Passed CCNA and Can’t Find Work
I had an angry e-mail from a guy yesterday saying that he
passed his CCNA 6 months ago and ‘there are no jobs out
there’ and all the CCNA jobs wanted 2 years experience
before they would even interview him.
This means one of two things. Either he is correct and you
simply cannot get work if you have little or no IT
experience or he is mistaken.
The clue to the answer is in his comment ‘there are no
jobs OUT THERE.’I am going to treat you all like grown ups
and I hope you don’t find my comments to be rude but your
success in IT and life in fact is entirely down to you. If
you pass your CCNA and get knocked back a few times you can
either redouble your efforts and find ways into IT or cry
to anyone who will listen that the cruel IT industry won’t
give a guy a break.
The second clue is when he said ‘ALL the jobs wanted 2
years experience.’ There must be over a thousand jobs
advertised every month with CCNA in the title in the UK
alone. Has he checked every one or just looked at the
trend and decided that the 2 year rule applies to all
If I spent time on the phone and asked this guy what he was
doing I may find out that he had put his CV ‘out there’ on
job boards, maybe applied for some Cisco roles advertised
on the internet and heard nothing back. This is all passive
job seeking. Waiting for the phone to ring.
I would ask him about proactive job hunting. I would start
by asking if he had written a list of large companies in and
around his area and called the IT manager for a chat about
vacancies. I would ask him if he had written a list of
every friend, family member and acquaintence and asked them
who they know who is working in an IT role so he could have
a quick chat with them about where they work and any job
I would ask if he had put his Cisco skills to use by doing
some freelance work for local companies. He could call them
and offer a free Cisco audit where he will check that the
router and switch configs are backed up and that the
passwords are stored securely in case of router failure
or reload. If he found any problems he could offer to fix
them for a fee. He could even offer monthly support contracts
where they get 2 hours free on site support in case of any
If he charged only $100 for each device he had to back up
configs for plus $200 for the support contract and he found
only 10 companies in his area who wanted that service he
could easily net $3000 in a month and a recurring $2000 per
month in support fees whether or not his clients called him.
Anyway. I’m sure that if he carries on e-mailing off his
generic CV and waiting for the phone to ring he will get
the same results he has had so far which is nothing.