do, is get your CCNA, and not work on a Cisco gear or do any network administration for the first few years; at which time your cert needs renewed, and you can't remember what you learned 3 years ago, because you haven't worked at a more advanced level.

These are just my thoughts, I wish you well in your success.

HTH

(edit: grammar police)

nicklauscombs Fri, 04/11/2008 - 05:46

I would agree with starting out getting your A+ and Network+ which are solid foundations to getting an entry level job and then start learning the CCNA material as you pick up job experience

seektheword Fri, 04/11/2008 - 08:09

Thanks to both of you who replied. The suggestions mentioned are great, and well taken. I undestand where you are coming from, and I will do as you have suggested, starting with the A+.

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