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    Is CCIE certification still worth it?


      Hello Everyone,


      Currently I have CCNP & CCDP certifications which will expire in few months. I don't want them to expire so i am just wondering if i should go for CCIE exam or something else? Is CCIE still worth it? If i just pass written exam, will that extend my CCNP & CCDP expire dates?


      Many companies are moving toward Cloud services, Openstack, SDN etc. Should i get those certifications instead? Currently, I am working in telecom industry.


      Please share your thoughts.




        • 1. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
          Daniel Dib CCIE #37149 CCDE #20160011

          The CCIE written will renew your other certs, yes.


          Is it worth it? Everyone has a different answer. For me, absolutely yes. If you study it the right way that is. If you study it to really learn then you will have a very solid foundation in TCP/IP technologies which all other things build on, cloud, SDN etc. These technologies aren't as revolutionizing as you may think. If you are very solid in your foundational knowledge than learning new technologies becomes much easier.


          Cloud, SDN etc. is a hot but all vendors do things differently so it's difficult getting a cert that says you know cloud or you know SDN. They are mostly useful if you work a lot with things like AWS or if you are deploying ACI or NSX etc.

          • 2. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?

            Hi Viren,


            For sure it worth it.


            CCIE covers basic foundational knowledge, and if you plan to dig deeper into SDx flavors, for sure you will be benefited from your CCIE studies. Letting aside job aspects of the certification, or any other marketing around, if you go for it, you should get more than knowledge. You will be in very good shape to get into a new networking technology (really there is very few really new...) and understand it in a more compressive way.


            I really recommend you take the path, independently of any other studies of your interest you may get into during the journey.


            Good luck !

            • 3. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?



              Everyone here has provided you with great advice.


              I would also recommend that you read  the following blogs, so you understand better the importance of the CCIE program and where its headed regarding evaluation of topics and what it means for you.  Please check the following links:


              The New CCIE Exam Topics and What They Mean to You



              What’s New for CCIE Lab and Practical Exams?


              Also if you are thinking of pursing a Cloud certification.  You might want to check out this well written blog that resumes quite well the importance nowadays of Cloud technology and provides great insights on the importance of pursing this track.  You can learn more about it at the following link: 





              I hope this information is helpful for you. 


              I wish you all the best in your networking career. 



              • 4. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?

                Let me sum it up this way. Life is about experiences and choices. Some choices are made on the fly and others are made from past experiences. Those past experiences can be learned from personal or from watching others.


                In the last 8 years, my employment has been sporadic. I rarely got interviews, about 3 within a year (if lucky), which caused me months without work and never able to catch up on my bills. So when you are working 6 to 8 months out of the year, a $1 income a year can become $0.06 with a quickness.


                This is how I see this industry. Whenever I talk to others, not one person as shared my experience. In fact, everyone that I have talk to is doing much better than I was. So they all say "You should not have these problems", which would devalue my hardships that me and my family was experiencing.


                So I struggled on and after 3 attempts, obtained my CCIE. I got a job, and once again, I was let-go after 3 months. As usual, there was no explanation or feedback.


                This time however, that Number was placed at the top of my resume. I did nothing different. I worked just as ******* my search for new employment. However, this time, I was able to get 5 interviews with 30 days and land a job.


                Did the CCIE get me the job? No.....in fact, four of those interviews deemed my unworthy of their network infrastructure.


                The CCIE had two purposes for me......1) Self Education and respect for myself, not them. 2) For them.....that number is a stamp that states that I am serious about this field.


                I do not need their respect or their glory.....I just need to work so I can feed my girls.



                The CCIE is worth it to me, because of these things. In the future, I am hoping that it will provide some trust towards getting full scale projects.


                The most important thing: It was me you put all the hours in, spent well over $15k of my own money from CCNA to CCIE, who drove to NC (4hrs) every attempt, who sat there for 8hrs in that lab, and sacrificed every spare moment to better my life.


                It has been 8 months since I passed and I am still trying to see what the CCIE truly gets me. But in reality, I have already gotten what I wanted out of receiving my number.....Self Respect.


                It was worth every pain in the *** that I encountered. Success = time + sacrifice and it was proof to myself that I am more than capable of accomplish anything.


                Others who have not experienced what I have gone through, do not see a need for it since things are working out for them. Others see it as a money ticket. Some think it is guarantee work and an automatic $200k a year paycheck. So really, the desire for a CCIE should had some meaning and purpose like it did for me. Hope this helps.

                • 5. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                  Adams A.

                  In my humble opinion , people who previously answered are mixing 2 things :


                  1- The technology subjects covered by the CCIE blueprint

                  2- The CCIE certification itself


                  So YES, subjects covered by the blueprint are foundation knowledge AND BEYOND ,,,, so YES studying these subjects will help you in your everyday job in the networking field....


                  But the CCIE certification itself is another story .... CCIE is well known for not reflecting real life AT ALL ....You'll be asked to configure features that you've never heard of before and will never heard of after ....


