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Network execs on new Cisco DevNet certification: ‘Finally!’

Necessity is the mother of invention, and also — for network architect Brett Lykins — of community automation. About the earlier 11 several years of his job, as he is graduated to doing work in even larger and more substantial networks, Lykins claimed he is desired to discover programming skills to perform more rapidly with fewer assets.

“My task has developed from focusing on how to get packets from Stage A to B, to how to take care of the infrastructure that is undertaking the genuine networking,” claimed Lykins, who at present will work on the community protection team at managed web hosting supplier Rackspace, in San Antonio. “The technological know-how itself is so elaborate now that to get points finished, you just about have to leverage what automation offers you — the potential to do items additional programmatically, consistently and reliably.”

Lykins reported he has invested numerous 1000’s of several hours finding out Python and GoLang. When the skills he’s acquired have served him well at get the job done, he could not come across an business-identified networking certification that mirrored his experienced advancement and profession trajectory.

“There are certifications from Juniper and Palo Alto, but at this stage, people today however appear for Cisco certifications. It is what it is,” Lykins explained. “A variety of people today in my circumstance have moved into automation, and there hasn’t been a CCIE-equivalent certification.”

Until now. On Feb. 24, 2020, Cisco plans to launch its up to date expert certification test suite, which includes a few new DevNet tracks focusing on network automation and software growth skills at the associate, professional and expert ranges. Cisco will also update the Cisco Certified Community Associate (CCNA), Cisco Certified Network Specialist (CCNP) and Cisco Certified Internetwork Specialist (CCIE) exams to incorporate automation and programming.

Susie Wee, senior vice president and CTO of Cisco’s broader DevNet initiative, has publicly called it the certification program’s most significant shift in 26 several years. Some network professionals welcomed the shift as very long overdue.

My first response was, ‘Finally!’
Robert SchneiderNetwork engineer, Rollins College or university

“My initial response was, ‘Finally!'” said Robert Schneider, a community engineer at Rollins School in Winter season Park, Fla.

He added that Cisco has very long urged networking specialists to discover programming skills, but with out giving a apparent path for executing so.

“Place your income where your mouth is,” he said. “If you happen to be expressing automation is the long term, what certifications are you heading to give to enable people who want to study and expand?”

Bob Laliberte, practice director and senior analyst at Company Method Group, explained Cisco’s DevNet initiative has emerged as a main strategic priority for the seller.

“They realize very dispersed and complicated present day environments have to have a great deal increased concentrations of automation and programmability,” Laliberte explained. “To get there, however, they also identify that IT persons require to improve their skills.”

Are Cisco certs nonetheless value it?

But some community analysts now query the worth of Cisco certifications — at the time the undisputed industry gold conventional — given modern much more various, multivendor environments.

“Whilst Cisco is even now an critical seller, it isn’t really the most vital seller in all regions,” Kevin Tolly, founder of The Tolly Team, lately wrote for SearchNetworking. “Hence, a CCIE certification inherently becomes much less valuable, as it covers fewer of what is deployed in the community.”

In a modern discussion on Reddit, anonymous users in the same way questioned if the new Cisco DevNet certification observe would aim also greatly on Cisco DNA Center and other branded technologies. Schneider explained he at first shared individuals issues but improved his brain soon after examining the training products, which became obtainable to the public in June 2019.

“They are educating YAML, Python and Docker — all of these open up resource protocols. You will find no Cisco XML,” he mentioned. “I consider their intention is just to display men and women what is actually out there at present and how that relates to Cisco systems.”

Lykins has also pored more than the Cisco DevNet certification and training literature, agreeing it appears to be to strike a very good harmony in between seller-agnostic and seller-unique information and facts.

“It is a Cisco certification, so it’s of course heading to be about Cisco merchandise — which is what it truly is there for,” he reported. “But I feel they walked that line pretty properly.”

Laliberte reported the network professionals he is talked to continue to find major price in Cisco’s qualified certifications but acknowledged the program may not make perception for someone who neither will work in a Cisco setting nor ideas to. Typically, nonetheless, he stated companies need to inspire workers to pursue as a great deal training as feasible.

“The financial investment commonly constantly pays dividends in additional productive management and higher efficiency, no matter of the vendor,” Laliberte reported. “I essentially know some firms that send out their workforce to training and certification classes prior to getting the technological know-how.”