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CCNA- realistic job prospects

Discussion in 'General Cisco Certifications' started by 5cr3w8all, Jan 24, 2006.

  1. 5cr3w8all

    5cr3w8all Bit Poster

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    Hi guys/gals,

    I got a question and would like an honest answer if poss :eek:

    I'm 39 years of age and have just embarked on going for my CCNA at the local college in asssociation with cisco's academy thing.

    Were only 3 weeks in to semester 1 but I'm loving the challenge and getting on with the course work very well.

    What are the prospects for me getting into the networking industry at my age, assuming I pass my CCNA final exam ( long way off I know)???????????????????????

    I'm not looking for big salaries etc etc , to match my current self-employed earnings would be fine.

    I don't work in IT in any capacity at the moment, in fact I have my own decorating business and have had for the last 13 years.
    I was just curious about a possible carreer change once qualified.

    Thanks in advance for looking/responding
     
    Certifications: none as yet.
    WIP: CCNA and MCSE
  2. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    my honest assessment is that you'll probably struggle as CCNA on its own won't prepare you adequately for an 'entry level' position. You'd need to round it off with certs like A+/MCPs - all presuming that networking is what you're interested in. Down the line, the CCNA will be useful in the job hunt and it'll certainly be useful in helping you understand what happens on the other certs and in the real world.
    If you go to www.jobserve.com and type in ccna you'll see what jobs ask for it, not too many entry level ones there I reckon...

    Then again, you could get lucky! Are you willing to do helpdesk work? If so, the right attitude and manner are as important as certs - and any demonstrable practical hands on experience is a bonus. Trouble is CCNA doesn't help when the secretaries copy of word fails her....
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  3. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    If you want to get into networking you can aim for NOC support for big ISPs and datacentres. Type "NOC+helpdesk+CCNA" into jobserve and see what bites.

    I'm faced with trying to switch over to networking Cisco stuff from a background in Windows support, and with 6 years IT support and a CCNA people just don't want to know. I can't afford to take an entry level NOC support job as my outgoings are matched to my income now, but if I could go back and start again or afford to take the pay cut to I'd do that to get my foot in the door.

    Stay with the CCNA, doing it in 2 exams and with the academy will cover most of the basics you'll need and you could consider doing N+ as well as a lot of the material crosses over.

    Good luck :thumbleft
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  4. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    I think in this day and age luck plays a big part in getting employment within the IT industry. I think Clyde nailed it on the head in that you probably want to beef up your chances with the A+/Network+ certs from CompTIA to give you a good grounding.

    As for your age some employers might take it as a bonus in that you have life experience over a kid. With finding a job all I can say is be prepared to go in at the bottom rung on low pay 12k and get a years experience then see where it takes you. Pay goes up pretty well IMHO for hard working IT pro's.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  5. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    I have to say I see zero point in doing network+ and CCNA.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  6. Arroryn
    Honorary Member

    Arroryn we're all dooooooomed

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    Can you elaborate on that one Clyde?

    I'm not being sarcastic there either. I've heard that a lot of the CCNA material negates (or disregards) what you learn in the N+; if this is true, do the major learning providers sell the Comptia/CISCO mix purely as a way of 'beefing' their income from courses?
     
    Certifications: A+, N+, MCDST, 70-410, 70-411
    WIP: Modern Languages BA
  7. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    hi arronyn, well, if you study CCNA you should already have covered pretty much 80 % of Network+, and at the price CompTIA ask, I don't see the point of having both unless someone else is paying for it! CCNA is more respected also. Mind you, Network+ IS easier so for a newbie I'd generally suggest this cert first.
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  8. michael78

    michael78 Terabyte Poster

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    Clyde, I would have to disagree with you on that one. I think Network+ gives a good starting base for networking that isn't biased toward Cisco products and the Cisco way. Lets face it most small/medium businesses don't use Cisco due to expense and complexity of their products. I also wouldn't say CCNA is more respected as it's more niche market (Cisco) than Network+ (Generic). CCNA is pretty usless unless your going to be a cisco engineer hence why I quit the CCNA course midway through.
     
    Certifications: A+ | Network+ | Security+ | MCP | MCDST | MCTS: Hyper-V | MCTS: AD | MCTS: Exchange 2007 | MCTS: Windows 7 | MCSA: 2003 | ITIL Foundation v3 | CCA: Xenapp 5.0 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Administrator on Windows 7 | MCITP: Enterprise Desktop Support Technician on Windows 7
    WIP: Online SAN Overview, VCP in December 2011
  9. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    If you don't understand the network+ content, you can't understand CCNA, so, why get network+ if you already have CCNA?

