Career orientation for an aspiring network engineer | looking for a CCIE in the UK

zen4xzen4x Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
Hello to everybody.

I am trying to make a career change and targeting an entry role, hopefully a network position, in England. I am currently studying towards my CCNP in Routing and Switching and as soon as I finish I will look to get into work.
I am wondering if there's any CCIE that coul be interested to spend twenty minutes of his time, I am willing to pay for it, to help a noob to make his head around the Telecommunication industry in the UK.
I would like to have an advice regarding the followings:
  1. Recruitment companies to consider
  2. Tips for the technical interview
  3. Companies to apply to (ISP, Data Centers...anything that can get me closer to what I want to do)
  4. Salary expectations.
I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards.


  • TomkoTechTomkoTech Member Posts: 438
    CCNP and CCIE aren't exactly entry level certs..... The job opportunities and salaries are going to starkly contrast with what you can expect out of the gate.

    What is your technical background? Do you already have your CCNA? That is a requirement prior to sitting for your CCNP. With the CCNA you should be able to get a better than entry level role. But without years of documented experience the pay is going to be on the lower end of the spectrum.
  • zen4xzen4x Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hei TomkoTech, thank you for replying.

    I think there's a misunderstanding. I am looking for an entry level role, ideally something close to networking, and I would like to talk with somebody with experience that works in the UK. I did not mention this before, but I am trying to make a career change.
    I took time off from work, but now, after the CCNP, I really have to look for something and I wanted to receive an advice from a professional. A quick chat around the 3 points above.

    Kind Regards.
  • LS1LS1 Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□

    I'm from the UK and have about 10 years or so experience, I'm sure others will be along who have been in the game longer than I, but my experiences were this:

    I left school at 16, went straight in to college to study IT and more specifically networking. I really went at it and managed to come out with A+, CCNA, CCNP Routing and Switching, within a little over 2 years. I was only at college 2 and a half days a week and I tried everything I could to get a job somewhere to help with my studies, unfortunately every time I was met with 'how much experience do you have?', with the answer being 'none in a production environment', the door was quickly shut.

    After speaking to my parents, who spoke to their IT dept. at their work, I managed to get in working with them for a few days per week, unpaid just to get some experience because I knew when I was finished at college what I was about to be faced with. Fortunately doing this helped me get my first job and the rest followed on... very frustrating when I you know you have a natural aptitude for a subject, but people wouldn't take the risk on me! However, whilst my fellow students were just looking at pictures of Cisco 6500 switches, I was doing configuration of them! Absolutely invaluable!

    Anyway, after all said and done, I've had a few jobs and I now spend my time working as a contractor and charge £300-£400 per day, depending on where and what the job is. So it's worth it - keep sticking at it.

    In answer to your questions:

    1. Recruitment companies to consider - They are all much of a muchness to be quite honest, you will find there are lots of time wasters, but it doesn't hurt to get your CV about and see what feedback you get.
    2. Tips for the technical interview - best advice I can give for this, is give examples, whilst you might be able to recite every timer that EIGRP uses or the different types of LSAs OSPF uses, that doesn't impress people. Give solid examples of projects/problems/solutions you've been involved with. If you have none, you could perhaps ask the interviewer for a problem, and present an example of your solution to them to prove your understanding?
    3. Companies to apply to (ISP, Data Centers...anything that can get me closer to what I want to do) - If these are your goals, you ideally will need to start with probably a smaller company to get experience. I've not heard of many people going straight in to an ISP, but it might happen? (You have to remember, would you let someone fresh out of school, so to speak, loose in a datacentre... bit too much of a risk eh?)
    4. Salary expectations - this is purely down to experience in my opinion, my first job was on £11k/year, that was as someone with an A+, CCNA, CCNP and parts of CCSP, plus a few other IT odds and ends... unfortunately with zero experience at the time, I couldn't argue I was worth more.

    If there's any advice I can give you, it's experience, experience, experience. Get it from wherever you can at whatever cost you can reasonably live with.

    Turned in to war and peace, but my 00000010 bits anyway! ;)

    Good luck!
  • zen4xzen4x Member Posts: 15 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Hello LS1, great story. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    I feel very concerned about the salary to be honest. Since I do not have parents or a property, living off 850£ per month will be very difficult.
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