Consider Hiring or Requiring a CWNE For Critical WLAN SituationsBy Lee Badman On 12/28/2016
Yes, I am a Certified Wireless Network Expert (CWNE), and no- I'm not looking for work via this blog post. But I see things, I read things, and I hear things as a busy citizen of the wireless world that bring me to the keyboard on this topic. With the booming popularity of wireless networking as the preferred access method for a growing number of business and personal scenarios, it stands to reason that more people are "doing" WLAN. But there are is a huge delta between doing it and doing it right. And that's where your friendly neighborhood CWNE comes in.
There are now over 200 CWNEs in the world. Most are concentrated in the US, but there are some fantastic folks outside the states carrying the top-level certificate with growing interest in the program. CWNP is the company behind CWNE and all of the "lesser" certs that come before the expert level including wireless network Administration, Security, Design, and Analysis. It's a well-rounded program that frequently updates its content in response to industry and technology changes. It also happens to be vendor-neutral, which brings me to why opted to write this piece.
There are a lot of companies out there bidding for wireless work right now. There are individuals that have been thrown to the wireless wolves in their network environments because somebody has to do it. There are good VARs, clueless VARs, well-meaning individuals doing their best with little or no real training, and those who think popping up Apple AirPorts for friends and family make them a wireless engineer. When you are hiring staff or bidding out large-scale wireless work, you're going to hear from a lot of folks claiming to be skilled in wireless. CWNE helps remove any doubt.
Given how long it takes to work through all of the requirements, and that part of the application process is proving that you have relevant experience to an advisory board, the CWNE program helps those spending budget dollars get what they think they are getting in wireless human resources. You can't get BS your way to CWNE, which is one characteristic of the program that I thoroughly respect. Where vendor-specific certs show completion of a specific vendor's system training course, many of these leave out the broader, wireless world-view type aspects that are part of the CWNE's training. The best of all worlds is a CWNE with vendor certificates- provided it's the vendor of interest to you.
(If CWNE-level experience is overkill for your circumstance, I'm here to tell you that ANYONE involved with supporting, installing, or selling Wi-Fi will benefit greatly from achieving their CWNA certificate. It will get their mind right on wireless, guaranteed.)
I've had a busy last few weeks of dealing with different wireless support issues, interacting with customers shopping for WLAN and colleagues trying to get work, and spending time researching a half-dozen topics in multiple vendors' support forums. There is a lot of bad information floating around, and really goofy ideas about what's good and bad in wireless. Though not everyone that actually gets it has a CWNE (put another way, I'm not saying that all non-CWNEs are clueless) I've found that my fellow CWNEs tend to be among the best resources when I'm in need.
Consider it a filtering tool. Specifying a CWNE be part of the team on your most important wireless projects will benefit you, and it will also help drive more wireless-minded workers to achieve that level of expertise. That's what I call a win-win.
**Reprinted with Permission**Tagged with: CWNE, CWNP