experience then cert?

Tyson87Tyson87 Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hey guys,

Im about to do my CCNA, near finished my IT degree. hard getting a job round here since i live in the middle of no where, but im hopefully moving to london after i graduate. so i am left with a couple of options and would like to hear some suggestions from some people with the same interest and some good advice/experience! My lecturer recommended goin for the CCNP, I am still convinced that you need experience to really get the full value of it and im afraid i might just look like a paper chaser with all certs and no experience, correct me if im wrong please! however i really do enjoy the telecomms/networking side of things and would like to continue on learning new things and gaining certification. If theres any other certs anyone thinks i should consider doing before the CCNP or i should just look for work, just throw them out there! looking at voice n wireless too but just not sure what to do! above all i want to learn and gain experience. ! Cheers!icon_thumright.gif
[FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."


BSc. Network Computing
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Comments

  • dynamikdynamik Banned Posts: 12,312 ■■■■■■■■■□
    The associate specializations are quicker to get through and will be more useful in finding an entry-level job.

    The NP will probably take your around a year (give or take A LOT depending on many factors), so there's no reason to not start working towards it. If you obtain it before you find a job and feel that it looks odd on your resume, given your experience, just take it off.

    Welcome to the forums and good luck :D
  • scheistermeisterscheistermeister Member Posts: 748 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I got both my CCNA and CCNP before having major experience in the networking field and having those are what got me a lot of contracts and eventually my current job. Although having the NP made it a bit tougher to actually get companies to talk to me. The company I ended up with did hire me partly because I did have my NP although before they talked to me they thought I was extremely over qualified for the job and would not stick around.
    Give a man fire and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.
  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    You are correct that you probably will not get the full benefit without actual experience to back it. My opinion is that certifications are to compliment experience not substitute. How can you call yourself a certified network professional if you have never worked on a real network?

    If I were you I would do all that I can to find a related job and continue your study. Notice the related part, a helpdesk job fixing print issues will not compliment a CCNP very well. I have noticed the best place to start is with an ISP. A lot of my fellow engineers worked their way up from the NOC monitoring circuits.

    Just keep looking for a job and keep up the study and you should do fine!
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • Daniel333Daniel333 Member Posts: 2,077 ■■■■■■□□□□
    The specializations are nice to get, but without experience they are not very valuable. Better to be more rounded.

    Dont' touch the CCNP until you have a year or more under your belt, dont' wana be a paper tiger, assuming yuo can even pass without real world.
    -Daniel
  • empc4000xlempc4000xl Member Posts: 322
    Get your NP if you have the time and that's your interest, just don't put it on your resume. But the Key word is that your interest. If not I would work on something like L+ or some MCSA stuff. Even though I work in a cisco world it would be nice to have some scripting, SQL and server knowledge from time to time.
  • mikej412mikej412 Member Posts: 10,086 ■■■■■■■■■■
    How near are you to finishing your IT degree.

    The only CCNPs we'll even look at for a job who don't have any experience are University recruits or recent graduates. And even then we look to see if they did any kind of campus job, internship, or summer job where they may have used and developed some of their skills. But a lot of times we'll toss out the resumes with the professional certifications if we're just looking for someone to fill a rack 'n stack entry level position.

    Your degree should give you an advantage in a job search against other new CCNAs who don't have one.

    Continuing on with the BSCI and/or BCMSN exams while finishing up your degree and starting your job search could be an option. Finishing an exam or two should keep your knowledge and skills sharp for job interviews and could give you another advantage over other CCNA candidates.

    You probably want to get that first job after graduation and start racking up some useful experience before you worry about completing the CCNP.

    Don't forget to check out the Cisco Partner Locator to get an idea where the Cisco Business Partners are located. Getting a job with a Business Parter is one way to get a lot of good experience in a short time.
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • Tyson87Tyson87 Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
    empc4000xl wrote: »
    Get your NP if you have the time and that's your interest, just don't put it on your resume. But the Key word is that your interest. If not I would work on something like L+ or some MCSA stuff. Even though I work in a cisco world it would be nice to have some scripting, SQL and server knowledge from time to time.
    Hey thanks for the reply. i actually have done and still am doing alot of sql and server management but i didnt really think that sql would come into the networking side of things very often? having said that i think i might take ur advice on the mcsa stuff since i have a class thats pretty much based on the whole microsoft curriculum. n if i still have the urge for the NP after a while i might just go for it. anyways thank u all who took the time to help very much appreciated! cheers!
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."


