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CCIE Emeritus: Did Cisco give into complaints from CIOs and product managers?

When I set out to write about Cisco’s new CCIE Emeritus program a few weeks ago, I spoke to three CCIE-certified engineers, all at different stages of their career, to get a variety of perspectives on the program. CCIE Emeritus is a program for CCIE-certified engineers who are no longer working closely with networking technology on a daily basis and don’t have the up-to-date technical skills required for passing the biannual recertification exam. Instead, if they’ve been in the CCIE program for at least 10 years, they can opt into the Emeritus program, which allows them to maintain a connection to the CCIE program without being fully certified. Instead, they demonstrate that they’ve taken on more of a leadership role in the industry, as technology executives, authors, lecturers or mentors. they keep the CCIE badge on their resumes, but potential employers know that these people are no longer living in the network on a daily basis. Instead they’ve advanced into other types of careers.

Mostly the engineers I talked to thought it was a nice option for Cisco to offer to people and they could see scenarios in which going in this Emeritus program would work for them. No one seemed to object to it.

However, i got some reader feedback recently that presented a different view. Robert DuBell (CCIE#9105), a consulting systems engineer with World Wide Technology Inc., had this to say:

The written recertification test is definitely not a “hands on” test like the lab is. The written test can purely be passed simply by studying the material written in the study material listed on the Cisco CCIE written prep suggestions. You don’t have to be in the CLI all day every day in order to complete the recertification. Simply spend a few hours of your free time studying the proper material and you can recert. If you want to keep your CCIE valid, then you should have no problem keeping up with the technology.

Just because you have moved into a management position does not mean you should let your knowledge of cutting edge technology slip! I have completed the recertification test four times and I have taken different track tests to broaden my working knowledge of the different technologies. I think I have done the Routing and Switching CCIE recert test once since achieving my CCIE.

The CCIE is the best cert out there because Cisco has not given into rules changes on how they run their program. I think this is a shame that they have given into the CIOs and PMs [product managers] so they can keep their number active.

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