There can be no denying it: the IT industry is booming. If you have basic IT skills, then it is highly likely you’re going to be able to land yourself a job, as there are very few companies that don’t need help for their IT departments. If you want to get to the upper echelons of the industry, though, certain skill sets are going to set you apart from the competition. Having your CCNA certification, for instance, is going to look great on your resume. There are different places that you can get IT training, but these are the most common steps that are taken in pursuit of that CCNA certification that is so prized by employers.
Brush Up on Your Common Key Skills
CCNA stands for Cisco Certified Network Associate, and to get the CCNA certification, you’re going to want some basic knowledge of interoffice communication, organizational, and customer service skills. You’ll want to make sure that you’re sharp in all of those areas as you get ready to take the test.
There is a section on the test where your analytical skills will be challenged. Therefore, you should be able to problem solve. However, if you have been in IT for a while, then you will know that coming up with creative solutions is expected of you. If you’ve got a good head on your shoulders and some real-world IT experience, you should be fine in this respect.
Familiarity with Industry-Specific Tools
There are tools of the trade for IT just as there are if you were a plumber or a carpenter. Your potential employer somewhere down the line is most likely going to look for your familiarity with Cisco and Microsoft Office Suite. Make sure that you are well versed in both of those.
Entry Level Certification
When you’re ready, you can try to get the entry-level certification which is the precursor to the CCNA certification. Whether and how easily you can get it should be an indication of any areas where you need to improve.
Take the Time to Get Ready
You can take the CCNA certification test whenever you’re feeling up to it. However, in addition to the certification itself, many employers who are trying to fill the plum IT jobs on their staffs will want to see that you have several years of experience in the industry. Some employers won’t be as impressed by the certification if they don’t know that you have several years of applicable, real-world office experience to back it up.
When you’re getting close to the time that you feel you’re ready for the exam, you can study with textbooks and practice exams that exist for the purpose. There are online courses offered through several different venues, including some that are authorized partners with Cisco.
Take the Exam
When you’re ready, go for it. You will have to head to a test center, and sometimes you’ll need to register as much as six weeks in advance. Take advantage of that time to brush up on all of your skills. Make sure that you have the terminology down, and that you can do such things as LAN switching. If you have what it takes, this is your chance to prove it.
Having some experience and that CCNA certification will look good to an employer who is trying to fill an upper-level IT position in their company. You will feel a rush of accomplishment when you get the certification, but you will likely feel a greater one when you land that prestigious new job.