What Benefits Can You Bring to Your Company with New Cisco Certification Program?

There are many Cisco credentials that will be launched in 2020. Cisco will withdraw a lot of its old certificates and release new ones that will form a new certification program. The focus of this blog article is on these new credentials. Without much ado, let’s look at some of those that are likely to take the IT world and the professionals by storm in 2020.

Changes, changes, changes

The new Cisco certification program will bring major changes to CCIE, CCNP, and CCNA, and will also introduce new credentials such as DevNet Professional and DevNet Associate. The vendor plans to launch its new certification and training program on February 24, 2020. Actually, February 23 will be the last day you can be tested under the current Cisco path.

  • New CCNA certification program

The new CCNA certificates are designed to prepare the IT professionals for the associate-level job positions and roles. They will confirm a broad range of skills and knowledge. The new CCNA exams cover security and networking fundamentals, as well as programmability and automation. To earn any credential of the Associate level, you will need to pass only one test – 200-301. Previously, the candidates were required to take multiple exams in order to obtain any CCNA certification. The Cisco Certified Network Associate test will go live on February 24, 2020. Technically, there are no formal prerequisites or requirements for the Cisco 200-301 exam. But Cisco recommends that that students have at least one year of experience administering and implementing Cisco solutions, a thorough understanding of networking basis, and basic knowledge of IP addressing.

The new CCNA certification track will replace all the credentials that you could obtain earlier within the Associate level. With these changes, the Cisco pathway will look completely different than ever. Thus, there will be only three certificates for this level: DevNet Associate, CCNA, and CCNA Cyber Ops.

  • New CCNP certification program

Changes will also be made to the CCNP certification program. There are many professional-level certificates that are retiring and are not going to be available in 2020. The networking specialists pursuing the CCNP track have always been required to start with a specialization path at the CCNA level. However, all this is going to change. For instance, CCNA Security is now leading to CCNP Security. But soon, in order to get a professional-level credential, you will need to pass one core and one concentration exam. It will be a standard procedure, and you won’t need to have an associate-level certification as a requirement.

However, the structure of the CCNP exams is likely to remain the same as before. The number of questions for each test is not indicated, but the allocated time is already available for the candidates on the official website. As we mentioned above, the applicants will still be required to clear one core exam and any of the eight concentration tests in order to earn any CCNP certification. The new professional-level track will include DevNet Professional and five CCNP certificates.

  • New CCIE certification program

There are also many changes to CCIE. Due to them, there will now be six CCIE tracks. Instead of the dedicated written exams, you will have to clear one core test and then take the 8-hour lab. For example, to obtain the CCIE Security certification, you will have to pass 350-701 SCOR, which is the CCNP Security core exam. After that, you will have to take the CCIE Security v6.0 lab. This is common across all the new certificates, except CCIE Enterprise.

There are two options for the CCIE Enterprise certification path. They include CCIE Enterprise Infrastructure and CCIE Enterprise Wireless. Both of these tracks adopt the CCNP Enterprise test (300-401 ENCOR), which is their written exam. The new expert-level pathway includes the same credentials, but a higher level, and CCDE.

Introduction to DevNet – new certification track

Cisco also announced the introduction of a new certification path – DevNet. This new track will take effect in February 2020. It combines infrastructure and programming (mainly with Python).

The DevNet track will have four levels:

– Expert;

– Professional;

– Specialist;

– Associate.

These certification paths follow the same conventions as the other 5 tracks. After obtaining a DevNet certificate of the Associate level, you can clear one exam, and then get a credential of the Specialist level. Alternatively, you can also take two tests to earn the professional-level certification.

What will happen to your existing certification in 2020?

The new Cisco certification program will be available on February 24, 2020. For CCNP, DevNet Specialist, and CCNA, your current certificate will not be interfered with. It will remain active and valid until its expiration date. If you already have a credential, it will be transitioned to an equivalent in the newly launched program. As for the DevNet Expert certification, if you are already an active CCIE certificate holder, then Cisco will convert your suspended year into an active one. For instance, if your active CCIE credential is to be suspended on April 21, 2020, then you are guaranteed active status throughout 2020 until April 21, 2021, after the launch of the new certification tracks in February.


The Cisco certifications discussed here are the main ones that the company has already announced. You can choose a certificate you want and should begin to prepare for it as early as possible. As you can see, these changes are not so scary, so don’t be afraid of them. Prepare for a certification exam at the earliest possible time and be among the first candidates who will be able to earn a Cisco credential in the first days after the launch of the new program.