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  1. Senior Member
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    #1

    Default How important is the MCSE?

    In a networking career, how important are the Microsoft certifications? Do they carry a lot of weight? What would I lose if I didnt have a MS cert?
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    #2
    You would loose to the same guy with a MCSE applying for a job if you had the same skill set. I honestly dont' like the idea of certs for the most part, but I'm not going to go against the system. You do learn a lot. But I think it goes overboard at times.
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    #3
    Experience and OJT > certs...but certs are the only universal way to show you have a certain base knowledge. Its a necessary evil of the industry for those that of us trying to compete for positions...but if you know someone or have some other advantage, they're irrelevant for the most part.
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    #4

    Default Re: How important is the MCSE?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dingdongbubble
    In a networking career, how important are the Microsoft certifications? Do they carry a lot of weight? What would I lose if I didnt have a MS cert?
    If you don't know Windows at an in depth level, you learn quite a bit. Plus, the certification does open doors for potential jobs. Most higher positions I've seen for Windows Admins and Engineers require or at least prefer MCSE.

    You can get good jobs without it, but they're not usually going to be Windows centric positions.

    All three of my full time positions I've had I never would have gotten without my MCSE. In fact, my current employer required I upgrade mine to 2003 within six months of hire. I wouldn't have gotten even an interview for other positions I had applied for either.
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    #5
    But lets say I want to work primarily on Cisco stuff? Shouldnt we be just concentrating on Cisco instead of going for MS as well?

    whats OJT?
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  7. Senior Stupidboy stupidboy's Avatar
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    #6
    Here in the UK most employers are looking for people with an array of skills that include MCSE and CCNA/CCNP.

    Rightly or wrongly common filter criteria is certification, companies see big benefits in employing certified individuals.
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  8. Cisco Moderator mikej412's Avatar
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Dingdongbubble
    But lets say I want to work primarily on Cisco stuff? Shouldnt we be just concentrating on Cisco instead of going for MS as well?

    whats OJT?
    OJT = On the Job Training.

    Downside to OJT is you just learn what they use on your current job and could be clueless about everything else that isn't important to that job. People who answer "we didn't do that on my last job" when asked technical interview questions usually don't do well on interviews. But that assumes that got an interview. When we needed a Windows guy/gal for our Lab we looked for an MCSE since they'd have the skills we wanted. We didn't need all the MCSE's skills, but it's a lot easier to electronically search resumes for MSCE, rather then search for lots of random task words and read lots of random resumes.

    If you've never worked in IT before, how do you know you'll like working on just Cisco stuff, or that you're actually good enough to jump right into it?

    Having an MCSA and a CCNA would probably be more helpful for getting that first job and open up a lot more opportunities for you. Once you start getting some experience, then you can better decide if you want to specialize.
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  9. nel
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    #8
    In a networking career, how important are the Microsoft certifications? Do they carry a lot of weight? What would I lose if I didnt have a MS cert?
    Unless you are some kind of consultant or something who only works on cisco kit then obviously you will need skills for other tasks whatever that maybe. i recently seen a job ad which was primarily networking but you needed other skills like windows and linux administration skills so if you went for this post and had good cisco skills but no microsoft or linux skills, then the tide maybe against you! this is just one example. i think its always good to have secondary skills to compliment your primary role.
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    #9
    Dingdongbubble,


    MCSE will be fading away over the next couple of years in it's importance, but it is one of the most wanted certifications at this time.

    Quick monster.com search...
    MCSE 2200+
    CCNA 1300+
    CCNP 840+

    Of course that doesn't account for the quality of the job or any other skills that might need.
    -Daniel
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    #10
    I think for jobs where either MCSE or CCNA have some value (such as a corporate environment where you have users and equipment (i.e., not just a NOC job)) the employer would have to preference MCSE over say CCNP because CCNP would be most helpful for equipment and wiring which more lends itself to one-time contractor calls than say MCSE.

