6 Network Certifications for Your IT Career in 2024

In the realm of information technology (IT), you can verify your proficiency with networks by obtaining a network certification.

They can be vendor-neutral, which means the knowledge you gain should be applicable to a variety of networking technologies, or vendor-specific, which concentrates on the technology from a single business, such as Cisco or Microsoft.

Network certifications: Should you get one?

Certifications can be a useful tool for employers to rapidly verify your skill level, even though they are not always necessary.

Obtaining network certifications can help you acquire the abilities necessary to thrive in an IT career and improve the competitiveness of your resume.

If you’re just starting out in IT and are still unsure about the career path you want to follow, think about pursuing an entry-level IT certification or enrolling in an introductory course like Technical Support Fundamentals from Google.

Network technicians, administrators, engineers, architects, and other network-related professions can be filled by people having network certifications. Network expertise can also be helpful for some system administration roles.

Network certifications

1. Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA)

The Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) is an associate-level (early career) credential that is widely considered to be a standard network certification. Numerous networking fundamentals are covered.

Given that Cisco is one of the biggest businesses in the networking sector, this accreditation is extremely important. Additionally, Cisco provides certificates at the entry-level (CCT), professional (CCNP), and expert (CCDE).

  • Cost: $300
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites, though at least one year of experience working with Cisco solutions is recommended.
  • What’s being tested: Network access, IP connectivity, IP services, security, automation, and programmability

2. CompTIA Network+

Regardless of the source of your networking technology, the CompTIA Network+ certification is vendor-neutral and assesses your grasp of networking fundamentals.

In addition, CompTIA provides the CompTIA A+ certification for individuals seeking entry-level positions in IT.

  • Cost: $338
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites, though 9-12 months of networking experience or CompTIA A+ certification is recommended.
  • What’s being tested: Essential networking concepts; cabling, device, and storage technologies; managing networks; security; and troubleshooting methodology and tools

3. Juniper Networks Certified Associate – Junos

The associate-level certification for Juniper Networks technologies is called JNCIA-Junos.

For anyone wishing to pursue more advanced certifications from Juniper Networks in enterprise routing and switching, data center technologies, or service provider routing and switching, this is the prerequisite.

  • Cost: $200
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites.
  • What’s being tested: Junos OS fundamentals like software architecture and transit traffic processing, configuration basics, routing policy, and firewall filters

4. SolarWinds Certified Professional

You can utilize and manage SolarWinds network and system products if you have the SolarWinds Certified Professional credential.

Products from SolarWinds are widely utilized in certain sectors, such as accountancy and government.

  • Cost: $200
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites.
  • What’s being tested: Diagnostics, database performance analysis, network configuration, performance monitoring, network architecture

5. Aruba Certified Mobility Associate (ACMA)

Certain firms could assume you are familiar with Aruba networking features. You can create, set up, and configure a basic Aruba Wireless Local Area Network if you have earned the title of Aruba Certified Mobility Associate (ACMA).

Obtaining any three of the remaining four associate-level Aruba certifications—Switching, ClearPass, Design, and Security—will provide you an Aruba Edge Associate designation.

  • Cost: $230
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites, though candidates are encouraged to take a course in Aruba Mobility Fundamentals.
  • What’s being tested: Essential workings of Aruba WLAN, using V8 operating system architecture

6. VMWare Certified Technical Associate – Network Virtualization

Obtaining the VMware NSX Network Virtualization Platform Essentials certification, which tests your understanding of graphical user interfaces, NSX terminology, and other fundamental technical skills, can be a good way to get started if virtualization is something you’re interested in.

  • Cost: $125
  • Requirements: Requires one exam. No prerequisites.
  • What’s being tested: Installing, configuring, and setup; performance-tuning, optimization, and upgrades; fundamental architecture and technologies; planning and designing; troubleshooting

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