Is The CCNP Worth It? The Updated Exam
When it comes to IT certifications it can be said, without any doubt, that the choice is wide and sometimes it is difficult to pick. Besides the vast number of certifications, there is always the question of whether a certain certification has enough value to be picked, and in this case, we are talking about the CCNP. So, is the updated version of CCNP worth it?
The updated CCNP exam is considered to be worth every penny taking into account that it gives you a sense of accomplishment, and it opens the doors to many new opportunities. The certification makes you more marketable and allows you to earn more money while securing your job position.
In this article, I have reviewed the new, updated version of the CCNP exam. I will explain the new advantages of the certification, and I will provide the numbers you want to hear, i.e the salaries given to certified people. I will also talk about the ways you can pass this exam, even if you do not have any experience.
Recent Exam Updates Match The Job Market
With the fast development of technology and the network communities, the need for updates in IT certifications has significantly increased. That is the case with CCNP certification, which recently has experienced some updates, and that way has gained more value on the market. In other words, the changes that were done to the certification have made it the perfect match for the job market.
Since the updates were added, people interested in certifications have been asking the same question over and over again. Have the updates made a difference and is the certification really worth it? The exam is definitely worth every penny considering the fact that the certification makes you the ideal candidate for the job market, leaving you with a lot of options and opportunities.
The updates that are added to the CCNP exam will provide broader skills for the candidates, and it will give precise and in-depth knowledge of the concepts and principles. Now, the CCNP exam gives you the opportunity to focus on the area of your choice and need. You are the one that decides to what certain point you want to pay attention, and that way choose the path of your career.
The exam is again structured with two parts – a core exam and a concentration exam of your choice. The core examination includes various technologies, such as enterprise infrastructure, visualization, architecture, security, automation, and network assurance. This is actually the theoretical part for which you can prepare by yourself, or take a training known as ENCOR, i.e. Implementing and Operating Cisco Enterprise Network Core Technologies.
The core exam is mandatory and without it, you cannot take the concentration exam. What is great about the core exam is the fact that it is also a qualification for CCIE Enterprise certification. This means that passing the core exam gives you the opportunity to obtain both CCNP and CCIE.
On the other hand, the concentration exam is more focused on topics based on a certain IT industry. This is what makes the CCNP the desired certification for those who want to improve their skills and level up their career.
Therefore, once you choose you can prepare for the concentration exam that is really in your interest. You can also prepare for this part of the exam by taking a training course provided by Cisco. These are your choices for the concentration exam:
- Designing Cisco Enterprise Networks
- Designing Cisco Enterprise Wireless Networks
- Implementing Cisco SD-WAN Solutions
- Implementing Cisco Enterprise Advanced Routing and Services
- Implementing Cisco Enterprise Wireless Networks
- Automating and Programming Cisco Enterprise Solutions
Since I mentioned the Cisco training courses, I think you should know that these courses are really helpful, and they truly focus on the critical areas. Therefore, if you are thinking about enrolling in a course for your preparation process, consider the Cisco ones since they are the most eligible.
CCNP Certification Benefits
When it comes to the benefits that come with the CCNP exam, I can say that there are many. Firstly, you will be adding new networking skills in your area of expertise, therefore you are going to get more confident and marketable in the IT industry. Secondly, your certification will be focused on your technical area of interest and you will position yourself higher in the world of technologies.
Furthermore, the core exam will qualify you for the CCIE Enterprise lab exam, so you will have the opportunity to achieve one more certification if that is what you want. Lastly, you can show your skills with your high-valued certificate that is recognized worldwide.
Traditional CCNP Salaries
CCNP salaries usually vary depending on the location. For example, the highest salaries in the United States are mostly in California. The highest annual CCNP salary is around $162,500, while the lowest is around $47,000. However, the average annual salary for CCNP certified experts ranges between $91,000 and $134,000.
The average salary mentioned above refers to the cities in which CCNP professionals are paid the highest. This mostly includes the cities in California and Massachusetts. In other locations, i.e. other countries and cities the average annual salary is around $42,000.
CCNP With No Experience? Create Virtual Labs
A certain experience when taking an exam is always recommended and advantageous. However, having no experience does not necessarily mean that you cannot pass the exam and get certified.
A good alternative for gaining some experience before the exam is creating virtual labs at your home. Establishing a home lab will give you the opportunity to work on everything you have learned from the books. Virtual labs are a way of putting theory into practice, and a good option for those who have never experienced working with different technologies and networks.
As seen from above, it is safe to say that the updated version of the CCNP certification is totally worth it. It is advanced, progressive, precise, and focused on the topics of your interests. This certification can ultimately change the path of your career and take it to the next level.