    That said, I respect CCNP way more than MCSE. Way tougher, IMO.
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    #11
    Employers now want someone who can multiskill, so someone who has a ccna and mcse would be favored over someone who has just ccnp- that's what i heard anyway. Companies don;t tend to have rooms of Cisco equipment, they have a mixture so just doing Cisco won;t get you a job working with microsoft stuff (which you may well have to do as a network or systems admin).

    just my 2 cents...
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  13. Senior Member
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    #12
    IT is an expensive toss up !!! You pay a great deal of money to become certified in anything you plan to do whether it be MCSE or Cisco. Then we you get to where you want to be cert wise you find out you need to take a couple more certs. Its like a big circle but at the end employers want a one man IT Dept that will save them money$$$ by firing or laying off the one skill per person IT Dept and training a bunch of fresh out of school people to do more on there helpdesk for 11 dollars an hour In My Opinion
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  14. Senior Member
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    #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel333

    MCSE will be fading away over the next couple of years in it's importance, but it is one of the most wanted certifications at this time.
    Daniel333, could you explain that statement? That grabbed my interest since i'm working towards my MCSA 2003.

    Thanks.
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  15. Senior Member Turgon's Avatar
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    #14
    I think it's still an important qualification and well worth embarking upon. When I started out many years ago I was rather green and surrounded by all these experienced PC types who had to help me over the telephone. But once I put 9 months of hard core MCSE study under my belt on my own time after work, I realised what my peers *thought* they knew about NT 4.0 at the time, and networking generally was rather different than the reality. I left that job with three MCPs and nobody else in the IT department had one.

    The awareness of how something works, at least in terms of the possibilities thanks to taking on a syllabus like the MCSE was way more beneficial than just relying on hands on experience at work and hearsay from non certified peers alone. It definitely helped me get on.

    Good luck.
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  16. Senior Member
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    #15
    Quote Originally Posted by kevozz
    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel333

    MCSE will be fading away over the next couple of years in it's importance, but it is one of the most wanted certifications at this time.
    Daniel333, could you explain that statement? That grabbed my interest since i'm working towards my MCSA 2003.

    Thanks.
    Hopefully Daniel doesn't mind me jumping in...

    I'm sure you're aware that Server 2008 was recently released. It's only natural that the now five-year old 2003 certifications will lose value over time. However, 2003 will still be in use for many years, so don't fret about your current situation.

    Also, Microsoft has discontinued the use of MCSA/MCSE for future certifications because that use of "Engineer" is problematic in some countries. The new top-of-the-line certifications this time around the MCITPs (Microsoft Certified IT Professional). Server 2008 has both an MCITP: Server Administrator and an MCITP: Enterprise Administrator. There are no specializations, such as Messaging and Security, this time. However, there is an MCITP for Exchange as well.

    Keep working on your MCSA. You can always upgrade to one (or both) of the MCITPs when you're ready.
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  17. Nidhoggr, the Net Serpent Claymoore's Avatar
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    #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Dingdongbubble
    But lets say I want to work primarily on Cisco stuff? Shouldnt we be just concentrating on Cisco instead of going for MS as well?

    whats OJT?
    Not necessarily - remember your Cisco network does not exist in a vacuum. The network is only as valuable as the devices communicating on it and most of those devices are going to be running Microsoft software. If you know the networking quirks of the devices using your network, you will be better able to design it and troubleshoot it when problems arise.
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  18. Senior Member Turgon's Avatar
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    #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Claymoore
    Quote Originally Posted by Dingdongbubble
    But lets say I want to work primarily on Cisco stuff? Shouldnt we be just concentrating on Cisco instead of going for MS as well?

    whats OJT?
    Not necessarily - remember your Cisco network does not exist in a vacuum. The network is only as valuable as the devices communicating on it and most of those devices are going to be running Microsoft software. If you know the networking quirks of the devices using your network, you will be better able to design it and troubleshoot it when problems arise.

    That's a very important point. Remember the whole picture. Networks exist to provide services. Good networks surely help to provide good services though
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