                  I know GREAT senior engineers who failed the lab miserably... And some others who doesnt know why a vlan interface doesnt come up who passed on their first attempt by using dumps.


                  Lets be honnest.... CCIE is designed for candidates to fail most likely.

                  • 6. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                    Daniel Dib CCIE #37149 CCDE #20160011

                    Learning the content is the real value, yes. But if you have attained the knowledge, why not also prove it by getting the cert?


                    There are great people with and without certs. I don't draw any conclusions based on that. That doesn't mean certs are bad. That means you need to do proper review of people before hiring them.


                    The CCIE lab is not designed to fail people. It's designed to be a challenging implementation exam.

                    • 7. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                      Adams A.

                      Daniel Dib CCIE #37149 CCDE #20160011 a écrit:


                      The CCIE lab is not designed to fail people. It's designed to be a challenging implementation exam.


                      Trust me Daniel it is.... I dont throw sentences like that in the air just for the sake of talking.... I got that from a trusted source.

                      • 8. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                        Daniel Dib CCIE #37149 CCDE #20160011

                        I know the people involved in the creation of the CCIE. I've been a SME and developed labs myself. Our goal when we met to create labs were never to fail people.


                        However, it has to be challenging or it's not an expert level exam. If there's an 80% pass rate then it's too easy. If there's an 5% pass rate then it's too difficult. Statistics like this are very important and closely monitored.


                        I do agree that the older exams were not well designed. There was too much to configure on too few devices so it was difficult to test knowledge of features without intertwining them all. From what I've heard the v5 is a lot better in that aspect. The older exam also was too services heavy and had little used features that were heavily tested.


                        It's always a battle between the vendor and the cheaters and sometimes I think that battling the cheaters has the opposite effect, meaning strange requirements and features make it onto the lab to make it more difficult for the cheaters. What ends up happening though is that the cheaters find out what's on the lab and solve these convoluted tasks but the people with real knowledge get stumped because the requirements or feature doesn't make sense.


                        That's my perspective on the lab anyways.

                        • 9. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                          Luiz Maia

                          It's a very tough discussion and I am actually in the middle of a dilemma.


                          I am CCNA and CCNP R&S and Collaboration and I was thinking to work/study towards the CCIE Collab. I have been working with R&S and Collab over the past 10 years and I was thinking....it's the time to get the CCIE.


                          However, one side of my brain tells me this all the time:


                          The enterprise segment where I have been working doesn't care if you are CCIE. They always look for a senior engineer able to deploy/manage the network and more importantly, able to influence executives to drive to the the correct solution/deployment.


                          All contractor CCIE's I have hired they had a very poor knowledge of how business works and most of them were limiting their careers by having to work on the Industry side that cares about this certification, which is: Cisco Partners, Cisco itself and ISPs.


                          Also, I was in the same level of technical discussion with them even holding only the CCNP cert. Also, I don't see the market payment more for a CCIE (I am talking about enterprise segment).


                          The truth is: The market is changing. Cisco is losing the leader position in so many different areas:


                          1. They lost the battle on the Load Balance service discontinuing their ACE Product. F5 (Big IP) were crazy 10 years ahead of them...

                          2. They lost the battle on the Call Center Side. Genesys is kicking the Cisco *** with their amazing cloud call center. (PureCloud Software). They are like 10 years ahead of Cisco.

                          3. CUCM (CallManager) is still a very solid and good product, however the cloud services are going to make this market very tough in the next 5 years (SkypeBE will be more mature, Genesys, etc).

                          4. Oracle Acme Packet & Sonus Session Border Controllers are 5 hears ahead of the CUBE's.

                          5. Cisco is losing market on the R&S for Juniper and other players.

                          6. Security ( Very tough market as well).


                          I did not even mentioned the SD market, WAAS platform, etc....


                          So my conclusion is driving me to believe that companies are looking for engineers able to learn and manage/interact with multiple players without necessarily having the CCIE stamp.

                          My brain is driving me now to add a forth language in my CV and get more certs from other vendors rather then studying for the CCIE and paying around 15k.

                          My 2 cents on this topic...

                          • 10. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                            Ricardo Martins

                            I though I would answer this even tho is a bit old post.


                            I got my CCIE in 2009 (CCIE#23373) and back in the day being a ccie was being a little god in the field. These days it is just another cert.

                            To be honest, I got far better positions with CCNP than actually after CCIE. Sone companies dont understand the fact that a CCIE is something really hard to obtain, they may even think ccna is better than ccie, they dont really understand the value of it. Sure if you are going for cisco patners companies then CCIE might help otherwise no.


                            These days 2018, you better off getting a CCNP, JNCIP-ENT, checkpoint certs, etc and make your CV with lots of different vendor certs, it will lend you a better job. After that you can study for example ccie service provider, security, etc just to know your stuff but dont need to certify.


                            I let my ccie go inactive, I didn't see any point to re-certify, unless you wanna take an exam every 2 years for the rest of your life until the day you die, no point, eventually everyone will become inactive or emeritus..


                            So to answer your question, the amount of studying, hours, lab exam, flying, etc etc, no its not worth, it wont make your life much better, not in 2018 anyways.


