Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on CCNA Routing and Switching

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Salary Survey Extra is a series of periodic dispatches that give added insight into the findings of our most recent Salary Survey. These posts contain previously unpublished Salary Survey data.

Cisco's long-lived CCNA Routing and Switching cert has provided the foundation to many a computer networking career.Cisco hardware is bedrock computer networking technology. And the Cisco Certified Networking Associate (CCNA) Routing and Switching certification is a bedrock computer networking credential. The foundation to many a computer networking career, as well as many an IT career generally speaking, is laid on CCNA Routing and Switching.

Not surprisingly, CCNA Routing and Switching is a reliable presence on our Salary Survey 75 list, checking in on this year’s list at No. 53. Here’s what the salary picture looks like for CCNA Routing and Switching holders who responded to the Salary Survey:

All U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $110,620
Median Annual Salary: $105,910
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 9.9 percent
Very Satisfied: 18.7 percent
Satisfied: 40.7 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 28.5 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 2.2 percent

All Non-U.S. Respondents
Average Annual Salary: $55,430
Median Annual Salary: $53,330
How satisfied are you with your current salary?
Completely Satisfied: 2 percent
Very Satisfied: 11 percent
Satisfied: 38.4 percent
Not Very Satisfied: 35.6 percent
Not At All Satisfied: 13 percent

The largest single body of CCNA Routing and Switching holders to participate in the survey is made up of U.S. residents: 48.7 percent of those surveyed. Cisco certs have a strong global footprint, however, and we also heard from credential holders in 43 (!) other countries: Argentina, Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Macedonia, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Nigeria, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and Uruguay.

The overwhelming majority of those we heard from are men — 96.3 percent — though there are female CCNA Routing and Switching holders out there as well. There’s a noticeable skew toward youth among CCNA Routing and Switching holders, slightly more than 65 percent of whom are younger than 45: 35.8 percent of respondents are between the ages of 35 and 44, with 27.9 percent between the ages of 25 and 34, and 2.8 percent between the ages of 19 and 24. On the other side of the spectrum, 25.1 percent of those surveyed are between the ages of 45 and 54 and 8.4 percent are between ages of 55 and 64.

On the formal education front, the highest level of education completed by most CCNA Routing and Switching holders is some type of university degree, either a bachelor’s degree (43.6 percent of respondents), master’s degree (24.6 percent), associate’s degree (9.5 percent), doctorate (1.7 percent), or professional degree (1.7 percent). The outliers are the 11.1 percent of respondents whose highest level of educational attainment is some degree of post-high school technical training, the 7.3 percent who checked out after receiving a high school diploma, and 0.5 percent who are currently in school.

A robust 95.8 percent of CCNA Routing and Switching holders who responded to the survey are employed full-time, with 2.7 percent in part-time jobs, and 0.5 percent apiece either on sabbatical, unemployed, or currently in school. Among those who have full-time jobs, most are on the clock either between 41 and 50 hours per week (31.1 percent of those surveyed) or have a standard 40-hours schedule (31.1 percent). The outliers are those who put in more than 50 hours per week (14 percent of respondents), those at work between 31 and 39 hours per week (10 percent), and those who put in between 20 and 30 hours per week (1.1 percent).

In terms of workplace standing, the largest single group of CCNA Routing and Switching holders are senior specialists (43.1 percent of respondents). The rest, in descending order, are either specialists (19.1 percent of those surveyed), rank-and-file employees (15.8 percent), managers (8.6 percent), directors (5.7 percent), senior managers (4.8 percent), or executives (2.9 percent).

Exactly 44 percent of all CCNA Routing and Switching holders to participate in the survey are veterans, having worked in a role that directly utilizes one or more of their certified skills for more than a decade. The rest have been plying their certified skills for either between zero years (1 to 11 months) and 2 years (13.4 percent of respondents), between 3 and 5 years (19.1 percent), between 6 and 8 years (14.8 percent), or between 9 and 10 years (8.6 percent).

Finally, here’s the view of CCNA Routing and Switching holders on key questions from the survey about how certification impacts job performance:

At my current job I use skills learned or enhanced through certification: 
Several times a day: 51.3 percent
Several times a week: 30.1 percent
Several times a month: 15.3 percent
Occasionally: 2.9 percent
Rarely: 1.9 percent

Since becoming certified, I feel there is greater demand for my skills. 
Strongly agree: 39.2 percent percent
Agree: 40.7 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 15.3 percent
Disagree: 2.9 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.9 percent

Becoming certified has increased my problem-solving skills.
Strongly agree: 36.5 percent
Agree: 44 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 16.7 percent
Disagree: 1.4 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.4 percent

Becoming certified has increased my workplace productivity.
Strongly agree: 35.9 percent
Agree: 40.2 percent
Neither Agree nor Disagree: 20.6 percent
Disagree: 1.4 percent
Strongly Disagree: 1.9 percent

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CertMag Staff


Certification Magazine was launched in 1999 and remained in print until mid-2008. Publication was restarted on a quarterly basis in February 2014. Subscribe to CertMag here.

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One thought on “Salary Survey Extra: Deep Focus on CCNA Routing and Switching”

  1. After 11 years of IT support, in various capacities (Help Desk, desktop support, level III support), I’ve recently had my position outsourced and was laid off. I hold a bachelors degree in networking and just passed my CCENT. Currently, I’m prepping for the CCNA which I hope to complete within the next month or two. What can I do to get into the networking world with no actual hands on experience in networking? It seems that most employers want a “jack of all trades” but are only willing to pay peanuts. I’ve talked to a few recruiters but I feel like they’re reluctant to place in a networking position due to my lack of experience in that realm. I have no issues working the ground up, again, but feel insulted at what they’re willing to pay me. I feel that eleven years in IT support should account for something, right?

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