Cisco DevNet Certifications Explained | Global network
The enterprise network is undergoing a fundamental transition from manual to automated, from hardware to software-defined, from tightly controlled to sprawling in SaaS, multi-cloud, remote work, and IoT environments.
Network professionals must not only extend existing functionality to all of these environments, but they must also elevate network capabilities to enable digital transformation. This means building a more agile, resilient, secure, scalable, observable and intelligent network.
For network managers, engineers, and architects looking to stay ahead of technology, advance their careers, and add business value, an entirely new development-based skill set software is required.
In response to this changing dynamic, Cisco, which already offers a wide range of certifications in networking, security, and cloud, created a certification path called DevNet. “Cisco Certified DevNet Engineers are empowered to think through complex network problems and deliver solutions at scale through automation,” said Joe Clarke, Distinguished Engineer at Cisco.
Cisco launched its first DevNet certifications – DevNet Associate, DevNet Professional, and DevNet Specialist – in early 2020. And this year, Cisco added DevNet Expert to the certification track, with the first exams taking place in May.
DevNet Certification Basics
As these are Cisco-specific certifications, candidates must have experience working in a Cisco store. Cisco recommends that entry-level certification candidates have at least one year of experience, while the Expert certificate is for candidates with 5-7 years of experience.
- Are there any prerequisites? There are no prerequisites to earning any of the DevNet certifications, but Cisco recommends candidates have a good understanding of the topics before taking the exams.
- Who administers the exams? The Pearson testing company administers the exams, which can be taken online or in person at a physical location.
- How can I prepare for an exam? Cisco offers a DevNet Resources page with links to the DevNet Certification Community, training webinars and videos, and other training products.
- How long is the certification valid? All Cisco DevNet certifications are valid for three years, and those already certified can recertify by taking exams, continuing education activities, or a combination of the two.
What are the benefits of a DevNet certification?
Companies will pay a premium to workers with specific certifications, which means additional compensation beyond the base salary.
“This whole category of network and communications skills bonuses earns on average what would equate to about 5% of base pay,” says Foote Partners analyst Mike Connelly, who just published research for the first six months. of this year. year, based on data from more than 90,000 tech workers who receive skills bonuses at just over 4,000 employers in the United States and Canada.
Besides increasing your earning power, DevNet certifications show that you are serious about improving your skills. “The whole nature of DevNet or DevOps — DevNet being the equivalent of network infrastructure within DevOps — is that you want to be as versatile as possible,” he says. “People who work in DevOps who have multiple skills and dimensions they can bring to a job do much better than others.”
Network administration, network security, network virtualization and DevOps have become important for businesses, especially with the pandemic shift to remote working, Connelly says. “More and more workers are not returning to the office,” he says. “The more employees you have working remotely, the more you have to deal with network architecture, network security, and network infrastructure.”
Clarke adds, “The idea of full observability – knowing that all your services are healthy and how these applications are performing – is a hot topic right now. As we move towards the cloud and more remote workers, it will be more important for network engineers to be able to develop centralized policies so that all of these users have the same experience.
Looking a little further, Vijoy Pandey, Vice President of Cloud and Distributed Systems at Cisco, predicts: “In a few years, nobody will be configuring the network, they will only be configuring the applications. We want autonomous, programmable networks that take care of themselves. For network professionals who want to be part of that future, becoming proficient in software development is essential.
Here are the descriptions of the four DevNet track certifications:
Cisco claims that the DevNet Associate certification validates a person’s basic knowledge of working with Cisco applications, platforms, Cisco programmability strategy, and APIs. A DevNet Associate certification introduces the candidate to the knowledge they would need for a variety of jobs, including network automation engineer, software developer, and systems integration programmer.
- level of experience: This certification is recommended for developers with one or more years of hands-on experience developing and maintaining applications built on Cisco platforms.
- Wage scale: The DevNet Associate certification is comparable to the CCNA or Cisco Certified Network Associate certification. According to PayScale, the average base salary for a CCNA certified professional is $82,000 per year.
- Prime: According to Connelly of Foote Partners, Cisco Certified DevNet Associate is a perfect match for the average 5% bonus in networking and communication skills. “Some are willing to give you the equivalent of 3% to 7%, but more and more in the middle of 5%,” he says.
- Cost: The DevNet Associate v1.0 (200-901) exam costs $300 and lasts 120 minutes.
- How to prepare: Candidates can prepare for the test by taking the DevNet Associate Fundamentals training course, which Cisco calls an interactive learning experience that includes built-in on-board labs. The training course is expected to last around 60 hours and includes sections on software development and design, understanding and using APIs, network fundamentals, application deployment and security, infrastructure and networking. automation, as well as Cisco platforms and development.
Cisco also has the DevNet Associate Guided Study Group, which provides 180-day access to a self-paced online learning program that prepares students for the exam. Students can participate in expert-led learning sessions, access a community of others preparing for the exam, and receive personalized coaching from their instructor with access to regularly designated office hours.
This certification will prepare a candidate for positions such as Senior Network Automation Engineer, Senior Software Developer, Senior Systems Integration Programmer, Senior Infrastructure Architect, Senior Test Development Engineer, and Senior Network Designer.
Live: The DevNet Professional certification is recommended for developers with at least three to five years of experience designing and implementing applications built on Cisco platforms.
Pay: The DevNet Professional certification is comparable to the CCNP or Cisco Certified Network Professional certification. According to Payscale, the average salary for someone with a CCNP is around $100,000 per year.
Prime: DevNet Professional certification offers a bonus of 7% of base salary, according to Connelly of Foote Partners.
Cost: The DevNet Professional certification requires passing two exams, a foundation exam and a concentration exam. The basic exam costs $400, lasts 120 minutes, and focuses on the candidate’s knowledge of software development and design. After passing the foundational exam, candidates must choose a specialized concentration and pass the concentration exam to receive their DevNet Professional certification. Each concentration exam costs $300 and lasts 90 minutes.
According to Cisco, the specialist certification is for developers with three to five years of experience in application development, operations, security, or infrastructure. Only one exam must be passed for each certification, and Cisco says specialist certifications give a person progressive recognition as they work toward other certifications.
The five DevNet Automation Specialist certifications can count as a concentration exam for the DevNet Professional and CCNP Professional certifications in Enterprise, Data Center, Security, Service Provider, or Collaboration.
The DevNet Expert certification validates specialized knowledge in network automation, secure automation tools, and programmability. According to Cisco, a person with the DevNet Expert certification has the skills to plan, design, develop, and maintain automation-focused network environments. Roles include Network Architect, Senior Software Developer, Senior Network Automation Engineer, Senior Network Designer, Senior Infrastructure Architect, and NetDevOps Team Lead.
Live: Cisco recommends candidates have five to seven years of experience designing, deploying, operating, and optimizing NetDevOps technologies and solutions before applying for the DevNet Expert certification.
Pay: The Cisco Certified DevNet Expert certification is comparable to the CCIE, or Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert. According to Payscale, someone with a CCIE can expect an average base salary of $131,000 per year.
Prime: Because the DevNet Expert certification is new, Foote Partners does not yet have enough data to indicate what the skills premium is for this level of certification, according to Connelly.
Cost: Earning the DevNet Expert certification requires passing two exams: a written exam that covers software and automation development and design for Cisco platforms, and a lab exam. The written exam costs $400.
The lab exam is an eight-hour closed-book hands-on exam that asks the candidate to plan, design, develop, test, deploy, and maintain automation solutions in software-driven network environments. The lab review was first available on May 2, 2022.
The lab exam fee is $1,600 if you bring your own device; $1,900 if using Cisco devices.
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