                            Also why kill yourself studying tons of hours for a ccie? some guy in India or china will pass the lab with some cheats and lend the job for 1 dollar an hour. I feel these days, the pizza delivery guy can achive a ccie.


                            Just study, get experience, and keep your eyes open to the world, don't just focus in one cert thinking life will be so great after that because it won't.

                            • 11. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                              Steven Davidson

                              I agree with Daniel's sentiment ("...study it the right way...") insofar as if you're pursuing the CCIE to learn the material (as opposed to simply being driven by the goal of obtaining the number) then the pursuit has value (and obtaining the number is validation that the journey was fruitful in the end).  I agree with everybody who poses this question or expresses doubt.  Anybody thinking of investing serious time and dollars into the pursuit of an expert-level Cisco certification needs to be very clear about why they are doing it or they are unlikely to reflect positively on the experience looking back on it.  There are so many potential pitfalls.  Health, family, friendships, job performance, etc, can, and likely will, take a hit to some degree no matter how minor.  None of them are worth risking without a clearly defined reason, the greatest of them (in my opinion) being the pursuit of knowledge.  The undertaking is a lengthy one (potentially stretching into years) and a candidate should constantly be evaluating whether or not it still makes sense every couple of months.  If your motives are pure you can walk away at any time knowing that you gained knowledge and it wasn't wasted effort.  The worst thing one can do is cling to the pursuit out of pride, vanity or ego.


                              I've been blessed in that I have been able to get my hands on good training materials through my employer.  As long as I have access to it, I'll continue to use it and enjoy it and benefit from it.  I have no desire to become a walking encyclopedia on the exam topic list because about half of it is completely and utterly irrelevant to my job duties and if, by some twist of fate, those things ever did become relevant to my job I would have long forgotten them and would need to refresh the knowledge anyway.  I make sure to focus my energy on exam topics which are most relevant to my current position (BGP, OSPF, DMVPN, QoS, spanning-tree, first-hop security mechanisms, IPv6, HSRP, interpreting packet captures, etc).  I already serve too many masters (employer, wife, children, house, health, et al).  The CCIE R&S is a two-headed master; there's acquiring the knowledge and there's learning how to take the exam.  To cisconaute's point, the exam is designed to produce a certain failure rate.  It has to be that way because the certification's primary value is in Cisco's ability to keep it a relatively rare thing.  It's simple supply-demand principles at work.  To that end, it's not just a knowledge exam.  It's also about learning how to take the exam.  Trainers rise to meet the new challenges with new materials and new bootcamps and Cisco has to answer by making the exams more ridiculously hard to pass based on tweaks that might not really have anything to do with the exam's stated purpose (such as arbitrary time constraints, minimally described requirements, unrealistic tools which are cumbersome to use, etc).

                              • 12. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?

                                Hello all--I read this thread with a great deal of interest, and after reading everyone's two bits, I felt compelled to add my own. 


                                My path to a CCIE is very different than most folks.  I had a solid ten plus years in an entirely different discipline when an injury ended my ability to continue.  Criminal law... if you can believe that.  After searching for over a year and not being able to find a legal job that I could do that could accommodate my injury, I looked at my circumstances and took a total leap of faith.  I retired from the Bar in the beginning of 2016 and I've been studying for my CCIE (data center) pretty much ever since.  I got my CCNA and CCNP in R/S so I could have a solid network foundation, and a few days ago, I made my first attempt at the written exam.  (Super pleased with the results, BTW!)


                                Along the way, I have HAD to study with the intent of learning the material, because I had no previous background in the field.  It is, in my very humble opinion, the ONLY way to study.  I cannot imagine trying to stretch your brain to learn the great breadth of material encompassed by the CCIE DC only being motivated by pride or ego. I suppose anything is possible, but frankly, I agree with Daniel and Steven.  Do it for the love of learning. Then your certifications will, in fact, be a mark of your personal achievement. 


                                The cost--both tangible and intangible--to prepare for the CCIE is pretty high, as Steven pointed out.  I know this because my partner attempted the CCIE R/S a few years back, and the study regimen was grueling.  Myself, I am "between jobs" so I study 8-10 hours a day. Every day.  So if you are not doing it for yourself, paying the price day after day after day gets harder and harder. 


                                So, the CCIE may or may not be for you.  Only you can decide.  But if you do attempt it, do yourself a favor and do it for you.  Valar morghulis.  MM

                                • 13. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?
                                  Steven Davidson

                                  Micheline wrote:


                                  ....and a few days ago, I made my first attempt at the written exam.  (Super pleased with the results, BTW!)


                                  Micheline_Murphy I take it from this that you passed.  Is that so?

                                  • 14. Re: Is CCIE certification still worth it?

                                    I missed a pass by 8 points, if you can believe that.    I've got a re-test scheduled at the end of this week coming up and in the meantime, I've been boning up on the few questions that gave me problems. 

                                    Still, I AM super-pleased by the results.  It's good to know that my own personal assessment of readiness is accurate. 



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