CCIE Certification in Demand as IT Job Market Heats Up

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print

Senior networking and systems engineers, especially those who hold CCIE certifications with VOIP, are getting multiple job offers, something that hasn't happened in the IT job market in the last two years, according to IT recruitment company SmartSource. The number of permanent, senior-level IT job openings has tripled in the last four months, SmartSource says. Other professionals in demand include .NET developers and Microsoft SharePoint experts.

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Joe Iovinelli, CEO of IT recruitment company SmartSource, tells Channel Insider that demand for senior-level systems engineers and networking engineers has tripled in the last four months.

What's more, candidates are getting multiple offers, and that hasn't happened for the last two years, Iovinelli says. And while those offers are not any higher in terms of salaries—more like what they were two years ago—Iovinelli says he believes that may start to change.

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"What's going to happen, as this trend continues, is candidates will start getting more money," he says. "Employers will have to pull the trigger quickly. That is going to start to drive the prices back up for these candidates. We saw this happen coming out of the last recession."

Most in demand? Candidates who hold a CCIE (Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert) with VOIP (voice over IP) certification.

"CCIEs with VOIP are still probably the No. 1 requested resource," says Iovinelli. "Every client has to have one."

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Also in demand are systems engineers, Microsoft engineers and consultants, SharePoint experts, and .NET developers. Employers are looking for candidates with as many years of hands-on experience as they can get. Also, candidates who have examples of their work that they can show are favored over those who don't.

Candidates who are experienced but don't hold certifications are more likely to get hired through connections or word of mouth, says Iovinelli, because while they may be better qualified, they can't demonstrate that as easily and therefore may not even get an interview.

Entry-level candidates are not getting the same kind of interest, however, Iovinelli reports. Rather, they are being used on a temporary basis for short-term projects such as installations as IT solution providers look to supplement their downsized workforces in a dynamic way without adding to headcount yet.

Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com