On my way to CCSP, should I look for work now?

KenjinKenjin Member Posts: 20 ■□□□□□□□□□
A similar post to another member earlier...

I`m currently studying for CCSP, I am at the Cisco Firewall Specialist Stage/ Cisco Information Security Specialist - got my certs through the post this week.

I am thinking, do I now look for work with these certs now? or wait untillI finish the CCSP? Would it be difficult to find work in the UK market with no experience? I guess so. My plan is to finish the CCSP then start studying for CCNP.

I posted this on another UK board (thats my location) and I got shot down in flames, everyone saying I have wasted my time and I should of just done a Network + and worked my way up through the career ladder. My arguement was, the CCNA is "supposedly" an entry network level cert, why do I need to do another entry level cert?
Also isn't the CCNA more difficult than A+ anyway??

I tell you, it really P***d me off, I worked my sack off getting this far and virtually all of them board jumped on me virtually saying I had "wasted my time" or "if I was an employer, I would think that you were brain dumped" and even one moron said, "Cisco certs only last 3 years, so they are a waste of time" didn't even respond top that one.


  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    I don't think its a waste of time, but you probably won't be able to find a job in security with no experience. Its the harsh fact of the IT world. A lot of people are running for security certifications but don't realize that security professionals are usually previous admins on the seytems they are now securing. You may be able to find a lower level job were you get experience on firewalls and exposure to vpns, but I don't think you will be able to find anything strictly security with out the experience regardless of the certification you have.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
  • dtlokeedtlokee Member Posts: 2,381
    Let me tell you about some of the "security experts" that I get in my classes sometimes. I am not sure what they think security is, but some of these guys don't have a clue. I had one that claimed to have 10 years of experience, but didn't know what a VPN was. They have faked their way through their career using TAC, looking stuff up, and hiring outside consultants. but I don't think their network is truly secured. Some of the people who take such offense to people getting certified is because they aren't certified themseves so it's easier to dismiss the certs as worthless than go out and get them.

    The certifications aren't the end all, but they are helpful. I generally won't call somone for an interview if they aren't certified. Most of the people I hire are instructors so it's expected they will be certified, regardless of years of experience.

    You haven't wasted your time. You will find a job, but you may not get paid as much as somone with years of experience. Get the starter job, gains some experience and move on.
    The only easy day was yesterday!
  • mikej412mikej412 Member Posts: 10,090
    Kenjin wrote:
    do I now look for work with these certs now? or wait untillI finish the CCSP? Would it be difficult to find work in the UK market with no experience? I guess so. My plan is to finish the CCSP then start studying for CCNP.
    It's always hard getting that first break, but I'd say "Use it or lose it." Get a job now so that you can start getting experience -- and hopefully get to use what you already learned.

    If you're looking to "break into Security" -- try to get a job someplace that also has PIX and ASAs. Consider checking out the Cisco Partners in your area. You might have to start out "racking and stacking" -- but it is a start -- and there would be lots of room for growth if you do have the skills.

    The professional level certification definitely aren't entry level -- so unless you're a college student also working on certifications, it could "look bad" having the professional level certification(s) without any IT experience. But most of us here won't make fun of you if you do demonstrate that you do have the knowledge by asking intelligent well thought out questions, or answering other people's questions.

    I never worked at a fast food restaurant (I studied and got scholarships for college) and I never worked on a helpdesk -- but I'm sure there are some people who think that is a natural progression to an IT career. But I do remember working at one company where our recruiters would raid McDonald's drive thru windows looking for people with "people skills" to work on helpdesks (and read troubleshooting scripts from a database). And one recruiter got banned from Best Buy for raiding their Computer and TV departments for staffing some of the "more technical" helpdesks :D
    :mike: Cisco Certifications -- Collect the Entire Set!
  • KenjinKenjin Member Posts: 20 ■□□□□□□□□□
    thanks everyone for the good advice. The reason I was going for the proffesional certs is because I didn't want to end up on an help desk. You see, I`m 37 and have a family to look after, my previous jobs were always in Managment. I don't mind starting at the bottom but I think an help desk job would drive me insane!!
  • networker050184networker050184 Mod Posts: 11,962 Mod
    Its really the experience that gets you to the higher jobs not certifications. Yeah certifications are helpful, don't get me wrong, but all employers want experience and education. The certifications are there to compliment your experience not substitue for it. Most people with no IT experience find it difficult to find even a helpdesk job. Your previous management skills could be a great asseset on your resume for any position, so that is a plus. Good luck and don't stop learning. IT is ever changing and if you don't keep up you will get left behind.
    An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made.
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