I feel like I might be getting mixed input about the value of the CCDP cert. Recently, I was considering my pursuit of the CCIE R&S, however, I decided against this due to financial limitations. I'm already a CCNP, and my thought was that until the time came for me to pursue the CCIE, I'd round out my troubleshooting/support cert with a design cert. Another individual mentioned that he had seen a few in the industry take this path - combine the CCNP with the CCDP while on course to obtaining CCIE status.
I have a couple of purposes for obtaining the CCDP. First is simply the satisfaction and challenge of learning a new avenue of network engineering. Second, I want to increase my marketability and advancement opportunities. However, I've noticed a couple of interesting things about the CCDP. First, if you do a simple search on a job board like dice.com (search with keyword "CCNP"), you'll get 359 hits. Use the "CCDP" keyword, you'll only get 59 hits. Then, if you visit TCPMag and check out the 2004 salary survey numbers for both, there's around a $20K difference in favor of the CCDP.
Bottom line: I just renewed my CCNP cert Friday and have started the CCDP study process. I'm not looking to leave my private company employer, however, I've had thoughts of possibly doing some Cisco work on the side. Besides, no one knows what the future will bring...I want to have as many tools at my disposal as possible to make the most of every opportunity. Is the CCDP entering a sunset phase? Or, is the situation as it appears - less jobs because it's a "higher-end" design cert, and by nature, design can command as much (or more) in terms of responsibility and salary? Don't get me wrong, this isn't just about getting a fatter paycheck! :-)
Thanks for any and all input!