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  1. Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    South Florida
    Posts
    857

    Certifications
    CISSP, CISM, CISA, CRISC
    #26
    Do a cost benefit analysis. If the cert is "costing" you more than the benefits your are receiving now or will in the future then let them expire. if not, renew them.
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  3. Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Washington DC area
    Posts
    262

    Certifications
    CISM, CISSP, SSCP, Security+, Network+, A+, Linux+, Project+, NSTISSI / CNSSI 4011, 4012, 4015, and 4016
    #27
    The problem with a simple cost-benefit analysis is that A) one cannot accurately predict the value of the future benefit, and B) it doesn't account for the cost (time, energy, references, etc.) that might be necessary to re-certify in the future if necessary, especially since the future requirements for a certification may change.

    I think of a certification much like a tree. It doesn't just suddenly appear. It has to be grown over time. And just because you can grow one in a particular place in your yard one year doesn't mean you'll necessarily be successful growing the same kind of tree in the same spot next year if you cut the current one down.

    So sure, you can get rid of it and try to grow another one if you ever need it, but that does assume some risk. Keeping it, however, imposes no risk at all.

    We've seen threads right on these forums about folks who had certifications, let them lapse, and then, when needed, couldn't re-certify as easily as they expected or in time for whatever opportunity.
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  4. Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    West Chester, PA
    Posts
    377

    Certifications
    CISSP, F5 CSE:Security, CCNP:Security, CCNP:R&S, RHCE, MCSE: Server Infrastructure, MCITP:SA/EA, MCSE: Security, Security+, Project+
    #28
    I have to do at least 1 renewal exam a year at this point so I understand the frustration. My Microsoft exams expire in 2016, 2019, my redhat exams expire 2017, 2020, my cisco exams expire 2018, 2021, my F5 exams expire 2018, 2020 and my ISC2 expires 2016, 2019. I usually am able to credit some of my time for each renewal towards my ISC2 CPEs so that's something at least.

    I had a buddy who was convinced he wouldn't need his CCNP Security and let it lapse. The company then instituted a policy requiring a CCNP to be promoted. His CCNP Security would have fit the bill but because it was expired he was faced with having to recertify from scratch. He ultimately left the company over the ceiling placed on his job and his desire not to have to go through the process of recertifying.

    While the guy knew his stuff and wouldnt have had any problem recertifying, it would have delayed his promotion by 6 months to a year while he went through the process and I guess it was just a matter of principal for him.

    In most cases, its well worth the time and effort to renew your certificates. About the only exception to the my "rule" is lower level certs and things that are one-and-done exams that are relatively easy... For example, I allowed my Security+ to lapse into legacy status (I have a lifetime Security+) when they switched to the Continuing Education model. While I may need a Security+ by employer requirement, the single exam is not as problematic to complete as would be starting my MCSE, CCNP, CISSP or F5 certificates from scratch.

    My RHCE is the biggest question mark for renewal... At 2 exams, its not that much more difficult to reacquire if I were to let it lapse from an exam perspective but I'd argue that renewing keeps your skills sharper and fresher than letting it lapse and reaquiring.
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  5. Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Washington DC area
    Posts
    262

    Certifications
    CISM, CISSP, SSCP, Security+, Network+, A+, Linux+, Project+, NSTISSI / CNSSI 4011, 4012, 4015, and 4016
    #29
    Even for the one-and-dones, there's some risk. Just in the last few weeks or so there was a fellow posting here that his company sent him to a boot camp for N+ several years ago, he then passed the exam, but let the cert lapse because the company never made it mandatory to maintain.

    But now, very recently, they did make it mandatory, so he took the exam and didn't pass. Last he posted, he was suspended from work without pay until he re-certifies and he was basically a wreck about it -- that's a lot of pressure riding on you to pass!

    Bottom line, though, is that he just never expected to need it... until he needed it. He didn't really do much network stuff... photocopier maintenance or something like that... but had he known, he would have maintained the cert. I say, you never know what you'll need in the future, so keep those certs from lapsing.
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