    Sorry, but I disagree slypie...
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  10. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    I'd consider doing N+ some time just to have another cert on my CV, I'd like to do A+ as well because I know there are gaps in my foundational knowledge due to the way I learnt but I'll probably finish MCSA and CCNP before I get round to doing that.

    I completely agree though that with a CCNA there should be no need to learn N+ syllabus as it will have been covered in CCNA particularly if one does the CCNA in 2 exams through the academy instead of 1.

    I wouldn't consider it pointless though as having extra certs can only be a good thing even if they are done the wrong way round lol.

    I only mentioned the N+ thing because the original poster is going through the acadedemy so will be learning all material the academy way, so I just thought- 'why not get your N+ at the same time as INTRO' study for one but pass 2 exams- kind of thing
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  11. Clyde

    Clyde Megabyte Poster

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    I hear what you're saying, though, with my employers hat on I'd consider it redundent to have both.. perhaps the money would be better spent on A+ or an MCP ?
     
    Certifications: A+, Network+, Security+, MCSA, MCSE
    WIP: MCITP
  12. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    You're right, in retrospect, the time and money would be better spent on an exam that would show additional skills expanding the skillset not repeating it.
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  13. 5cr3w8all

    5cr3w8all Bit Poster

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    Thanks for the input peeps.....I have done all the A+ course work but never went for the exam :rolleyes: From time to time I do repair/ upgrade freinds and family pc's and setup SOHO's so when I said 'I don't work in IT in any capacity at the moment', what I meant was it's not a source of income for me at the mo.(family = freebee :rolleyes: ) I could possibly brush up on that and go for the exam....what do ya think ?

    Our tutor at college mentioned last week that he also teaches MCSE, would it be too much to get started on this while doing my CCNA or do ya think my head might a'splode :biggrin ?

    cheers

    ian
     
    Certifications: none as yet.
    WIP: CCNA and MCSE
  14. Bluerinse
    Honorary Member

    Bluerinse Exabyte Poster

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    Go for it if you want this to happen :twisted:

    [​IMG]
     
    Certifications: C&G Electronics - MCSA (W2K) MCSE (W2K)
  15. Pete01

    Pete01 Kilobyte Poster

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    How are you enjoying the CCNA?

    I wouldn't recommend trying CCNA and MCSE at the same time. If you're enjoying the CCNA I'd stick with that- especially if you've made a dent in it already.

    What I'm finding at the moment is that there are Cisco jobs and MS support jobs (as well as programming/UNIX/etc etc. jobs). I'm in a situation where I'm trying to cross over from MS to Cisco and I'm having a tough time.

    It seems to me that you're at a bit of a crossroads here which I'm quite jelouse of because I wish I was in a position to choose which direction to head in.

    I'd say choose one and stick to it, with MS and the MCSE you'll be looking at server/desktop work with scope to work with some amazing technologies in the client/server software field. There is a breathtaking amount of technology to get to grips with that is constantly updating to new versions and it's all quite user friendly and easy to learn but time consuming at that.

    With Cisco you'll be looking at networking hardware, packet tracing and network monitoring tools. If you want to specialise in things like firewall security, network design/implementation, Voice Over IP, wireless, choose Cisco.

    Either way you'll start at entry level on a helpdesk just logging faults to start with. That helpdesk/callcentre could be a corporate IT helpdesk or an ISP/NOC. If I could start over I'd go straight for the NOC- but that's because I prefer Cisco.
     
    Certifications: MCP (NT4) CCNA
    WIP: 70-669, Learning MSI packaging
  16. 5cr3w8all

    5cr3w8all Bit Poster

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    I'm really enjoying the CCNA, I never thought I might hear myself saying that but , it's really great... my brain has started to work again :dunce .

    I could always go on to do a CCNP once I got the CCNA under my belt.
     
    Certifications: none as yet.
    WIP: CCNA and MCSE
  17. jellybelly1979

    jellybelly1979 New Member

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    Whats an NOC?
     
  18. hbroomhall

    hbroomhall Petabyte Poster Gold Member

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    Usualy it is 'Network Operations Centre'. Where an ISP controlls its networks from.

    Harry.
     
    Certifications: ECDL A+ Network+ i-Net+
    WIP: Server+

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