Nortel Plans to Reorganize Certification Program

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Nortel Networks, a provider of communications technologies and solutions, has announced it will rearrange the structure of its certification program starting in October. The transformation will reflect the expressed needs of the company’s customers for the credentials, said Scott Schauer, director of global certifications.

“Over the previous three or four months, we have sat down with a lot of our channel partners and distributors and asked a lot of questions as to how we can evolve our training and certification programs to help them in their business,” he said. “One of the things that came back was based on the theme of business made simple: ‘We recognize the value of certification. How can we get there more easily and flexibly?’”

The main aspect of the change is the segmentation of the program’s major exams, undertaken to make the tests better align to the training courses.

“One of the ideas that was spawned during the meeting was to essentially take the big exam we send people off to testing centers for, break that up into smaller parts and offer those up at the end of courses,” he said. “We’re mapping them directly back to the training courses that questions are associated with. We’re also opening up a testing window at the end of each course. What this will do is allow our customers to take the training and essentially challenge the segment of the certification exam for which they were trained and earn certifications more quickly. They can earn that certification a step at a time, and they can take the test while the information is still fresh in their mind.”

Another facet of the reorganization will be an expansion of the certification program to benefit a new audience, Schauer added.

“Historically, it’s been focused on enterprise products, but now we’re expanding it into our carrier market, the telephone company side of our business,” he said.

Other than how it’s organized, the content of the certification has not been affected.

“It’s the same questions, but a byproduct is that it’s going to give Nortel a lot more flexibility in carving out certification designations,” Schauer said. “We’re finding that as multiproduct solutions become more prominent in our business, we can now reach into our training portfolio a course at a time and start creating solutions certifications that span data, voice-over data and applications suites.”

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