It is really important for an IT graduate to keep up with the latest developments and advances in the technology to explore enough opportunities for excelling at the highest level. While you’d definitely need the best certifications to succeed at the highest level corporate environment with enough skill sets and expertise in the required area. There are various certifications that can add the desired value to your career and profile and sometimes it gets hard to choose the better one for your work profile.
MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) is a top level certification provided by Microsoft to validate one’s authority in Microsoft products and servers all around the world. The certification requires you to first pass the MCSA (Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate) certification. Based on your choice of expertise and the field that you want to pursue, there are eight different options to opt for:
The certification exam judges you on advanced skills ranging from installing software to managing and troubleshooting networks in Microsoft Systems and Servers Enterprise. You have to answer just about 50 questions in the duration of 90 minutes or so and get a score of 750 out of 1000 to secure passing marks in the examination. The passing rate in the first attempt of examination is 70-80% and that is not very bad as compared to other high level certification exams.
The CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate) Certification is one of the most advanced level certifications that Cisco provides for individuals seeking expertise in Cisco enterprise. The certification requires extensive skills of troubleshooting and configuring a network and knowledge of installing and configuring WAN and LAN along with routers and switches. The certification gives you wide range of expertise in Cisco enterprise to mould your career in the best shape possible. It is good enough to give you a high amount of opportunities at the corporate level.
The Cisco Certification exam is one of the toughest certification exams to crack in a single attempt. The certification tests your ability to troubleshoot, manage, secure and configure a medium sized network in highly advanced and real time Cisco enterprise along with your knowledge of routers and switches management and configuration. You have to answer about 45 multiple choice questions in the duration of 90 minutes or so. The exam has a success rate of just 40% in the first attempt and can give you a shocker or a wakeup call if you’re underprepared.
Which is the best?
Both the certifications are highly valued in the industry of IT professional and they have their own set of pros and cons over time. Which one is best for you certainly depend on what you’re seeking and in what field you want to excel in future? While MCSE gives you more scope and opportunities, it does require you to give seven different examinations to earn the certification. But the CCNA certification gives you more credibility and expertise if you’re planning to pursue a career in networking and security and moreover you have to pass just a single examination to earn the certification. While CCNA gives you more authority as a network administrator, the MCSE can consolidate your position as a system administrator.
CCNA professionals earn more salaries than MCSE professional but the margin is not very much. It is also observed that people with CCNA certifications get more jobs as compared to the MCSE certified professionals.
Both the certifications require you to recertify within 3-4 years time. The MCSE certification is the highest level Microsoft certification while one can opt for more advanced level certifications in Cisco environment after CCNA like; CCNP (Cisco Certified Network Professional) and CCIE (Cisco Certified Internet Professional). The Microsoft certification is more popular and the fact that you’ll have to give 8 different exams to attain the credential means that you’ll have to invest more time, money and resources to get through but it also means that you’ll also have a wide range of skills to broadcast your employers. The CCNA certification gives you more leverage in WAN and LAN field along with superiority in networking and security and requires you to just one exam. What is best for you totally depend on your present job profile and where you want to go in the future.