Are you considering getting a CompTIA Network+ or a Cisco CCNA certification, or even both? In this blog, I'll walk you through some scenarios and give you some options to help you make the best decision for your career goals.

One important thing to consider is the section on education and certifications in your resume. I've talked to IT recruiters, account managers, and engineers to find out what they look for in this section. I'll give you some tips on what not to do to make sure your resume stands out.

Now, let's dive into the topic of which certification to choose. Some people may suggest taking both the CompTIA Network+ and the Cisco CCNA, but I'll give you a few things to think about before making that decision.

The CompTIA Network+ certification covers the big picture of networking and teaches you about how devices communicate with each other. It also covers the business side of IT, which is important to know.

On the other hand, the Cisco CCNA certification is more focused on Cisco equipment, teaching you how devices communicate with each other at a higher level, and how to manage, set up, configure, and troubleshoot them.

Now, let's go through some questions to help you decide which certification is right for you. If you have a degree, that may impact your decision. Additionally, if you are new to IT or in your early 20s, late 20s, under 30s, or 40s, that could also affect your choice.

For example, if you're looking to get an entry-level job, getting a CompTIA Network+ certification may be the best choice. However, if you have experience with Cisco equipment, the Cisco CCNA certification may be more suitable for you.

As I mentioned earlier, getting an entry-level job is not the only way to start your IT career. In fact, I have had many students who were able to land their first job in IT without having to start at the bottom. But what about your resume? Are there any mistakes that you may be making that could be preventing you from landing your dream job in IT?

Let's take a closer look at the education and certification section of your resume. You may have listed your high school and bachelor's degree, as well as your certifications such as A+, Network+, and Cisco CCNA. At first glance, this may seem like a solid list of credentials. However, there are a few things that you could improve on.

Firstly, if you already have a degree or are working towards one, you do not need to obtain a certification such as Network+. You are already learning about networking as part of your degree program, so it would be redundant to obtain a certification on the same topic. I have seen many students who have obtained a degree and Network+ certification, and it did not necessarily help them land a job in IT.

On the other hand, if you are completely new to IT and have no experience or education in the field, obtaining a certification such as Network+ could be beneficial. However, I would advise against taking the certification exam immediately. Instead, take a few weeks to study the content and topics covered in the certification exam. This will give you a solid foundation and understanding of the material, but it is not necessary to take the actual exam in order to land a job in IT.

Lastly, if you are in your 40s, 30s, or even 20s, and are looking for an entry-level job in IT, obtaining a certification such as Network+ may be helpful. However, keep in mind that entry-level jobs in IT may not pay as much as you expect. It's important to have realistic expectations when starting out in any career.

As we discussed in the previous sections, the CompTIA Network+ certification can be a valuable asset for those looking to start or advance their career in IT. However, it's important to note that obtaining this certification does not guarantee a high-paying job, especially if you already have an established career and earning a decent salary.

For individuals in their 30s or 40s who already have bills to pay and a job that pays a good salary, taking an entry-level position that pays less than what they are currently earning may not be the best option. In fact, it could result in a pay cut and a setback in their career progression.

Jorge, an experienced IT professional and educator, advises his students to be cautious of the advice they receive about starting their IT career with an entry-level job. He stresses that it's not necessary to begin with an entry-level position and that there are other paths to achieving a successful career in IT.

Jorge suggests that individuals in their early 20s, who may not have as many bills to pay and are not earning a high salary yet, could benefit from obtaining the CompTIA Network+ certification and starting with an entry-level job. However, he also emphasizes that it's important to differentiate oneself from others by doing the right things and not blindly following what everyone else is doing.

When it comes to building a resume, Jorge reminds his students that including a high school diploma is unnecessary if they already have a bachelor's degree. It's important to focus on relevant education and certifications that showcase their skills and qualifications for the job they are applying for.

As I mentioned before, having too many IT certifications on your resume can be counterproductive. It's important to focus on the ones that matter and are relevant to the job you're applying for. In this chunk, I want to discuss some more examples of certifications that may not be necessary if you already have a Cisco CCNA.

First, let's talk about the CompTIA A+ certification. This certification is focused on computer hardware and software, and it's often recommended for entry-level IT positions. However, if you already have a Cisco CCNA, you have demonstrated your knowledge of networking, which includes understanding computer hardware and software. Therefore, having a CompTIA A+ certification may not add much value to your resume.

Similarly, the CompTIA Network+ certification focuses on networking fundamentals, including network design, implementation, and troubleshooting. Again, if you have a Cisco CCNA, you have already demonstrated your knowledge in these areas. Adding a Network+ certification may not be necessary and can be seen as redundant.

I know it may be tempting to list every IT certification you have on your resume, but it's important to be strategic about it. Listing too many certifications can make you appear unfocused or even desperate for a job. Instead, focus on the certifications that are most relevant to the job you're applying for and highlight the skills and knowledge you gained from them.


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