Is CCENT Required for CCNA? How to Get Your Employees on the Right Path

Even if skill with technology isn't in a job description, there are few careers and fields of work in today's world that have no connection to the inner-workings of our digital tools. While your staff does not have to be capable of writing their own programs or managing the company network, they should have a basic understanding of the tools that they use to prevent as much user error - the leading cause of data breaches and other cybersecurity risks - as possible.

If your employees ever touch a computer connected to the Internet, then it is beneficial to have them train and take the examination for the basic certifications available in the Cisco system. Here's how this certification system can help you and your business.

What Is the Cisco Certification System?

Cisco is the dominant company in the networking field, accounting for 53.8% of the market share. In addition to creating a wide swathe of devices, they created a certification system to provide a way for networking technicians to indicate their proficiency and for employers to have a way to find the right person for the job. The certifications range from the start of an IT career as an Associate to the Experts and Architects who are managing data centers and Internet service providers.

The qualifications needed to take a certification exam varies, but the lowest tiers either have no prerequisites or need a lower certification. This means that it is possible to circumvent the degree path entirely if you want to pursue a career in IT. The first step on that path is to take the Cisco Certified Entry Networking Technician (CCENT) exam.

What Is the CCENT?

The CCENT is the lowest certification available from Cisco. Passing the exam demonstrates a basic understanding of networking technology and the ability to manage the type of networking hardware and software that a business would use.

Your workers will see 50 to 60 questions about the layers of information technology and the protocols that govern how they interact. It also covers practical scenarios such as figuring out the capabilities of a network with a given set of hardware.

Like many private exams such as the SAT, Cisco charges you to take the examination. The exam is administered in person, so your employees won't be able to take it like an open-book test. This makes it vital to prepare as best as they can to avoid having to retake the exam and your company pay for it again.

Which Certifications and Jobs Does the CCENT Unlock?

While the primary goal of training employees is making them perform their current roles better, it also opens up future opportunities for them within your company and as they move forward. The Associate level of exams typically has no prerequisites, but the ones that do become available once they earn their CCENT. Since the CCENT covers essential information, taking it first is the fastest and easiest way to get employees familiar and comfortable with technology.

If you want to move the employee to a full-time IT position, they can continue to work on the Associate level of certifications while they build up time on the job that will flesh out their credentials and give them valuable lessons as they navigate the management of a professional network. For those who remain in other positions, the certification will help whenever their job duties and technology intersect, and they may still benefit from continued education and certifications.

What Is the Best Way to Prepare for the CCENT and Future Exams?

With a full schedule of work, you may wonder when you will have time to schedule your employees for educational seminars to get them ready for the CCENT. Infotec Training offers a variety of teaching methods such as e-learning and extreme bootcamps that can work around your scheduling needs. Connect with a representative today to learn more about Cisco training courses.

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