I come from a R&S background so I can see valid points in a lot of what has been said here. I am not sure where you are located but over the past 2 to 3 months I get an average of two three call as week specifically for wireless work. If you are willing to hit the road and have the experience it is not hard to get working. I think that the industry is starting to understand that we are unique breed and most of the offers that I get typically reflect that. I am chasing the IE but that is because I want to do training, this is our time (finally!) but I don't think it will last long. The new hot technology on the block now is video specifically (Telepresence) and other HD vendors. So I would say if you are going to get in do so while the water is fine.
Ok, I am rethinking going on(or maybe not going on) for a CWSP now that I passed the CWNA, with all this talk.
Maybe I really need to find something more in demand. Clearly Cisco dominance in the networking market leaves few options. Looking over job postings, Cisco certifications are required, CWNA is sometimes not listed. I had a CCNA years ago but I hesitate to go for a vendor certification.
Alan, I would say the CWNA is more on the CCNP level, touching in to some of the other higher CWNP tests. I am guessing the CWTS is more the CCNA-Wireless level.
Wlanman, sorry thought you were comparing the CCNA-Wireless to the CWNA. Yeah, the CCNA R/S doesn?t talk much at all about wifi, one question, maybe two. The CCNA is a reallllly hard test. It teaches the basics that all network guys need to know. The test isn?t Cisco only, it cover osi model, subnetting, network topologies, how all the layers work together, spanning tree, trunking, standards, etc?
All the things a good WiFi guy is going to need to know. I wouldn?t say a ?CCNA? knows anything about wireless but I would say that a WiFi guy better know all topics covered in the CCNA. Of course they cover Cisco hardware and their views but don?t think for one second they don?t cover all of the needed fundamentals of networking and open standards. FTW I made more when I was just a CCNA doing wireless work (contractor) then I am making right now as a CCNP-W/CWNA(FTE). Kind of makes me laugh. Of course I did just getting a fat bonus that is going to even things up for this year. ?
Samlo, I get network jobs that want the person to know about wifi but they aren?t focused on wifi. It is pretty rate I get a wifi only email or call. The only time I see wifi jobs is on this site or on twitter. What are you doing to get so many wifi gigs? Video, I hear that. It is starting bleed over on to our wifi now.
BCWNA, Do you like wifi? As for the requirements on job postings? That crap is just a wish list. They post those listings looking for a unicorn. At the end of day they fall back on their ?requirements?.
I like wireless, that could be Wifi, LTE, ....much of it should cross over. I was a broadcast engineer for 20+ years and went to IP network systems. I want to use the practical RF background. Also, I see the future of IPTV as wireless networking at least in the household, if not merging into the free-tv off-air delivery for more efficient spectrum utilization. I was also somewhat involved with IPTV systems. I'm an SBE Senior Certified TV Engineer. This is just a springboard to go in that direction. Just thoughts.
[quote]Alan, I would say the CWNA is more on the CCNP level, touching in to some of the other higher CWNP tests. I am guessing the CWTS is more the CCNA-Wireless level.[/quote]
Im not so sure id agree. CWTS is more like CCENT, CWNA is CCNA-W, CWxP is CCNP-W, and CWNE is CCIE. Purely because the CWNP programme is similar to the Cisco Certification Level tier/pyramid so to me makes sense to make that comparison. I could be wrong here.
I think Cisco should make CWNP a pre-requisite for any of its CCxP-W exams! :-)
There are many ways to look at this. My take on it is what a perspective employer values.
I once applied for a wireless job through a recruitment company who said they wanted CCNA. I applied with my bunch of CWNP certs, but didn't get in. That was the fault of the recruitment company, not the actual company they were representing.
At the time I worked mainly with Aruba gear, and had an Aruba cert, but as luck would have it, I knew someone in that actual company who recommended me. When I actually got interviewed, the guy said he didn't care about certs at all. He wanted to know if I were smart enough to learn, and have the right job attitude. Experience helped too.
When I started there, I had my CWNE, and was put in charge of wireless architecture which was to be vendor neutral. That is, it was all to be design guidlines that any prospective company could provide a solution for. This was a rare opportunity that perfectly suited my CWNE.
I now work more with Cisco gear, and am working on my CCNP-Wireless. After the CWNP certs, it makes it a lot easier, but of course there is all the Cisco stuff to learn.
I had the strange idea that a CCIE-Wireless would just be a Cisco guru and that's about it. After meeting one however, I found out that he did indeed know a lot about how the protocols work. I might do the CCIE, might not, but either way, in my opinion there is nothing like the CWAP to get into the nitty gritty of this stuff.
It's all about who values what. If you want a job with a company that insists on Cisco certs, get them. If you are having trouble finding people who know about the CWNP programme (like in Australia), educate them on what it's about, and it's value. It worked for me.
Back to a point I brought up earlier.
The Network+ cert covers about 1/2 of what the CCNA does - the part without the Cisco gear and their CLI.
OSI layers, sub-netting, switching and routing, etc. are all covered. And unless things have changed no, or almost no, wireless.
I would recommend anyone interested in general wireless technologies to learn these networking technologies, whether it is from a Net+ or a CCNA class/cert.
Since Cisco is the predominant hardware out there, it does help to be familiar with the CLI when the AP GUI doesn't do what you want it to do.
I gotta say, the market here in Brazil is pretty bad for Wi-Fi only professionals. You might find an old school RF guy that is not so good with IP/ethernet, or an IT guy that knows nothing about RF. I've seen that the only job openings outside the US or Canada that [b]consciously [/b] ask for CWNP certificates are the ones at Cisco. You can't take seriously a job opening that asks for Cisco, Microsoft, Security, Forensics AND Wireless certs.
I hope the market will change soon, but I really don't want to stay around and wait. I'm packing my bags and moving to Canada ASAP.