    BSc. Network Computing
    [/FONT][/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][/FONT][/FONT]
  • Tyson87Tyson87 Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
    mikej412 wrote: »
    How near are you to finishing your IT degree.

    The only CCNPs we'll even look at for a job who don't have any experience are University recruits or recent graduates. And even then we look to see if they did any kind of campus job, internship, or summer job where they may have used and developed some of their skills. But a lot of times we'll toss out the resumes with the professional certifications if we're just looking for someone to fill a rack 'n stack entry level position.

    Your degree should give you an advantage in a job search against other new CCNAs who don't have one.

    Continuing on with the BSCI and/or BCMSN exams while finishing up your degree and starting your job search could be an option. Finishing an exam or two should keep your knowledge and skills sharp for job interviews and could give you another advantage over other CCNA candidates.

    You probably want to get that first job after graduation and start racking up some useful experience before you worry about completing the CCNP.

    Don't forget to check out the Cisco Partner Locator to get an idea where the Cisco Business Partners are located. Getting a job with a Business Parter is one way to get a lot of good experience in a short time.
    Hey mike, im finished my degree in may. i was kinda expectin that if i had no experience the NP might look a bit rare on my cv. as far as an entry level position goes i would jump at the chance to get one. considering the recent plunge in the economy in ireland. thinkin about london or might just go back to america. anyone know what the jobs market is like over there at the moment? been lookin at monster.com but every position wants atleast 1 -2 years experience.. which is understandable. the partner locator sounds very good must give it a look. thanks!
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][FONT=Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]My mechanic told me, "I couldn't repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder."


    BSc. Network Computing
    [/FONT][/FONT][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif][/FONT][/FONT]
  • scheistermeisterscheistermeister Member Posts: 748 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Daniel333 wrote: »
    Dont' touch the CCNP until you have a year or more under your belt, dont' wana be a paper tiger, assuming yuo can even pass without real world.

    I don't agree with that. Studying for an getting my CCNP has helped me a TON with my new job at an ISP and I have someone to compare myself with that had just gotten their CCNA.

    Another guy and myself got hired at the same time for the same position. Our differences are that he was previously a field tech working out west and had just gotten his CCNA and I had just gotten out of school and gotten my CCNP.

    He is really struggling to grasp some of the concepts that I learned while studying for the NP. It has also been extremely helpful because we are rolling out and supporting a new MPLS network.

    I would also say that it is very possible to pass the NP without real world experience, just takes a **** load of studying.
    Give a man fire and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.
  • LifelongLearnerLifelongLearner Member Posts: 45 ■■□□□□□□□□
    It's very tricky to advise someone whether to do a cert or not. The truth is, with no experience, it does take a lot of studying and pulling your hair out to try to learn the material. And sometimes it does work against you in an interview and other times it helps you.

    So what do you do?

    Concentrate on getting experience first, certifications second.

    Whichever way you look at it, experience is paramount. I would prefer to have 6 months experience in IT than zero experience and 5 certifications.

    Next concentrate on becoming a master at getting the work you want. This includes:

    job interview skills
    resume and cover letter writing (or get a service to do it for you)
    Soft skills
    etc
  • UnixGuyUnixGuy Are we having fun yet? Mod Posts: 4,425 Mod
    mikej412 wrote: »

    Don't forget to check out the Cisco Partner Locator to get an idea where the Cisco Business Partners are located. Getting a job with a Business Parter is one way to get a lot of good experience in a short time.

    +1

    the same goes for Microsoft partners, Sun partners, IBM partners...etc, depends on what you're interested in.
    Certs: GSTRT, GPEN, GCFA, CISM, CRISC, RHCE

    Check out my YouTube Channel!

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