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Is there job potential with just CCNA or do I need more certs?

I am presently attending classes for the CCNA exam. Will I get a job after CCNA certification? How should I proceed further in the networking industry?

Secondly, someone suggested that MCSE certification with CCNA is a good choice, what do you think?

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By itself, a CCNA is not enough certification to guarantee employment. The CCNA is a one- or two-exam cert that leads people into the entry levels of Cisco knowledge and skills, but you don't see too many positions advertised (either here in North America, or in India) for people who hold only a CCNA credential. You'll probably need to carry your training and certification further, perhaps into the Cisco professional certs (CCNP, CCDP, CCIP, or CCSP) or into the Microsoft arena (where MCSA can lead pretty naturally to MCSE if you plan things out properly).

And yes, you do find lots of IT professionals who combine CCNA with MCSE. But ultimately, it's what you know how to do, what kinds of problems you know how to solve, and the experience and knowledge you bring to the workplace that make the difference in employability. So be sure to develop your hands-on skills and knowledge as you pursue your certifications; these things will stand you in the best stead during the search for employment later on.

This was first published in September 2003

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