Cisco Unveils Network Design Certification

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Cisco has announced a new certification — the Cisco Certified Design Expert (CCDE) — intended to recognize professionals with extensive experience in networking design.


The CCDE will facilitate such professionals designing networks built around the business requirements of an organization. Although no prerequisite certs are required, seven years of networking experience is recommended, and passing both a qualification and practical exam is mandatory.


The certification was developed in response to customer demand for a certification centered not only on network implementation but design strategy as well.


David Bump, certification portfolio manager at Cisco, said it’s natural that highly skilled individuals would want to evolve their skills and align more to their company’s business goals and be recognized for it.


“We have a lot of 10-year veterans out there who are looking for that next step in their career,” Bump said. “The network design role is more on the front end of the network operations team, so much so that they’re moving out of that [team] and closer to the business strategy. Before they were in operations and engineering, but now they’re going into the planning and security issues of design, as well as looking at performance optimization issues.”


With design expertise that covers voice, data, storage and video, CCDEs will have the ability to design a neutral, adaptable, optimized and cost-efficient network.


The CCDE isn’t just meant to expand the expertise and knowledge of network designers. Bump explained it’s also a way to recognize the critical role network designers play in an organization. Cisco’s goal is to make this role both more marketable for both employers and job-seekers.


“It’s important to enable these individuals to be identified in the marketplace and for them to have a professional development path recognizing the hard work they do in design and architecture.”

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